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China is mistaken to bar lawmakers from Hong Kong: Cameron LONDON: Prime Minister David Cameron said on Monday a Chinese decision to prevent a committee of British lawmakers from visiting Hong Kong was mistaken and heightened concerns about the situation in the former British colony.On Sunday, the chairman of parliament's foreign affairs committee said Chinese embassy officials had told him he and other British lawmakers would be refused entry to Hong Kong to undertake research related to an inquiry about progress towards democracy there.Cameron sharply criticised that decision on Monday, escalating a diplomatic dispute that threatens to damage relations between London and Beijing at a time when economic and trade ties between the two are becoming closer."His view is that the decision with regard to the foreign affairs committee is a mistaken one," Cameron's spokesman told reporters, saying Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond had raised a complaint about the matter with his Chinese counterpart last week on the sidelines of a ...

French business owners protest taxes, red tape PARIS: Several hundred business owners demonstrated in Paris on Monday to protest hefty taxes, charges and stifling regulations they say are driving their firms into the ground.The rally was to head to the imposing finance ministry later in the day in a bid to attach padlocks symbolising frustration at decades of government policies derided as obstructive.Called by the CGPME representing owners of small- and medium-sized businesses, the protest paralleled much bigger workers' demonstrations that more ...
Poland ruling party in local elections win WARSAW: Poland's ruling Civic Platform (PO) was on course to pull off a victory in a runoff of local elections Sunday, taking the country's main cities, according to an exit poll.The centre-right party was predicted to hold the capital Warsaw as well as win Gdansk, Wroclaw and Poznan in the second round of a highly-contentious vote.The PO mayor of Warsaw, Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz, was elected for a record third time taking 56.8 percent of the vote ...
Unruly rebel nightlife in east Ukraine DONETSK: The icy avenues of Donetsk have been silent for hours -- only the garish neon of the Banana Cafe sign cuts through the gloom, defying the curfew so that rebel fighters have somewhere to drink, smoke and fight.The underground bar is open 24 hours a day and one of the few nightspots in this separatist bastion of eastern Ukraine, where no one is supposed to be on the roads between 11:00 pm and 6:00 ...
Britain's Osborne pledges pre-election healthcare funding boost LONDON: British finance minister George Osborne announced a 2 billion pound annual increase in healthcare spending on Sunday, seeking to counter political attacks on his Conservative party's handling of the health service six months before an election.The National Health Service (NHS), which provides free healthcare at the point of delivery, is highly valued by voters and an issue on which opinion polls show Prime Minister David Cameron's centre-right Conservative party traditionally lag their main rivals, ...
Moldovans vote, may slow moves to integrate with Europe CHISINAU: Ex-Soviet Moldova voted on Sunday as polls showed the outcome might slow, though not halt, its moves to shift towards the European Union and away from Russia, which has hurt its economy by banning its wines and other prime exports.Surveys show public opinion in one of Europe's smallest and poorest countries is divided over whether to stick to the pro-Europe path pursued by the ruling centre-right coalition or reverse course and join the Russia-led ...
Russia urges EU to lift sanctions, promises to waive counter-measures MOSCOW: Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexei Meshkov urged the European Union to lift sanctions against Moscow over the Ukrainian conflict and promised to waive its counter-measures, Interfax news agency reported on Saturday.Moscow in August banned most Western food imports, worth $9 billion a year, in response to U.S. and European Union sanctions over Russia's role in Ukraine."We don't expect anything from our European partners. The only thing we expect is for them to leave the ...


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ICT 2014

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WeeklyDecember 15, 2014
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