Home > News > News in Brief: 10 November 2008

News in Brief: 10 November 2008

A brief list of news for the day:

China unleashes massive budget to ward off crisis. China has announced an ambitious $586-billion (U.S.) plan to bolster its faltering economy, focusing on domestic demand as the key to salvaging the extraordinary growth rates that have turbocharged the global economy for the past decade. (Globe and Mail)

Secret Order Lets U.S. Raid Al Qaeda in Many Countries. The United States military since 2004 has used broad, secret authority to carry out nearly a dozen previously undisclosed attacks against Al Qaeda and other militants in Syria, Pakistan and elsewhere, according to senior American officials. (New York Times)

Fuel-starved Gaza faces blackouts. Citizens in the Gaza Strip are bracing for more electricity blackouts after Israel cut off fuel shipments to the territory’s only power plant. Israel’s defence ministry closed the crossings on Sunday after Palestinian fighters fired rockets into southern Israel. No one was hurt in the attack. (Al Jazeera)

Georgian Opposition Demands Fresh Elections or Else. In the first massive street protests since the August war, Georgian opposition parties on November 7 demanded new presidential and parliamentary elections in 2009. A newly formed coalition of five parties presented a list of demands — and deadlines — to the authorities and threatened large-scale protests to force President Mikheil Saakashvili’s resignation if the government does not comply. (Eurasianet)

Iraq triple bombings kill dozens. A triple bombing in Baghdad has killed more than two dozen people and wounded scores more in the deadliest attack in the Iraqi capital in almost four months. The Interior Ministry reported at least 30 dead and 70 wounded in the strikes, and the Health Ministry reported at least 28 dead and more than 60 wounded. Iraqis say it was the deadliest attack in the capital city in almost four months. (CNN)

Afghan transport minister sacked. Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai has fired his transport minister “for carrying out suspicious activities”, his office said in a statement. Hamidullah Qaderi has been sacked and an inquiry has been ordered into his handling of contracts to take Afghan pilgrims to Mecca for the Haj, it said. Critics say the government – which receives billions of dollars in foreign aid – is riddled with corruption. (BBC)

Canada won’t extend Afghan commitment: minister. Canadian Foreign Minister Lawrence Cannon said on Sunday that a stepped-up emphasis by U.S. President-elect Barack Obama on fighting terrorism in Afghanistan won’t change Canada’s plans to pull its military out of that country in 2011. (Khaleej Times/Reuters)

Militants hijack US supply trucks in Pakistan. Militants in northwest Pakistan hijacked 13 trucks carrying supplies for Western forces in Afghanistan on Monday as they passed through the Khyber Pass, a government official said. (Gulf News)

India’s MMRCA Fighter Competition. “It’s the biggest fighter aircraft deal since the early 1990s,” said Boeing’s Mark Kronenberg, who runs the company’s Asia/Pacific business. The original intent of India’s fighter purchase was to replace hundreds of non-upgraded MiG-21s that India will be forced to retire, with a complementary force of 126 aircraft that would fit between India’s high end Su-30MKIs and its low-end Tejas LCA lightweight fighter. (Defense Industry Daily) [Nima’s note: the competition is worth $10 billion dollars]

Fatah’s security forces flex their muscles at Ain al-Hilweh. The Western-backed Fatah party of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas staged a show of force on Sunday in the largest of Lebanon’s 12 refugee camps, the scene of recent clashes with Islamists. (The Daily Star/AFP)

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