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Top News: Politics

Intrigue swirls anew in court of Pope Francis

Vatican City - It is like an episode of "Game of Thrones" without the explicit sex.

Trump Twitter tirades deepen Asia alarm over conflict risk

Seoul - Donald Trump may have stumbled into dangerous new territory with tweets that North Korea interpreted as a declaration of war, alarming a region used to living on the edge but now seriously considering the possibility of conflict.

Tension with North Korea more political than military, US chief of staff says

Washington - US relations with North Korea may be "charged" but tensions in the standoff remain political rather than military, the US chairman of the joint chiefs of staff said Tuesday.

US wants diplomatic end to North Korea crisis: Mattis

New Delhi - The United States wants a diplomatic solution to the escalating nuclear crisis with North Korea, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Tuesday, toning down the shrill rhetoric between the two countries.

No 'sufficient progress' in Brexit talks so far: EU's Tusk

London - EU President Donald Tusk on Tuesday slapped down Prime Minister Theresa May's bid to unlock negotiations on future ties between Britain and the EU, saying there was "no sufficient progress" so far.

Merkel seeks partners in splintered Germany

Berlin - Chancellor Angela Merkel got down to work Tuesday in the fractured political landscape left by Germany's "earthquake" election, seeking a ruling majority to help neutralise a newly empowered hard right.

Could Japan's Abe 'do a Theresa May'?

Toukyo - Seeking to capitalise on a fractured and weak opposition and a healthy lead in the polls, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe stunned Japan by gambling on a snap election more than a year before it was due.

Macron government to unveil belt-tightening first budget

Paris - French President Emmanuel Macron's government is set to unveil its first annual budget on Wednesday, balancing tricky priorities as it seeks to cut taxes while also slashing the deficit.

White House slaps critics on Puerto Rico hurricane response

Washington - The White House on Monday batted back allegations that Donald Trump is not focused on the unfolding humanitarian crisis in Puerto Rico, which has been clobbered by a series of deadly hurricanes.

Trump ignores pleas to calm North Korea tensions

Washington - Donald Trump on Tuesday accused North Korea of torturing a captive US student "beyond belief," spurning pleas from allies and foes in east Asia to tone down his warlike rhetoric.

Trump urges EU to sanction Maduro regime in Venezuela

Washington - US President Donald Trump on Tuesday urged the European Union to follow America's lead in slapping sanctions on the "oppressive" regime of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.

'Stop lying', Spanish minister tells Catalan separatists

Madrid - Spain's Foreign Minister Alfonso Dastis on Monday called on Catalonia's separatist leaders to "stop lying" and start talks with the central government, less than a week before a planned independence referendum.

New US travel ban 'psychological terrorism': Venezuela

Caracas - Venezuela accused the United States on Monday of "psychological terrorism" designed to bring down the government after it was included in a list of eight countries targeted by a travel ban."These types of lists....

Labour papers over Brexit splits with fighting talk

Brighton - Britain's main opposition Labour party is performing a delicate balancing act on Brexit even as it takes on Prime Minister Theresa May's negotiating strategy.

Germany's Free Democrats could be brake on euro reform

Frankfurt - Germany's general election brought the pro-business Free Democratic Party a triumphant return to parliament, but memories of its near-death experience last time will make for tough coalition talks with consequences beyond Germany's borders.

EU to turn screw on Poland over rule of law

Brussels - The EU will assess on Monday whether there is backing for unprecedented sanctions against Poland's rightwing government over fears its court reforms threaten the rule of law.

Leading AfD figure refuses to join German party's parliamentary group

Berlin - The nationalist Alternative of Germany was hit by party infighting on Monday just hours after winning its first seats in parliament, with its co-chief Frauke Petry declaring that she won't join its Bundestag group.

Polish president scraps bid to amend constitution for judicial reform

Varsovia - Polish President Andrzej Duda on Monday abandoned his bid to amend the constitution to give himself more power over the judiciary, the latest twist to a reform campaign that has alarmed the EU and prompted mass protests.

Humbled Merkel vows to win back hard-right voters

Berlin - Chancellor Angela Merkel said Monday that she would talk with all mainstream parties about trying to form a "good, stable" government after Germany's watershed election, and vowed to try to win back voters who supported an upstart nationalist force.
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