Political News from Yahoo

Israel tightens grip on E.Jerusalem with $90m plan

The Israeli cabinet on Sunday approved a $90 million dollar socio-economic development plan for annexed east Jerusalem which focuses on increased security and police presence in the area, the municipality said. The plan involves an increase in the number of policemen on the beat as well as a greater number of security cameras. "According to Israel police assessments, the plan will lead to a significant decline in the short- and medium-term of over 50 percent in displays of violence," it said. Police figures quoted by the municipality indicate that in March and April, there were 390 incidents of stone-throwing at the security forces and vehicles in east Jerusalem, as well as dozens of cars stolen and break-ins.


Obama: European jihadists threaten US

US President Barack Obama warned that "battle-hardened" Europeans who embrace jihad in Syria and Iraq threaten the United States because their passports mean they can enter the country without a visa. Nearly 800 French citizens have spent time fighting in Syria's civil war, according to latest estimates, and Belgium says 200 of its people have done the same. Those holding French, Belgian and British passports -- along with a host of other European countries -- do not need visas to visit the United States, meaning they can potentially avoid scrutiny. "We have seen Europeans sympathetic to their (militants') cause traveling into Syria and may now travel into Iraq, getting battle-hardened.


Obama to seek funds to stem border influx

The White House is poised to seek about $2 billion in emergency funds to help stem the flow of tens of thousands of Central American children entering the United States illegally. The request will add to an already fiery debate in Washington over US immigration reform and growing concerns about the steady increase of minors illicitly smuggled from Central America and across Mexico into the US. The White House on Monday will send a letter informing Congress it will be requesting the additional resources to help boost border security, among other measures, as well as attempting to get to the root causes of migration. The measures will include stepping up the fight against criminal networks responsible for smuggling children, the official said, adding the administration of President Barack Obama will also ask lawmakers to modify existing statutes to simplify the process of returning deportees.


Turkish President says will not run for second term

Turkish President Abdullah Gul said he would not seek a second term in office, further raising the likelihood that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan would run for the top job. Already in his third term as prime minister -- the maximum permitted under the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP)'s rules -- Erdogan is widely expected to be unveiled on Tuesday as his party's candidate for August's presidential poll.


'Mistake by the Lake' seeks political redemption

CLEVELAND (AP) — This Lake Erie city has suffered some bad public relations over the years and has made headlines for all the wrong reasons: poverty, pollution, foreclosure, bizarre crimes and a fleeing population. Yet, thanks to billions of dollars spent burnishing the city's image and its physical face, Cleveland is one of two finalists for the Republican national convention in 2016 and a longshot candidate to host the Democrats, as well.


Putin calls on Ukraine leader to extend truce with rebels

Moscow (AFP) - Russian President Vladimir Putin on Sunday joined the leaders of Germany and France in calling on Ukraine to extend its temporary ceasefire with pro-Kremlin militias beyond Monday, the Kremlin said.


Rise of jihadists in Iraq a boon for Damascus

The rise of jihadists in Iraq has set the West on edge, but Damascus sees it is an opportunity to legitimise its battle against rebels and promote it as a war on "terror". President Bashar al-Assad's regime has repeatedly denied the existence of a revolt seeking political change in Syria, instead branding its opponents -- both peaceful and armed -- as "terrorists". For Damascus, the lightning Sunni offensive in neighbouring Iraq led by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) provides a chance to lend credence to its rhetoric. "The West must recognise it made a mistake by encouraging all these people to establish themselves in the region," said Waddah Abed Rabbo, editor-in-chief of pro-regime daily Al-Watan.


Suspected Islamists 'attack churches near Nigeria's Chibok'

Suspected Boko Haram Islamists attacked a series of churches on Sunday near Chibok, the northeast Nigeria town where more than 200 teenage girls were kidnapped in April, with dozens feared dead, witnesses said. "The attackers went to churches with bombs and guns," Timothy James, a Chibok resident said by phone, explaining that the villages were within 10 kilometres (six miles) of Chibok.


Wendy Davis tries to get Texas campaign for governor back on track

By Jon Herskovitz DALLAS (Reuters) - For one day a year ago, Wendy Davis became the brightest star in the U.S. political universe when she donned pink tennis shoes and launched a one-woman, 10-hour filibuster against abortion restrictions that brought her international attention. Now she is battling to revive a seemingly stalled campaign to become the first Democratic Texas governor in more than 20 years by winning over frustrated Republicans and motivating enough voters who would otherwise spend election day at home to find a few minutes to vote. State Senator Davis, 51, came into the Texas Democratic convention in Dallas over the weekend with surveys showing her 10-13 percent points behind the Republican nominee, Attorney General Greg Abbott, 56, and failing to close ground. "I'm running because there's a moderate majority that's being ignored - commonsense, practical, hardworking Texans whose voices are being drowned out by insiders in Greg Abbott's party, and it needs to stop," she told the convention on Friday.


Two Israelis, one Egyptian to face trial over 'spying'

Cairo (AFP) - An Egyptian and two Israelis, including an intelligence officer, will be tried by an Egyptian court for allegedly "spying" for the Jewish state, judicial sources said on Sunday.


Benghazi suspect's court case could offer clarity

WASHINGTON (AP) — A court appearance for the alleged mastermind of the attacks on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya, is the first step in a long legal process that could yield new insight into a fiery assault that continues to reverberate across U.S. politics.


Faith offers valuable connection for Southern Dems

ATLANTA (AP) — Jason Carter, former President Jimmy Carter's grandson, stepped into the pulpit of South Columbus United Methodist Church for a Palm Sunday sermon and offered a message of Christian responsibility to the poor, with his phone in hand.


Somalia's Shebab warn of Mogadishu attacks during Ramadan

Al-Qaeda-linked Shebab militants have warned they will step up attacks in the Somali capital Mogadishu during the holy month of Ramadan, which started on Sunday. In an audio message released on the Shebab-controlled station Radio Andalus and also on an Islamist website, the group's commander in charge of Mogadishu operations, Sheik Ali Mohamed Hussein, said the time had come when violence will be at a peak. His statement came just a few hours after the Somalia government deployed dozens of heavily armed police on key streets and roads in Mogadishu to counter attacks. "The attacks will increase and explosions will continue, Mogadishu will remain a frontline and even worse than ever," said Sheik Ali Mohamed Hussein.


Britons pessimistic about promised EU reforms: poll

British voters are pessimistic about Prime Minister David Cameron's ability to achieve reforms to the European Union that he believes are crucial to persuading Britain to stay in the bloc, a new poll found on Sunday. Some 42 percent of respondents surveyed by YouGov do not believe the EU will be prepared to hand back any powers to member states, and another 29 percent think any concessions won by Britain will only be minor. Cameron has pledged to renegotiate Britain's terms of membership with the EU before holding a referendum on whether to leave or stay in the block in 2017. He hopes that reform will persuade eurosceptic voters to stay in the EU, but admitted that his failure last week to block the appointment of Jean-Claude Juncker as head of the bloc's executive arm made his job harder.


Senegal votes in local elections seen as presidential test

Senegal voted in municipal and provincial elections on Sunday, seen as a key test for President Macky Sall as he tries to shore up support for his party two years after his own disputed victory. A bitterly disputed presidential election in March 2012 was marred by violence that left up to 15 people dead and at least 150 injured. Sall won that election with more than 65 percent of the vote against Abdoulaye Wade who had been in power for 12 years. The local elections are a key test for Sall and his party which control only a few local communities.


ISIL crucifies 9 men in Syria's Aleppo: NGO

A jihadist group in Syria has publicly executed and crucified nine men, eight of them rebels fighting both President Bashar al-Assad's regime and the jihadists, a monitor said on Sunday. The report comes amid fierce clashes on the outskirts of Damascus between the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, which is spearheading a major offensive in Iraq, and rebels, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. "ISIL executed eight men in Deir Hafer in the east of Aleppo province" on Saturday because they belonged to rebel groups that had fought against the jihadists as well as Assad's forces, it said. Also in Aleppo province, a ninth man was executed and crucified in Al-Bab town near the border with Turkey.


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