The public pledge of allegiance to King Charles III at his upcoming coronation ceremony has stirred controversy among many Britons. British Indians have expressed mixed views over the first-of-its-kind move by the UK royals.
The world will witness millions of people watching the coronation ceremony of King Charles III and the Queen Consort at Westminster Abbey in London this Saturday.
In the historical ceremony, the Archbishop of Canterbury will call on all Britons to swear allegiance to the King and his successors.
Russian government officials are panicking over the arrest warrant issued by the International Criminal Court (ICC) against President Vladimir Putin last month for alleged war crimes. Some current and former government employees spoke to The Moscow Times and said that the Kremlin organized a special meeting to discuss Russia's response. The charges against Putin include unlawful deportation of children from Ukraine, which was attacked by Russia in February last year. The ICC says the crimes were committed in Ukraine from February 24, 2022.
Russia formally condemned the action, but behind the scenes, there is a concern about the possible political ramifications. "This is essentially a call to overthrow the government in Russia," a parliamentary deputy from the ruling United Russia party told The Moscow Times.
The Russian President enjoys unchallenged power in his homeland, so there is no prospect of the Kremlin handing him over to the ICC. Till the time he is in Russia, Mr Putin faces no risk of being arrested. However, Putin could be detained if he leaves Russia, so he might have to restrict his travel. But, due to the international sanctions against him over Ukraine war, it is unlikely that he will show up in a country that would want to put him on trial.
The ICC arrest warrant, issued on March 17, targeted both Putin and Maria Alekseyevna Lvova-Belova, Commissioner for Children's Rights in the Russian President's office.
In a major blow to British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, his close aide and Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab resigned on Friday after allegations he bullied staff members while working as a Cabinet minister across different government departments.
Rishi Sunak was handed the independent report into allegations made by several civil servants on Thursday, a copy of which has now been released by Downing Street. Sunak expressed his “sadness” as he accepted the resignation of 49-year-old Rabb.
While Sunak praised Raab for keeping his word to resign in the event of any finding of bullying, he also pointed to “shortcomings” in the historic process that highlighted the need for better handling of such matters in the future.
“It is with great sadness that I have accepted your resignation,” wrote Sunak in response to Raab’s resignation letter earlier.
ROC Taiwan's president expressed gratitude for a meeting with US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Wednesday, saying it showed her island was "not isolated" on the international stage -- but Beijing soon after threatened a "resolute" response. Tsai Ing-wen, who was greeted by the top Republican in California, said she had received a warm welcome in the United States from politicians on both sides of the aisle.
"Their presence and unwavering support reassure the people of Taiwan that we are not isolated and we are not alone," she told reporters at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley.
Taiwan's President Tsai's visit to California is technically a stop-over after a trip to Latin America to see two of Taiwan's dwindling band of official diplomatic allies. Despite its having been ruled separately for more than 70 years, China views Taiwan as part of its territory and has vowed to one day seize it, by force if necessary.
China is threatening all its major neighbors by expanding its military strength in the last few decades.
Soon after India outrightly rejected China's attempt to rename places of Arunachal Pradesh, Beijing on Tuesday claimed its "sovereignty" over the region.
In a regular press conference, China's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning said, "Zangnan (Arunachal Pradesh) is part of China's territory. In accordance with relevant stipulations of the administration of geographical names of the State Council, competent authorities of the Chinese government have standardised the names of some parts of Zangnan. This is within China's sovereign rights."
Ministry of External Affairs official spokesperson Arindam Bagchi on Tuesday asserted that Arunachal Pradesh will always be an integral part of India.
Mr Bagchi issued the statement after China's Ministry of Civil Affairs came up with the names of 11 places in Arunachal Pradesh, which it referred to as "Zangnan, the southern part of Tibet."
The crisis-ridden Pakistani rupee sank to ? 287.29 against the US dollar, a record low on Tuesday as the cash-starved country struggles to unlock critical International Monetary Fund (IMF) funding while dwindling foreign exchange reserves become another source of concern for investors, a media report said. In the interbank market, the local unit closed at 287.29 against the US dollar, 0.78 percent or ? 2.25, down from Monday's close of 285.04, Pakistan's Geo News reported.
The rupee hit a record low last month, closing at ? 285.09 per US dollar on March 2, the data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) showed.
According to financial experts, Financial importers have resumed the panic buying of US dollars, while the supply of foreign currency remained low in the interbank market.
Pakistan's loan programme has yet to materialise months after it raised taxes and energy prices and allowed the currency to depreciate to meet the IMF's conditions. The nation has missed multiple deadlines to resume its bailout.
The cash-strapped nation secured a USD 6 billion IMF bailout in 2019. It was topped up with another USD 1 billion last year to help the country following devastating floods, but the IMF then suspended disbursements in November due to Pakistan's failure to make more progress on fiscal consolidation.
Just after Russian President unveiled the new foreign policy stating that India, Russia and China are emerging "major powers" with notable influence, Beijing is following the track by being ready to boost ties with Moscow and New Delhi, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Mao Ning said on Tuesday.
While responding to TASS Agency's question about Russia's new foreign policy concept, Mao said, "China, Russia and India are all major emerging major countries with notable influence. As the international and regional landscape is facing profound and complex changes, we are ready to strengthen communication with the international community including Russia and India and send a positive signal to the world about defending true multilateralism and jointly responding to global challenges," according to the Spokesperson of Chinese Embassy in India, Wang Xiaojian's tweet.
She further added, "China and Russia are dedicated to growing a new type of major-country relations featuring mutual respect, peaceful coexistence and win-win cooperation. The bilateral relationship does not target and is not affected by any third party. Last month, President Xi Jinping paid a successful state visit to Russia. The two heads of state drew a blueprint for the future course of China-Russia relations. The two sides are comprehensively following through on the important common understandings between the two leaders. We are fully confident about the future of China-Russia relations."
Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the new Foreign Policy Concept last Friday, which said strengthening and deepening relations with China and India is a diplomatic priority for Russia.
Former US President Donald Trump has been indicted by a Manhattan grand jury over hush money payments made to a porn star during his 2016 campaign, making him the first former US president to face a criminal charge and upending his bid to retake the White House in 2024.
The office of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, who has been pursuing the investigation, confirmed that it had contacted Trump's lawyers on Thursday evening to "coordinate his surrender" on unspecified charges.
"This evening we contacted Mr. Trump's attorney to coordinate his surrender to the Manhattan D. A.'s office for arraignment on a Supreme Court indictment, which remains under seal. Guidance will be provided when the arraignment date is selected," a spokesperson for District Attorney Bragg said.
The New York Times newspaper, quoting five people with knowledge of the matter, reported that the grand jury on Thursday voted to indict 76-year-old Trump, a Republican, for his role in paying money to porn star Stormy Daniels in an attempt to buy her silence over an alleged affair.
The report termed it "a historic development that will shake up the 2024 presidential race and forever mark him as the nation's first former president to face criminal charges."
A defiant Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fired Defence Minister Yoav Galant a day after he broke ranks, citing security concerns in calling for a pause to the government's controversial judicial reforms. On a day when 200,000 people took to the streets of Tel Aviv to protest the reforms, Galant -- who had been a staunch Netanyahu ally -- on Saturday said "we must stop the legislative process" for a month in view of its divisiveness.
The plans to hand more control to politicians and diminish the role of the Supreme Court have been questioned by Israel's top allies including the United States, while regularly igniting protests in Israel.
"The growing social rift has made its way into the (army) and security agencies," said Galant, who is a member of Netanyahu's right-wing Likud party. "It is a clear, immediate and tangible threat to Israel's security.
"I am committed to Likud values... and placing the State of Israel above all... but major changes on the national level must be made through deliberations and dialogue," he added, also calling for a halt to the protests.
To face the upcoming challenge, the US Federal Reserve raised its benchmark lending rate on Wednesday, as it sought to strike a balance between curbing high inflation and averting further upheaval in the commercial banking sector. The quarter-point increase, which was in line with expectations, lifted their interest rate target to between 4.75 and 5 percent at the end of a two-day policy meeting, the Fed said in a statement.
The policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) added that "some additional policy firming may be appropriate" to get to a stance that is sufficiently restrictive to bring inflation down.
The latest increase was the same size as the central bank's previous rate decision in February, and marks its ninth straight rate hike. The Fed also updated its economic projections on Wednesday, slightly lowering its 2023 GDP growth projections 2023 to 0.4 percent from 0.5 percent in December.
Global financial stocks have lost a huge $465 billion in market value in two days as investors cut exposure to lenders from New York to Japan in the wake of Silicon Valley Bank's collapse.
Losses widened today, with the MSCI Asia Pacific Financials Index dropping as much as 2.7% to the lowest since Nov. 29. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. slid as much as 8.3% in Japan, while South Korea's Hana Financial Group Inc. fell 4.7% and Australia's ANZ Group Holdings Ltd. lost 2.8%.
There are concerns that financial firms could see an impact from their investments in bonds and other instruments on the SVB-induced worry. Treasury yields plunged Monday amid expectations the Federal Reserve will hold off raising rates due to turmoil in the banking system.