01232017Mon
Last update: Mon, 23 Jan 2017 05am

Europe

World - Europe

Turkey moves closer to expanding Erdogan powers ANKARA: The Turkish parliament early Saturday approved a draft bill that would dramatically expand the powers of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, meaning the country will vote on changing the constitution later this year.The government insists the proposals to create an executive presidency will ensure simpler and more effective administration but critics say it will give Erdogan more power that is unchecked.The parliament approved the 18-article constitution in a final vote with 339 "yes" votes. 142 MPs voted against the bill.Each article was put to a vote in the 550-seat parliament, where the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) enjoys a comfortable majority. At least 330 votes -- a three-fifths majority -- were needed to adopt the constitutional change. Immediately after the bill was approved, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said the "last word" would be had by the people in a referendum, expected to be held in April."No one should have ...

World - Europe

British PM says Trump 'recognises importance of NATO': FT LONDON: British Prime Minister Theresa May said Friday that she believed US President Donald Trump "recognises the importance and significance of NATO", despite him days earlier dubbing the military alliance obsolete.In an interview with the Financial Times, May said: "I'm also confident the USA will recognise the importance of the cooperation we have in Europe to ensure our collective defence and collective security."The British premier is expected to visit Trump in the spring, according to ...

World - Europe

Putin won't watch Trump's inauguration live: Kremlin MOSCOW: Russian President Vladimir Putin won't be watching the live ceremony of Donald Trump's inauguration Friday, his spokesman said, rubbishing the idea of him being Moscow's man in Washington."I don't think that he plans to watch it live but of course he will follow it in the news, perhaps even as the main news item," Peskov told journalists.Separately, he told Rossiya 24 state channel it would be a grave mistake for foreign and domestic observers ...

World - Europe

No longer 'realistic' to exclude Assad from Syria deal: Turkey DAVOS: Turkey said on Friday it was no longer "realistic" to insist on a solution to the Syria conflict without President Bashar al-Assad."We have to be pragmatic, realistic. The facts on the ground have changed dramatically," Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Simsek told a panel on Syria at the World Economic Forum in Davos. "Turkey can no longer insist on a settlement without Assad. It is not realistic." Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2017 ...

World - Europe

Lagarde warns of race to bottom on trade, regulation, taxes DAVOS: The head of the International Monetary Fund said on Friday that one of the biggest risks to the global economy in 2017 was "a race to the bottom" on taxes, regulations and trade, in an indirect reference to the policy plans of the incoming US administration. "If the disruptions we are expecting for 2017 as a result of what has happened in 2016 prove to be all negative and we are to end up ...

World - Europe

Germany says US under Trump must abide by trade deals BERLIN: Washington must stick to international agreements under the presidency of Donald Trump, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said on Friday, but does not expect a major trade war despite the President-elect's attack on German car makers. Trump - now hours away from his inauguration - has vowed to make sweeping changes to US trade policy, and economists see his protectionism as the biggest risk to US growth. "The United States also signed international agreements," ...

World - Europe

UNESCO chief says latest destruction in Syria's Palmyra sites is war crime PARIS: The head of the United Nations cultural agency said on Friday that the destruction of the Tetrapylon and the facade of the Roman Theatre in the Syrian city of Palmyra by Islamic State militants was a "new war crime." "This destruction is a new war crime and an immense loss for the Syrian people and for humanity," UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova said in a statement. "This new blow against cultural heritage, just a ...