International

Trump’s summit no-show draws Asian nations closer together

Views - 4 Saturday, 17 November 2018 21:58

SINGAPORE (Reuters): US President Donald Trump didn’t make it to this week’s summit of Asian nations in Singapore, but his influence was still keenly felt among the leaders who gathered in the city. One prime minister warned that the trade war be


Global markets: Sterling scarred by Brexit turmoil; Asia shares cling to trade hopes

Views - 3 Saturday, 17 November 2018 00:00

SYDNEY (Reuters): The British pound lay battered and bruised in Asia on Friday after a bout of political turmoil fanned fears the country could crash out of the European Union without a divorce deal. Asian share markets fared better as hopes for a th


‘I’m going to see this through’: UK PM May vows to fight for Brexit deal

Views - 4 Saturday, 17 November 2018 00:00

LONDON (Reuters): Prime Minister Theresa May vowed to fight for her draft divorce deal with the European Union on Thursday after the resignation of her Brexit secretary and other ministers put her strategy and her job in peril.


US imposes sanctions for Khashoggi killing, Saudis seek death penalty

Views - 2 Saturday, 17 November 2018 00:00

WASHINGTON/RIYADH (Reuters): The United States imposed economic sanctions on 17 Saudi officials on Thursday for their role in the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, as Saudi Arabia’s public prosecutor sought the death p


Pence says ‘empire and aggression’ have no place in Indo-Pacific

Views - 6 Friday, 16 November 2018 00:00

SINGAPORE (Reuters): US Vice President Mike Pence told leaders of Southeast Asian nations on Thursday that there is no place for “empire and aggression” in the Indo-Pacific region, a comment that may be widely interpreted as a reference to China


PM May suffers severe blow on Brexit as Ministers quit

Views - 3 Friday, 16 November 2018 00:00

LONDON (Reuters): British Prime Minister Theresa May was dealt a severe blow on Thursday when her Brexit Secretary and another Minister quit, striking at the heart of a draft divorce deal with the EU she is battling to sell to her party, Parliament a


Wife of Malaysia’s former PM Najib charged with two counts of graft

Views - 3 Friday, 16 November 2018 00:00

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters): Malaysia on Thursday accused Rosmah Mansor, the wife of former Prime Minister Najib Razak, on charges of soliciting and receiving bribes involving a sum of 189 million ringgit ($45.12 million) to help a company secure a govern


Rohingya in Bangladesh protest efforts to send them back to Myanmar

Views - 2 Friday, 16 November 2018 00:00

Bangladesh/YANGON (Reuters): Hundreds of Rohingya Muslim refugees in Bangladesh protested on Thursday against any attempt to send them back to Myanmar after the launch of a repatriation plan was postponed.Bangladesh had begun preparations to repatria


The fish that swallowed the whale

Views - 3 Friday, 16 November 2018 00:00

Continued from Page 15 Mahinda Rajapaksa is not a selfish man. He institutionalised the exploitative privileges and perks of his team from base to the top of the pyramid. Despite his great charisma, this episode has made him a political clown. He has


India’s October trade deficit widens to $ 17.13 b

Views - 2 Friday, 16 November 2018 00:00

NEW DELHI (Reuters): India’s October trade deficit widened to $ 17.13 billion due to a higher oil import bill, the country’s Trade Ministry said in a statement on Thursday. In September, the trade deficit was at $ 13.98 billion. India, the world


Britain agrees Brexit divorce deal with EU, May’s opponents vow to thwart it

Views - 4 Thursday, 15 November 2018 00:10

LONDON (Reuters): Britain struck a draft divorce deal with the European Union after more than a year of talks, thrusting Prime Minister Theresa May into a perilous battle over Brexit that could shape her country’s prosperity for generations to come


Pence decries violence against Rohingya in open remarks to Suu Kyi

Views - 2 Thursday, 15 November 2018 00:00

SINGAPORE (Reuters): US Vice President Mike Pence criticised Myanmar’s military for the persecution of Rohingya Muslims in a meeting with the country’s leader Aung San Suu Kyi on Wednesday, and said he was keen to hear that those responsible for


‘Defending the indefensible’: Malaysia’s Mahathir slams Suu Kyi over Rohingya crisis

Views - 2 Thursday, 15 November 2018 00:00

SINGAPORE (Reuters): Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said on Tuesday Myanmar’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi was trying to “defend the indefensible” over alleged atrocities committed by the country’s military against minority Roh


Days after visit, Trump blasts France’s Macron as relations sour

Views - 3 Thursday, 15 November 2018 00:00

WASHINGTON/PARIS (Reuters): US President Donald Trump attacked his French counterpart on Tuesday in a series of tweets that underscored how much the once-friendly ties between the two leaders have soured, just two days afte


Iran executes two men accused of economic crimes

Views - 2 Thursday, 15 November 2018 00:00

Geneva (Reuters): Iran executed two men accused of economic crimes on Wednesday, part of an effort to stem financial misconduct as the country faces an economic crisis and new US sanctions targeting its oil sector. One of the two executed men was Vah


Warnings of a ‘domino effect’ of protectionism as Asian leaders meet

Views - 8 Thursday, 15 November 2018 00:00

SINGAPORE (Reuters): Asian leaders gathered for a summit on Tuesday amid warnings that the post-World War Two international order is in jeopardy and trade tensions between Washington and Beijing could trigger a “domino effect” of protectionist me


Japan’s economy contracts in Q3 as natural disasters, trade woes bite

Views - 4 Thursday, 15 November 2018 00:00

TOKYO (Reuters): Japan’s economy contracted more than expected in the third quarter, hit by natural disasters and a decline in exports, a worrying sign that trade protectionism is starting to take its toll on overseas demand. The contraction in the


Oil jumps towards $ 67 as OPEC, partners discuss supply cut

Views - 3 Thursday, 15 November 2018 00:00

LONDON (Reuters): Oil rose towards $ 67 a barrel on Wednesday, recouping some of the previous session’s slide, on the growing prospect of OPEC and allied producers cutting output at a meeting next month to prop up the market. Crude rallied after th


German economy contracts on weak foreign trade, auto bottleneck

Views - 2 Thursday, 15 November 2018 00:00

BERLIN (Reuters): The German economy contracted for the first time since 2015 in the third quarter as global trade disputes swung the traditional export growth engine of Europe’s largest economy into reverse, raising concerns that a near-decade-lon


Asian shares pare losses on US-China trade optimism, oil slides

Views - 6 Wednesday, 14 November 2018 00:00

SYDNEY (Reuters): Asian shares pared losses on Tuesday as hopes for a de-escalation in the Sino-US tariff war rose on a report that China’s top trade negotiator was preparing to visit the United States ahead of a meeting between the two countries


Brexit talks are nearing their endgame, UK PM May says

Views - 3 Wednesday, 14 November 2018 00:00

LONDON (Reuters): British Prime Minister Theresa May said on Monday that there were still considerable unresolved issues with the European Union over Brexit as the two sides approached the “endgame” in negotiations for departure from the bloc. Ma


Amnesty International strips Myanmar’s Suu Kyi of ‘conscience’ award

Views - 4 Wednesday, 14 November 2018 00:00

YANGON (Reuters): Amnesty International has withdrawn its most prestigious human rights prize from Aung San Suu Kyi, accusing the Myanmar leader of perpetuating human rights abuses by not speaking out about violence against the Rohingya Muslim minori


Turkey’s Erdogan says Khashoggi recordings ‘appalling,’ shocked Saudi intelligence

Views - 5 Wednesday, 14 November 2018 00:00

ISTANBUL (Reuters): President Tayyip Erdogan said recordings related to the killing of Jamal Khashoggi, which Turkey has shared with Western allies, are “appalling” and shocked a Saudi intelligence officer who listened to them, Turkish media repo


Israel-Gaza border ignites in most serious fighting since 2014 war

Views - 3 Wednesday, 14 November 2018 00:00

GAZA/JERUSALEM (Reuters): Israel launched more air strikes on Gaza on Tuesday as Palestinians kept up rocket fire on Israeli territory, in the worst surge of violence since a 2014 war. The fighting - that has killed six Palestinians, five of them mil


Vietnam becomes seventh country to ratify Trans-Pacific trade pact

Views - 8 Tuesday, 13 November 2018 00:18

HANOI (Reuters): Vietnam’s law-making body, the National Assembly, on Monday unanimously ratified a landmark 11-country deal that will slash tariffs across much of the Asia-Pacific. One of the region’s fastest growing economies, its status cement


Saudi energy minister says no plans to break up OPEC

Views - 3 Tuesday, 13 November 2018 00:16

Abu Dhabi (Reuters); Saudi Arabia is not preparing for a break up of OPEC and believes the group will remain the global central bank for oil for a long time, Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al Falih said on Monday. Saudi Arabia’s top government-funded


Euro zone growth slowdown is a return to normal

Views - 3 Tuesday, 13 November 2018 00:15

Frankfurt (Reuters); Euro zone growth is merely returning to normal after an exceptional 2017 and the slowdown is primarily due to weaker external demand, European Central Bank Vice President Luis de Guindos said on Monday. He added that negative mar


Modi to get a test in state votes as general election looms

Views - 4 Tuesday, 13 November 2018 00:14

New Delhi (Reuters): India began the first of five state elections to be held in coming weeks on Monday, important tests for Prime Minister Narendra Modi as he plots a course that he hopes will ensure him victory in a general election due by May. Vot


Bangladesh delays general election by a week to 30 Dec

Views - 5 Tuesday, 13 November 2018 00:11

Dhaka (Reuters): Bangladesh will defer general elections by a week, to 30 December, a top election official said on Monday, partially meeting demands from several opposition parties for more time to prepare. After the poll was set last week for 23 De


Singapore calls for closer S.E. Asia, says multilateralism under threat

Views - 4 Tuesday, 13 November 2018 00:09

SINGAPORE (Reuters): Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong called on Monday for greater integration between Southeast Asian countries at a time when multilateralism is under threat. His remarks came at a business summit on the sidelines of meeting


Today's Columnists

The Brahmin footprint in Sri Lankan history

Saturday, 17 November 2018

It is generally said that there are no genuine “Sri Lankan” Brahmins in the island today, and that those Brahmins who officiate as priests in Hindu kovils (temples) are of Indian origin with close ties with Tamil Nadu.


Country paying for Sirisena’s childlike behaviour

Saturday, 17 November 2018

Many were surprised on 26 October to see former President Rajapaksa being appointed Prime Minister by the very man who defeated him a couple years ago, at a considerable risk to himself and to those who helped him win the election. Then events beca


The JR-MR effect

Saturday, 17 November 2018

Sri Lanka over the last few weeks has experienced a twin crisis. One is political provoked by its Constitution, and the other economic engendered by its politics. However, this crisis is the combined effect of two previous presidencies, those of J.R.


The fish that swallowed the whale

Friday, 16 November 2018

This is an easy-peasy, elementary effort of an ordinary citizen to comprehend the mad scramble for power among the political class. It is undertaken in the belief that the crisis we face is an opportunity to reject the family kleptocracy of Mahinda R


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