International Relations

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and German Chancellor Angela Merkel talk during a debate at the German parliament, the Bundestag in Berlin on Feb. 27. © Reuters

German lawmakers approve Greek bailout extension

BERLIN (Reuters) -- Germany's parliament approved an extension of Greece's bailout on Friday after Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble, who has voiced doubts about whether Athens can be trusted, promised he would not let Greece "blackmail" its euro z...

  • South Korean diplomacy

    Park's principles trump relations with Pyongyang, Tokyo

    SEOUL -- South Korean President Park Geun-hye appears resolved to stick to certain principles, even if doing so limits her maneuvering room for improving relations with North Korea and Japan. Recent talk of a potential summit between the leaders...

  • Aviation dispute heats up

    Taiwan may intercept Chinese jetliners

    TAIPEI -- A senior Taiwanese official said the island may dispatch military aircraft to intercept Chinese airliners should mainland planes close in on a boundary over the Taiwan Strait. The threat comes after China unilaterally established new ro...

  • Showcase for equipment makers

    Japan, Vietnam broadening health care cooperation

    HANOI -- Vietnam is cooperating more with Japan in the field of medicine, as the Southeast Asian country seeks advanced technology and know-how to improve its health care. In mid-February, Vietnam's Ministry of Health signed an agreement on perso...

  • Rare transpeninsular cooperation

    North Korea may carry Russian power to South Korea

    MOSCOW -- Russia and North Korea have agreed to advance a large energy project to transmit surplus power from Russia's Far East to North Korea as well as to South Korea. The agreement is meant to promote energy cooperation between Moscow and Pyongyan...

  • Death penalty divide

    Indonesia's 'no clemency' policy for drug convicts strains diplomatic ties

    JAKARTA -- Indonesia's policy of doling out severe penalties for drug-related crimes -- often death -- is affecting its relations with countries that no longer resort to capital punishment. Australia is among the nations stepping up pressure on I...

  • Deep rifts

    Asia-Pacific trade pact will lack uniform tariff target

    TOKYO -- Countries in talks for a comprehensive Asia-Pacific free trade pact agreed not to set a uniform trade liberalization target, it was revealed Wednesday, highlighting the widely differing expectations among the parties involved. The 16 cou...

  • Obama vs. the GOP

    Pipeline fight may fuel compromise on trade promotion authority

    WASHINGTON -- By sending President Barack Obama an oil pipeline authorization bill they knew he would veto, the Republicans controlling the U.S. Congress may have laid the groundwork for compromise on legislation that would give the president broad a...

  • 70 years after the war

    Abe wants to hear experts' views on anniversary statement

    TOKYO -- As Prime Minister Shinzo Abe mulls the wording of a landmark war anniversary statement, he is eager to hear experts' opinions mainly on Japan's postwar pacifism and future international contribution. "Our feeling of remorse for the last ...

  • Taming a new frontier

    Japan to help Myanmar protect intellectual property

    TOKYO -- The Japanese government will provide Myanmar with the tools it needs to build intellectual property safeguards modeled on Japan's. Held back by decades of military rule, Myanmar lacks the legal and institutional resources for protecting ...

  • Kishida-Kerry talks set for Tokyo in mid-March: source

    TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida and his U.S. counterpart John Kerry are planning to meet in Tokyo in mid-March to prepare for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's U.S. visit, a diplomatic source said Wednesday. They are also expec...

  • Abe does America

    Japan Inc. CEO to pitch for California bullet trains

    TOKYO -- Shinzo Abe may become the first Japanese prime minister to visit California since 1999 during his upcoming trip to the U.S., giving him a chance to promote his country's high-speed rail technology. Abe is considering making multiple stop...

  • 70 killed in Bangladesh ferry accident

    NEW DELHI -- Nearly 70 people, many of them women and children, died in a ferry accident in Bangladesh after a crowded passenger boat was hit by a cargo vessel on a river near the capital, Dhaka. The accident, which occurred on Sunday, is the lat...

  • EU military force

    Europe deepens security ties with Japan

    TOKYO -- How many Japanese people know what the ''European Union force'' is? Most will know the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), a Europe-based alliance that includes the U.S., Canada and a number of European countries. But they may...

  • Chilly Japan-S. Korea relations

    Tokyo, Seoul end 14-year currency swap program amid chilled ties

    TOKYO -- Japan and South Korea have let their 14-year-old currency swap program expire amid chilled bilateral relations. While a currency swap accord between two countries is aimed at enabling each country to secure foreign currencies in need fro...

  • Diplomatic disengagement

    Japan, South Korea let currency accord expire

    TOKYO -- The currency swap arrangement between Japan and South Korea ended Monday, raising concern that the two countries may be a bit more vulnerable to financial emergencies. The program, which let each partner use its currency to secure dolla...

  • Ukraine fears spread of war after blast in eastern city

    NIZHNYAYA KRYNKA/KHARKIV, Ukraine (Reuters) -- Ukraine said on Sunday it feared unrest could spread beyond territory held by pro-Russian separatists, after an explosion killed two people at a memorial rally in an eastern city far from the front line....

  • One year on

    Ukraine crisis reveals changing global order

    TOKYO -- On Feb. 23, 2014, anti-government protesters in Ukraine ousted the corrupt, pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych. Russian President Vladimir Putin reacted by annexing the Crimean Peninsula and intervening in the country's eastern regions....

  • China's growing sway

    Beijing builds infrastructure and influence in Asia

    MANILA -- Looking to up its influence in the region, China is using its growing financial clout to fund infrastructure development throughout Asia. "This is a transit hub for automobile trade," said a port official at Hambantota, a southern port ...

  • South Korean, Japanese cargo wanted

    New Silk Road taking shape with freight train from Yellow Sea to Kazakhstan

    LIANYUNGANG, China -- China on Wednesday will begin twice-weekly freight service along a 5,600km railway between Lianyungang, Jiangsu Province, and resource-rich Kazakhstan. The new transport corridor is part of Chinese President Xi Jinping's Silk Ro...