Talking points

PUBLISHED : Monday, 09 January, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 09 January, 2012, 12:00am


Our editors will be looking ahead today to these developing stories ...

Chief justice and minister open legal year

Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma Tao-li and Secretary for Justice Wong Yan-lung officiate at the ceremonial opening of the legal year at City Hall, Central, this afternoon. Ma, Wong, the chairman of the Bar Association, Kumar Ramanathan SC, and the president of the Law Society, Junius Ho Kwan-yiu, will deliver speeches at the ceremony.

Geithner to press China, Japan on Iran sanctions

US Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner visits Beijing tomorrow to discuss sanctions against Iran and economic issues. He will meet Vice-Premier Wang Qishan on Tuesday and Premier Wen Jiabao the next day before visiting Japan. At the top of his agenda will be seeking collaboration with the two countries to reduce Iran's oil revenue and force it to abandon its suspected nuclear weapons programme. The Chinese Foreign Ministry said Geithner would be in Beijing to discuss Sino-US economic relations and the global financial and economic situation, without mentioning sanctions against Iran.

N Korea focus of S Korean president's visit to Beijing

South Korean President Lee Myung-bak (left) visits Beijing to meet top leaders as the two nations monitor North Korea after Kim Jong-il's death. Lee will meet President Hu Jintao , top legislator Wu Bangguo and Premier Wen Jiabao. Beijing said his visit would boost the nations' bilateral strategic co-operative partnership as they neared their 20th anniversary of diplomatic ties. North Korea is expected to be the focus of the talks. China has often called on Seoul to exert influence on Pyongyang, especially regarding its nuclear programme.

Sarkozy, Merkel meet on euro-zone crisis

French President Nicolas Sarkozy holds talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin. Pressure is mounting on the euro zone's two biggest economies to provide leadership in the sovereign debt crisis. Standard & Poor's last month put Germany, France and 13 other euro-zone nations on review for a downgrade, saying 'continuing disagreements among European policymakers on how to tackle' the region's debt crisis risk damaging their financial stability.

Anwar braces for verdict

The verdict in the sodomy trial of Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim is due. Anwar, 64, is charged with sodomising a 26-year-old former male aide and faces up to 20 years in prison if found guilty. Anwar's party has said it is planning to gather 100,000 people outside the court to support their leader, who denies the charges.

Nationwide strike threatens to cripple Nigeria

A nationwide strike, organised by Nigerian labour unions furious at the more than doubling of petrol prices since the end of decades-long subsidy, is scheduled for today. It already bears echoes of a strike in 2003 that saw the country almost entirely shut down. While analysts say the subsidy's end frees up US$8 billion a year needed to help the country, they warn that the way it was carried out only alienates those living in a nation of more than 160 million people where only the wealthy elite benefit from its oil reserves.