The historic emissions deal between China and the U.S. removes a key barrier in United Nations-led efforts to craft a global climate pact. Now President Barack Obama has to find a way to make it happen at home. An international agreement to curb greenhouse gases would go nowhere without participation from China and the U.S., the two biggest producers of carbon emissions, and until yesterday they were far apart on numerous issues. With Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping now in accord that the world's two largest economies bear a certain responsibility to take the lead in fighting climate change, other nations may be more willing to follow suit when envoys meet in Lima next month for the next round of UN-organized negotiations. "This could be a first critical step to unlocking the logjam in the climate-change negotiations," said Yvo de Boer, who oversaw the UN effort on global warming from 2006 to 2010, in a telephone interview from Seoul. "It becomes much easier for other pieces of … [Read more...] about World cheers U.S., China carbon deal as Republicans jeer
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BNP Paribas' guilty plea and agreement to pay nearly $9 billion for violating U.S. sanctions is part of a larger U.S. Justice Department shift in strategy that is expected to snare more major banks and other firms across the financial food chain. Two other major French banks, Credit Agricole and Societe Generale, Germany's Deutsche Bank AG, and Citigroup Inc's Banamex unit in Mexico are among those being investigated for possible money laundering or sanctions violations, according to people familiar with the matter and public disclosures. The Justice Department and other U.S. authorities, including the Manhattan District Attorney, are probing Credit Agricole and Societe Generale for potentially violating U.S. economic sanctions imposed against Iran, Cuba and Sudan, one of the sources said. Credit Agricole and SocGen have disclosed that they are reviewing whether they violated U.S. sanctions. SocGen said in its latest annual report that it is engaged in discussions with the Treasury … [Read more...] about After BNP, U.S. targets range of firms in crackdown on illicit money flows
At least three people were killed when insurgents attacked the U.S. consulate in western Afghanistan's main city on Friday, detonating a powerful truck bomb outside the front gates and launching a gunbattle with security forces, officials said. The bold attack in Herat, claimed by the Taliban, once again underscored a worrying security picture as Afghanistan prepares to take over from foreign combat troops after 12 years of war and stage crucial presidential elections next year. While the circumstances of the attack were initially unclear, a spokesman for the U.S. embassy in the Afghan capital of Kabul said all U.S. personnel in the consulate in Herat were safe and had been accounted for. He described the incident as a "complex" attack that included a car bomb. A U.S. State Department statement later said the attack was over. Herat police chief General Rahmatullah Safi said a police officer and a translator had been killed and two Afghan staff working in the consulate had been … [Read more...] about At least three killed as insurgents attack U.S. consulate in Afghan west
Not long ago, a bomb attack on New York City's Times Square would have had intelligence officials and terrorism experts checking off the usual suspects among the sources of terrorist plots against the U.S. - Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Iraq. But these days, says a top counterterrorism official, "when I hear of a terrorist plot, I can count back from 10, and before I get to zero, someone will bring up the P word." That's P for Pakistan. Over the past couple of years, more plots against U.S. targets have emanated from or had a strong connection to Pakistan than any other country. Says the counterterrorism official, who was briefed on the hunt for the Times Square bomber but is not authorized to speak with the media: "It was totally predictable that the smoking Pathfinder would lead to someone with Pakistan in his past." Nor would it come as a surprise if it were revealed that Faisal Shahzad, who has claimed to investigators that he was working alone, was in fact linked to an ever … [Read more...] about Beyond Times Square: Pakistani Terrorism Targets U.S.
Iran's state-run satellite Press TV reported Thursday that Iran will reveal some documents about the " U.S. anti-Tehran terror plots." Iran's chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili will reveal details about the U.S. involvement in anti-Iran terror plots in his speech on Friday as the country marks the anniversary of the seizure of former U.S. embassy in Tehran 32 years ago. In 1979, a group of Iranian students seized the U.S. embassy in Tehran and captured some 60 U.S. diplomats, with 52 of them in captivity for 444 days during the hostage crisis. Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Khamenei said Wednesday that "we have one hundred undeniable documents (which proves) that the U.S. government is behind terrorist attacks in Iran and the region." Khamenei said that Tehran will reveal those documents to " disgrace the U.S. government." The United States recently wanted to save itself from the domestic pressures by making "absurd scenario" against the Islamic Republic … [Read more...] about Iran to reveal “U.S. anti-Tehran terror plots”