Global News Journal

from India Insight:

India, China take a measure of each other at border row talks

August 5, 2009

China and India are sitting down for another round of talks this week on their unsettled border, a nearly 50-year festering row that in recent months seems to have gotten worse.

from Tales from the Trail:

North Korea requests Clinton. So off he goes.

August 5, 2009

KOREA-NORTH/It turns out that it was North Korea which had suggested that former President Bill Clinton would be the best person to come and negotiate the release of two journalists who had been sentenced to 12 years of hard labor in the Stalinist state.
 
The U.S. government -- particularly Secretary of State Hillary Clinton -- had been working for months on trying to free the two journalists. The secretary of state reportedly proposed sending various people to Pyongyang, including Clinton's former vice president Al Gore, to lobby for the women's release.
 
But North Korea rejected Gore and other possible envoys like Senator John Kerry, Governor Bill Richardson and former ambassador to South Korea Donald Gregg. Pyongyang wanted President Clinton and passed that word along through the two detained journalists, Laura Ling and Euna Lee, who were making occasional phone calls to their families.
 
"In mid-July during one such phone call, Ms. Ling and Ms. Lee shared what the North Koreans had told them -- that they would be willing to grant them amnesty and release the two Americans if an envoy in the person of President Clinton would agree to come to Pyongyang and seek their release," a senior administration official said.

from Pakistan: Now or Never?:

Punishing Baitullah Mehsud

August 5, 2009

Pakistan's military campaign against Baitullah Mehsud in South Waziristan has been seen very much as a punitive mission - and that has just been forcefully highlighted by reports that the Pakistani Taliban leader's wife was killed in a missile strike. A relative said that Mehsud's second wife had been killed when a U.S. drone fired missiles into her father's house in the village of Makeen. He said four children were among the wounded.

from Africa News blog:

Boko Haram: a sect alone?

August 4, 2009

****** ****** ****** ****** ****** ****** ****** ****** ****** ****** ******The Boko Haram sect surprised many in Nigeria and elsewhere with the violence of their uprising last week.******Before Boko Haram was suppressed by the security forces at the cost of nearly 800 lives, we learned that the group's name means "Western education is sinful" in the Hausa language used in northern Nigeria.******We also learned that the sect's charismatic leader, Mohammed Yusuf, was, before he was killed while in police detention, opposed to all things Western.******Which prompts two thoughts. The first is that the anti-education message may not have much traction in Nigeria, a country whose inhabitants are determined to get ahead and secure the best education for their children. In many cases that will be either in the West or in Nigerian schools offering a Western-style curriculum.******During the years I spent in the country, staff working for me were always concerned about being able to raise enough money for their children's school uniforms and books.******And the second thought: Yusuf's opposition to the modern world seems to have had its limits. When the violence erupted in Maiduguri, he was seen riding in a Toyota car, dressed in military-style fatigues and accompanied by men carrying Russian-designed assault rifles.

Sudan open to pressure over trousers, not war crimes

August 4, 2009

Back in December, 2007, Sudan’s legal system was a focus of international media attention because of a British schoolteacher jailed for insulting Islam by naming the class teddy bear Mohammad. In that instance the teacher, Gillian Gibons, was pardoned and returned to her home in Britain.

from Tales from the Trail:

Bill grabs spotlight from Hillary

August 4, 2009

KOREA-NORTH/For months, Bill Clinton has stayed out of the diplomatic spotlight in deference to his wife.

from India Insight:

Manmohan Singh’s shrinking room for manoeuvre on Pakistan

August 3, 2009

It is more than two weeks since Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh signed a declaration with his Pakistani counterpart Yusuf Raza Gilani aimed at rebuilding ties, but the attacks on Singh haven't abated at home.

Newsmaker: Australian Treasurer Wayne Swan

By Reuters Staff
August 3, 2009

Australian Treasurer Wayne Swan will take questions from Thomson Reuters clients on how Australia managed to avoid recession and where the economy goes from here, at 9:15 am AEST on Tuesday (7:30 pm on Monday, EST).