Weekday News Wrap: Wednesday, May 2, 2012
- US President Obama makes a surprise visit to Kabul in order to sign a strategic pact setting out the US’ strategic long-term role. Shortly after his visit, large blasts were heard and at least six were killed in the country’s capital.
- Myanmar’s Suu Kyi makes her historic debut in parliament.
- The UN peacekeeping chief has said that the Syrian army is still using heavy weapons and found that both sides are in violation of the ceasefire.
- Uruguay became the first country to ratify the Domestic Workers Convention, a treaty that will come into force once it gains its second ratification.
- ABC News reports that Uganda is ratcheting up accusations that Joseph Kony and his Lord’s Resistance Army are receiving assistance from the government of Sudan.
- Civil society and local politicians in the Philippines are concerned that a new military agreement with the US concluded earlier this week would increase the Philippines’ dependence on the US.
- Over at International Political Economy Zone, Emmanuel Yujuico posts on the different alliances in the agricultural sector where China is supportive of the Philippines’ WTO request to waive rice import quota for a further five years until June 30, 2017, whereas the US is not. More on the Chinese-Philippines negotiations can be found here.
- Just as Hilary Clinton arrived in Beijing, Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng voluntarily left the US Embassy for a medical checkup. China’s Foreign Ministry has demanded an apology from the US for the interference in its domestic affairs.
- TIME has a piece about what the Chen saga means for the global economy, and the NY Times analyzes the case as a test for Obama’s Human Rights policy in China when these conflict with business and economic interests.
- At a speech at Chatham House, a South Sudan representative argued that China should take up a more active role in seeking a diplomatic solution to the ongoing border dispute between Sudan and South Sudan.
- An American group, United Against Nuclear Iran, is calling for a withdrawal of the IMF’s holdings in the Iranian Central bank or a suspension of Iran’s IMF Membership. The IMF has however declined and argues that the holdings in the Iranian Central Bank are not inconsistent with the EU and US sanctions.