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International News on February 16, 2011

India, Japan sign CEPA to boost trade
Union Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma and Japanese Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara signed the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) here on Wednesday to give greater impetus to trade and investments between the two nations. ANI

Sarkozy's party accused of anti-Semitism following potential rival diatribe
Nicolas Sarkozy's party has been accused of anti-Semitism after it described the French President's most dangerous potential rival and IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn, as "not representing the soil of France". ANI

Australia to unveil new Multiculturalism Policy to tackle racial discrimination
The Australian government has set up a new advisory body to champion multiculturalism, in the wake of growing religious extremism and incidents of racism in the country. ANI

'Drought in China will not hit world grain prices', says Foreign Ministry spokesman
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu has downplayed the concerns that the prevailing drought in China's wheat-producing regions will have a global impact. ANI

Over half of Americans believe US still in economic recession: Poll
Over half of Americans, are of the opinion that the US is still in an economic recession, and expressed little confidence that it would improve over the next few months, a new CBS News poll has revealed. ANI

Obama's budget 'a good starting point for a discussion' with Republicans: NYT editorial
United States President Barack Obama's new 3.7 trillion dollar budget is encouraging, but it is difficult to answer whether it stands a chance in a Congress in which Republicans, who now dominate the House, are obsessed with making indiscriminate short-term cuts in programs they never liked, according to an editorial in the New York Times. ANI

Banks, hedge funds were somehow "complicit" in massive Ponzi scheme, says Madoff
Bernard L. Madoff, the man who is serving a 150-year sentence over defrauding people of billions of dollars while operating a vast Ponzi scheme that began at least 20 years ago, has said that in a prison interview that various banks were 'wilfully blind' to his crimes. ANI

New York cab driver awarded for returning $100K worth of valuables
A New York City taxi driver, who returned 100,000 dollars worth of jewellery and cash that had been left in the back seat of his cab, has been awarded. ANI

Releasing Davis may give rise to Egypt-like revolution in 'outraged' Pakistan
Pakistan may witness a revolution like that in Egypt and Tunisia if double murder-accused US official Raymond Davis is granted diplomatic immunity and released from detention, the Pakistani public and analysts say. ANI

Musharraf can't claim constitutional immunity in Benazir assassination case: Pak jurists
No parallel can be drawn between Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari and former military ruler Pervez Musharraf, as the latter is not a sitting president, noted jurists have observed. ANI

Brit girl, 15, drinks 152 units of alcohol every week, insists she's no alcoholic
A schoolgirl in Britain, who drinks 26 pints of cider, ten cans of lager and almost a bottle of vodka every week, has insisted that she is not an alcoholic. ANI

Four-time world rally champion sets new car world speed record on ice at 330.695 km/h
Juha Kankkunen, four-time world rally champion, drove a Bentley Continental Supersports convertible on the frozen waters of the Baltic Sea at 330.695 kilometers per hour (205.48 miles per hour) to set a new world speed record on ice. ANI

Berlusconi 'entertained women 2 or 3 times a week at Roman castle'
Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, who is set to face trial on charges of sex with a 17-year-old girl, apparently entertained young women two or three times a week at a historic castle he rented last summer outside Rome. ANI

Beijing mum uploads video of nude daughter to find her a suitor
A Beijing woman, who was desperate to find a suitor for her daughter, uploaded a video of the girl walking out of a shower n*ked while fielding questions on prospective boyfriends. ANI

New Jersey Gov. asks NY to take back 'Jersey Shore' cast members
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has asked New York to take back 'Jersey Shore' cast members who he thinks are giving his state a bad name. ANI

Kevin Rudd buys $3.1m holiday house at Castaways Beach
Former Aussie Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and his family have purchased a new holiday home at Castaways Beach, south of Noosa, for 3.1 million dollars. ANI

Brit grandma convicted of bestiality for sex with rottweiler
A woman in Britain, who was photographed having sex with her pet rottweiler, has been convicted of bestiality. ANI

'Austerity campaigner' Cameron's £200K Jag sits outside Number 10
For someone who preached that Government Ministers should take the Tube to slash government spending, David Cameron doesn't seem to be listening to his own message too well. ANI

Massachusetts Hindu Temple launches $2m expansion project
Well-known Sri Lakshmi Temple in Ashland (Massachusetts, USA) has reportedly embarked upon a two million dollars expansion project. ANI

Nevada Senate in USA opens with Gayatri Mantra
Nevada State Senate reverberated with Sanskrit mantras from ancient Hindu scriptures in Carson City (USA) on February 14. ANI

Muslim preacher arrested over assault on children at mosque in England
West Yorkshire Police have arrested a 59-year-old Muslim preacher over alleged assaults on children at a mosque in Keighley, England. ANI

Rabid Iranian MPs want opposition leaders fuelling anti-government protests 'hanged'
Conservative Iranian parliamentarians have demanded that prominent opposition leaders -Mir Hussein Moussavi and Mehdi Karroubi- should be prosecuted over the deadly protests in Tehran. ANI

Two women caught shooting p*rn film on balcony of Oz hotel
Two women in Australia were caught shooting a pornographic film on the balcony of a hotel, and in full view of residents and pedestrians passing below. ANI

66 percent Americans not in favor of US meddling in Egypt
In the wake of the uprising that led to the fall of the Egyptian leader Hosni Mubarak, two in three American's believe that the United States should stay out of Egypt's affairs. ANI

Bangladesh Govt. asks Muhammad Yunus to give up Grameen Bank post
The Bangladeshi government has asked Nobel peace laureate and micro credit pioneer Muhammad Yunus to retire as he has reached the normal retirement age for executives at private banks. ANI

Petraeus may quit post of commander of US and Nato forces in Afghanistan by year end
General David Petraeus plans to quit his post as commander of US and Nato forces in Afghanistan as a part of changes to be introduced by the Pentagon. ANI

Obama bestows George Bush with America's highest civilian honour
US President Barack Obama honoured 41st president George H W Bush with America's highest civilian honour on Tuesday. ANI

"Unknown perpetrators" killed bulk of 90,000 Iraqi civilians during 2003 to 2008: study
A study has claimed that nearly 90, 000 people have been killed over five years from March 2003 to 2008 during the Iraq war, and majority of these were by unknown perpetrators. ANI

Oz man sees 'god gazing down through clouds'
A man from the Macarthur region has claimed he saw god's image in a cloud. ANI

Global celebrity culture fuelling 'fear of insignificance' warns psychologist
A university psychologist has warned that the global celebrity culture is adding fuel to the "fear of insignificance" by undermining one's self-image and sense of self-worth. ANI

China's 'n*ked officials' to be subjected to more scrutiny
A senior discipline official in China has revealed that "n*ked officials", the name given to public servants whose wives have taken residence abroad and who are suspected to be more prone to corruption, will soon be subjected to more scrutiny. ANI

Egyptian govt. exploited national infrastructure to cripple Internet: Experts
Interviews with many Egyptian engineers, as well as an examination of data collected around the world during the five-day Internet blackout in the country during the anti-government protests, indicate that the Hosni Mubarak government had exploited a devastating combination of vulnerabilities in the national infrastructure ANI

Obama proposes 3.1-bn-dollar US aid to Pak in fiscal year 2012
The Obama administration has proposed a staggering amount of 3.1-billion-dollars, as financial assistance to Pakistan in the 2012 budget, despite its standoff with the Asian nation on double murder-accused US official Raymond Davis' detention issue. ANI

Kerry hints at possibility of bill being moved in Senate 'against US aid to Pak'
US Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John F. Kerry has hinted at the possibility of some senators moving a bill for cutting off aid to Pakistan in case both countries did not act sensibly on the issue of double-murder accused US diplomat Raymond Davis. ANI

Anonymous hackers release 'decrypted version of Stuxnet worm' online: Security experts
US security experts have claimed that the computer hackers' collective Anonymous has released a decrypted version of the Stuxnet worm that had affected Iran's nuclear power program in December last year, online. ANI

US "top lawyer of last resort" joins Assange to "protect new electronic media vigorously"
Alan Dershowitz, America's "top lawyer of last resort", has said that he has joined Wikileaks founder Julian Assange's legal team to "protect new electronic media vigorously." ANI

Egypt's new military leader feared political reform could 'erode central govt. power': Wikileaks
Field Marshal Mohamad Tantawi, the head of the Higher Military Council that took control of Egypt last week, had opposed political reform because he believed that it 'eroded central government power,' the whistleblower Wikileaks has revealed. ANI

'Foreign docs, including Indians, 6 times more likely to banned than those trained in UK'
Doctors who qualify from non-European countries, including India, are six times more likely to banned for putting patients in danger than those trained in the UK, a study has found. ANI

Iraqi defector admits lying about Iraq WMD to get rid of Saddam Hussein regime
An Iraqi defector whose claims that the Saddam Hussein regime possessed biological weapons of mass destruction had persuaded the US to invade the oil rich country in 2003, has admitted for the first time he had "fabricated" some facts to get rid of the autocratic regime. ANI

3 out of 4 Brits are gambling addicts
A survey has found that the number of gamblers in Britain has risen, with three out of four being gambling addicts. ANI

Nazi 3D 'dancing girls and sausages' films are of 'excellent quality'
Aussie director Philippe Mora has uncovered 3D films shot by Nazis that feature dancing girls and sausages. ANI

US Embassy denies reports about Davis' rude behaviour, special treatment in jail
The US Consul General in Lahore has dismissed media reports that double-murder accused US diplomat Raymond Davis and the US officials who visited him in Lahore's Kot Lakhpat Jail had acted inappropriately. ANI

Michelle Obama promotes breastfeeding
As part of her campaign against childhood obesity, US First Lady Michelle Obama is urging women to breastfeed. ANI

Berlusconi trial will be presided over by three women judges
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi will be tried in court on charges of abuse of office and paying for sex with an under age prostitute and the case will be presided over by three women judges. ANI

I'll probably be an unbearable grandmother, says Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton has admitted that she would probably make an 'unbearable' grandmother, but she would love it if her newly-married daughter Chelsea were to have children. ANI

Michelle Obama portrayed as overweight in cartoon attacking her obesity campaign
US First Lady Michelle Obama has been portrayed as an overweight, hamburger-munching glutton in a very personal cartoon attack. ANI

Princess Diana's bro set to tie the knot
Princess Diana's brother, Charles Spencer, has announced that he is engaged to Canadian philanthropist Karen Gordon. ANI

'German Fritzl' accused of fathering 7 kids with stepdaughter
A man labelled the 'German Josef Fritzl' has been accused of fathering seven children with his stepdaughter. ANI

London 7/7 bomber's secret girlfriend was 'clueless' of his 'radicalization'
A secret girlfriend of Shehzad Tanweer, one of the July 7, 2005, London suicide bombers, has told the inquest into the attack that she had no idea about his radicalization. ANI

Second round of Indo-US Strategic dialogue to start on April 6 in Delhi
India's Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao today said that the second round of the Indo-US Strategic Dialogue will start in Delhi on April 6, with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton leading the American side. ANI

US support for Indian Security Council bid has spurred momentum for UN reform: Rao
Thanking the United States for its support for India's bid for UN Security Council permanent membership, Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao today said that Washington's support came at an opportune moment, as New Delhi saw new momentum for a long-mooted proposal to expand the UNSC. ANI

Afghanistan, US to hold bilateral meeting in Washington sans Pakistan
Pakistan has been excluded from the high-level Afghan-Pak-US trilateral meeting, as the United States and Afghanistan have decided to hold bilateral talks on the same scheduled dates. ANI

US assures India of fair solution for Tri-Valley 'duped' students
The United States has assured India of finding a fair solution for the Indian students caught in the Tri-Valley University visa fraud scam. ANI

Oz Resource Minister urges govt. to sell uranium to India as 'special case'
Australian Resource Minister Martin Ferguson has said that the Labor party needs to allow "flexibility and discretion" to its current uranium sales policy, so that the metallic chemical elements could be exported to India. ANI

Muslim Brotherhood plans to form political party but won't field presidential candidate
The Muslim Brotherhood, the banned Islamic group that is considered as Egypt's main political opposition, has said that it would form a political party once democracy is established in Cairo, but promised not to field a presidential candidate this time. ANI

NATO jets, drone violate Pakistan's airspace again
Pakistan's airspace was yet again violated by NATO as its fighter jets and a drone were seen hovering over Chaman and its suburbs, according to sources. ANI

CBS correspondent Lara Logan 'sexually assaulted while covering Egypt protests
It has emerged that CBS correspondent Lara Logan is recovering in hospital after she was sexually assaulted while covering Egyptian protests. ANI

Egypt-style protests rock Bahrain, demonstrators crowd 'Pearl Square' in Manama
Thousands of protesters gathered at the main square in Bahrain's capital, Manama, in an Egypt-style rebellion demanding political reform and greater freedoms. ANI

Kerry urges Pak to free Davis, promises criminal investigation against him in US
US Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John F. Kerry has voiced regret for the killings of two Pakistani men by an American official in Lahore, and sought to reassure the Pakistanis by announcing that the United States would launch its own probe into the matter. ANI

'Pressurised' Pak Foreign Office relents, declares murder accused American "a diplomat"
Pakistan's Foreign Office has declared double murder-accused US official Raymond Davis "a diplomat" in a letter written to the Law Ministry. ANI

Now, Obama personally demands release of murder accused American from Pak
For the first time, US President Barack Obama has publicly spoken on the US-Pak diplomatic row over double murder-accused American official Raymond Davis' detention in Lahore, insisting that Pakistan must recognize Davis as a diplomat and release him on the grounds of diplomatic immunity. ANI

O3b Networks Appoints Steve Collar as CEO
O3b Networks announced today that it has appointed Steve Collar as Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Collar succeeds Mark Rigolle after the completion of O3b’s latest financing round in November 2010. After a handover period, Mr. Collar will formally take up his new position on 7th March 2011. Business Wire India

Intero International Franchise Services, LLC, Goes Global Signing First Master Franchise Agreement in the UK
Intero International Franchise Services, LLC, has signed a master franchise agreement to extend the Intero brand into new markets with GPEA, LTD. Business Wire India

Wipro Technologies Expands Canadian Operations
Wipro Technologies, the Global Consulting, System Integration and Outsourcing business of Wipro Limited (NYSE:WIT), today announced the inauguration of a new office in Mississauga, Ontario, as part of an expansion plan for its Canadian operations Business Wire India

FutureCarbon with Electrically Heated Coating for Temperatures up to 500°C at Nano Tech 2011 Show
FutureCarbon is again attending nano tech, the world's biggest nanotechnology show. Included in its exhibits is the electrically heated coating Carbo e-Therm UHT, an innovation for heating solutions using temperatures up to 500°C. The big attraction with this high-temperature heating system is that the coating can be applied by the simplest techniques such as squeegeeing or brushing Business Wire India

Smith Micro Software Announces Agreement with Telecom New Zealand, Further Expanding Its Global Footprint in the Asia Pacific Region
MOBILE WORLD CONGRESS – Smith Micro Software, Inc. (NASDAQ:SMSI), a leading developer and marketer of software solutions and services for the mobility market, today announced the expansion of its global footprint through an agreement with Telecom New Zealand, the largest telecommunications service provider in New Zealand Business Wire India

ZTE to Build LTE/DC-HSPA+ National Network for Hutchison 3G Austria
ZTE and Hutchison 3G Austria have announced that ZTE will build a nationwide LTE/DC-HSPA+ commercial network in Austria Business Wire India

WPP Digital Launches Global Interactions Agency, Possible Worldwide
WPP Digital has announced the launch of Possible Worldwide, a global interactive marketing agency. Formed through the combination of award-winning WPP Digital agencies Schematic, Bridge Worldwide, BLUE and Quasar, Possible Worldwide’s mission is to create meaningful and measurable interactive marketing for the world’s largest brands. Business Wire India

Aeolus Awarded Contract Fully Valued at $118 Million from BARDA to Develop Treatment for Lung Acute Radiation Syndrome
Aeolus Pharmaceuticals, Inc Business Wire India

Deutsche Boerse AG and NYSE Euronext Agree to Combine to Create the Premier Global Exchange Group
Deutsche Boerse AG (XETRA: DB1) and NYSE Euronext (NYSE: NYX) has announced that they have entered into a business combination agreement following approval from both companies’ Boards Business Wire India

LifeSize Video Center Introduces Mobile HD Video Streaming
LifeSize, a division of Logitech (Nasdaq:LOGI) (SIX:LOGN), has announced HD video content streaming on mobile devices using LifeSize® Video Center Business Wire India

Exxon Mobil Corporation Announces 2010 Reserves Replacement
Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) announced that additions to its proved reserves in 2010 totaled 3.5 billion oil-equivalent barrels, replacing 209 percent of production. Excluding the impact of asset sales, reserves additions replaced 211 percent of production. Business Wire India

JPMorgan Chase Announces New Programs for Military and Veterans
JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM) announced yesteray it will significantly enhance its programs to help military and veteran customers. Business Wire India

MKU Showcases a Vast Range of Ballistic Protection Solutions at IDEX 2011
MKU introduced a range of new and innovative ballistic protection solutions at IDEX 2011 being held at Abu Dhabi. It introduced the new Combat Vehicle Crewman Helmet and the G-Factor Boltfree CS Helmet in the personal production segment. Both these helmets feature several design and technological enhancements over standard helmets Business Wire India

Control4 and Cisco Sign Strategic Agreement to Deliver Network-enabled Automation Platforms for Smart+Connected Communities and Home Energy Management Solutions
Control4, a leader in affordable IP-based home control systems, announced that it has signed a strategic agreement with Cisco to deliver network-enabled automation platforms for connected smart communities and home energy deployments around the world Business Wire India

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