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Sep 29, 2012

NYT Global Update -September 29, 2012-: Sole Canadian Held at Guantánamo Bay Is Repatriated

 
The New York Times International Herald Tribune
September 29, 2012

Global Update

 
TOP NEWS

Sole Canadian Held at Guantánamo Bay Is Repatriated

By IAN AUSTEN
Canada's government had vigorously resisted calls and a court order to bring back Omar Khadr, who was 15 years old when he was captured by American forces in Afghanistan.

In Syria's Largest City, Fire Ravages Ancient Market

By ANNE BARNARD and HWAIDA SAAD
A vast and well-preserved labyrinth of storehouses, schools and courtyards in Aleppo was damaged on Saturday as fierce clashes between security forces and insurgents continued.

Better Off Than They Were Nine Years Ago, Georgian Voters Ask: At What Cost?

By ELLEN BARRY
The parliamentary election has become a referendum on the trade-offs of the so-called Rose Revolution.
World

Slide Show: Georgians Confront Revolution's Legacy in Vote

Nine years after reformers took power, Georgians are gearing up for parliamentary elections on Monday.
Opinion

Op-Ed Columnist

40 Days of Night

By CHARLES M. BLOW
The problem for Republicans that has led to President Obama widening his lead in the polls has a name: Willard Mitt Romney.
WORLD

Fleeing Syrians Struggle in Countryside Amid Indiscriminate Violence

By C. J. CHIVERS
Unable to pursue the rebels on the ground through the farmland and mountains of Idlib and Aleppo Provinces, government forces drop bombs and shell villages where rebels are active, endangering civilians.

Bahrain Faces Riots After Boy Dies in Protest

By REUTERS
The riot police sought to subdue protesters hurling stones as a funeral march for a young demonstrator killed the day before turned violent.

Pope's Former Butler on Trial In Theft of Personal Papers

By ELISABETTA POVOLEDO
The trial of Paolo Gabriele comes as the Roman Catholic Church is racked by a pedophilia scandal, internal disputes and challenges to preserve its moral authoritativeness within rapidly changing societies.
BUSINESS

A Guitar Maker Aims to Stay Plugged In

By JANET MORRISSEY
Fender, the guitar company made famous by the likes of Buddy Holly, Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton, is facing big challenges amid the fickle tastes of Wall Street and the music industry.

Bound to Sea but Buried in Debt, Spain's Fishermen Blame Bloc's Policies

By RAPHAEL MINDER
A decline in fish stocks, rising operating costs and a sharp economic downturn have devastated much of Spain's coastal economy and intensified criticism of subsidies.

Meg Whitman's Toughest Campaign: Retooling H.P.

By QUENTIN HARDY
The former eBay chief and gubernatorial candidate has found her Act III at Hewlett-Packard. But the challenge of re-energizing the company for a new information era is daunting.
TECHNOLOGY

Apple Apologizes for Misstep on Maps

By NICK WINGFIELD and BRIAN X. CHEN
The problems with Apple's new mobile maps were embarrassing, but the company has a tendency to bungle services that rely heavily on the Internet.
Bits Blog

As Apple's Maps Stumbles, AOL's MapQuest Flourishes

By JENNA WORTHAM
Apple's map application debacle has been a boon for MapQuest, which had been eclipsed in the era of in-car GPS and smartphones.

Australians Surge in Quest for New Class of Computer

By JOHN MARKOFF
Teams based at the University of New South Wales have made advances toward building a quantum computer, which could help tackle a new class of problems.
SPORTS
Soccer Roundup

Spanish Connection Sparks Chelsea

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Chelsea remained unbeaten in England's Premier League after Saturday's 2-1 victory at Arsenal.

Americans Keep Rolling In Morning Foursomes

By CHRISTOPHER CLAREY
Encroaching on traditional European territory, the United States, helped by another victory by Phil Mickelson and Keegan Bradley, took a commanding 8-4 lead.

Rookies Give Americans an Early Edge

By CHRISTOPHER CLAREY
Strong showings from Keegan Bradley, Phil Mickelson, Bubba Watson and Webb Simpson helped the United States take a lead over Europe at the Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club.
U.S. NEWS

Supreme Court Faces Crucial Rulings in Coming Term

By ADAM LIPTAK
The justices, starting on Monday, are expected to take up same-sex marriage, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and affirmative action in higher education.

Political and Class Issues Complicate a Colorado Land Dispute

By JACK HEALY
Bill Koch's effort to acquire some public land, including a piece that cuts through his 4,500-acre ranch, has run into hostility from his neighbors.

San Francisco's New Archbishop Worries Gay Catholics

By NORIMITSU ONISHI
Bishop Salvatore Cordileone, who will be installed on Thursday as the leader of the San Francisco Archdiocese, led the fight against same-sex marriage in California.
OPINION
Op-Ed Columnist

The College Rankings Racket

By JOE NOCERA
The U.S. News & World Report's annual list promotes status at the expense of affordable education.
Op-Ed Contributor

When the Music Changed

By KYLE JARRARD
Mom urged me to fill the moral vacuum with piano lessons and endless hours of practice. That was fine by me.

GATA | THE GATA DISPATCH -September 29, 2012-: Qatar worried about value of dollar and euro

Qatar worried about value of dollar and euro

By Angus McDowall
Reuters
Saturday, September 29, 2012

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/09/29/us-qatar-investment-idUSBRE88S...

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia -- Wealthy Qatar, a major investor in U.S. and European assets, worries that haphazard attempts by countries to shore up their economies could weaken the dollar and the euro, its prime minister said.

"What should happen is we should have a full package with a full strategy to solve the problems," Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim al-Thani, who also heads the country's sovereign wealth fund, Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), told U.S. financial broadcaster CNBC in an interview aired on Friday.

This month the U.S. Federal Reserve announced a program of heavy purchases of mortgage-backed securities in an effort to boost employment, but the U.S. government has so far failed to reassure financial markets that it has an effective plan to cut its budget deficit and boost economic growth.

The European Central Bank has also said it will buy bonds to protect economies from the euro zone debt crisis, but governments of weak countries such as Greece and Spain have not persuaded investors their debts can be cut to safe levels.

Sheikh Hamad said the central banks were right to act to prevent worse crises, but added: "With more printing money, without having a strategy, I believe the value of the money will go down very soon."

He did not give details of the economic measures which he believed Western countries should be taking, but said the risk of further volatility in markets was making investors such as Qatar cautious. Analysts have estimated the size of Qatar's sovereign wealth fund at around $100 billion.

"There are some questions with no answer up to now," he told CNBC.

However, Sheikh Hamad added that Qatar would retain holdings of strategic stocks and buy when prices dropped, and that it would continue to make new investments in promising assets.

He said he was optimistic about the longer-term future of the banking industry, since better regulation and capital-raising would strengthen banks after some years. He noted that QIA had a strategic stake in Credit Suisse and owned about 1 percent of Bank of America and 5 percent of Santander Brasil among other banks.
The gas-rich Gulf state has bought more than $5 billion or $6 billion of real estate assets over the last four to five months, mostly in the United States and Europe, Sheikh Hamad said. "If there is some good opportunity, why not?" he said of investing in crisis-hit Europe.

Qatar, which owns just over 12 percent of Xstrata (XTA.L), will help to determine the success or failure of Glencore's $32 billion offer for the miner.
Glencore was forced earlier this month to raise its bid price, offering 3.05 new shares for every Xstrata share instead of 2.8, after Qatari pressure. As a condition, however, Glencore imposed its own chief executive and largest single shareholder, Ivan Glasenberg, at the head of the combined group.

Xstrata's directors face a Monday deadline to decide their position on Glencore's higher offer.
Sheikh Hamad told CNBC: "We have no problem with the new price," but added, "Other aspects (of the proposed deal) have to be studied." He declined to elaborate.

This week Reuters quoted banking sources as saying Qatar Holding, one of the country's investment vehicles, was in advanced talks to buy a 49-percent stake in Brazilian billionaire Eike Batista's gold firm AUX for about $2 billion.

Qatar Holding subsequently issued a statement denying that such talks had taken place.
However, asked about Qatar's intentions towards AUX, Sheikh Hamad told CNBC: "We're studying it. Still there is no commitment from our side." Details of the proposal need to be presented to the board, he added without elaborating.

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