United States

OP-ED: Egyptian-Saudi Coalition in Defence of Autocracy

The Bahraini Arabic language newspaper al-Wasat reported on Wednesday Apr. 9 that a Cairo court began to consider a case brought by an Egyptian lawyer against Qatar accusing it of being soft on terrorism.

Is Puerto Rico Going the Way of Greece and Detroit?

Puerto Rican society has been shaken to its foundations by the announcement in February by Standard & Poor's and Moody's credit rating agencies that they had downgraded the island's creditworthiness to junk status.

The Iranian Nuclear Weapons Programme That Wasn’t

When U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts Carmen M. Ortiz unsealed the indictment of a Chinese citizen in the UK for violating the embargo against Iran, she made what appeared to be a new U.S. accusation of an Iran nuclear weapons programme.

U.S. Blasted on Failure to Ratify IMF Reforms

While Republicans complain relentlessly about U.S. President Barack Obama’s alleged failure to exert global leadership on geo-political issues like Syria and Ukraine, they are clearly undermining Washington’s leadership of the world economy.

U.S. Urged to Push World Bank on Human Rights Safeguards

Rights advocates and community leaders, together with some U.S. lawmakers, are urging the United States to take a more robust role in pushing the World Bank to explicitly incorporate human rights into policies that dictate how and when the bank can engage in project lending and technical assistance.

Developing Nations Seek U.N. Retaliation on Bank Cancellations

The 132-member Group of 77, the largest single coalition of developing nations, has urged Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to provide, "as soon as possible...alternative options for banking services" in New York City following the mass cancellation of bank accounts of U.N. missions and foreign diplomats.

U.S.-Colombia Labour Rights Plan Falls Short

Three years after Colombia agreed to U.S. demands to better protect labour rights and activists, a “Labour Plan of Action” (LPA) drawn up by the two nations is showing mixed results at best, according to U.S. officials and union and rights activists from both countries.

U.N. Non-Committal over U.S. Visa Refusal to Iranian Envoy

When New York City was picked as the location for the United Nations many moons ago, the politically-important decision was followed by the 1947 U.S.-U.N. Headquarters Agreement which obligated Washington to facilitate - not hinder - the smooth functioning of the world body.

Criminal Court a U.S.-Israeli “Red Line” for Palestinians

When Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas decided to defy the United States and Israel over stalled peace negotiations, he formally indicated to the United Nations last week that Palestine will join 15 international conventions relating mostly to the protection of human rights and treaties governing conflicts and prisoners of war.

Cuba’s Youth Were the Target of USAID’s ZunZuneo

The generations born in Cuba in the last two or three decades, permeated by the influences of societies that differ radically from the one their government is trying to build, are in the eye of the ideological storm that feeds the conflict between Havana and Washington.

Truman Was Less “Pro-Israel” than Commonly Known, New Book Says

With U.S.-mediated Israel-Palestinian peace talks once again dangling over the abyss, a new book has kicked up controversy over the roots of U.S. policy toward Israelis and Palestinians.

Supreme Court Further Empowers Wealthy Political Donors

In a decision with major implications for the U.S. political system, a bare majority of the Supreme Wednesday ruled that the government cannot limit total spending by individuals on federal elections.

California Cities Gear Up to Fight “Big Soda”

Mexico is fighting obesity and accompanying diseases with a one-peso per litre tax on sugar-sweetened beverages that kicked in Jan. 1. France implemented its “cola tax” in 2012. Several U.S. states tax sugar-sweetened beverages, including Vermont, Rhode Island, Arkansas, Tennessee, West Virginia and Virginia. Illinois legislators are considering such a tax.

With U.S. Taking Off, Kyrgyzstan Mulls Selling Airports to Russia

Russia’s state-run oil giant Rosneft wants to purchase a majority stake in the state-controlled company that owns all of Kyrgyzstan’s civilian airports.

U.S. Rejected Israeli Demand for Iran Nuclear Confession

The Barack Obama administration appears to have rejected a deal-breaking demand by Israel for an Iranian confession to having had a covert nuclear weapons programme as a condition for completing the comprehensive nuclear agreement.

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