China hits back at some western politicians' support for Nobel Peace Prize
China has hit back at some western politicians' support for this year's Nobel Peace Prize that was awarded to a convicted Chinese criminal, reiterating its opposition to interference in its internal affairs.
Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said China opposes anyone to make an issue of this matter, and oppose anyone to interfere in China's internal affairs in any way.
She made the remarks while answering a question on reports that some leaders from western countries have voiced support for the award.
Jiang Yu said China has repeatedly expressed its principle and position.
She said Mutual respect for sovereignty and non-interference in internal affairs are the basic norms governing international relations.
She hoped that "relevant countries could abide by the norms and do more things conducive to mutual trust and cooperation, and not the opposite.
China's Central Economic Work Conference Starts
China's annual Central Economic Work Conference is now being held in Beijing.
The Chinese government is analyzing this year's economic situation and deploying economic work for the coming year.
Senior policymakers, including the heads of the major ministries and China's largest state enterprises are convened for the three-day conference.
Curbing inflation, expanding domestic demand and guaranteeing people's livelihood will top the agenda. The meeting could also touch upon the issues concerning loans and investment.
Four dead, five injured in factory explosion in central China
A blast at a pharmaceutical factory in central China's Hubei Province has killed four workers and injured five others.
The county government of Tuanfeng says the explosion hit a workshop at the privately-run factory and caused fire.
The fire has been put out by more than 70 fire fighters with the help of 11 fire fighting engines.
The cause of the explosion is under investigation.
China increase Bank researve ratio
China's central bank is now raising bank reserve requirement ratio by another half a percentage point.
The late afternoon move is another step by the Chinese authorities to rein in liquidity and help ease inflationary trends.
No word yet on whether the central bank plans to raise its key interest rate, which many analysts anticipate may happy before the government releases its latest CPI.
Tighter control of China's plastic surgery industry promised after singer's death
China's Health Ministry has vowed to tighten supervision of the cosmetic surgery industry after the controversial death of a young woman during an operation last month.
A ministry spokesman told reporters that the ministry is planning to launch a nationwide inspection of the industry in the near future.
He said Hundreds of thousands of people receive cosmetic surgery every year in China.
However, the industry is plagued by problems, like the uneven distribution of qualified medical resources, unfair competition and an increasing number of medical accidents.
The spokesman admitted the industry lacked support from and supervision by health authorities.
Suicide blast kills
A blast that reportedly killed at least 15 people in northwest Pakistan this afternoon was as suicide attack according to local police.
A van laden with explosives hit the gate of a hospital under construction in Hangu city, southwest of Peshawar in Pakistan's northwest Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
Apart from the 15 people reportedly killed in the blast, many others were injured. The huge blast has also seriously damaged many buildings nearby the hospital which is located in a densely populated area in Hangu city and many people are feared buried under the debris of the destroyed building.
No group has yet claimed the responsibility for the blast.
Somali pirates seize Liberian ship
Somali pirates have hijacked a Liberian-flagged container ship east of Tanzania with 23 crew members onboard.
An EU Naval Force spokesman says the MV Panama was seized by two armed skiffs with a total of five pirates on board on Friday afternoon. "A Rocket Propelled Grenade was used during the attack which occurred approximately 80 nautical miles east of the Tanzanian/ Mozambique border,"
The vessel is operated by a U.S.-based company, with a crew of 23 all from Myanmar.
IMF postpones Ireland bailout loan after parliamentary approval
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has announced that its executive board has decided to postpone consideration of the proposed Irish bailout loan after the Irish parliamentary debate.
The IMF said in a statement the Government of Ireland decided to table a motion on the EU- IMF Financial Assistance Program for Ireland in the Irish Parliament. The vote on this motion is scheduled for Wednesday, December 15, 2010. In deference to Ireland's parliamentary process, the IMF has decided to postpone consideration by its Board of the proposed loan under the Extended Fund Facility until after the debate.
Hacker shuts down Dutch ministry website
The website of the Dutch public prosecution and police department were shut down by hackers today, after a young hacker was arrested over the cyber attacks in support of WikiLeaks on Wednesday.
A National Police Service spokesman confirmed the attack, while the Dutch public prosecution said prosecutors were investigating the problems with their website. Both sites could be accessed only sporadically on Friday.
According to local media, the attack is in response to the arrest of a 16-year-old youth in connection with the hacking of Mastercard and Visa credit card websites and other websites by WikiLeaks supporters earlier this week.
Emergency rule in Bangkok to be revoked by year-end
Thai Prime Minister says he is giving serious thought of lifting emergency decree in Bangkok and three other vicinal provinces by the year-end.
The special security law was imposed eight months ago due to a chronic anti-government rally.
Abhisit Vejjajiva said the emergency rule will be revoded since the situation has returned to normal.
Chinese cool on report calling Shanghai students smartest
Chinese parents and education experts have shrugged off a report from an international organization saying Shanghai students are the smartest in the world.
The report was released by the Paris-based Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, with results that reportedly "stunned" western educators.
But Chinese parents and educators say the performance of Shanghai students is no proof of a successful education system in China where students are burdened with an excessive workload and there exists a large gap in education resources between different regions.