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An Important News

Riyadh and Tehran ‘fight for influence’ in Lebanon

Iran’s foreign minister has promised business deals to Lebanon, while some in Beirut are anticipating aid from Riyadh on the back of a forthcoming visit from a Saudi delegation. Two weeks after Beirut announced the formation of a government following an eight month impasse, the Middle East’s major regional rivalry is playing out in the Levant. Adviser to the Saudi ...

Hezbollah calls for talks on Lebanon state debt

Prime Minister Saad Hariri’s government last month categorically ruled out restructuring and pledged to repay debt at existing interest rates BEIRUT: Hezbollah urged Lebanon’s new government on Tuesday to negotiate with banks to restructure the country’s massive national debt. The unprecedented call by a Hezbollah member of Parliament suggests that the group, which for the first time controls three ministries, ...

Nine facts about the medical evacuation bill

With the medical evacuations bill now cleared by the Senate, and with politicians coming off the long run with all kinds of misleading claims about what this package does, let’s spell out some basic facts. How do the medical evacuation procedures work? The new legislation sets out the conditions by which sick people on Nauru and Manus Island can be transferred to ...

Australian politicians want R. Kelly banned

The embattled singer’s possible entry into the country is reportedly being protested by a group of politicians there. On Tuesday, R. Kelly announced new tour dates in a tweet promising shows in Australia, New Zealand and Sri Lanka. R. Kelly announces overseas tour There were no additional details released, and the tweet was later deleted. The singer has been embroiled ...

Australia can meet its Paris targets – if government doesn’t hinder progress

New research finds Australia is installing renewable energy faster than any other country, a trend that will allow Australia to meet its economy-wide Paris targets five years ahead of schedule if politics doesn’t derail the trend, according to new research from the Australian National University. While emissions have been rising across the economy since the Abbott government repealed the carbon ...

Friday morning snow snarled traffic, caused accidents

In St. Clairsville, a parked wreck truck suddenly slid over a hill. The road had to be closed, and it took a while to get it out. At the Ohio State Highway Patrol, every trooper was responding to numerous accidents. “Oh, we had a lot of people stuck, a lot of people stuck in ditches,” said Sgt. Joe Weaver of the Ohio State ...

Australia Removes Last Asylum-Seeker Children From Detention

Australia has removed the last asylum-seeker children from detention on the remote island of Nauru, ending one of the most contentious parts of the nation’s border-protection policy. The final four children and their families have been approved to fly to the U.S. for resettlement, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said in a statement Sunday. There were 109 children in detention when ...

Lebanon finally has a new government. Here are three reasons for cautious optimism.

After a nine-month deadlock marked by political bickering, a struggling economy and massive growing public debt, Lebanon’s political elite finally agreed Thursday on the formation of a new government. The compromise among Lebanon’s sectarian political factions will certainly inject some much-needed social normalcy and stability, and the new government will historically include four women ministers, among them Raya al-Hassan, leading the ...

As Hezbollah Rises in Lebanon’s Government, Fears About U.S. Response Follow

BEIRUT, Lebanon — Lebanon’s newly formed government, which gives the Islamist movement Hezbollah key ministries, has raised concerns that the country could run afoul of sanctions by the United States that prohibit material support for the Iran-backed group. On Friday, the United States warned Hezbollah against propping up its agenda with its new position, which includes key posts in Lebanon’s ...

British man and family plead for asylum after hiding in Australia in fear of Russian threats

A British man who leaked financial information about one of Russia’s most powerful politicians is pleading with the Australian government to allow his family to live in the country, despite their claim for asylum having been refused. In 2014 Nicholas Stride provided secret documents to media about the financial dealings of Russia’s former deputy prime minister, Igor Shuvalov, when he ...