Morning Brief, Thursday, December 13

CHIP SOMODEVILLA/Getty Images Global Economy Central banks in North America and Europe pumped billions into struggling credit markets Wednesday in a bid to avert a recession, but the stock market reaction has been mixed. Asia Two thirds of Pakistanis want President Pervez Musharraf to resign. Also in Pakistan, two suicide bombs struck Quetta, the capital ...

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597625_071213_bernanke_0_15.jpg

CHIP SOMODEVILLA/Getty Images

CHIP SOMODEVILLA/Getty Images

Global Economy

Central banks in North America and Europe pumped billions into struggling credit markets Wednesday in a bid to avert a recession, but the stock market reaction has been mixed.

Asia

Two thirds of Pakistanis want President Pervez Musharraf to resign. Also in Pakistan, two suicide bombs struck Quetta, the capital of troubled Baluchistan province.

A new poll finds former Hyundai CEO and conservative opposition leader Lee Myung-bak with a commanding lead ahead of next Wednesday’s presidential election in South Korea.

In Bali, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon conceded that the United States has successfully forestalled the possibility of binding emissions targets. Al Gore also blamed the United States, but his language was less diplomatic.

Europe

European leaders will have to celebrate the signing of the new EU Treaty without British PM Gordon Brown, who had other priorities.

The EU will delay a decision on the status of Kosovo until spring. 

Switzerland’s far-right Swiss People’s Party has pulled out of the government after its leader was ousted as justice minister.

Middle East

Russia and Iran have agreed on a timetable for the completion of Iran’s Bushehr nuclear plant.

In a rare foray into politics, the Red Cross is calling for urgent action on the West Bank and Gaza. Red Cross officials say they are losing faith in the usefulness of humanitarian aid alone.

Speculation is growing that an Islamist group was behind the assassination of Lebanon’s No. 2 general.

Elsewhere

The United States accused Venezuela of trying to secretly funnel almost $800,000 to the campaign of Christina Fernandez de Kirchner, Argentina’s new president.

A federal judge affirmed the U.S. state of California’s right to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from cars.

Inflation rose sharply in the United States in November.

The Congo is sliding rapidly toward war. 

Today’s Agenda

  • Carla Del Ponte steps down as the U.N.’s top war-crimes prosecutor.
  • Budapest hosts talks between the United States and Russia on a controversial missile shield that the U.S. wants to install in Eastern Europe.
  • President Bush welcomes Nigeria’s new president, Umaru Yar’Adua, to the White House.
  • The Dalai Lama meets the Pope in Rome.

Yesterday on Passport

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