Global News Journal

Beyond the World news headlines

from Africa News blog:

Should developing world have more say in crisis talks?

Photo

When world leaders meet in Washington to tackle the global financial crisis, Africa will be represented only by South Africa.

 

African officials meeting in Tunis this week to discuss the impact of the crisis argued that the continent needed better representation, given the effects that the turmoil is having in Africa as well as the continent’s growing financial importance. The complaint could apply equally to other developing countries.

 

The global crisis has come just as many African economies were turning a corner, buoyed by improvements in governance, technological change, debt relief, higher prices for their exports as well as inflows of funds from Asia and from Western investors seeking higher yields.

 

Many African countries have spent decades gearing economic policies to attract more private capital and dispel a reputation as unreliable investment destinations.

Rwanda deja vu? UN council hesitates on more Congo troops

Photo

In 1994 the U.N. Security Council failed to prevent the slaughter of some 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus. U.N. officials often refer to that period as the darkest chapter in the 60-year history of U.N. peacekeeping.

In 2000 the council accepted responsibility for dragging its heels and failing to prevent the Rwandan genocide. Members of the 15-nation body vowed to take lessons from the tragedy.

Saudi king basks in praise at UN interfaith forum

Photo

The price of oil may have dropped by more than half in recent weeks but the Saudi petrodollar appears to have lost none of its allure, judging by the procession of very important visitors to the New York Palace Hotel this week and to the U.N. General Assembly. With President George W. Bush in the lead, they have all come to present their compliments to King Abdullah, the Saudi ruler, who has turned the Manhattan hotel and the world body into an extension of his court, complete, it would seem, with a Majlis to receive petitioners.

Naturally, all the VIPs visiting him are eager to congratulate his majesty on his interfaith initiative, a gathering of religious and political leaders which took place  this week under the auspices of the United Nations. The meeting has attracted extravagant praise from, among others, Tony Blair, the former British Prime Minister,  and Shimon Peres,  the veteran Israeli president.

“Frauenpower” at Siemens: another crack in the glass ceiling?

Photo

Siemens’ announcement this week that it has appointed a woman to its management board has generated a loud hullabaloo in the media, with newspapers trumpeting “the womanless age at Siemens is over” and “Barbara Kux, the strong woman at Siemens.”

But how was the news of a woman’s appointment to a senior executive position deserving of a celebratory press release and the ensuing excitement? Surely in an era of equal opportunities in developed countries, such news should be commonplace.

Once popular Greek PM struggling to reconnect

Photo

By Dina Kyriakidou

Once the most popular politician in Greece, Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis
has seen his ratings decline, hit by a wave of scandals, party rebels and the world economic crisis.

As little as a year ago, he managed to turn his political fortunes around, winning elections after deadly forest fires, a feat admired by friends and foes alike.

Does Algeria now have a president for life?

Photo

After the Algerian parliament changed the constitution to lift presidential term limits, north Africans are asking whether Algeria now has a president for life.

 

In making the change, Algeria has followed a route taken in recent years by other African countries such as Cameroon, Chad and Uganda, all of which removed the limit of two presidential terms.

from Africa News blog:

How serious is Sudan’s Darfur ceasefire?

Photo

Sudan's President Omar Hassan al-Bashir was in a jubilant mood when he announced to crowds of supporters that he was declaring a ceasefire in Darfur.

From his body language, you might have thought he had already ended the crisis and achieved his goal of avoiding a possible indictment by the International Criminal Court for alleged war crimes in Darfur.

from Africa News blog:

How serious is Sudan’s Darfur ceasefire?

Sudan's President Omar Hassan al-Bashir was in a jubilant mood when he announced to crowds of supporters that he was declaring a ceasefire in Darfur.

From his body language, you might have thought he had already ended the crisis and achieved his goal of avoiding a possible indictment by the International Criminal Court for alleged war crimes in Darfur.

from FaithWorld:

How credible is a Saudi initiative on interfaith dialogue?

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, which the U.S. State Department lists as a "country of particular concern" because of its severe restrictions on religious freedom, is sponsoring talks at the United Nations in New York today and tomorrow on improving interfaith dialogue. Is this a credible exercise? (Photo: King Abdullah with U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon at U.N. in New York, Nov 12, 2008)

Analysis leading up to the meeting has been full of reservations. Our Riyadh bureau chief Andrew Hammond noted that the influential religious establishment in Saudi Arabia shows scant support for the king's initiative. Our Middle East news editor Samia Nakhoul quotes Saudi delegation member Jamal Khajoggi as saying "The king can change positions, he can hire and fire people but he cannot change the mind-set of people or the clerical establishment quickly. It has to be gradual."

Nigeria: Will someone turn on the lights?

Photo

Returning to Nigeria for the first time in five years, nothing is more striking than the mobile phones ringing wherever you go.

 

The phone signal barely drops on a drive some five hours out of Abuja, through countryside where the only people visible are hoeing the red earth and balancing unwieldy stems of sugar cane on bicycles. A growing number of village households now have phones.

  •