Reuters World News Summary | Politics

Written by corres2

Following is a summary of current world news briefs.

Political change in Pakistan as Shehbaz Sharif seeks to become PM

Opposition politician Shehbaz Sharif submitted his nomination to be Pakistan’s next prime minister to the legislature on Sunday, his party said, after incumbent Imran Khan lost a no-confidence vote in parliament after nearly four years in power. The younger brother of three-times prime minister Nawaz Sharif, Shehbaz, 70, has led a bid by the opposition in parliament to topple former cricket star Khan, and he is widely expected to replace him following a vote on Monday.

Finland, Sweden set to join NATO as soon as summer – The Times

Russia has made a “massive strategic blunder” as Finland and Sweden look poised to join NATO as early as the summer, The Times reported on Monday, citing officials. The United States officials said that NATO membership for both Nordic countries was “a topic of conversation and multiple sessions” during talks between the alliance’s foreign ministers last week attended by Sweden and Finland, report added.

Former Ecuador vice president released from prison

Former Ecuadorean vice president Jorge Glas was released from prison on Sunday, after a judge ruled his physical and psychological well-being were at risk, officials and Glas’ supporters said. Glas had been sentenced to jail in 2017 after a court found him guilty of receiving bribes from Brazilian construction company Odebrecht in return for handing the scandal-ridden firm state contracts. He served four-and-a-half years.

British finance minister Sunak requests review of his financial declarations

Britain’s finance minister Rishi Sunak said on Sunday he had asked Prime Minister Boris Johnson for a review to determine whether he had stuck to the rules on ministerial declarations following criticism over his family’s financial arrangements. Sunak said he had written to the prime minister asking him to refer Sunak’s ministerial declarations to Christopher Geidt, the independent adviser on ministers’ interests.

New Zealand prime minister to visit Singapore, Japan

New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will lead a trade mission to Singapore and Japan later this month, the government said Monday in a statement. The statement said that the prime minister, who will be accompanied by Minister for Trade and Export Growth Damien O’Connor and 13 business leaders, is making the visit to reconnect with two of its closest Indo-Pacific economic and security partners.

Analysis-In presidential race, Macron can no longer count on anti-Le Pen front

President Emmanuel Macron won’t be able to count on French voters’ traditional anti-far right front in the final runoff and will need to step up his campaign if he is to defeat Marine Le Pen, who has successfully softened her image. Although Macron was projected to win a better-than-expected first round score of 28%, improving on his 2017 result, Macron cannot count on victory: polls forecast a razor-thin margin of victory against Le Pen in the April 24 run-off.

France’s traditional parties bloodied by vote for far-right and hard-left

Supporters of France’s far-right and hard-left parties celebrated as presidential candidates for traditional mainstream parties failed dismally in Sunday’s first-round vote. As vote counting continued, President Emmanuel Macron was ahead of far-right party leader Marine Le Pen and polling firms estimated that far-left leader Jean-Luc Melenchon would win over 22% of the vote, compared to under 20% five years ago.

As battle looms in Ukraine’s east, Austrian leader to meet Putin

Russian forces pounded targets in eastern Ukraine with missiles and artillery on Sunday as Austria’s leader planned to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Washington pledged to give Ukraine “the weapons it needs” to defend itself against a new Russian offensive. Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer said he would meet with Putin on Monday in Moscow for the Russian leader’s first face-to-face meeting with a European Union counterpart since Russia’s invasion began on Feb. 24.

Israel and West Bank on edge after more bloodshed

Israeli forces killed two Palestinian women on Sunday after one ran towards troops and the other stabbed a soldier in separate incidents in the occupied West Bank, Israeli security officials said. With violence surging after a string of deadly Arab attacks in Israel, a Palestinian man was killed by Israeli soldiers during what local residents said were confrontations with stone-throwers near the West Bank town of Bethlehem, the Palestinian health ministry announced.

France’s Macron and Le Pen head for cliffhanger April 24 election runoff

French leader Emmanuel Macron and challenger Marine Le Pen qualified on Sunday for what promises to be a very tightly fought presidential election runoff on April 24, pitting a pro-European economic liberal against a far-right nationalist. With partial results putting Macron in first place ahead of Le Pen after the first-round voting, other major candidates admitted defeat. Except for another far-right candidate, Eric Zemmour, they all urged voters to block the far-right in the second round.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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