Global News Journal

Beyond the World news headlines

Turkish PM ‘genocide’ comment triggers China ties concern

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        Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan’s accusation of genocide in describing the rioting which killed 184 people in China’s northwestern Muslim region of Xinjiang should come as no surprise to those familiar with his outspoken, populist style.

    The incident recalls the furore that followed Erdogan’s haranguing of Israel’s president over Israel’s Gaza offensive at the Davos forum in January when he told Shimon Peres: “When it comes to killing you know very well how to kill”.

    That outburst attracted strong approval among Turks and in the Arab world, but was also seen as potentially damaging for predominantly Muslim but secular Turkey’s role as a Middle East mediator.

    His latest comments have drawn an indignant response in China, and Turkish commentators are now voicing concerns that his undiplomatic approach could harm the relations which Turkey
is trying to develop with the world’s third-biggest economy.

France frets about the right to rap

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Should rappers be able to sing whatever they like in the name of art and should politicians be able to stop them taking to the stage? The question of censorship has jumped back to the fore in France with President Nicolas Sarkozy’s government, in a rather unlikely about-turn, jumping to the defence of a foul-mouthed rapper, while a leading Socialist has tried to muzzle him.

The rapper — pictured in the video above — is called Orelsan, a white, middle-class singer sometimes referred to as “France’s Eminem”, who shot to prominence earlier this year when a video of one of his songs became an Internet hit. Here is a taste of the lyrics (with the worst of the sexual imagery omitted!)

Sex education again in Malaysia, thanks to the courts

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By Niluksi Koswanage

Gay Austrian fashionista Bruno will not be making an appearance on Malaysia’s screens this summer for fear of corrupting this mostly-Muslim nation’s youth.

But Malaysia’s parents will still not have it easy as the country’s opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim  is again on trial for sodomy in a re-run of a 14-month case that in 1998 generated endless sexually explicit headlines and questions from curious children.

How Ill is Kim Jong-il?

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Photo:A compilation by Reuters of pool photographs and images provided by North Korea’s KCNA news agency showing North Korean leader Kim Jong-il from 2004 to 2009. The photograph in the lower right was released this week by KCNA

By Jon Herskovitz

The image the world once had of North Korean leader Kim Jong-il, with a trademark paunch, platform shoes and a bouffant hair-do, is gone and may never come back. He has now become a gaunt figure with thinning hair who has trouble walking in normal shoes, let alone ones with heels 8-10 centimetres (3-4 inches) high like he used to wear.

Sometimes admiration comes from unlikely places

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Barack Obama’s American admirers are not the only ones who compare former U.S. President John F. Kennedy to the current U.S. leader. Leftist Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, a vociferous critic of the United States, also invokes the charismatic late president when he talks about Obama, who, like Kennedy 48 years earlier, was a young senator when he was elected to the White House.

Chavez brought up Kennedy again this week, as he railed against Washington over the coup in Honduras, which many observers have called an unwelcome reminder of the ousters of Latin American leftists during the Cold War — waged partly under Kennedy.

from FaithWorld:

Baghdad church bombings leave tiny Christian minority trembling

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baghdad-church-1A spate of bombs targeting churches in Baghdad this week has Iraq's minority Christian community trembling at the prospect of being the next victim of militants trying to reignite war.

Iraqi Christians, one of the country's weakest ethnic or  religious groups, have usually tried to steer clear of its many-sided conflict. For the most part, they manage.

EU parliament gets a new head – does anyone care?

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 Pat Cox, Joseph Borrell, Hans-Gert Poettering and now Jerzy Buzek. What do they have in common ? For those outside the EU bubble in Brussels, Polish conservative Buzek was elected on Tuesday as the new president of the European Parliament, following in the footsteps of the others mentioned above.
    But does anyone really care ?
 I asked on Facebook if anyone could name the previous two presidents and from those of my friends who do not work in any of the European Union institutions, I received numerous responses ranging from Barack Obama to Seamus & Sheila McSpud.

 In his first media interview after taking over as the head of the EU’s directly elected assembly in 2007, Poettering told me he was going to make the European Parliament one of the best-known legislatures in the world.

So pigs are to blame after all!

And those pesky promiscuous viruses. More insight into the 1918 pandemic – the kind everyone fears may happen again – shows it circulated for a little while before it got bad. And as Tan Ee Lyn reports from Hong Kong, it was a swine flu as well:

http://www.reuters.com/article/scienceNews/idUSTRE56C64720090713

Merkel man jumps ship

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The man who has been so eloquently selling Chancellor Angela Merkel and her policies to the German public as a government spokesman for the last 3 years, 9 months and two weeks has been furloughed.

But Thomas Steg’s voluntary departure in Berlin just 2 months and 2 weeks before the federal election has raised more than a few eyebrows — he is not leaving his post as deputy government spokesman to go off and write a book or study horticulture but rather he will be leading the election campaign communications efforts of the man who wants to knock Merkel out of office — SPD candidate Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

from Pakistan: Now or Never?:

Pakistan and India: Signposts in the Sinai

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Even before Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and President Asif Ali Zardari broke the ice by meeting on the sidelines of a regional summit in Yekaterinburg, Russia last month, the real question over talks between India and Pakistan has not been about the form but the substance.

After the bitterness of last year's attacks on Mumbai by Pakistan-based militants, can India and Pakistan work their way back to a roadmap for an agreement on Kashmir reached two years ago? Although never finalised, the roadmap opened up the intellectual space for an eventual peace deal. This week's meetings between India and Pakistan on the sidelines of a Non-Aligned Movement summit in Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt could give some clues on whether it has any chance of being  revived.

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