« Previous | Main | Next »

Burma, Blackwater and Bollywood

Martin Vennard | 09:17 UK time, Tuesday, 16 October 2007

Japan, which is one of the leading donors of aid to Burma, is halting $4.7m in funding for a human resources centre in Burma, as economic pressure mounts on the military government there.

On Monday, the EU upped sanctions on Burma and the US urged "consequential" action against its leaders.

Should countries be implementing tougher sanctions against Burma following the suppression of pro-democracy demonstrations there? Is engagement a better way of bringing about change in Burma or should foreign countries stay out of the affairs of a sovereign nation?


Iraq's Minister for Human Rights, Mrs Wijdan Salim, has said private security guards from the US firm Blackwater should stand trial in Iraq.

It follows the shooting dead of some 17 Iraqi civilians last month, in an incident involving Blackwater employees. The company says its guards acted in self-defence.

The minister said all private security firms in Iraq should be liable under Iraqi criminal law. They currently enjoy immunity from prosecution under a law passed by Iraq's now defunct Coalition Provisional Authority, which she said must now be ended.

Is she right or will such a move stop firms like Blackwater from operating in Iraq, where they provide services that the government and the US-led coalition is unable to provide?


Iraq has urged Turkey's government to be "wise and patient" after it said it would seek MPs' permission for military action against Kurdish rebels in Iraq.

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki said he was prepared to conduct "urgent talks" to defuse the crisis and said a diplomatic solution had to be found.

The US also warned Ankara against ordering any incursions into Iraq, but soon after the Turkish cabinet agreed to submit a motion to parliament seeking authorisation for military action.

Meanwhile, Britain's Times newspaper has reported that Turkish forces, who are already carrying out low-level shelling operations across the border into Iraq, have carried out their deepest assault so far into Iraqi territory - prompting a sharp reaction from the Kurdish regional government.

Should we be discussing this?


The Russian President, Vladimir Putin, is in Iran for a historic visit, the first visit by a Kremlin leader since Stalin joined a summit there in World War II.

Iran's nuclear programme is set to top the agenda, with Iran seeking Russian help fending off new UN sanctions over its programme.

Russia has said there is no evidence that Iran is trying to develop nuclear weapons, something the US says Iran wants to do. Should Russia be taking a tougher stance over Iran and its nuclear programme?


In India a legal battle is taking place over the country's entry for best foreign film at the Oscars.

"Eklavya: The Royal Guard" is facing a legal challenge from a rival director who says the jury that selected it was biased.

The Oscar authorities have asked India to reconfirm its choice by Wednesday, while the Bombay High Court is due to consider the case today.

Eklavya was selected from among five films, including Dharm (Religion) directed by Bhavna Talwar.

Ms Talwar, a first time director, has gone to the court complaining that the jury making India's choice had close links with Eklavya's director. It's making headlines in India, home of the world's biggest film industry. Perhaps we should be talking about it?


  • No comments to display yet.

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.