Phuket’s daily world news round-up – Saturday 23rd February 2013

Phuket’s daily world news round-up – Saturday 23rd February 2013

Phuket’s daily world news round-up – Saturday 23rd February 2013THAILAND – Isoc calls the shots
Internal Security Operations Command will have full authority to decide where and how to extend offers of amnesty to militants who surrender under Section 21 of the Internal Security Act in other areas in the troubled South. – M79 attack hurts Pattani police
PATTANI – Six police were wounded after M79 grenades were fired at them on Friday evening while they were exercising at their station in Kapo district. – PM may seek Malaysian role in peace process during KL visit
Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s visit to Malaysia on Thursday will address the possible role of Kuala Lumpur in facilitating a peace process between Bangkok and the Malay Muslim separatist movement. – Dam to up power output
Vajiralongkorn dam to increase hydro-electricity output in early April to help offset the brief shortage of natural gas from Myanmar for power generation. – PCC’s subcontractors seek help
Several subcontractors plan to petition the government for help after a firm that won a lucrative contract to build police stations and flats, and then employed them to do the work, failed to pay them. – Defence ministers to cool tension over lunch
Thai and Cambodian defence ministers will have a special lunch in the disputed border zone to discuss the Preah Vihear temple issue on Tuesday. – No upset victory expected in city polls
Two leading pollsters say they doubt if there will be an upset victory in the upcoming Bangkok gubernatorial election. – New Chao Phraya bridge planned
A new bridge over the Chao Phraya River linking two districts of Samut Prakan will ease congestion and reduce logistics costs for transport businesses, says Deputy Transport Minister Prasert Chanruangthong.

ASIA – UN sounds alarm over Myanmar boat people
The UN’s refugee agency has raised the alarm over the number of boat people perishing in the Indian Ocean. – China acknowledges ‘cancer villages’
China’s environment ministry appears to have acknowledged the existence of so-called “cancer villages”, after years of public speculation about the impact of pollution in certain areas. – Japan PM won’t ‘tolerate’ China challenge
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has told an audience in Washington DC he won’t tolerate any challenge to control over contested islands from China. – Deadly clashes over Bangladesh bloggers
At least four people die in Bangladesh as police clash with Islamists protesting against bloggers they accuse of blasphemy. – Bus crash kills 13 in Pakistan
At least 13 people were killed in Pakistan when a speeding bus plunged into a ravine on Friday.

UK – UK loses top AAA credit rating
The UK loses its top AAA credit rating for the first time since 1978, with Chancellor George Osborne saying it will not weaken his “resolve” on the deficit. – Police chief email accuses Hillsborough group of lying
South Yorkshire’s chief constable accused a group representing Hillsborough Disaster victims and their families of lying, it has emerged.

AFRICA – Pistorius granted bail
Oscar Pistorius was granted bail on Friday, paving the way for him to be freed from custody pending his trial in the Valentine’s Day shooting death of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp. – ‘Many die’ in Mali mountain clashes
Thirteen Chadian soldiers and dozens of Islamist rebels are killed in heavy fighting in a mountainous area of northern Mali, Chad’s army says. – Kenya ‘hate leaflets’ discovered
Kenyan police find leaflets inciting violence being distributed in some areas, less than two weeks ahead of general elections.

EUROPE – Eurozone downturn and deficits to persist, Commission says
The eurozone recession will persist into 2013, the European Commission has conceded in its latest forecast. – Thieves bag a million in watches
Thieves on the French Riviera have made off with a million euros ($A1.3 million) worth of luxury watches. – Italy general election campaign ends
Political parties in Italy hold their final campaign rallies ahead of a general election that begins on Sunday. – Athens is hit by torrential rainfall
Heavy rain in the Greek capital Athens floods roads and homes, causing huge traffic jams and disrupting its train and tram network, officials say.

LATIN AMERICA – Cuba’s Raul Castro mentions retirement
Cuba President Raul Castro has raised the possibility of leaving his post during an appearance with Russian President Dmitri Medvedev. – Chile fire kills at least 4
A fire has killed at least four people in a neighbourhood near Chile’s capital and a 2-month old baby is missing amid the rubble. – Ruling party wins Barbados election
The Democratic Labour Party retains power in a closely fought election in the Caribbean island of Barbados.

MID-EAST –  ‘Civilians killed’ by Aleppo rockets
At least 12 civilians are killed by rockets in Aleppo, activists say, as opposition groups agree to form a rebel government. – Almost 100 wounded in Palestinian clashes
94 Palestinians have been wounded, with police responding to stone-throwing demonstrators with tear gas, stun grenades and gunfire. – Third death in Bahrain protests
A protester struck by a tear gas canister fired by police in Bahrain last week has died, opposition officials say, the third death in a week of unrest.

US – US sends 100 armed troops to Niger
The US has deployed 100 troops to Niger to assist French forces in neighbouring Mali, President Barack Obama says. – Obama, Japan PM firm on North Korea
President Barack Obama says the US will stand firm with Japan on North Korea, but his administration has tried to calm tensions between Japan and China. – US government to sue Armstrong
The US government joins a lawsuit against Lance Armstrong after talks with the disgraced cyclist’s lawyers broke down. – US grounds entire F-35 jet fleet
The US grounds its entire fleet of F-35 fighters – the Pentagon’s most expensive weapons programme – after a cracked engine blade is discovered.


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