Greece does not want anymore loans from the IMF, they are preparing to exit. Russia two largest banks are pushing forward in creating an identical SWIFT system. Russia and China agree to a currency swap. Iran and Russia agree to create a joint bank to bypass the dollar. The US is now using voice prints to spy and locate people. Ebola devastates the economies of three West African countries as they were on the verge of recovery. Ground troops are on there way to Iraq, the advisories will now switch to combat mode. Syria creates special team to deal with the Islamic State.
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Current News – 10.13.2014
- Athens has informed the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that it will end its obligations to the unpopular rescue program, which placed crippling austerity measures on the country, more than a year early.
- At €240 billion (£188 billion), the bailout was the largest rescue effort in financial history.
- “Not only do we not need a new memorandum [rescue loan agreement]. We don’t need the rest of the money that from the start of next year we were on course to get from the current memorandum. We can leave it one and a half years earlier… that is our goal,”
- Last week, Lagarde advised Athens to continue with the program, saying that Greece is still confronted by a budgetary shortfall of about €15 billion for 2015.
- The two biggest banks in Russia, Sberbank (zu bera bank) and VTB, are in talks to create an alternative to the SWIFT global system for interbank financial communications, VTB head Andrey Kostin said.
- “There is an alternative, we can use the Central Bank system that is already in operation, and we may make our own, we are already in discussions with Sberbank,”
- Switching Russia off SWIFT, the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, would instantly isolate it from global finance, as happened with Iran in 2012
- The central banks of China and Russia have signed a 3-year ruble-yuan currency swap deal up to $25 billion, in order to boost trade using national currencies and lessen dependence on the dollar and euro.
- “We need to expand the practice of using national currencies in trade.
- The deal is valid for 3 years, and can be extended if both Russia and China agree.
- Using more local currencies will speed up trade between the two countries who are aiming to reach $100 billion by 2015. Trade between Russia and China is already nearly $90 billion and is scheduled to hit $200 billion in the next six years.
- Iran and Russia plan to establish a joint bank as an effort to multiply bilateral trade and bypass sanctions on the Islamic Republic’s banking sector.
- Tehran and Moscow are studying the possibilities of opening a new chapter in trade relations that could break the domination of Western currencies over bilateral exchanges.
- “Such a bank would be able to exchange money between the two sides using rials and rubles and put aside dollars, euros and pounds,” he added.
- the U.S. government’s secretive ‘No Fly List’ on Friday, seven people who challenged their inclusion on the list were finally cleared and told they can once again enjoy the right to board an aircraft and fly commercially over domestic airspace.
- Friday’s announcement by the Department of Homeland Security was described by one attorney involved with the case as the first ever significant blow to the “unfair and unnecessary secrecy regime” that surrounds the government list that now contains thousands upon thousands of names.
- corporate and government databases in the US, Europe and elsewhere contain more than 65 million samples of people’s voices,
- Sometimes bank clients may not even suspect that voiceprint recognition is in effect. For example, two major US banks, JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo & Co., use a voice screening system provided by matching the voiceprints of people calling them against a database of fraught suspects to prevent identity theft.
- Just as their economies had begun to recover from the man-made horror of coups and civil war, the West African nations of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone have been knocked back down by a terrifying force of nature: the Ebola virus.
- “They were coming back and now have been set back in a big way,“
- The epidemic damages the economy directly. Commerce stops. The sick can’t work. Contaminated areas close down.
- Nigeria and Senegal have kept their epidemics contained,” Ferreira said.
- Russia will send the new anti-viral drug triazavirin to West Africa to help in the struggle against the spread of the deadly Ebola virus, Russian Health Minister Veronika Skvortsova said Monday.
- “In the next two months we will produce enough triazavirin to send to our team in Guinea and to see its efficiency in clinical use,”
- According to the minister, the efficiency of the new drug varies from 70 to 90 percent.
- President Barack Obama is asking federal authorities to take measures to make sure hospitals and health care providers across the United States are prepared to deal with Ebola patients.
- Obama has also asked the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to accelerate its probe into the apparent “breach of infection control procedures” at a Texas hospital, where an Ebola patient died last week before infecting a health worker.
- National Security Adviser Susan Rice says the US is monitoring North Korea with great attention and there is no indication that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is no longer in power.
- “Obviously, we are watching very carefully what’s happening in North Korea. It’s a country that we monitor with great attention,” Rice said Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
- The North Korean leader has been absent from the public view for more than a month now.
- The South Korean military said Monday it has deployed additional weapons to islands near the tense western maritime border to better deal with North Korea’s growing threats.
- (the military) has additionally dispatched missiles and armored vehicles in the regions,” the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said in a report, citing the country’s portable
- NATO is strengthening its presence in the Black Sea; by the end of the week, a French warship will join two American vessels already stationed in Black Sea waters, a military source told RIA Novosti on Monday.
- On October 3, the command ship, the USS Mount Whitney entered the Black Sea, joining the USS Cole destroyer, deployed in the area in September.
- Ukraine has disagreed to pay part of the outstanding debt for Russian gas before supplies begin, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak told the media on Monday.
- “Ukraine has disagreed (with Russia’s position) so far. They have addressed the European Commission with their own option: first the supplies must get underway and then the debt will begin to be paid,” Novak said.
- Russia’s President Vladimir Putin confirms the positive development of relations between Russia and Bahrain. At the meeting with Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa he suggested discussing both bilateral and international problems.
- “I am pleased, over these years relations between Russia and Bahrain have been developing and contacts continue,” the Russian president said, expressing hope Bahrain’s king will enjoy Russia’s first every Formula 1 Grand Prix.
- “We have many sectors of cooperation, for example, culture, economy; and our relations may be called strategic,” the king said.
- Lebanon is set to postpone next month’s parliamentary elections to 2017 because instability linked to the Syrian crisis
- The civil war in neighboring Syria has stoked sectarian tensions and aggravated long-standing rivalries in Lebanon.
- “There is no longer a possibility of holding the elections because of the deteriorating security situation in the country,”
- Lebanon has been without a president since May
- Southern separatists in Yemen have called for huge demonstrations Tuesday to demand secession,
- The aim is to “send one last message to the northerners that we are more determined than ever to build an independent state,” said Abdullah al-Jifri, leader of a southern faction.
- “The people of the south are marching to Aden from all provinces
- Iraqi officials have issued a “desperate plea for America to bring US ground troops back,” due to the fact that Islamic States militants are now “within striking distance of Baghdad.”
- Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey today said his “instinct at this point” is that the war will eventually require the “advisers,” US ground troops sent to Iraq, will have to engage in ground combat, particularly in the push to retake the major city of Mosul.
- Gen. Dempsey went on to say that ISIS is successfully blending in to the Sunni population in towns along the outskirts of Baghdad,
- Iceland has closed down a website believed to be used by the jihadist organisation ISIS
- Kuwait has agreed to host Canada’s military in the war against Islamic State
- Canada marked the second NATO ally reported to have expanded deployment in Kuwait. Earlier, the United States said it was sending more than 2,000 soldiers as part of a rapid-deployment force in the Middle East and Gulf.
- Turkey denied statements by U.S. officials that it had allowed the United States access to its air bases for operations against ISIS militants in Syria.
- “There is no new agreement with the United States about Incirlik,“
- Saudi Arabia: Iran must withdraw its “occupying” forces from Syria to help resolve that country’s conflict,
- “In many conflicts, Iran is part of the problem, not the solution,“
- “In this case, we can say that Iranian forces in Syria are occupying forces,” aiding President Bashar Assad, whom he described as an “illegitimate” leader.
- Supreme Military Advisor to the Supreme Leader’s Representative in the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard renewed Iran’s full support to the Syrian people and government in confronting the conspiracy hatched against it and combating the terrorist organizations.
- Turkish government’s involvement in supporting ISIS helped the terrorist organization expand in some areas in Syria and Iraq, clarifying that Turkey’s priority is not battling with ISIS, particularly that Ankara has contributed to founding this terrorist organization and many others.
- NATO must force Turkey to stop its undeclared support of the Islamic State (ISIS) and shift its policy toward the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), the deputy speaker of the German parliament said
- Erdogan’s “dealings with the ISIS are unacceptable. I could not believe that Turkey harbors an ISIS militant camp in Istanbul,” Roth said. “Turkey has also allowed weapons to be transported into Syria through its borders. Also that the ISIS has been able to sell its oil via Turkey is extraordinary,” she added.
- “Germany must put pressure on Turkey to change course and reevaluate its policies.
- Syria’s UN envoy has accused Turkey and Saudi Arabia of giving weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) to terrorist groups fighting in the country. The charge precedes reports Kurdish fighters battling ISIS militants have been attacked with chemical weapons.
- The US-led airstrikes against the Takfiri ISIL terrorist group near the Syrian border city of Kobani are “deliberately ineffective,” an analyst says Rickards.
- the airstrikes by the US-led coalition against the ISIL have not been “effective,” as “the bombing campaign” does not target the militants’ positions.
- “How is it possible to fight against terrorism in a country, when the leadership of that country wishes to fight, but (US and its allies) do not recognize its sovereignty? There is a need for clear understanding of what a sovereign state is, and cooperation with this country’s government, like this is done in Iraq,” Bogdanov said, adding that “there should be no double standards”.
- Even though Islamic State militants in Syria have no aircraft to speak of, the US’s top military commander says establishing a no-fly zone may be part of the campaign. Such a move is what US allies, including Turkey, have been pressing for.
- The possible establishment of a no-fly zone over northern Syria was hinted at by Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey.
- “Do I anticipate that there could be circumstances in the future where that would be part
- Iran and Russia argue the US is just a hair’s breadth away from an illegal invasion of a sovereign nation on a pretext of fighting terrorism.
- Small groups of Syrians are hunting down ISIS fighters in one of their main strongholds in eastern Syria in a new guerrilla campaign that has emerged as a response to the Islamists’ growing brutality.
- The main aim is to generate fear in ISIS’ ranks, said the head of “White Shroud” – a group that says it has killed more than 100 ISIS fighters in attacks in Deir al-Zor province in recent months.
- The Syrian government still controls a portion of Deir al-Zor city and its airport.
- The black flag of Islamic militant group ISIS is shown flying above St. Peter’s Square on the cover of the group’s magazine Dabiq, which called in its latest issue for a war against the Catholic Church. With the headline The Failed Crusade, the photo-shopped cover of Dabiq caps new threats against Rome and the Vatican as well as forces led by the United States in a bombing campaign in Iraq and Syria against ISIS militants.