Archive for the ‘politis’ Category

Oil rises to new record as dollar drops

March 17, 2008

By GILLIAN WONG, Associated Press

SINGAPORE – Oil prices jumped to an all-time trading high near $112 a barrel Monday in Asia as the tumbling U.S. dollar and plunging stock markets prompted investors to seek shelter in commodities.

An oil rig in a file photo. Oil jumped to a record above $111 ...
Oil jumped to a record above $111 a barrel on Monday, as a surprise weekend cut in the Federal Reserve discount rate and the fire sale of stricken investment bank Bear Stearns sent the dollar to all-time lows.(File/Reuters)

Investors fled the dollar after a surprise move by the U.S. Federal Reserve on Sunday to provide cash to financially squeezed Wall Street investment houses pushed the battered greenback deeper into multiyear lows against the yen.

“The Fed’s move overall will help the liquidity of the U.S. dollar, and that will really further soften the dollar,” said Victor Shum, an energy analyst with Purvin & Gertz in Singapore. “Meanwhile, investors seem to be just following the mantra of buying oil and commodities to hedge against the falling dollar and inflation.”

Light, sweet crude for April delivery spiked to a record $111.80 a barrel — up $1.59 from Friday’s close — in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange, midafternoon in Singapore. It later slipped back to $111.61 a barrel.

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Chinese security forces swarm Tibet

March 15, 2008
By AUDRA ANG, Associated Press Writer

BEIJING – Soldiers on foot and in armored carriers swarmed Tibet’s capital Saturday, enforcing a strict curfew a day after protesters burned shops and cars to vent their anger against Chinese rule. In another western city, police clashed with hundreds of Buddhist monks leading a sympathy demonstration.

Chinese armoured military vehicles line a streets in the Tibetan ... 
Chinese armoured military vehicles line a streets in the Tibetan capital Lhasa a day after violent protests broke out following days of demonstrations against Chinese rule. The US embassy in Beijing issued a warning Saturday against travel to Tibet and majority Tibetan areas of west China after clashes between Chinese troops and protestors in Lhasa left a reported 30 dead.(AFP)

The violence erupted just two weeks before China‘s Summer Olympic celebrations kick off with the start of the torch relay, which passes through Tibet. China is gambling that its crackdown will not draw an international outcry over human rights violations that could lead to boycotts of the Olympics.

The latest unrest began Monday on the anniversary of a 1959 uprising against Chinese rule. Tibet was effectively independent for decades before communist troops entered in 1950.

Initially, the protests were led by Buddhist monks demanding the release of other detained monks. Their demands spiraled to include cries for Tibet’s independence and turned violent Friday when police tried to stop a group of protesting monks. Pent-up grievances against Chinese rule came to the fore, as Tibetans directed their anger against Chinese and their shops, hotels and other businesses.

It was the fiercest challenge to Beijing‘s authority in nearly two decades.

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NATO caught between expansion, Russia’s ire

March 7, 2008

By Nicholas Kralev
The Washington Times
March 7, 2008
BRUSSELS — Divisions surfaced in NATO yesterday over the future membership of Ukraine and Georgia, with some nations reluctant to anger Russia by admitting the two former Soviet republics.
Some allies want to offer Ukraine and Georgia a “Membership Action Plan,” the formal path to preparing for membership. But several European ministers expressed concerns about angering Russia.
NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer answers questions ...
 NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer answers questions after a ministerial meeting in Brussels.Greece has stood firm and refused to allow Macedonia to join the NATO military alliance until a row over its name, which has festered for more than 17 years, has been resolved.
(AFP/John Thys)
“I will not hide that I’m skeptical, but we’ll discuss that calmly today,” German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said before yesterday’s meeting of foreign ministers from 26 NATO nations.

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Thailand: New PM Also To Take Defense Minister’s Job To Deter Military Coup

February 4, 2008

(AP) BANGKOK, THAILAND: Thailand’s new prime minister said Sunday (3 Feb) that he will also become the defense minister in a soon-to-be unveiled Cabinet to deter the military from staging a coup against his government.

The cabinet, to be announced in the coming days, is expected to be stocked with close advisers, friends and relatives of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, who was toppled in a 2006 military coup.

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