Wednesday, February 2, 2011

From the CFR Daily News Brief


Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, an important U.S. ally in the region, says he will not seek reelection or pass authority to his son. Experts suggest the move is intended to prevent a confrontation with opponents and fend off the anti-government unrest (Haaretz) rippling through the Arab world.


India's former telecom minister Andimuthu Raja is being questioned over irregularities in the allocation of telephone spectrum. Officials are investigating the potentially corrupt government sale of mobile phone frequencies (WSJ) to several companies in 2008, which a government auditor says cost India up to $40 billion.


At least fifteen protestors were detained by security forces in Khartoum, and more than one hundred have been taken into custody since demonstrations began on Sunday. Observers say the protests seem to be organized mainly by students via the Internet, inspired by the events in Egypt and Tunisia (BBC).


Mexican mogul Carlos Slim (BBC) announced plans to invest $8.3 billion in nineteen countries, mostly in Latin America. Much of the investment--$3.6 billion--will go to Mexico, including telecommunications, mining, and road-building projects. Despite drug-related violence in the country, Slim believes the Mexican economy will continue to grow in 2011 and 2012.


Officials from the United States and several European countries are meeting in Warsaw, Poland, to discuss raising money to support the democratic opposition in Belarus (AP), including pro-democracy groups, free media outlets, and Belarusian students.


Danish lawmakers approved plans for an underwater tunnel (DeutscheWelle) that would stretch about ten miles from Copenhagen, Denmark, to Hamburg, Germany. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2014 and be completed by 2020.

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