08242016Wed
Last update: Wed, 24 Aug 2016 06am

Europe

World - Europe

Food aid demand in NE Nigeria could double in a month: UN GENEVA: The number of people in northeast Nigeria who need food aid could nearly double within a month, as the Boko Haram insurgency and economic pressures intensify suffering, the UN said Friday.A crisis fuelled by years of radical Islamist violence has left more than three million people in the northeast "in a state of moderate or severe food insecurity," said Bettina Luescher, spokeswoman for the UN's World Food Programme. But tough economic conditions in Nigeria -- caused by low oil prices and surging inflation -- could see that number rise to 5.5 million "next month", Luescher told reporters in Geneva. "We are so concerned about where this crisis is going," she said. Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2016 ...

World - Europe

German interior minister calls for partial burqa ban BERLIN: German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere came out Friday in favour of a partial burqa ban amid a fierce national debate on integration."We agree that we reject the burqa, we agree that we want to introduce a legal requirement to show one's face in places where it is necessary for our society's coexistence -- at the wheel, at public offices, at the registry office, in schools and universities, in the civil service, in court," ...

World - Europe

Merkel sees no end to EU sanctions against Russia BERLIN: There is no reason to lift the European Union's sanctions against Russia as Moscow has not fulfilled all of its commitments under the Minsk peace plan, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in an interview published on Friday. Merkel told the RedaktionsNetzwerks Deutschland (RND) thatRussia had caused a major crisis by annexing the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea in 2014 and with its support for separatists in eastern Ukraine."Europe had to react against this violation ...

World - Europe

France's Hollande says feels 'urge' to run again in 2017 PARIS: French President Francois Hollande says he may run in next year's elections provided he sees a chance of winning, but would quit politics if he lost, according to a book published on Friday.Quoted by journalists Antonin Andre and Karim Rissouli in "Conversations Privees avec le President" (Private Conversations with the President), Hollande highlighted the strain of politics, the burden of high office and the passing of time."I know what it's like... to spend years ...

World - Europe

Spain's Rajoy to face confidence vote in week of Aug. 30 MADRID: Spain's lower house of parliament will begin to discuss acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's bid for a second term in office on Aug. 30, the house speaker said on Thursday, meaning he will likely face a confidence vote the following day. The Spanish parliament usually stages a debate to invest a prime minister before holding a vote on their plan for a government the next day. If the candidate fails to secure an absolute ...

World - Europe

Russia takes budget gamble by shelving Bashneft stake sale MOSCOW: A surprise delay to Russia's privatisation of mid-sized oil producer Bashneft does not bode well for plans to sell a stake in energy giant Rosneft this year.A failure of that deal too would deal a heavy blow to state finances. Moscow needs privatisation revenue to help meet its targets for a 2016 budget based on optimistic oil price projections. The alternatives are problematic: a sovereign wealth fund is already dwindling, domestic borrowing costs remain ...

World - Europe

De Mistura says will work out details of Aleppo truce with Russia GENEVA: The United Nations special envoy for Syria said on Thursday he would work with Russia to iron out details of a planned 48-hour humanitarian ceasefire in Aleppo, in order to deliver aid quickly to civilians. Earlier, the Russian defence ministry said on Twitter Russia was willing to support a plan by UN envoy Staffan de Mistura for weekly 48-hour "humanitarian pauses" in Aleppo, from next week."The Special Envoy welcomes the Russian Federation statement, and ...