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Assad or no Assad, West asks, as IS rises and conflict rages PARIS: Faced with a seemingly unending bloody conflict in Syria and the rise of the Islamic State group, is President Bashar al-Assad the lesser of the country's evils and should the West re-engage with him?While world powers such as the United States, France and Britain refuse to have anything to do with a leader the French prime minister described as a "butcher", the question is increasingly being raised within these countries.Staffan de Mistura, the UN envoy for Syria, echoed this feeling this month when he said Assad was "part of the solution" to end a conflict that has killed more than 210,000 people, displaced nearly half the country's population and spilled over into neighbouring nations.And this week, a private trip to Damascus by French lawmakers who met Assad for talks drew an angry response from the French government which cut diplomatic ties with Syria in 2012 -- but was feted ...


Indonesia deports Australian journalist for visa violations JAKARTA: An Australian journalist has been deported from Indonesia for reporting without a proper visa as she covered two Australian drug traffickers on death row, an immigration official said Saturday.Candace Sutton, a reporter for the Daily Mail, was taken in for questioning by immigration officials on Wednesday as she interviewed a relative of one of the Australian convicts in the coastal town of Cilacap.The town is close to a prison island where the traffickers Myuran ...

Sri Lanka inflation hits 11-year low COLOMBO: Sri Lanka's inflation hit an 11-year low in February on the back of drastic price reductions ordered by the new government, official figures showed Friday.The Colombo Consumer Price Index, the main measure of inflation in the island, increased by 0.6 percent in February, down from 3.2 percent in January and 4.2 percent a year ago.The previous low of 0.5 percent was recorded in January 2004.The new government of President Maithripala Sirisena, who came to ...

EU panel casts doubt on Germany's proposed motorway toll BERLIN: A German plan to introduce a motorway toll next year aimed at foreign drivers would violate European Union laws, in the view of an EU Commission panel, a German magazine reported on Friday. The EU experts' analysis found that the toll would discriminate against foreign drivers because German motorists would be compensated with a reduction in car taxes. "It is clearly a contradiction to offer relief to all domestic motorists by exactly the same ...

Turkish foreign visitor arrivals rise 9.08pc in January ISTANBUL: The number of foreign visitors to Turkey rose 9.08 percent year-on-year in January to 1.25 million people, Tourism Ministry data showed on Friday. Out of all the foreign visitors, 55 percent entered the country through Istanbul. Copyright Reuters, 2015

Brazil loses 81,774 jobs in January, way more than expectations SAO PAULO: Factories, farms and services companies in Brazil shed a net 81,774 jobs in January, the labor ministry said on Friday, the latest evidence that the nation's once booming job market is rapidly losing steam. The number compared with a forecast of 20,000 net dismissals in a Reuters poll of analysts. Copyright Reuters, 2015

Poland seen cutting rates by 25 bps in March and in Q2 WARSAW: Poland is likely to cut interest rates by 25 basis points next week before delivering one more reduction in the second quarter to counter a long decline in consumer prices, a Reuters poll showed on Friday.Seventeen out of 25 economists polled from Feb. 25 to Feb. 27 expect the central bank's Monetary Policy Council (MPC) to cut the benchmark rate to a new record low of 1.75 percent when it meets on Tuesday and ...


 



 
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Annual2013/14
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