World features

Paris climate summit faces tougher job after modest Lima deal

© AFP / by Mariette Le Roux, Richard Ingham | Members of representative commissions of the countries participating in the climate change conferences attend the seventh plenary meeting of the COP20 on December 13, 2014 in Lima
15 Dec 2014
A Paris summit in 2015 will face a tougher task to agree a U.N. deal to slow climate change after the hopes of many that cooperation between Washington and Beijing would be a magic key to end global gridlock dissolved in chaotic...

Analysts: Hong Kong left deeply polarised by protests

 AFP/File / by Caroline Henshaw | A woman walks past a wall of messages of support near an area occupied by pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong in October 2014
14 Dec 2014
The demolition of the main protest camp ended a pro-democracy occupation that paralysed Hong Kong for two months, but the campaign has left the city deeply divided both politically and socially, analysts say. With the world watching, Hong...

Islamic State influence spreads to African jihadists

© AFP/File / by Michel Moutot | A Kenyan police officer folds up a flag inscribed with the logo of the Islamic state (IS) following a raid on two mosques in the coastal city of Mombasa, on November 17, 2014
13 Dec 2014
 Its main battlegrounds are far away and its true influence hard to judge, but the Islamic State's black banner is attracting the attention of jihadists in Africa, particularly in Nigeria. IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi's so-...

Israel gas deal stirs domestic opposition in Jordan

AFP / by Kamal Taha | A majority of members of Jordan's parliament have voted to scrap a deal to buy gas from Israel
11 Dec 2014
Jordanian plans to buy gas from Israel have aroused fierce opposition in the kingdom at a time of mounting criticism of the Jewish state's policies towards the Palestinians. Parliament began debating the proposed gas deal on Tuesday,...

UN: Record numbers trying and dying to reach Europe

Rescuers help people in the sea after a boat carring some 250 migrants crashed into rocks as they tried to enter the port of Pantelleria, an island off the southern coast of Italy, on 13 April 2011
10 Dec 2014
More than 3,400 people have died in the Mediterranean this year trying to reach Europe, the UN refugee agency said Wednesday, urging governments to take more action to save lives. More than 207,000 people have made the risky sea crossing...

Saudi suspends aid to Yemen after Houthi takeover

Shi'ite Houthi rebels man a checkpoint near Yareem town of Yemen's central province of Ibb, 22 October 2014.
04 Dec 2014
Saudi Arabiahas suspended most of its financial aid to Yemen, Yemeni and Western sources said, in a clear indication of its dissatisfaction with the growing political power of Shi'ite Houthi fighters friendly with Riyadh's regional...

Denmark's jihadist rehab: homework, football and Islam

03 Dec 2014
How do you turn around a young man who is determined to destroy the West? In the Danish city of Aarhus, you take him to a cafe or a public library and talk about football. This is the softly-softly approach of Mads, a mentor in an...

Saudis block website that reported woman driver's case

 AFP/File | Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world where women are not allowed to drive
02 Dec 2014
Saudi authorities have blocked the website of a regional human rights group which reported the case of a woman who tried to defy the kingdom's ban on female drivers. Attempts inside Saudi Arabia to access the Internet site of the Gulf...

Rise of Turkish Islamic schooling upsets secular parents

1 OF 4. Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan talks with students of Tevfik Ileri Imam Hatip School during its opening ceremony in Ankara November 18, 2014.
02 Dec 2014
 Turkey has seen a sharp rise in religious schooling under reforms which President Tayyip Erdogan casts as a defence against moral decay, but which opponents see as an unwanted drive to shape a more Islamic nation. Almost a...

Nazi hunter says Adolf Eichmann's top aide presumed dead in Syria

AFP/File | A placard featuring a black-and-white photograph of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp highlights the campaign of Nazi-hunting Simon Wiesenthal Center on July 23, 2013
02 Dec 2014
One of the world's most wanted war criminals, the reputed top lieutenant of Nazi mastermind Adolf Eichmann, is presumed to have died at least four years ago in Syria, where he lived under government protection, a leading Nazi...