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World - Finland risks `serious crisis` with Russia if it joins NATO: study

If Finland joined NATO it would provoke a `serious crisis` with neighbouring Russia, an expert report commissioned by the government warned on Friday. The report also said that Finland and Sweden should decide together if they want to join the transatlantic military alliance. `Finland joining NATO with Sweden staying out would create a strategically awkward situation, leaving Finland as a strategic outpost without territorial contiguity with NATO,` the analysis said.

Friday, April 29, 2016  20:29


World - Berlin: German nuclear commission has shown way for sustainable solution

A report on allotting the costs of atomic waste storage by a commission overseeing Germany`s nuclear exit lays the foundations for a sustainable solution, government spokesman Steffen Seibert said on Friday. `The report has been unanimously agreed, opening the way for a joint solution and a sustainable solution was presented,` Seibert said during a government news conference. The commission said this week it wanted utilities operating atomic power plants to pay 23.3 billion euros ($26.55 billion)into a state-fund to cover the costs of waste storage.

Friday, April 29, 2016  13:14


World - EU executive opposes call for easier suspension of visa-free travel

By Tom Koerkemeier BRUSSELS (Reuters) - A proposal by Germany and France to make it easier to suspend visa-free travel to the European Union from countries such as Turkey drew a frosty reception from the executive European Commission on Friday. In what was seen as a move to make visa liberalization for Turks, Ukrainians and Georgians more acceptable, Berlin and Paris wrote to EU partners this week calling for a tougher safeguard mechanism in case of a spike of asylum requests, overstays or readmission refusals. Under their plan, which would have to be formally put forward by the Commission, any member state would be allowed to suspend visa-free travel from any country for six months unless EU states voted by a qualified majority to overrule it.

Friday, April 29, 2016  12:00


World - Brussels suspect `dumped metro bomb in toilet`

A Swedish suspect in the Brussels and Paris attacks has told investigators that he dumped the explosives that he carried onto the Belgian capital`s metro system into the toilet, reports said Friday. Osama Krayem, 23, doused the home-made TATP explosive that he had carried into Maalbeek metro station with water before trying to dispose of it in the lavatory of the apartment where the attackers were based, La Libre Belgique newspaper said. It said investigators thought his claims were `credible` as TATP, the favoured choice of the Islamic State group as it can be made from readily available chemicals, is in crystal form and dissolves in water.

Friday, April 29, 2016  18:40


World - Finnish NATO membership would lead to crisis with Russia: government report

If Finland were to join NATO it would strengthen the country`s security but would also lead to a serious crisis with neighboring Russia, a government-commissioned working group report stated on Friday. While an open conflict with Russia would be unlikely, Finland`s NATO membership would trigger a harsh political reaction from Kremlin, affecting trade between the two countries, the report prepared for Prime Minister Juha Sipila`s center-right government said. Militarily-neutral Finland shares a 1,340 km-long border and difficult history with its former ruler.

Friday, April 29, 2016  15:03


World - Brazil land activists facing `increased intimidation` with six killings in 2016

By Chris Arsenault RIO DE JANEIRO (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Land rights campaigners and environmentalists are facing growing violence and intimidation in Brazil, with at least six activists killed so far this year, a human rights group said. The killings, tracked between January and February 2016, happened in three largely rural Brazilian states with a history of land conflicts: Rondnia, Maranho, and Alagoas, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) reported this week. South America`s largest country has some of the world`s widest inequality in land distribution, according to a U.S. government report, with one percent of the population owning nearly half of the country`s land.

Friday, April 29, 2016  17:11


Business - Brexit vote not affecting U.S.-Europe trade talks: negotiators

U.S. and European trade negotiators said on Friday that the looming referendum on whether Britain should leave the European Union was not affecting their talks toward reaching a sweeping trans-Atlantic free trade deal. Assistant U.S. Trade Representative Daniel Mullaney and European Commission negotiator Ignacio Garcia Bercero told reporters that they are not considering implications of the June 23 vote as they try to reach a deal between the world`s two largest trading blocs.

Friday, April 29, 2016  15:58


World - New violence as Paris police break up youth protest

Several dozen youth protesters clashed with police in the early hours of Friday in a central Paris square after refusing orders to disperse, police said. Police made 27 arrests and kept 24 people in custody after scenes of violence that saw protesters hurling chunks of concrete at riot police and torching vehicles. Around 100 `especially mobile and violent demonstrators` forced their way through a police barricade at the Place de la Republique, police said.

Friday, April 29, 2016  08:57

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