World News Roundup

Middle East pushes up global execution rate

GlobalPost – Iran, Iraq, Yemen, and Saudi Arabia pushed up global rate.

Plan of Action Proves Elusive for Group of Emerging Powers

New York Times – BRICS – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa — has had difficulty finding common ground on how to exert collective geopolitical influence since forming three years ago.

US flight diverted after pilot is restrained

Al Jazeera – Las Vegas-bound flight forced to divert after captain displayed “erratic behaviour” and was subdued by passengers.

US suspends food aid to North Korea

Al Jazeera – Official says Pyongyang has “broken its promise to refrain from missile launches and cannot be trusted”.

Good news: Colombia and its rebels seek peace

GlobalPost – So why are they stepping up the killing?

Lula cancer treatment ‘success’

BBC – Former Brazilian President Luis Inacio Lula da Silva’s treatment for throat cancer has been successful, doctors say.

Argentina’s dissenters

BBC – Opinion polls suggest that two-thirds of Argentines support their country’s claim of sovereignty over the Falkland Islands. But there are also dissenting voices, who find it hard to engage in debate.

Red-hot Chile peepers

BBC – Based in the Atacama Desert, the VLT – or Very Large Telescope – is the biggest optical facility of its kind in the world. But how does it work, and what can you see?

India Cracks Down on Tibetan Districts on Eve of Summit

New York Times – With Chinese President Hu Jintao arriving for a diplomatic summit meeting, Indian authorities sought to prevent Tibetans from staging anti-China protests in New Delhi.

China policeman ‘sought UK talks’

BBC – The policeman at the centre of a major Chinese political scandal sought talks with UK officials hours before he fled to a US mission, the BBC learns.

Radiation ‘fatally high’ at Japan reactor

Al Jazeera – Examination of containment chamber at tsunami-hit Fukushima Daiichi plant’s number 2 reactor reveals extensive damage.

News Corp Australia hacking row

BBC – Australian officials express concern over allegations that News Corporation engaged in hacking and piracy to damage its commercial TV competitors.

Saudi deputy consul abducted in Yemen

Al Jazeera – Abdallah al-Khalidi taken by gunmen as he was about to get into his car outside his residence in southern port of Aden.

Iranian Official Cites April 13 as Date for Nuclear Talks

New York Times – Comments by Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi represented one more step in a diplomatic minuet playing out against a backdrop of speculation about a possible military strike by Israel.

Top Israeli duo’s bond forged in secret unit

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Forty years before becoming Israel’s top decision-making duo, Benjamin Netanyahu and Ehud Barak first made news on the blood-stained wing of a hijacked Belgian airliner.

Mofaz wins Israel opposition vote

BBC – Israel’s main opposition party, Kadima, has elected the former defence minister and army chief, Shaul Mofaz, as its new leader.

Peace plan fails to end Syria strife

Al Jazeera – Cities are being shelled and neighbourhoods raided, a day after Damascus accepted UN-Arab League initiative.

AU ‘concern’ over Sudan fighting

BBC – The African Union says it is deeply concerned at recent border clashes between Sudan and South Sudan, amid reports of continuing air attacks.

Mali coup leaders unveil new constitution

Al Jazeera – African delegation set to arrive to press for restoration of democracy, as thousands march in support of mutineers.

Lesson in democracy

BBC – What can other African countries learn from Senegal’s peaceful poll?

European Left backs France’s Hollande

Al Jazeera – If elected, the Socialist candidate may help leftist coaliations in France, Germany and Italy to also take power.

EU proposes elite cybercrime unit

BBC – The European Commission announces plans to set up a dedicated centre to fight cybercrime, based in the Netherlands.

UK economic growth revised down

BBC – UK economic growth in the last three months of 2011 is revised down to a contraction of 0.3%, partly due to the transport sector.

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