Anna's Feed
Mar 24, 2015

U.S. removes dead Cubans, sunken ships from sanctions list

HAVANA/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States removed 45 companies and individuals from a Cuba sanctions blacklist on Tuesday, most of them dead people, defunct companies or sunken ships.

Among them was Amado Padron, a Cuban executed by a firing squad 26 years ago along with Arnaldo Ochoa, a decorated army general who was sentenced to death by Cuba’s communist government after he was found to be connected to international drug trafficking.

Mar 19, 2015

Ukraine stuck on an IMF dripfeed a year after Crimea seizure

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – In eight International Monetary Fund programs since independence in 1991, Ukraine has completed just one successfully. A year on from Russia’s seizure of Crimea, it looks unlikely it will live up to the terms of its latest deal with the IMF also.

Ukraine’s finance minister believes the IMF’s money is “not forever”, but over-optimistic economic assumptions and continued fighting in the east of the country will probably mean Ukraine will end up depending on foreign support given on its geopolitical significance, experts and former IMF officials said.

Mar 18, 2015

U.S. Treasury secretary says ‘dangerous’ not to pass IMF reforms

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew on Wednesday said failure by Congress to authorize reforms at the International Monetary Fund it was “dangerous” and would limit U.S. leverage on issues such as the China-led infrastructure bank.

But a senior Republican lawmaker expressed doubt Congress would take up the reforms this year, increasing the likelihood the IMF would seek to move ahead without the United States.

Mar 17, 2015

Ukraine says wants to be ‘flexible’ with its bondholders

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Ukraine’s finance minister on Tuesday said the country wants to be “flexible” in its discussions with sovereign bondholders over renegotiating its debt, and is not ruling out any form of agreement, including maturity extension.

Finance Minister Natalia Yaresko also called on the United States to further boost its financial assistance to help rebuild confidence in Ukraine’s economy as it struggles against pro-Russia separatists in the east. She declined to specify a specific figure.

Feb 26, 2015

Insight: West’s offer to rebuild Ukraine faces reality check

BRUSSELS/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Western powers are preparing what they say may be their most potent weapon against Moscow’s interference in Ukraine – a multi billion dollar aid package to rebuild a near-bankrupt state and realize the European dream cherished by many Ukrainians.

There is just one problem: foreign governments and international financing institutions are not willing to pour money into a dysfunctional state. Only this week the businessman brought in by the new authorities to clean up the tax service was himself suspended pending a corruption inquiry.

Feb 26, 2015

West’s offer to rebuild Ukraine faces reality check

BRUSSELS/WASHINGTON, Feb 26 (Reuters) – Western powers are
preparing what they say may be their most potent weapon against
Moscow’s interference in Ukraine – a multi billion dollar aid
package to rebuild a near-bankrupt state and realise the
European dream cherished by many Ukrainians.

There is just one problem: foreign governments and
international financing institutions are not willing to pour
money into a dysfunctional state. Only this week the businessman
brought in by the new authorities to clean up the tax service
was himself suspended pending a corruption inquiry.

Feb 23, 2015

U.S. homeland security says aware of no credible threat against malls

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Homeland Security Department said on Sunday it was not aware of any specific plot against U.S. shopping malls, backing away from comments by the department’s chief that he takes seriously a threat by Somali-based Islamist militants against the Mall of America in Minnesota and other shopping sites in the West.

Some U.S. and Canadian officials had earlier cast doubt on the credibility of the threat made in a video attributed to al Shabaab, which appeared to call for attacks on Western shopping areas, specifically mentioning Mall of America, the West Edmonton Mall in Canada, London’s Oxford Street and sites in Paris.

Feb 22, 2015

U.S. homeland security chief worried about al Shabaab mall threat

WASHINGTON, Feb 22 (Reuters) – The U.S. homeland security
chief said on Sunday he takes seriously an apparent threat by
Somali-based Islamist militants against prominent shopping sites
in the West including the Mall of America in Minnesota and urged
people there to be careful.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson was reacting to a
video attributed to al Shabaab appearing to call for attacks on
Western shopping areas, specifically mentioning Mall of America,
the West Edmonton Mall in Canada, London’s Oxford Street and
sites in Paris.

Feb 22, 2015

Homeland security chief worried about al Shabaab mall threat

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. homeland security chief said on Sunday he takes seriously an apparent threat by Somali-based Islamist militants against prominent shopping sites in the West including the Mall of America in Minnesota and urged people there to be careful.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson was reacting to a video attributed to al Shabaab appearing to call for attacks on Western shopping areas, specifically mentioning Mall of America, the West Edmonton Mall in Canada, London’s Oxford Street and sites in Paris.

Feb 10, 2015

IMF weighs dropping U.S. veto over delayed reforms: sources

WASHINGTON/MOSCOW (Reuters) – The IMF’s board last month discussed two options for moving forward on voting reforms without the United States, including a proposal under which Washington would lose its veto power at the global lender, according to three sources familiar with the proposals.

The sources, who have seen an IMF staff paper laying out the options, said the plan would ask the United States to temporarily give up its controlling share of IMF votes, amid growing frustration with U.S. foot-dragging on reforms meant to give emerging markets more say at the institution.