July 23, 2013 |
TOKYO - Japanese voters dealt a runaway election victory Sunday to the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, exit polls indicated, in a strong sign of approval for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's ambitious plan to revive the world's third-largest economy. Sunday's vote, for seats in the upper house of parliament, gives Abe's ruling bloc control of both chambers - and it provides Abe with a mandate unmatched by any Japanese leader in nearly a decade. How Abe uses that political power will help determine the long-term health of Japan's economy and its relations with Asian neighbors.
February 13, 2013 |
MOSCOW - Russia's lower house of parliament Tuesday passed a bill prohibiting smoking in public places, an extraordinary measure in a country where about 60 percent of men smoke cigarettes. The bill was proposed by the Ministry of Health and endorsed by Prime Minister Dmitry A. Medvedev in an effort to limit the harm caused by smoking. The measure is expected to be easily approved by the upper house and signed by President Vladimir V. Putin within two weeks. The lower house gave the bill overwhelming approval, passing it by 441-1.
February 13, 2013
PARIS - After months of philosophical debate and massive street demonstrations for and against, the French National Assembly on Tuesday authorized same-sex marriage and adoption by gay couples, despite France's long history as a homeland for Roman Catholic tradition. The legislation, passed 329 to 229 with 10 abstentions, was called France's most far-reaching social change since abolition of the death penalty in 1981. The measure is scheduled to be taken up in April by the Senate, where the ruling Socialist-led coalition enjoys a majority and is likely to confirm the lower-house vote, despite warnings that the law undermines the foundations of French society . MOSCOW - Russia's lower house of parliament Tuesday passed a bill prohibiting smoking in public places, an extraordinary measure in a country where about 60 percent of adult men smoke cigarettes.
December 30, 2012 |
CAIRO - Egypt's Islamist president used his first address before the newly convened upper house of parliament on Saturday to warn against any unrest that could harm the country's battered economy, as he renewed calls for the opposition to join in a national dialogue. In the nationally televised speech, Mohammed Morsi said the nation's entire efforts should be focused on "production, work, seriousness and effort" now that a new constitution came into effect last week. He blamed protests and violence the past month for causing further damage to an economy already deteriorating from the turmoil since the fall of autocrat Hosni Mubarak early last year.
December 28, 2012 |
Russian President Vladimir V. Putin, acceding to the anti-American fervor that has gripped the country's legislature, said Thursday that he intends to sign a bill barring Americans from adopting Russian children. Various Kremlin officials had criticized the bill, which was designed as a means of retaliation against a new American law that targets corrupt Russian officials, but Putin has chosen not to heed their advice. Having spent the last year stoking hostility toward the United States, he is now faced with an emotional response from the parliament that seems to be on the verge of getting away from him. Though he raised questions about the adoption bill at his annual news conference earlier this month, and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Science and Education Minister Dmitry Livanov, among others, have called it ill-advised, on Thursday Putin said, "I have not seen any reason why I should not sign it. " 'Cannibalistic' bill The journalist Alexander Minkin, on his blog for the Ekho Moskvy website, described the Russian bill as "cannibalistic": With Americans placing sanctions on certain corrupt Russian bureaucrats, he wrote, Moscow strikes back by punishing its own orphans.
December 25, 2012 |
CAIRO - Egypt's president ordered parliament's upper chamber to convene after the release of official results of a referendum on an Islamist-backed constitution that gives temporary legislative powers to the traditionally toothless chamber. The results had been expected on Monday but were not released, and the electoral commission has not yet set a date to announce them. The Muslim Brotherhood, the main group that backed the charter, said it passed with 64 percent of the vote - a result likely to be confirmed by the official result.
December 22, 2012 |
ALEXANDRIA, Egypt - Violence erupted between Egypt's divided camps on Friday, the eve of the final round of a referendum on a constitution that has polarized the nation, as Islamists and their opponents pelted each other with stones while police fired tear gas in the streets of the Mediterranean city of Alexandria. The draft constitution, which would bring a greater implementation of Islamic law to Egypt, is expected to be approved Saturday. The first round of voting took place Dec. 15 in 10 of Egypt's 27 provinces.
September 26, 2011
Explosions kill 10 in Iraq holy city BAGHDAD - Back-to-back bomb blasts ripped through one of the holiest cities in Shiite Islam Sunday, killing at least 10 people in a community still reeling from a deadly bus hijacking this month. Four explosions spaced over five minutes struck the city of Karbala, government officials said. Two of the bombs targeted an Interior Ministry office that issues ID cards. Another struck near a house, shredding its walls and ceiling. And one of the explosions went off a half-mile from an important shrine.
July 8, 2011 |
The Montgomery County Coroner's Office has identified the driver who crashed into an Upper Moreland home early Tuesday, triggering a fire that killed two people and incinerated the house. Laura Stevens, 26, of Philadelphia, was at the wheel when the car veered off Byberry Road near Warminster Road at 1:44 a.m., first striking a parked car and then the home of James and Jill Cummins. Stevens and her friend and passenger, Wayne Foulke, 27, died at the scene. The cause was smoke inhalation, burns, and injuries sustained in the crash, said Vicki Firth, chief investigator for the coroner.
September 30, 2010
Ahmed Maher, 75, a former foreign minister of Egypt known for his low-key diplomacy, died Monday, just hours after he was hospitalized with unspecified health problems, the state-owned news agency MENA said. He served as foreign minister from 2001 until 2004. He was called back from retirement for that post in 2001 to replace Amr Moussa, who became head of the Arab League. In 2003, after he prayed at the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem, Mr. Maher was heckled by a group of angry Palestinians outside the mosque who were protesting his visit to Israel.