Chaos in Nepal Parliament

23 01 2015


Jan 23,

Nepal, the Constituent Assembly has failed to deliver the new Constitution. The political parties missed a deadline to draft a new Constitution that expired last night.

The Parliament session in Kathmandu ended, without agreeing on a draft, amid chaotic scenes. The Chairman of the Constituent Assembly, Subhash Nembang, adjourned the Parliament at 11.45 p.m., after two-and-half hour long obstruction by the opposition parties. Before announcing adjournment of the session, Nembang said he wishes to begin the process of drafting the Constitution and sought cooperation from all parties to forge agreement to promulgate the constitution.

The Parliament is scheduled to meet again at 1 p.m. today.

Yemen government resigns

23 01 2015

Jan 23

Yemen, President Mansour Hadi, Prime Minister Khaled Bahah and his cabinet have resigned. The development comes a day after the President agreed to demands of Shia Houthi rebels, who stormed his palace and private home in Sana’a earlier this week. Yemeni Presidential adviser Sultan al-Atwani said Mansour Haadi submitted his resignation just hours after receiving the resignations of Prime Minister Khalid Bahah and his cabinet. However parliament speaker Yahia al-Rai refused to accept the President’s resignation. He has called an extraordinary session of parliament on Friday morning. Yemeni Prime Minister Bahah posted on his Facebook page that he doesn’t want to be a part of what is happening or will happen.

Meanwhile Houthi rebels continued to stand guard President Haadi’s home and palace despite having promised to withdraw militia and siege of both buildings. They have also not released the chief of Presidential staff, Ahmad Awad Bin Omar. Supporters of Haadi protested outside his residency in Sana’a on Thursday, demanding to know where the president was. Houthi leaders said he would come out after implementing the power sharing agreement.

Dubai unveils World’s largest vertical maze

23 01 2015

Jan 23

Dubai has set yet another world record for the largest vertical maze. The 55 story Maze tower in Dubai’s financial district has been now confirmed by the records tally-keeper Guinness World Records as the world’s largest vertical maze.The design on the façade of the building is actually a puzzle made from intricate lines of balconies on the front and rear, and there is another garden maze on the roof top. The design uses natural stones and lights up in different colours making it appear light and reflective. It looks like as if it has been carved out of one single massive piece of rock; with the constant play of light and shadow to render it alive. The tower has four other unique features – the Maze Eye which is an eight-meter circular video wall at the top of the building to beam images. It has LED lights built into the exterior of the maze pattern that can display colours and patterns. Plus it has a garden floor in the middle of the building; and a maze garden at the rooftop. Even the pool is maze-shaped. The maze tower has 25 floors of office space and 24 floors of living space. With its latest acquisition, Dubai now holds more than 100 Guinness World Records.

Delhi Polls 693 candidates in fray after scrutiny

23 01 2015

Jan 23

A total of 693 nomination papers have been accepted for the 70-member Delhi Assembly elections. 230 nominations have been rejected in the scrutiny held yesterday. After scrutiny, the highest number of valid nominations was 18 from the Burari Assembly seat and the lowest number of valid nomination papers was four in Ambedkar Nagar constituency.

923 candidates from the BJP, Aam Aadmi Party, Congress, BSP, NCP, Left Parties and Independents had filed their nomination papers. The candidates can withdraw their nomination by tomorrow. Polling will take place on 7th of next month. Counting will be held on 10th February.

A total of one hundred and twenty one FIR’s have been lodged against various political parties in connection with the violation of the Model Code of Conduct in Delhi till now. According to the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer, Delhi, out of these violations, 54 FIR’s have been lodged against Aam Aadmi Party, 24 against BJP, 26 against Congress and 10 cases of violation have been registered against BSP. Besides, around 1600 hoardings have also removed from Public Property and 116 FIR’s have been lodged in this regard.

Netanyahu pushes back meeting with Congress to March

23 01 2015

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will travel to Washington in March to address Congress. He can make one trip to the US instead of two in the run-up to the March 17 Israeli election, Reuters reported, citing a Republican aide as saying on Thursday. Netanyahu announced earlier in the day in a statement the invitation tendered by House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner was bipartisan. Boehner announced the invitation to Netanyahu the previous day, drawing White House complaints that protocol had been breached.

Bomb blast near Egypt’s presidential palace

23 01 2015

At least two people have been injured in a pipe bomb explosion near Egypt’s Presidential Palace in Cairo, Sputnik news agency reported on Friday. One of the injuries is critical, a medical source said. Sinai-based jihadist group Soldiers of Egypt (Ajnad Misr) claimed responsibility for the attack via Twitter.

Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz is dead

23 01 2015


Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud (Reuters/Jacques Brinon)

Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz  died in hospital. He was undergoing treatment for pneumonia. An official statement has named Saudi Crown Prince Salman the new king.

“His Highness Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and all members of the family and the nation mourn the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, who passed away at exactly 1 a.m. this morning,” said the statement on Saudi Arabian state TV channel attributed to Salman.

Salman has immediately appointed his half-brother Muqrin as his crown prince and heir.

King Abdullah had been in hospital for several weeks as he had been suffering from pneumonia and temporarily needed to breathe through a tube on account of his illness.

US President Barack Obama has expressed his condolences and praised the late Saudi King for his “steadfast and passionate belief in the importance of the US-Saudi relationship as a force for stability and security in the Middle East and beyond.”

Meanwhile, Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has announced that he will be leaving the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland in order to travel to Saudi Arabia and pay his respects. Abdullah was officially appointed king in 2006, but prior to that he had run the country for at least 10 years as de facto regent, after his predecessor, King Fahd, suffered a debilitating stroke.

King Salman the new head of state of the number one oil exporter in the world is thought to be 79 years old. King Salman was appointed Crown Prince in 2012 and in the same year started serving as a defense minister. Before assuming these responsibilities, he had been governor of Riyadh province for five decades.

Abdullah was a staunch US ally, who supported the western fight against Al-Qaeda and maintained attempts to keep rival Shia Iran in check. Under his rule, Saudi Arabia strongly backed Syrian rebels trying to overthrow the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad. The monarch had also been the first international head of state to congratulate the interim government of Egypt after the July 2013 military coup deposed Mohamed Morsi.

King Abdullah implemented some modest reforms in the areas of women’s rights and economic deregulation, but largely stayed away from any severe changes to the kingdom’s political system. King Salman is said to be part of the royal circle that will continue to pursue similar policies.


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