Warren's Feed
Jan 15, 2014

Western, Arab states pledge $1.4 billion in fresh Syria aid

KUWAIT (Reuters) – Western and Gulf Arab nations pledged $1.4 billion (£852 million) on Wednesday for United Nations aid efforts in Syria, where an almost three-year-old civil war has left millions of people hungry, ailing or displaced.

The pledge arose from an appeal for $6.5 billion launched last month that is the largest in U.N. history. The world body estimates that the conflict has reversed development gains in Syria by 35 years, with half its people now living in poverty.

Jan 15, 2014

US, Gulf Arab states pledge $1 billion in fresh Syria aid

KUWAIT (Reuters) – Donors including the United States and wealthy Gulf Arab countries pledged $1 billion on Wednesday for U.N. humanitarian efforts in Syria, devastated by almost three years of civil war.

Kuwait’s emir, Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmed al-Sabah, promised $500 million in fresh assistance, while the United States announced a contribution of $380 million. Qatar and Saudi Arabia pledged $60 million each.

Jan 15, 2014

Kuwait pledges $500 million in Syria aid at donor conference

KUWAIT (Reuters) – Kuwait’s emir promised $500 million on Wednesday for U.N. humanitarian efforts in Syria, devastated by almost three years of civil war.

Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmed al-Sabah made the pledge at an international donor conference intended to help the world body reach a $6.5 billion aid target for the crisis in 2014.

Jan 14, 2014

Kerry asks Vatican to help win release of American jailed in Cuba

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday asked the Vatican to help win the release of an American contractor who has been in jail in Cuba since 2009.

Kerry, the first Catholic U.S. secretary of state in more than 30 years, stopped at the Vatican on his way to Kuwait to hold talks with Pope Francis’ top aide, Secretary of State Archbishop Pietro Parolin.

Jan 14, 2014

U.S. was slow to lose patience as South Sudan unraveled

WASHINGTON/UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) – It was a bad start for the U.S. president and the leader of the world’s newest country.

At their first meeting, less than three months after South Sudan’s independence, Barack Obama challenged President Salva Kiir with what he said was U.S. evidence that Kiir’s government was arming rebels fighting the Sudanese government in Khartoum.

Jan 13, 2014

U.S. and Russia say Syria aid access and local ceasefire possible

PARIS (Reuters) – Syria’s government and some rebels may be willing to permit humanitarian aid to flow, enforce local ceasefires and take other confidence-building measures in the nearly three-year-old civil war, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Monday.

Kerry said that he and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov “talked today about the possibility of trying to encourage a ceasefire. Maybe a localized ceasefire, beginning with Aleppo,” Syria’s largest city. “And both of us have agreed to try to work to see if that could be achieved.”

Jan 12, 2014

Friends of Syria group urges opposition to attend Geneva talks

PARIS (Reuters) – The “Friends of Syria”, an alliance of mainly Western and Gulf Arab countries who oppose Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, urged opposition groups on Sunday to attend this month’s peace talks, saying there was no other route to a political solution.

With 10 days to go until the first direct talks between the opposition and President Bashar al-Assad’s government – set for January 22 in Switzerland and dubbed “Geneva 2″ – Western backers have struggled to unify rebel groups.

Jan 10, 2014

Exclusive: U.S. weighs targeted sanctions against South Sudan – sources

UNITED NATIONS/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States is weighing targeted sanctions against South Sudan due to the failure of leaders in the world’s youngest nation to take steps to end a crisis that has brought the country to the brink of civil war, sources briefed on U.S. discussions told Reuters.

“It’s a tool that has been discussed,” a source told Reuters on condition of anonymity about the possibility of U.S. sanctions against those blocking peace efforts or fuelling violence in South Sudan. Another source confirmed the remarks, though both declined to provide details on the precise measures under consideration.

Jan 10, 2014

U.S. weighs targeted sanctions against South Sudan -sources

UNITED NATIONS/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States is weighing targeted sanctions against South Sudan due to the failure of leaders in the world’s youngest nation to take steps to end a crisis that has brought the country to the brink of civil war, sources briefed on U.S. discussions told Reuters.

“It’s a tool that has been discussed,” a source told Reuters on condition of anonymity about the possibility of U.S. sanctions against those blocking peace efforts or fueling violence in South Sudan. Another source confirmed the remarks, though both declined to provide details on the precise measures under consideration.

Dec 20, 2013

With cash, Ukraine’s political foes bring fight to Washington

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Rival political factions facing each other on the streets of Ukraine have also enlisted heavyweight lobbyists in Washington, some with connections at the highest levels of U.S. government, to promote their causes to American policymakers, media and members of Congress.

Among the high-profile lobbyists registered to represent organizations backing Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich’s government are prominent Democratic lobbyist Anthony Podesta and former Republican congressional leaders Vin Weber and Billy Tauzin.