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British minister warns Brexit is stuck as no-deal or referendum loom

LONDON: Britain’s exit from the European Union was heading for an impasse, one senior minister said on Saturday, after a week in which Prime Minister Theresa May failed to win EU assurances on her deal and pulled a vote because UK lawmakers would defeat it. With just over 100 days until Britain leaves the bloc on March 29, Brexit remains up in the air with growing calls for a no-deal exit, a potentially disorderly divorce that business fears would be highly damaging, or for a second referendum. May pulled a vote on her…

Euro slides as ECB warns on economic outlook

LONDON: The euro slipped on Thursday after the ECB trimmed its growth forecast for the eurozone because of "mounting uncertainties" from within and outside the region. European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi said risks facing the area were now "moving to the downside", although that did not stop the bank from pulling the plug on its massive emergency crisis-fighting economic stimulus known as quantitative easing (QE). "While Mario Draghi was boxed in by previous announcements about QE, his press conference revealed…

US warns Russia ‘outlaw’ actions in Ukraine jeopardize ties

WASHINGTON: The United States on Monday warned Russia that "outlaw actions" like the seizure of Ukrainian ships in the Sea of Azov are preventing normal relations from developing between Washington and Moscow. US Ambassador Nikki Haley told an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council that "the United States would welcome a normal relationship with Russia. But outlaw actions like this one continue to make that impossible." Tensions have flared after the Russian navy on Sunday boarded and seized three Ukrainian ships…

Israel PM warns of plot to topple him

JERUSALEM: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has accused the Jewish state's president and a former minister of conspiring to have him toppled, triggering charges of "paranoia" ahead of elections. "I know that a former Likud minister has been holding discussions with the coalition and concocted a subversive plot, with me winning a large victory at the next elections and him making sure I am not prime minister," he told a gathering of his right-wing Likud party on Wednesday night celebrating his 69th birthday.…

Trump warns Mexico on migrant caravan, threatens to close border

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump on Thursday said he would to deploy the US military and close the southern border if Mexico did not move to halt large groups of migrants headed for the United States from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador. “I must, in the strongest of terms, ask Mexico to stop this onslaught - and if unable to do so I will call up the US Military and CLOSE OUR SOUTHERN BORDER!” Trump wrote on Twitter. Trump threatened to withhold regional aid as a caravan with several thousand Honduran migrants…

UN warns of ‘perfect storm’ of hunger, climate change

ROME: A potent combination of hunger, climate change and man-made conflicts are creating a "perfect storm", the head of the UN's food arm warned Tuesday in a call to action on World Food Day. "You've got a nightmare, the perfect storm heading your way," David Beasley, World Food Programme (WFP) chief, said in a speech in Rome, where the United Nations' food agencies are headquartered. The UN aims to achieve a Zero Hunger world by 2030, but faces three obstacles: conflicts, climate change and an economic slowdown.…

Bank of England chief warns of housing market crash on ‘no deal’ Brexit

LONDON: British house prices could crash by 35 percent if the UK leaves the European Union next year without a divorce deal, Bank of England governor Mark Carney has reportedly warned. Sharing the BoE's worst-case scenarios with Prime Minister Theresa May and her cabinet Thursday, Carney painted a bleak picture for the British economy, according to UK media reports Friday. It comes as the head of Britain's biggest business lobby group said a "no deal" exit would be a "hammer blow" to the British economy. Brexit…

Climate negotiator warns world ‘out of time’ to save islands

BANGKOK: Island nations like Fiji and the Maldives are almost at the "point of no return" because of rising sea levels, a leading climate negotiator warned Friday. As well as losing land and infrastructure to encroaching oceans as the planet heats up, many islands are also facing extreme flooding and damage from tropical storms, warned Amjad Abdulla, head negotiator for the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS). With experts from across the planet locked in key talks in Bangkok aimed at breathing life into the Paris…

EU warns Irish border issue could still sink Brexit deal

BRUSSELS: The thorny problem of the Irish border could yet scupper a Brexit deal, EU negotiator Michel Barnier warned after talks with his British counterpart Friday, saying "urgent" work was needed to find a solution. Avoiding a hard border between European Union member Ireland and the British province of Northern Ireland after Britain leaves the EU's single market has become a major obstacle to finding a deal. After meeting British Brexit minister Dominic Raab in Brussels, Barnier hailed progress on some security…

India warns WhatsApp over spread of messages triggering violence

MUMBAI: India has asked Facebook-owned WhatsApp messenger to take steps to prevent the circulation of false texts and provocative content that have led to a series of lynchings and mob beatings across the country in the past few months. With more than 200 million users in India, WhatsApp’s biggest market in the world, false news, and videos circulating on the messaging app have become a new headache for social media giant Facebook, already grappling with a privacy scandal. So far this year, false messages about…