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U.S. files felony charges against HSBC bank for laundering rogue states’ funds

HSBC’s record penalty caps a year in which U.S. regulators have fined UK banks $3.4 billion.  /AP

Special to WASHINGTON — The United States has determined that a British bank helped money-laundering with Iran, Libya and Sudan. Federal prosecutors filed charges against Britain’s HSBC Holdings for allegedly violating international sanctions on several countries deemed by Washington as supporters of terrorism. The Justice Department said the London-based bank engaged in money-laundering transactions [...]

Posted in Africa / Europe,Americas,Burma,Cuba,Exclusives,Great Britain,Iran,Libya,Mideast,NE Asia,Recent Hits,Sudan,Top Stories,U.S. Intelligence | Read More »

Obama’s ‘Asia pivot’, 6-hour Burma layover, causes heartburn in Beijing

Burma's military rulers are allowing incremental reforms.

John J. Metzler UNITED NATIONS — The historic visit of U.S. President Barack Obama to Burma, the highest profile American diplomatic contact ever to this long isolated political pariah state, saw the United States enter a high stakes geopolitical chess game in Southeast Asia. Thus amid the shimmering golden temples and pagodas of Rangoon, the [...]

Posted in Burma,China,Columnists,COMMENTARY,Exclusives,John Metzler,NE Asia,Stateside,Top Stories,U.S. Politics,United Nations | Read More »

When world leaders talk about ‘human rights’ and when they do not

Leaders at ASEAN summit on Nov. 20.  /Tan Chhin Sothy/AFP

Special to By Donald Kirk, The spectacle of the ASEAN summit in Phnom Penh did more to lay bare the problems, conflicts and paradoxes of relations among the region’s wildly different and widely scattered nations than to resolve them. The fact that at least three of the leaders at this year’s ASEAN summit [...]

Posted in Burma,Cambodia,China,Exclusives,Japan,Life,NE Asia,North Korea,Philippines,South Korea,Stateside,Top Stories,U.S. Politics,Vietnam | Read More »

The Burma Road back to normalcy is long and uncertain

Burma's parliament includes a fresh crop of military representatives.  /Soe Than Win/AFP/Getty Images

John J. Metzler UNITED NATIONS — Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is on the road to Burma to witness a “critical moment” in the isolated Southeast Asian state’s slow but sure transition to a more open political system which may bring democracy, or could legitimize the long-ruling military regime. Recently, British Prime Minister David Cameron visited [...]

Posted in Burma,China,Columnists,COMMENTARY,Exclusives,John Metzler,NE Asia,Top Stories,United Nations | Read More »

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