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Anadarko ordered to pay for 2010 Gulf spill

A fire blazes aboard the mobile offshore oil drilling unit Deepwater Horizon on April 22 2010. Picture: EPA

Oil company is told to pay fine for its role as part-owner of doomed Gulf of Mexico well that caused biggest offshore spill in US history


‘Come to Paris! It’s safe’, says French prime minister

Manuel Valls.  Picture: REUTERS

Paris is safe again for tourists just over two weeks after one of France’s deadliest terrorist attacks, says Prime Minister Manuel Valls

Middle East

Saudi invites Syrian opposition figures to Riyadh ahead of talks

Bashar al-Assad. Picture: EPA/SANA

Saudi Arabia issues invitations to 65 opposition figures to attend conference in Riyadh to try unify positions ahead of proposed peace talks, newspapers report


Searing stakes for climate change deal

BURDEN: People wait next to colourful sculptures of animals on Monday in Le Bourget, near Paris, during the opening day of the United  Nations climate conference. More than 150 world leaders are meeting under heightened security. Picture: AFP

Scientists say failure to agree on strong measures would doom the world to ever-hotter average temperatures


Russia not keen on thaw with Turkey at talks in Paris

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan attends the COP 21 United Nations conference on climate change, on Monday at Le Bourget, on the outskirts of the French capital Paris. Picture: AFP

Putin snubs meeting with Erdogan in Paris as body of pilot killed when Ankara downed one of Moscow’s warplanes was flown home

African News

Ugandan rebels kill Congolese soldiers and UN peacekeeper

CALLED TO ACTION: Congolese army soldiers ride on Sunday towards the frontline where they are fighting against M23 rebels outside the eastern Congolese city of Goma. Picture: REUTERS

At least four Congolese soldiers and 12 Islamist militants killed in clashes, while seven civilians were hacked to death with machetes at a hospital


BHP Billiton falls on Brazil plans to sue for burst dam


Attorney-general says Brazil wants $5.2bn to fund a 10-year clean-up in the Rio Doce valley affected by the disaster


STRAIGHT TALK: War is not what it used to be

Turmoil and uncertainty in financial markets nothing more or less than a reflection of conflicts and tensions in the real world, writes Mark Barnes


The world according to a progressive patriot and idealist


There is nothing intrinsically problematic in self-identifying community wanting to live in their own space, according to their own rules, writes Glen Heneck

Narendra Modi.  Picture: REUTERS

India looks to improve African health

India can be proud of its role in driving down the cost of HIV treatment in Africa, write Nilanjan Banik and Philip Stevens


Japanese state pension fund in worst drop since 2008 crisis


Global stock rout in August and September wipes $64bn off Japanese asset manager’s investments


BTG Pactual chief quits amid graft probe

Brazilian BTG Pactual  CEO Andre Esteves in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Picture: REUTERS/NACHO DOCE

Prosecutors prepare charges against billionaire deal maker André Esteves suspected of trying to obstruct long-running graft probe


China leads the gloomy news from Asia’s factories

Factory activity deteriorates across most of the region, with China sinking to a three-year low as the spectre of a US interest rate increase looms


EDITORIAL: A complex and vexing conflict

A woman cries during a protest in front of the Turkish embassy in Sofia, Bulgaria, on Thursday. Picture: EPA/VASSIL DONEV

Defeating IS will take more than military might


Obama and Xi pledge to push for climate deal in Paris

US President Barack Obama, left, chats with Chinese President Xi Jinping as they walk from the West Wing of the White House to a private dinner across the street at Blair House, in Washington on Thursday.  Picture: REUTERS

US President Barack Obama, Chinese President Xi Jinping pledge to work together for climate change agreement at talks to ensure ‘low carbon global economy’


India to unlock massive gold stash

Picture: REUTERS

India set to discuss changes to a scheme to unlock the country’s massive stash of gold at high-level meeting


Japanese whaling fleet to sail to Antarctic Ocean


Japan defies international criticism, United Nations legal ruling that ‘research’ expedition is commercial hunt for whales in disguise


Climate summit: the crunch issues

Picture: AFP

Some 150 heads of state gather at Paris conference to engage in high-stakes negotiation to curb global warming, help poor countries cope with its effects

International companies


Chinese investors buy 13% stake in Manchester City

Manchester City's Argentinian striker Sergio Aguero (R) in action against Queens Park Rangers at The Etihad Stadium in Manchester, north west England on May 10, 2015. Chinese investors China Media Capital (CMC) and CITIC Capital have bought a 13 percent stake in the parent company of Manchester City Football Club for $400 million (377 million euros), the companies said on December 1, 2015. Picture: AFP / PAUL ELLIS

China plants its flag in English Premier League as consortium of Chinese investors buy stake in Manchester City’s parent company for $400m


Samsung’s new mobile phone boss exemplifies focus on software

Mock-ups of the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 smartphone are displayed at the company's flagship store in Seoul, South Korea. Picture: BLOOMBERG

Koh Dong Jin helped develop mobile payment, security platforms, exemplifying vice-chairman’s focus on software innovations as way to gain distance from rivals


US store sales down slightly for Thanksgiving and Black Friday

However, data show online sales were up by double digits

Middle East

War-weary Syrians find unlikely shelter in Sudan

Umm Mohammed, a Syrian mother who was forced to flee war-torn Aleppo, speaks to her colleagues at the Eve Kitchen (Hawa in Arabic) in the Sudanese capital Khartoum on November 25, 2015. The 50-year-old who joined a growing number of Syrians finding an unlikely shelter in Sudan, now cooks Middle Eastern dishes in the Khartoum kitchen along with 24 others on a project to support Syrians who have arrived since 2011. Picture: AFP

While many Syrians fleeing conflict still aim for Europe or neighbouring Turkey, a shared language, similarities in culture make Sudan an alternative for some


Chinese smog climbs to perilous levels on eve of climate talks

A woman wearing a mask cycles amid heavy smog in Beijing's Guomao area, China, November 30, 2015. REUTERS/Jason Lee

Northern China chokes under some of worst smog this year, with levels in Beijing soaring to 22 times healthy limits, triggering city’s second-highest pollution alert


Black Friday showdown: Target takes on Amazon with new in-store strategy

People work during Black Friday deals week at an Amazon centre in Madrid, Spain. Picture: REUTERS/ANDREA COMAS

Target’s approach is born out of need to cut down on delivery time, shipping costs to keep pace with Amazon.com


Australia flags superannuation reforms and targets highest earners

A sign on the Reserve Bank of Australia building in central Sydney. Picture: REUTERS

Treasurer flags reforms to nation’s retirement savings system, targeting its use by wealthy Australians to minimise taxes


Chinese stocks suffer but metals perk up

A board in Beijing shows stock prices on the Shanghai Securities Exchange on Wednesday. The Chinese government froze stock markets amid a dramatic correction last month. Picture: REUTERS

Chinese shares slump 5%, hit by regulatory, industrial sector worries, but it is not enough to derail first weekly rise for metals such as copper, zinc since early October

Financial Services

Standard Bank in UK court over fraud allegations

Standard Bank. Picture: MARTIN RHODES

The bank’s UK unit, which could pay up to $40m in fines if an agreement to suspend prosecution is approved in court, had indemnified 60% owner ICBC of China

Middle East

Sirens ring out as airstrikes hit Islamic State stronghold

Militant Islamist fighters on a tank take part in a military parade along the streets of northern Raqqa province, Syria, in June last year. Picture: REUTERS

As US-led coalition, Russia step up strikes on jihadists’ de facto Syrian capital, sirens ring out whenever warplanes approach to give Islamic State members signal to flee


North and South Korea plan further talks to ease tension


North, South Korea agree to hold talks at vice-minister level next month, after meeting aimed at further easing tension following end to armed standoff in August


Chinese Communist party reshuffles military and extends control

Chinese troops march at a parade marking the 70th anniversary of the end of the Second World War. Picture: REUTERS/ROLEX DELA PENA

China will carry out sweeping reforms to structure of military, in moves intended to enhance ruling Communist Party’s control over People’s Liberation Army


Obama eyes a chance to make his mark on climate change

US President Barack Obama delivers remarks to reporters after meeting with Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan at the Regnum Carya Resort in Antalya, Turkey on Sunday. Picture: REUTERS

After fiasco in Copenhagen, before he leaves office, Paris summit offers US President Barack Obama chance to make his mark in fight against global warming


Turkey preparing to hand over body of pilot to Russia

A burning Russian fighter jet falls after being shot down near the Turkish-Syrian border. Picture: AFP PHOTO

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu says the body is being treated in accordance with the Orthodox tradition


Migration to Britain reaches record high


Data could make uncomfortable viewing for the government of Prime Minister David Cameron, has who has vowed to curb immigration


Destruction of Amazon forest increases in 2015


Devastation of largest intact rainforest increases from a year ago as government struggles to enforce legislation, stop illegal clearings

Financial Services

Standard Bank in UK court over fraud allegations

Standard Bank. Picture: MARTIN RHODES

The bank’s UK unit, which could pay up to $40m in fines if an agreement to suspend prosecution is approved in court, had indemnified 60% owner ICBC of China


AT HOME AND ABROAD: There’s a better way to deal with Islamic State than war

A more sophisticated solution is needed in the Middle East as interventions by the West have not been enough


Pecking order of pain plays into Islamist hands

To distinguish between the victims who deserve our sympathy and those who do not is to provide fanatics with more recruits

Christine Lagarde, chief of the International Monetary Fund. Picture: REUTERS

IMF approves China’s yuan for currency basket

IMF chief Christine Lagarde says yuan’s inclusion in Special Drawing Rights basket expected to help China open up further to world’s economy

Opinion & Analysis

Is the shock of extremists’ families plausible?

People hug on the street near the Bataclan concert hall following fatal attacks in Paris, France on Friday. Picture: REUTERS

Loved ones’ unwillingness to read the signs shows the need to work with the social networks of youths at risk to combat violent extremism, writes Arie W Kruglanski


Barclays fined £72.1m for £1.9bn ‘elephant’ deal


Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority says the bank did not follow procedures in a deal put together for wealthy clients who should have been more closely monitored


UK regulator gives Barclays huge fine for noncompliance

HEADACHE:  Bob Diamond was Barclays CEO from the start of 2011 until he left in July 2012, the time during which a £1.9bn deal was transacted. Barclays has been fined £72m for cutting corners in due diligence. Picture: REUTERS/DYLAN MARTINEZ

Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority fines leading bank for cutting corners in checking wealthy customers involved in a sizeable transaction


US set for four-day test of retail vigour

People work during Black Friday deals week at an Amazon centre in Madrid, Spain. Picture: REUTERS/ANDREA COMAS

Mall traffic is in the midst of a long-term slowdown and shoppers are spending more on experiences


Pakistan tightens its antimoney-laundering law


Parliament approves amendments to law to make it more effective in targeting financing of extremists, bring it into line with global standards


LETTER FROM WASHINGTON: The purpose of terror is to cause global division

Obama’s prescient dismissal of scorched-earth option against Islamic State worth preserving, but he has little time left as US president


Life goes on even after the terror

HUMANITY: Tunisian women carry placards during a silent march in Habib Bourguiba Avenue in Tunis on Monday for the victims of the attacks in the French capital Paris, the Lebanese capital Beirut and the Tunisian town of Jelma. Picture: AFP PHOTO/FETHI BELAID

Beyond the immediate horrors of terrorism and calamity, facts reveal human and economic resilience


Imminent Fed tightening puts pressure on Europe’s central banks

European Central Bank. Picture: EPA/BORIS ROESSLER

European central banks struggle with divergent quandaries over how to revive inflation, sustain growth as US Federal Reserve prepares to start hiking rates


Brics New Development Bank allocates formal duties to vice-presidents

Picture: REUTERS

Brics economic grouping’s bank allocates responsibilities to its four vice-presidents to help bring bank closer to operation


Brazil dam’s failure flooded region with toxic waste, UN report says

Rescuers search for victims in the Brazilian village of Bento Rodrigues after a dam burst at Vale and BHP Billiton’s iron-ore venture. At least one person is confirmed dead and 13 workers missing. Picture: REUTERS/RICARDO MORAES

UN experts reveal new evidence showing the presence of heavy metals contradicting repeated statements by the Brazilian government and mining companies


Myanmar’s Suu Kyi blames lack of safety regulations for deadly landslide


Disregard for rule of law in jade mining industry has made accidents such as recent landslide that killed more than 100 people a common occurrence, Nobel laureate says

Middle East

Flooding brings Qatar to near standstill

Motorists drive in a flooded street in the Qatari capital Doha following heavy rainfall on Wednesday. Picture: AFP

Qatar hit by more than a year’s worth of rain in several hours, while in neighbouring Saudi Arabia one person s killed during flooding


Normal life resumes in Brussels, but under soldiers’ watchful gaze

TENSION: The European Union capital was in a heightened state of alert on Sunday as French President Francois Hollande started rallying global allies. Picture: BLOOMBERG/JASPER JUINEN

The Belgian capital’s schools and metro system reopen, but troops on the streets are a reminder that the city remains on high alert for terrorist attacks after Paris


Saudi women begin their first-ever election campaign

Nassima al-Sadah, a candidate for municipal councils in the Gulf coast city of Qatif, working at her office in Qatif 400 kilometers east of the Saudi capital, Riyadh. Women in Saudi Arabia begin their first-ever electoral campaign on November 29, a step forward for both women’s rights and the kingdom’s slow democratic process. AFP

Saudi Arabia takes tentative steps towards better representation of women in kingdom as female candidates prepare to stand in municipal elections

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