Wen Jiabao

Talking points

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 19 April, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 19 April, 2012, 12:00am


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

Wen to extol China's policy in Europe

Premier Wen Jiabao (left) is to visit four European countries, starting tomorrow with Iceland. He will also call on Sweden, Poland and Germany, where he will attend the opening of the Hannover Fair, the world's largest book fair. State media said he would meet members of the countries' economic and business communities, deliver speeches on China's policy of reform and opening up, and discuss proposals for bilateral and China-EU business co-operation.

Power company prepares for busy typhoon season

CLP Power briefs the media in Yuen Long on measures it has taken to cope with typhoon damage. The Observatory says Hongkongers can expect a greater than usual number of typhoons to hit the city this year as a result of the La Nina phenomenon in the Pacific. The weather service also expects the typhoon season to start early, in June or even earlier.

Tunisian media chief faces blasphemy charges

The trial resumes in Tunis of Nabil Karoui, the head of the television station Nessma, who has been accused of violating 'sacred values', or blasphemy, by broadcasting the Iranian animated film Persepolis, which includes an image of God. After Islamists attacked the TV station in October, Karoui was also charged with disturbing public order on the ground that airing the film around the time of Tunisia's elections was provocative. He faces up to three years in prison if convicted, according to rights group Amnesty International.

Friends of Syria meet on state of ceasefire

Members of the group Friends of Syria Foreign Ministers, including US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton (left), meet in Paris to discuss the fragile ceasefire. Despite the persistence of violence in Homs and other cities, the international community is reluctant to declare the ceasefire a failure, in part because it is seen as the only way to end the 13 months of bloodshed triggered by the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad, in which more than 9,000 people have been killed.

Bank of America to post drop in profits

Analysts polled by Bloomberg expect Bank of America, which has the biggest home-equity portfolio in the United States, to post a 6.9 per cent decline in first-quarter adjusted profit to US$1.62 billion. Barclays Capital predicts the bank will say about US$2 billion of junior loans are bad assets even though some borrowers are still paying on time.

Former Philippine president Arroyo back in dock

Former Philippine president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is scheduled to attend a pre-trial hearing in her election fraud case, at which a date may be set for her formal trial. In a second criminal case, Arroyo and her husband, Jose Miguel 'Mike' Arroyo (pictured with his wife at the court), have pleaded not guilty to corruption charges related to an allegedly overpriced US$330 million government contract with ZTE. The Shenzhen-based Chinese telecoms giant has denied paying any kickbacks during Arroyo's presidency, which ended with the expiry of her second term in June 2010.