UN has 'no right to interfere' – Myanmar army chief
Myanmar's powerful army chief says the United Nations has no right to interfere in his country's sovereignty, a week after UN investigators called for him and other top generals to be prosecuted for "genocide" against the Rohingya. Min Aung Hlaing's comments to an army newspaper were his first public reaction since a UN fact-finding mission urged the Security Council to refer the top military brass to the International Criminal Court (ICC). They came as the UN General Assembly prepares to discuss the crisis in New York. Min Aung Hlaing also shrugged off demands from UN investigators for the army to withdraw from politics in Myanmar, where it remains hugely influential despite a nominal transition to civilian rule in 2011.
Maldives Election: Surprise victory for opposition
The strongman leader of the Maldives on September 24 conceded defeat in the presidential election, easing fears of a fresh political crisis in the archipelago at the centre of a battle for influence between India and China. "The Maldivian people have decided what they want. I have accepted the results from yesterday," President Abdulla Yameen said in a televised address to the Indian Ocean nation a day after the joint opposition candidate unexpectedly triumphed. Solih's victory was a major surprise, with Yameen's main political rivals either in prison or in exile, media coverage of the opposition sparse and monitors and the opposition predicting vote-rigging. The final official result will take up to a week to be published.
Italy government adopts anti-migrant decree
The Italian government on September 24 adopted a security decree which will make it easier to expel migrants and strip them of Italian citizenship. The new bill is "a step forward to make Italy safer," Interior Minister Matteo Salvini said on Facebook. He added that it would help Italy "be stronger in the fight against the mafia and (people) smugglers". Parliament has 60 days to vote the bill into law. Salvini said the decree streamlines the rules for processing asylum requests and brings Italy into line with other EU countries. Humanitarian protection -- a lower level of asylum that is based on Italian rather than international law -- would be awarded based on six strict criteria. These include whether there was urgent medical need or if the applicant was the victim of a natural disaster, Salvini told journalists.
Mexico president-elect says will not fight with Trump
Mexican president-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said he does not want to fight with US President Donald Trump on immigration. Trump's hardline approach on the subject has ramped up tensions and riled Mexicans, who he previously claimed would pay for the construction of a wall between the two countries. But the leftist Lopez Obrador told reporters in the border state of Sonora on Saturday that angry exchanges were not the answer. "We are not going to fight with the US government, we are not going to fight with President Donald Trump," he said. "The migration problem is not resolved by building walls or by use of force, but it's a diplomatic job of respect," added Lopez Obrador, who takes office on December 1. Much of the border already has fencing or other barriers, but Trump has ordered a "contiguous, and impassable physical barrier," which scientists say would threaten more than 1,000 species of animals.