News stories from around the world
SLOVENIA: Sunday’s national referendum saw voters reject a new family law which included a highly contested clause that would allow same-sex couples to adopt children in some cases.
The law drafted by Slovenia’s former centrist government — and opposed by conservatives close to the Catholic Church — would have allowed gay couples to adopt the biological children of their partners. It did not allow the adoption of children from a third party.
With 98 per cent of the vote counted, about 55 per cent of those who took part in the referendum rejected the law while about 45 supported it, the state referendum commission said. Turnout was believed to be in the region of 26 per cent.
IRELAND: Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny says his government will announce a date for Ireland’s referendum on the European Union fiscal treaty on Tuesday.
The treaty lays down new neoliberal spending and deficit rules for members of the 17-country group that use the euro as their currency.
The pact will become law next year if at least 12 of the 17 eurozone governments manage to approve it through the national parliaments.
Ireland is the only member requiring a national vote.
SENEGAL: President Abdoulaye Wade conceded defeat on Sunday just hours after results from the presidential run-off showed his opponent winning.
According to the preliminary results Macky Sall won 69 per cent of votes against Mr Wade with 30.84 per cent.
Mr Wade had sought a third term in office even though he himself had revised the constitution to impose a two-term maximum and some feared he would not step aside if Mr Sall won.
TURKEY: A court banned a pro-Kurdish newspaper for a month at the weekend for spreading “terrorist propaganda” and police raided its offices in Istanbul to confiscate the Sunday edition.
Ozgur Gundem editor Huseyin Aykol said the court cited its reporting of Kurdish New Year celebrations from the Qandil mountains in northern Iraq, where Kurdistan Workers Party guerillas have bases.
Police detained several of the newspaper’s journalists.
QATAR: The Nato soldier who led the bombing campaign against Libya praised Qatar’s role in the blitzkrieg in a speech to top brass in Doha on Sunday.
Lieutenant General Joseph Bouchard said Qatari forces had bridged the cultural gap between Nato forces and local insurgents and “provided us with a strategic understanding of the Arab point of view of this, which was very important for leadership.”
Lt Gen Bouchard said popular social media such as YouTube and Facebook had played a key role in the campaign. “We have to tailor our media to target different segments of people, officials, troops and mercenaries.”
ARGENTINA: The government announced at the weekend that it has begun legal proceedings against five British oil companies for “carrying out illegal operations” off the Falkland Islands.
The Foreign Ministry said in a statement that agencies including the General Attorney’s Office and the AFIP tax agency “are co-ordinating legal and administrative strategies” against Argos Resources, Desire Petroleum, Falkland Oil and Gas and Rockhopper Exploration.
“Legal cases against these five companies before the General Tax Directive and the General Customs Directive have been opened,” it said.
GERMANY: The head of the powerful IG Metall Union called for pay caps for company chiefs at the weekend after it emerged that Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn pocketed €17.5 million (£14.6m) last year.
Berthold Huber called for “limits on executive compensation,” saying “no-one was expecting” the levels seen at Volkswagen after recent strong sales figures.
IG Metall, Europe’s biggest union, is currently seeking a 6.5 per cent pay rise for its 3.6 million members in the metals and electronics industries.
AFGHANISTAN: A man in an Afghan army uniform shot dead two British soldiers on Monday inside a Nato base in in Lashkar Gah, Helmand province.
“The gunman was shot and killed,” said a Nato spokesman, who declined to provide further details.
The Ministry of Defence said it was aware of the incident but refused to release any more information.
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