Home > News > News in Brief: 8 December 2008

News in Brief: 8 December 2008

A brief list of news for the day:

India, Russia regain elan of friendship. The Mumbai attacks may prove to be a watershed in New Delhi’s regional strategies, with China, Iran and Russia assuming new levels of importance. The gravitation towards the Shanghai Cooperation Organization and its possible role in a regional initiative in Afghanistan proves New Delhi has come a long way. Surely, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev returned to Moscow from Delhi last week with a smile on his face. (Asia Times)

India quakes over China’s water plan. As Beijing forges ahead with its massive water diversion project, already strained relations with New Delhi are likely to worsen, given the implications of the project on India and Bangladesh, both environmentally and security-wise. (Asia Times)

Militants in Pakistan Destroy NATO Trucks. The attack on more than 100 trucks carrying supplies for U.S. troops was the third attack in less than a month. (New York Times)

Closing Guantanamo a minefield of critical steps. The Pentagon on Monday begins more hearings for the proposed death penalty trial of reputed 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed, even as President-elect Barack Obama’s transition team and the Bush administration work to possibly close the Navy base prison camps. (McClatchy)

Gaza Fishermen Play Cat and Mouse with Israeli Navy. Israeli naval commandos recently hauled off three international peace activists off Palestinian fishing boats seven nautical miles off Gaza’s coast. Twenty naval commandos boarded the vessels. Using tasers and guns, they forced the ISM members and Palestinian fishermen into their naval vessels. Despite being in Palestinian territorial waters, and nowhere near Israeli territorial waters, the solidarity activists were taken to a detention centre at Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv from where they were subsequently deported. The Gazans were interrogated before being sent back to Gaza. (IPS)

After Israel objects, Qatar gives up plan for Gaza aid shipment. Israel is taking steps to discourage Arab and Muslim nations from challenging its economic siege of the Gaza Strip by sending aid ships to ease the desperate circumstances of the 1.5 million Gaza Palestinians. (McClatchy)

Israel threatens ‘no restraint’ if Hamas keeps retaliating. Israel threatened tougher action against rocket fire from the Gaza Strip on Sunday as the territory’s sole power plant again shut down in the face of a crippling blockade. Outgoing Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said he has told security chiefs to draw up contingency plans for military action against militant groups in Gaza. (The Daily Star/AFP)

Palestinians, Israelis moving toward peace deal: Rice. Israelis and Palestinians are moving toward a peace deal as more Israelis than ever back a two-state solution and Arab leaders back Mahmud Abbas, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Sunday. (Khaleej Times/AFP)

Official Calls for Sensitivity to Afghan Demands. The chief of the U.N. mission in Afghanistan said that military operations should be conducted with more care and cultural sensitivity. (New York Times)

Children ‘Executed’ in 1950 South Korean Killings: ROK and US responsibility. Government investigators digging into the grim hidden history of mass political executions in South Korea have confirmed that dozens of children were among many thousands shot by their own government early in the Korean War. The investigative Truth and Reconciliation Commission has thus far verified more than two dozen mass killings of leftists and supposed sympathizers, among at least 100,000 people estimated to have been hastily shot and dumped into makeshift trenches, abandoned mines or the sea after communist North Korea invaded the south in June 1950. (Japan Focus)

China’s Global Search for Energy Security: cooperation and competition in the Asia-Pacific. China has adopted a state-centered approach towards energy security to deepen political and commercial relationships with all energy producing nations and to aggressively invest in oil fields and pipelines around the world. (Japan Focus)

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