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Trump fills homeland security, environment, China ambassador jobs | Reuters

Updated : Dec 08, 2016

By : Reuters

Category : World

Trump fills homeland security, environment, China ambassador jobs | Reuters

By Richard Cowan | WASHINGTON WASHINGTON President-elect Donald Trump on Wednesday picked a fossil fuel industry defender as his top environmental official, another retired general as homeland security chief and Iowa's governor as U.S. ambassador to China in choices at odds with some of his recent pronouncements.Trump, continuing to build his Cabinet as he prepares to take office on Jan. 20, said Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, 48, would be nominated to head the Environmental Protection Agency. #United States #India #Business #Environment #science #Crime #Taiwan
Germany's top court rules Muslim schoolgirls must join swimming lessons | Reuters

Updated : Dec 08, 2016

By : Reuters

Category : World

Germany's top court rules Muslim schoolgirls must join swimming lessons | Reuters

BERLIN Germany's highest court ruled on Wednesday that ultra-conservative Muslim girls must take part in mixed swimming classes at school, finding against an 11-year-old pupil who had argued that even wearing a burkini, or full-body swimsuit, breached Islamic dress codes.The Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe rejected an appeal by the girl's parents that she should be excused the classes because a burkini did not conform with Islam's ethic of decency, German media reported.A spokesman for the court could not be reached for comment.Germany is in the grip of a heated public debate about the role of Islam in society as it seeks to integrate more than a million mainly Muslim asylum seekers fleeing war and persecution who have entered this year and last. Chancellor Angela Merkel, whose conservatives have been punished at the polls in regional elections by voters angry at her open-door policy, on Tuesday proposed a ban on full-face Muslim veils.Her Christian Democrats, who have been bleeding support to the AfD, a populist party that says Islam is incompatible with the constitution, toughened their tone on integrating migrants at a party conference this week. #United States #India #Business #markets #Argentina #Entertainment #Foreign policy
Exclusive: UK's lower house would back triggering EU divorce talks - Reuters research | Reuters

Updated : Dec 08, 2016

By : Reuters

Category : World

Exclusive: UK's lower house would back triggering EU divorce talks - Reuters research | Reuters

By Kylie MacLellan | LONDON LONDON While the British government tries to prevent parliament from having to pass a law to trigger the country's exit from the European Union, Reuters research indicates the lower house would in fact support it, based on lawmakers' recent statements.Prime Minister Theresa May has said she aims to launch the two-year negotiating period for the country's departure from the 28-nation bloc by the end of March and that the referendum vote in June to leave the EU provides sufficient instruction.The High Court has said parliamentary approval is required to invoke Article 50 of the EU's Lisbon treaty, governing the EU exit process. The government is challenging that decision in the Supreme Court, which began hearing the case on Monday.If the government loses, the House of Commons lower chamber could in theory block Brexit, because a majority of lawmakers supported staying in the EU at the referendum. But recent public comments made by remain-supporting lawmakers from the ruling Conservative Party and main opposition Labour Party indicate that May would have more than the number of votes the government would need to pass a Brexit bill.Their positions, set out on social media, on their own websites or in media interviews, reinforce the likelihood of Brexit, which has wide implications for the EU and beyond.They could change by the time the Supreme Court rules in January, however, and any Article 50 bill could also face trouble in parliament's upper chamber, the House of Lords, although if it blocked the bill the government could retable it.THE NUMBERS At least 64 Conservative and Labour lawmakers in the lower house have said they plan to vote to trigger Article 50 if parliament is given a say #United States #Economy #markets #House #graphics
Italy PM Renzi resigns, president to consult with parties | Reuters

Updated : Dec 08, 2016

By : Reuters

Category : World

Italy PM Renzi resigns, president to consult with parties | Reuters

ROME Prime Minister Matteo Renzi tendered his resignation to the head of state on Wednesday following a weekend referendum in which Italians resoundingly rejected his proposed constitutional reforms.President Sergio Mattarella asked Renzi to carry on in a caretaker capacity while he holds consultations with the political parties to decide the next steps, a statement from the president's office said.The consultations will begin on Thursday at 1700 GMT and are due to end on Saturday afternoon. After the consultations Mattarella is widely expected to ask a member of Renzi's cabinet, or a politician from his Democratic Party to try to form a new government. Elections are due in 2018 but many politicians are calling for them to be held earlier #United States #Economy #Business #Middle East #United Kingdom #article
Aleppo displaced hide out in last rebel districts as army closes in | Reuters

Updated : Dec 08, 2016

By : Reuters

Category : World

Aleppo displaced hide out in last rebel districts as army closes in | Reuters

By John Davison | BEIRUT BEIRUT Years of siege conditions mean the citizens living in rebel-held parts of Aleppo are accustomed to danger, fear and tragedy. But as the Syrian army close in on the ruined streets of the Old City, they face some unbearable choices."I feel this is the end," Reem, a mother of two children, said via patchy internet connection from a rebel held district of the historic city centre. Cold and a lack of water had made her children ill and the family was surviving on one meal a day."We've long accepted that if we die we die, from barrel bombs and so on, but now we're scared that the army will come in and take my husband."The options facing Reem and others caught up in the rapid government advance are bleak: men of fighting age could be arrested whether they stay put or head to government-held districts. #United States #India #Syria #Middle East #Russia #United Kingdom #graphics
Turkey's purged NATO staff not coup plotters - alliance commander | Reuters

Updated : Dec 07, 2016

By : Reuters

Category : World

Turkey's purged NATO staff not coup plotters - alliance commander | Reuters

By Robin Emmott | BRUSSELS BRUSSELS NATO's top commander said on Wednesday he did not believe Turkish personnel sacked from NATO command were involved in July's abortive coup and has raised his concerns with Turkey about the impact on its armed forces.Curtis Scaparrotti, a U.S general who is NATO Supreme Allied Commander in Europe, said some 150 military staff, or half of the Turkish military under his command at NATO, had been detained, recalled or retired from the alliance after the July 15 coup attempt. Asked if he thought they might have been involved in the planning of a coup, Scaparrotti said: "No ... These officers served well here in NATO.""I have a concern about what happened to the people who were working for us," he told reporters following a meeting of NATO foreign ministers, saying he had raised the issue with the chief of Turkey's military General Staff."I've said to General (Hulusi) Akar, my concern is that they would follow the rule of law and treat their people appropriately," Scaparrotti said, adding that Akar had promised he would "personally look into their welfare".Reuters exclusively reported in October that Turkish authorities had dismissed hundreds of senior military staff serving with NATO in Europe and the United States following July's coup attempt as part of a wide-reaching security clampdown that has raised human rights concerns. #United States #India #Middle East #Europe #Crime #Security #Argentina
Pope warns media over sin of spreading fake news, smearing politicians | Reuters

Updated : Dec 07, 2016

By : Reuters

Category : World

Pope warns media over sin of spreading fake news, smearing politicians | Reuters

By Philip Pullella | VATICAN CITY VATICAN CITY Media that focus on scandals and spread fake news to smear politicians risk becoming like people who have a morbid fascination with excrement, Pope Francis said in an interview published on Wednesday.Francis told the Belgian Catholic weekly "Tertio" that spreading disinformation was "probably the greatest damage that the media can do" and using communications for this rather than to educate the public amounted to a sin.Using precise psychological terms, he said scandal-mongering media risked falling prey to coprophilia, or arousal from excrement, and consumers of these media risked coprophagia, or eating excrement.The Argentine-born pontiff excused himself for using such terms in order to get his point across while answering a question about the correct use of the media."I think the media have to be very clear, very transparent, and not fall into - no offence intended - the sickness of coprophilia, that is, always wanting to cover scandals, covering nasty things, even if they are true," he said. "And since people have a tendency towards the sickness of coprophagia, a lot of damage can be done."That section of the interview, all of which was distributed to reporters in an Italian translation of the interview in the pope's native Spanish, contained some of the most blunt language the pontiff has ever used about the media. He also spoke of the danger of using the media to slander political rivals."The means of communication have their own temptations, they can be tempted by slander, and therefore used to slander people, to smear them, this above all in the world of politics," he said #Sports #United States #India #Interview #Entertainment
Italy passes 2017 budget, paving way for PM Renzi's resignation | Reuters

Updated : Dec 07, 2016

By : Reuters

Category : World

Italy passes 2017 budget, paving way for PM Renzi's resignation | Reuters

By Giuseppe Fonte | ROME ROME The Italian parliament on Wednesday gave its final approval to the government's 2017 budget, which has irked the European Union, paving the way for Prime Minister Matteo Renzi to hand in his resignation.Renzi said he would quit following his crushing defeat in Sunday's referendum when Italians rejected his proposed reforms to the constitution, but the head of state Sergio Mattarella told him to delay his resignation until the budget was passed.Sweeping away all amendments to speed up its parliamentary passage, the upper house Senate approved the budget in a vote of confidence, with 173 votes in favour and 108 against.Minutes later, Renzi announced he would hand in his resignation to Mattarella at 7 p.m. (1800 GMT). "Budget approved #United States #Economy #India #Business #Middle East #Budget #lifestyle
Philippines' Duterte vows to protect police after inquiry shows rub out | Reuters

Updated : Dec 07, 2016

By : Reuters

Category : World

Philippines' Duterte vows to protect police after inquiry shows rub out | Reuters

MANILA Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday defended police officers who killed a detained mayor on a list of top drug suspects even after another law enforcement agency concluded the death was an extrajudicial killing.The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) on Tuesday disputed a police account that the mayor from central Leyte Province, Rolando Espinosa, was killed in a shootout in a jail when police came to search for guns and drugs last month.The bureau described Espinosa's killing as a "rub out"."I will have to defend them," Duterte said during a ceremony at the main army base in the capital, Manila, referring to the police officers. "I will listen to the story and I will take it as the true version .. #United States #Business #Middle East #Drugs #Crime #Police
Trump picks Iowa Gov Branstad as U.S. ambassador to China - transition official | Reuters

Updated : Dec 07, 2016

By : Reuters

Category : World

Trump picks Iowa Gov Branstad as U.S. ambassador to China - transition official | Reuters

By Dominique Patton and Steve Holland | BEIJING/NEW YORK BEIJING/NEW YORK President-elect Donald Trump will nominate Iowa Governor Terry Branstad as the next U.S. ambassador to China, a transition official said on Wednesday, choosing a longstanding friend of Beijing after rattling the world's second-largest economy by speaking to Taiwan's president.The appointment of Branstad may help to ease trade tensions between the two countries, the world's two biggest agricultural producers, diplomats and trade experts said. It also suggests that Trump may be ready to take a less combative stance towards China than many expected, the experts said.The New York real estate developer, who defeated Hillary Clinton in last month's election, has said he intends to declare China a currency manipulator when he takes office on Jan #United States #Governor #Hillary Clinton #markets #chinese #lifestyle