When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Ukraine

Latest On Ukraine, U.S. Budget Deal, French Fries Onslaught

Protests in Kiev on Dec. 11, 2013
Protests in Kiev on Dec. 11, 2013
Worldcrunch

UKRAINE PROTESTS: UPDATE

  • Ukrainian riot police forces have withdrawn from Kiev’s Independence Square after clashing with protesters during the night, in an attempt to remove the barricades in and around the City Hall, Reuters reports.

    The Polish Foreign Ministry summoned the Ukrainian ambassador over the use of force by the police during the recent events, news agency ITAR-TASS reports. Poland favors discussions between the government and opponents and had previously denounced the use of violence.

  • Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov said the country was ready to sign the deal with the European Union if Brussels “minimizes” the losses to the Ukrainian economy that an agreement would cause. According to newswire Interfax, he estimated these at 20 billion euros.

  • For more on one of the leaders of the opposition, former boxer Vitali Klitschko, have a look at this Süddeutsche Zeitung/Worldcrunch piece.

U.S. CONGRESS CLOSING IN ON BUDGET DEAL
Republican and Democrat negotiators have agreed on a federal budget for the next two years, brushing aside fears of a new government shutdown in January, The Washington Post reports. If passed by the House and the Senate, the deal will translate into spending cuts and a pledge not to raise taxes, according to The Guardian.

BURMA FREES 44 POLITICAL PRISONERS
Burma has liberated another 44 political prisoners this morning, following a pledge from President Thein Sein to free all prisoners of conscience by the end of the year. But despite being released, some 200 political prisoners are still awaiting trial, AFP reports, citing a member of the country’s Assistance Association for Political Prisoners.

15 DEAD IN CHINESE FOOD MARKET FIRE
At least 15 people have died in a massive fire that broke out in a food market the Southeastern Chinese town of Shenzhen, Xinhua reports. The cause of the sudden blaze, which burnt an area of 1,000 square meters, is still unknown.

URUGUAY LEGALIZES MARIJUANA PRODUCTION, CONSUMPTION, SALE
Uruguay senators approved yesterday an historic bill that will make it the first state to control the entire production, distribution and commerce of marijuana, Clarínreports. From April onwards, people over 18 will be able to buy up to 40g of the drug per month in pharmacies. Backers of the bill believe that it will help the fight against drug cartels.
On its front page, national newspaper El País welcomes the news by writing: “Green light to the experiment”.

BY THE NUMBERS
Government officials in Japan will be served rice from Fukushima for nine days to prove it’s safe for consumption. For more on the decontamination of the nuclear facility, read this Le Monde/Worldcrunch piece: Meet The Underpaid, Overexposed “Liquidators” Of Fukushima.

VERBATIM
President Hollande justifies French military intervention in the Central African Republic, hours after two French soldiers were killed in Bangui.

FRENCH FRIES
This Frenchman didn’t like having his McDonald’s fries served cold — so he attacked the restaurant with a hatchet.

Click here to subscribe to Worldcrunch's NEWSLETTER.

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

Geopolitics

Utter Pessimism, What Israelis And Palestinians Share In Common

Right now, according to a joint survey of Israelis and Palestinians, hopes for a peaceful solution of coexistence simply don't exist. The recent spate of violence is confirmation of the deepest kind of pessimism on both sides for any solution other than domination of the other.

An old Palestinian protester waves Palestinian flag while he confronts the Israeli soldiers during the demonstration against Israeli settlements in the village of Beit Dajan near the West Bank city of Nablus.

A Palestinian protester confronts Israeli soldiers during the demonstration against Israeli settlements in the West Bank village of Beit Dajan on Jan. 6.

Pierre Haski

-Analysis-

PARIS — Just before the latest outbreak of violence between Israelis and Palestinians, a survey of public opinion among the two peoples provided a key to understanding the current situation unfolding before our eyes.

It was a joint study, entitled "Palestinian-Israeli Pulse", carried out by two research centers, one Israeli, the other Palestinian, which for years have been regularly asking the same questions to both sides.

The result is disastrous: not only is the support for the two-state solution — Israel and Palestine side by side — at its lowest point in two decades, but there is now a significant share of opinion on both sides that favors a "non-democratic" solution, i.e., a single state controlled by either the Israelis or Palestinians.

This captures the absolute sense of pessimism commonly felt regarding the chances of the two-state option ever being realized, which currently appears to be our grim reality today. But the results are also an expression of the growing acceptance on both sides that it is inconceivable for either state to live without dominating the other — and therefore impossible to live in peace.

Keep reading...Show less

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

The latest