Netanyahu, Putin to meet for Syria talks
MOSCOW: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is to hold talks on Tuesday with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the conflict in Syria, the Kremlin said, amid concerns Moscow plans to deliver advanced missiles to the Damascus regime. Natanyahu is expected to call on Putin at his Black Sea residence in Sochi as the casualty toll in Syria climbed to more than 80,000 people.
Syrian opposition to discuss US-Russia plan on May 23
BEIRUT: Syria’s key National Coalition opposition group will meet May 23 to discuss a US-Russian proposal for an international conference on a political solution to the Syrian conflict. “The meeting will take place in Istanbul and last three days . . . to take a decision on the Kerry-Lavrov proposal and our participation,” said Coalition spokesman Sonir Ahmed, referring to US Secretary of State John Kerry and his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov.
S. Korea president apologizes for sex assault scandal
SEOUL: South Korean President Park Geun-Hye personally apologised on Monday for an “unsavoury” incident during her US summit visit that led to the dismissal of her chief spokesman. Yoon Chang-Jung was sacked over allegations that he had sexually harassed a female intern—and Korean-American—while accompanying Park on her May 5-9 trip.
Musharraf party wins two seats in Pakistan election
ISLAMABAD: Supporters of Pakistan’s former military ruler Pervez Musharraf won two seats in the northwestern district of Chitral after flouting a party boycott of landmark elections, official results showed on Monday. The Pakistan election commission announced on its website that Iftikhar Uddin won Chitral’s only seat in the national assembly and Haji Ghulam Muhammad gained its sole seat in the provincial assembly of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Both contested on behalf of the All Pakistan League Party, which Musharraf founded in exile before he returned home and was put under house arrest, barred from contesting the elections in person.
Fallen UK minister, ex-wife freed from jail
LONDON: Britain’s disgraced former energy minister Chris Huhne and his ex-wife were both freed from prison on Monday after serving a quarter of their eight-month sentences for swapping speeding points. Huhne, 58, and his former spouse Vicky Pryce had been jailed in March for perverting the course of justice, after she took penalty points on her driving licence in 2003 so that her then husband could avoid a driving ban. Pryce, a Greek-born 60-year-old economist, revealed the points swap in 2011 in a bid to get revenge at Huhne after he left her for his publicist—but the plan backfired and resulted in her being jailed herself.
Suicide bomb kills six in southwest Pakistan
QUETTA: The police chief of Pakistan’s restive southwestern province of Baluchistan narrowly escaped a suicide attack Sunday that killed at least six people and wounded 46 others, officials said. Insp. Gen. Mushtaq Sukhera had just entered his residence in the provincial capital Quetta when a suicide bomber in a vehicle laden with explosives blew themselves up outside.