International

Inater national news

Kathmandu: Nepal is making diplomatic efforts to persuade the European Commission to revoke its recent decision to ban all Nepali airlines from entering the European airspace, government officials said Tuesday.

"The EC's recent decision could damage Nepal's aviation sector and this is the reason (why) we are using our diplomatic tools within this week to woo EC to roll back its decision," Xinhua quoted aviation ministry spokesperson Mohan Krishna Sapkota as saying.

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Dhaka: The Supreme Court of Bangladesh late Tuesday halted the execution of Abdul Quader Molla hours before the convicted war criminal was to be hanged, a leading Bangladesh daily reported.

The decision to halt the execution came after a petition by the counsels for the condemned Jamaat-e-Islami leader. The chamber judge of the Supreme Court, Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain, issued the order.

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Obama shakes hand Raul Castro in Johennesburg at the ceremonial service to Mandela.

Washington: A surprise handshake between US President Barack Obama and Cuban leader Raul Castro at Nelson Mandela's memorial ceremony in Johannesburg has stirred a major controversy at home and speculation about its deeper meaning.

Obama shook Castro's hand Tuesday as he walked down the line greeting other leaders, including Indian President Pranab Mukherjee, gathered there to pay their respects to South Africa's first black president who died Thursday.

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Singapore: Twenty-four Indian nationals, arrested for alleged involvement in riots here Dec 8, were Tuesday charged in court for rioting.

Judge Soh Tze Bian sent all the 24 Indian nationals to police remand for a week to facilitate further investigations, local media reported.

The case has been adjourned till Dec 17.

Lawyer Amarick Gill of the Pro Bono Services Office informed the accused that it was working to secure legal representation for all of them through its Criminal Legal Aid Scheme.

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Islamabad: Pakistan's new army chief Gen. Raheel Sharif Tuesday visited the troops deployed in forward locations along the Line of Control (LoC).

The army chief appreciated the operational preparedness and vigil being maintained by his troops on front line, the Associated Press of Pakistan reported.

Gen. Sharif was briefed by formation commanders on the prevailing security situation at the LoC.

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Johannesburg: Top world leaders walked into the FNB Stadium here Tuesday joining thousands of people to attend the memorial service of former South African president and anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela who passed away Dec 5.

As leaders walked into the venue, they were welcomed with screams, whistles and chants from the thousands of people who thronged the stadium to remember South Africa’s most famous son, the South African Press Agency (SAPA) reported.

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Washington: US Secretary of State John Kerry has tried to quell Israeli fears regarding the nuclear deal with Iran, saying the Jewish state is more safe and secure today than it was before the P5+1 countries reached an agreement with Tehran on its controversial atomic programme.

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Bangkok: Thailand Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra Tuesday pledged to continue performing her duties in accordance with the constitution until a new prime minister is elected.

In a statement made after a special cabinet meeting, Shinawatra pleaded with the public to protect democracy, and urged protestors to stop the rally and to start preparing for the next general elections slated for Feb 2, 2014, Xinhua reported.

The prime minister said she had made every compromise possible, and wished to be treated fairly.

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Singapore: Sale and consumption of alcohol will be banned this coming weekend in Little India’s Race Course Road area where riot broke out on Sunday night after a fatal accident.

Announcing the ban on Monday, Second Minister for Home Affairs S. Iswaran said details of the ban, such as exactly what time it would apply and what geographical area it would cover, would be worked out by the police.

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Washington: US Secretary of State John Kerry will return to the Middle East this week to push for Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, but Washington is not seeking an interim deal, the State Department said Monday.

The top American envoy will leave for Jerusalem Wednesday to talk about Iran and the ongoing final-status negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Xinhua quoted spokesperson Jennifer Psaki as saying in a statement.

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