Andrew's Feed
Jan 2, 2012

Analysis: U.S. hopes new Iran sanctions more scalpel than axe

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States has armed itself with some of the toughest sanctions yet targeting Iran but must carefully assess how to avoid catching energy-importing allies such as Japan, South Korea and India in the crossfire.

President Barack Obama signed the law on Saturday imposing sanctions on financial institutions that deal with Iran’s central bank, the main clearinghouse through which OPEC’s No. 2 oil exporter deals with clients around the world.

Dec 30, 2011

Egypt assures U.S. no more raids on democracy groups

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Egyptian officials have assured the United States they will halt raids on pro-democracy and human rights groups and return property seized in a crackdown that strained ties with Washington, U.S. officials said on Friday.

U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and the U.S. ambassador in Egypt, Anne Patterson, spoke with top Egyptian officials including the head of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces on Friday to press U.S. demands that the non-governmental organizations, or NGOs, be allowed to resume normal operations,

Dec 29, 2011

U.S. deeply concerned by Egypt raid on pro-democracy groups

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States expressed deep concern on Thursday after Egyptian police raided offices of U.S.-backed pro-democracy and human rights groups, saying the harassment should stop immediately and hinting that Washington could review its $1.3 billion in military aid if the raids continue.

“The United States is deeply concerned that Egyptian judicial and police officials raided the offices of a number of non-governmental organizations today,” State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told a news briefing.

Dec 22, 2011

How the U.S. coaxed Myanmar in from the cold

YANGON, Myanmar (Reuters) – Myanmar’s generals were looking for a chance to improve ties with the United States. A disturbed American gave them one in May 2009, when he swam across Yangon’s Inya Lake on “a mission from God” to rescue Aung San Suu Kyi.

John Yettaw, a 53-year-old Vietnam veteran from Missouri, had hoped to smuggle the democracy champion out of the country in a burkha. He was convicted along with Suu Kyi for violating the terms of her house arrest. Instead of sending him to Yangon’s notorious Insein Prison, however, the junta let Yettaw fly out of the country with a U.S. senator.

Dec 22, 2011

Special Report: How the U.S. coaxed Myanmar in from the cold

YANGON, Myanmar (Reuters) – Myanmar’s generals were looking for a chance to improve ties with the United States. A disturbed American gave them one in May 2009, when he swam across Yangon’s Inya Lake on “a mission from God” to rescue Aung San Suu Kyi.

John Yettaw, a 53-year-old Vietnam veteran from Missouri, had hoped to smuggle the democracy champion out of the country in a burkha. He was convicted along with Suu Kyi for violating the terms of her house arrest. Instead of sending him to Yangon’s notorious Insein Prison, however, the junta let Yettaw fly out of the country with a U.S. senator.

Dec 21, 2011

In mourning, hermit kingdom North Korea seals itself off

DANDONG, China/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – North Korea was in seclusion on Tuesday, a day after it announced the death of its leader Kim Jong-il, as concern mounted over what would happen next in the deeply secretive nation that is trying to build a nuclear arsenal.

While Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged North Korea to follow a “path of peace,” diplomats and commentators were struggling to understand what would happen as it transitions from the 17-year iron rule of Kim Jong-il, 69 years old when he died, to that of his untested son, in his late 20s.

Dec 20, 2011

U.S. calls Arab League Syria plan “best opportunity”

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States said on Tuesday an Arab League peace plan for Syria might bring results, but that would depend on Damascus upholding its side of the bargain and eventually ditching President Bashar al-Assad.

Syria agreed on Monday to allow Arab states to monitor its compliance with the Arab League proposal, which is aimed at halting a government crackdown on protests that U.N. officials say has killed more than 5,000 civilians.

Dec 20, 2011

US signals N.Korea, keeping dialogue open after Kim death

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States has signaled to North Korea’s new leaders it hopes for progress on the nuclear issue and has pushed ahead with discussions on resuming food aid despite the death of leader Kim Jong-il, U.S. officials said on Tuesday.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who on Monday urged Pyongyang to embrace “the path of peace”, has set out U.S. parameters for what would be necessary for improved relations, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said.

Dec 20, 2011

U.S. signals North Korea, keeping dialogue open after Kim death

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States has signaled to North Korea’s new leaders it hopes for progress on the nuclear issue and has pushed ahead with discussions on resuming food aid despite the death of leader Kim Jong-il, U.S. officials said on Tuesday.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who on Monday urged Pyongyang to embrace “the path of peace”, has set out U.S. parameters for what would be necessary for improved relations, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said.

Dec 20, 2011

North Korea mourns dead leader, son is “Great Successor”

DANDONG, China/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – North Korea was in seclusion on Tuesday, a day after it announced the death of its leader Kim Jong-il, as concerns mounted over what would happen next within one of the world’s most secretive and unpredictable nations.

While U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged nuclear-armed North Korea to follow a “path of peace”, diplomats and commentators were still struggling to understand what would happen as it transitions from the 17-year rule of Kim Jong-il, 69 years old when he died, to that of his son, said to be aged in his late 20s.