Weekly News Wrap: Monday, April 7, 2014
Your weekly selection of international law and international relations headlines from around the world:
- French and African soldiers serving in Central African Republic are “overwhelmed” by the “state of anarchy” in the country, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said a day after Chadian troops began withdrawing from the peacekeeping mission.
- Nigeria has overtaken South Africa as Africa’s largest economy after a rebasing calculation almost doubled its gross domestic product to more than $500bn, data from the statistics office showed.
- West African leaders endorsed “in principle” their Economic Partnership Agreement with the EU.
- U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will visit China’s sole aircraft carrier when he arrives in the country, in an unprecedented opening by Beijing to a potent symbol of its military buildup.
- Japan and Australia clinched a basic trade deal to cut import tariffs, Australian media reported, as U.S. and Japanese officials stepped up efforts to reach a parallel agreement that would re-energize stalled talks on a broader regional pact.
- At least 29 people were killed, most or all of them believed to be rebels, in the besieged Old City of Homs when a car bomb exploded.
- The navies of Iran and Pakistan plan to hold joint military exercises in the eastern part of the Strait of Hormuz on Tuesday, Iran’s state news agency said on Sunday.
- Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, has threatened to take unilateral action against Palestinians, if they press ahead with moves towards statehood.
- Iran hopes enough progress will be made at talks with major powers this week to let negotiators start drafting an accord to settle a dispute over its nuclear program.
- A Dutch law firm has filed a criminal complaint in the Netherlands against Rwandan president Paul Kagame for genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity, among others. The complaint can be found here.
- In related news, France said on Saturday it had canceled plans to attend a ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide following accusations of French involvement in the massacre by Rwandan President Paul Kagame. Rwanda responded by barring the French ambassador to Rwanda from attending any events marking the genocide.
- Police in the Philippines have filed a complaint for child trafficking and child abuse against a holidaying Italian diplomat arrested at a resort south of the capital Manila in the company of three boys.
- Protests in eastern Ukraine in which pro-Russian activists seized public buildings in three cities are part of a plan to destabilize Ukraine and bring in Russian troops, Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk said.
- Cuba said the United States continues to use social media to “subvert” the island’s government and that the revelation this week of a U.S.-created, Twitter-like service for Cuba was just one of several examples.
- A leading ally of Angela Merkel has criticized the United States for failing to provide sufficient assurances on its spying tactics and said bilateral talks were unlikely to make much progress before the German leader visits Washington next month.