|SOUTHERN CHINA’S FLOOD
Fresh rains have lashed flood-hit southern China, as the
death-toll across the 10 affected provinces rose to at least
The government has ordered the setting up of a rescue and
relief centre to coordinate the emergency response.
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao visited Jiangxi province in his
second trip to flood-hit areas in a week.
At least 100 others are missing and an estimated 2.4 million
people have been displaced by the disaster.
More than 15,000 soldiers have been deployed to aid rescue
The disaster has led to power cuts, collapsed reservoirs and
widespread damage to roads. Millions are without drinking
But efforts have been hindered by fresh periods of rain and
more rain is forecasted.
“Rain affects a person’s vision and it also creates
difficulty for us when manoeuvring the rescue boat,” said
one civilian worker, Zhou Fuyu.
As the situation worsened, Wen flew to the city of Fuzhou in
Jiangxi province to meet and encourage rescue workers and
China Central Television showed Wen wading through flooded
waters wearing galoshes.
“You are not afraid of sacrifice and in 48 hours, managed to
rescue 100,000 people without a single casualty... You have
created a miracle in history,” Wen said to paramilitary
In the Jiangxi city of Fengcheng, a 50,000 square mile area
of mountainside threatened to slide off and devastate areas
below, Xinhua news agency reported.
The Changkai dyke near Fuzhou meanwhile suffered a second
breach on Wednesday.
Over previous days, State TV broadcast images have shown
soldiers leading rescues from roof tops, submerged fields,
overturned cars, and people wading through waist-high water
as they tried to cross a flooded bridge.
The floods have cost an estimated 43bn yuan (about $6bn;
£4bn) so far.
The ministry of civil affairs has said that a total of 365
people have been killed in floods this year across the
nation, and 147 remain missing.
China’s rainy season began in May. (BBC NEWS)
|US drone strike kills two militants in
A US drone strike in Pakistan’s lawless northwest tribal
belt, on the border with Afghanistan, killed two militants
and wounded two others early on Saturday, security officials
The drone targeted a house in Mir Ali area, 30 kilometres
(around 20 miles) east of Miranshah, the main town in North
Waziristan, a security official and two intelligence
officials told AFP.
North Waziristan is known as a hub of Taliban and
“It was a US drone strike. The drone fired one missile on a
house and the house was completely destroyed,” an
intelligence official in Miranshah said.
A second official in the same area confirmed the strike and
the death of two militants.
Two other militants were injured, the officials said, but
it was not immediately clear if any of the militants were
US forces have been waging a covert drone war against
Taliban and Al-Qaeda-linked commanders in Pakistan’s
northwest tribal belt, where militants have carved out
havens in mountains outside direct government control.
The US military does not, as a rule, confirm drone
attacks, but its armed forces and the Central Intelligence
Agency operating in Afghanistan are the only forces that
deploy pilotless drones in the region.
More than 900 people have been killed in over 100 drone
strikes in Pakistan since August 2008.
On June 1, Al-Qaeda said its number three leader and Osama
bin Laden’s one-time treasurer Mustafa Abu al-Yazid had been
killed, in what security officials said was an apparent
drone strike in North Waziristan.
Washington has branded Pakistan’s northwestern tribal
area a global headquarters of Al-Qaeda and officials say it
is home to Islamist extremists who plan attacks on US-led
troops in Afghanistan and on cities abroad.
Waziristan came under renewed scrutiny when Faisal
Shahzad, the Pakistani-American charged over an attempted
bombing in New York on May 1, allegedly told US
interrogators he went there for bomb training.
The United States has been increasing pressure on Pakistan
to crack down on Islamist havens along the Afghan border.
Pakistani commanders have not ruled out an offensive in
North Waziristan, but argue that gains in South Waziristan
and the northwestern district of Swat need to be
consolidated to prevent troops from being stretched too
|US warns NKorea not to ‘aggravate
The United States warned North Korea
Friday to refrain from “actions that aggravate tensions,”
amid concerns that Pyongyang may be preparing for a new
round of missile tests.
A State Department spokesman said Washington was aware of a
North Korean notification that it was declaring a 9-day “no
sail” zone off its western coast, which in the past has
signalled the onset of missile tests.
“North Korea should refrain from actions that aggravate
tensions,” State Department spokesman Philip Crowley said.
“We would hate to see North Korea go through another round
of missile launches.”
The South Korea Defence Ministry said it believed the
notification was linked to regular North Korean artillery
exercises, but was studying the possibility Pyongyang was
preparing to test-fire short range missiles.
Tensions have been high since the sinking on March 26 of a
South Korean warship, the Cheonan, and an international
investigation that concluded it was attacked by a North
Korean submarine with a torpedo.
The latest US warning came on the anniversary of the start
of the Korean War 60 years ago. Crowley would not comment on
the specifics of the US concerns, saying it touched on
intelligence matters. “We would encourage North Korea to
avoid further provocative actions that increase tensions in
the region,” he said. “Now is the time to take steps to
improve relations with its neighbours and cease any
provocative behaviour.” (AFP)
|Justice vs ICC
When was the ICC established?
The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court
(ICC) is the treaty that established the ICC on June 17,
1998, and the court entered into force on June 1, 2002.
Why was it established?
The ICC was established in order to prosecute and punish
individuals for genocide, crimes against humanity, war
crimes, and crimes of aggression. The Preamble of the Rome
Statute of the ICC, the Treaty that established the ICC,
states that “…the most serious crimes of concern to the
international community as a whole must not go unpunished…”
It was passed by a 120-7 vote, with 21 countries abstaining.
Which countries voted against its creation and why?
Iraq, Israel, Libya, China, Qatar, the United States,
and Yemen were the seven countries that voted against the
Treaty establishing the ICC. Each country had its own
reasons for voting against, but perhaps the most influential
country opposed to it was the US. The US opposed the treaty
for constitutional reasons, such as every US citizen’s right
to a trial by peers, which the ICC would not account for,
and also for future problems that may arise for the US as a
result of its agreement with the Treaty.
What crimes does the ICC prosecute?
The Rome Statute grants the ICC jurisdiction to cover four
groups of crimes: genocide, crimes against humanity, war
crimes, and crimes of aggression. The ICC has often been
criticised of defining these crimes as too broad or vague.
What is the process through which a case must go through
to be tried?
There are two ways of alerting the ICC to injustices being
committed: The first being on the basis of referral from any
State party in the United Nations Security Council, and the
second being by “communications” or “complaints” by any
private party. Since 2002, there have been three State
referrals and approximately 8,733 communications from more
than 140 countries. Neither referrals nor private
communications automatically result in a case being filed.
The case must first be researched and analysed by the
prosecutor, to determine if there is a “reasonable basis to
proceed”. If the prosecutor deems the complaint worthy of a
full investigation, he or she submits the case to the
Pre-Trial Chamber, and if from there a formal investigation
may be launched. So far, only five official investigations
have been launched (Uganda, the Democratic Republic of the
Congo, the Central African Republic, Darfur and Kenya), and
only four have made it to trial (Uganda, the Democratic
Republic of the Congo, the Central African Republic and
What is the structure of the ICC?
The ICC is an independent institution and not part of
the UN, although it does cooperate with the world
organisation. The ICC is composed of four main parts: the
Presidency, the Judicial Divisions, the Office of the
Prosecutor and the Registry.
How is it funded?
The ICC is funded by contributions from State parties.
Each State’s contribution is calculated on the country’s
capacity to pay, which is a reflection of the State’s
national income and population. The budget for the ICC in
2009 was approximately US$ 125 million.
What cases is it handling and what are the status of
1) Prosecutor v Thomas Lubanga Dyilo (DRC)-01/04-01/06
Wanted for alleged responsibility in numerous war crimes,
consisting of enlisting and conscripting of children under
the age of 15 years of age into the Patriotic Forces for the
Liberation of Congo (FPLC) and using them to participate
actively in hostilities in the contest of an international
armed conflict from September 2002 to June 2003, and from
June 2003 to August 2003.
2) Prosecutor v Germain Katanga and Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui
Both Katanga and Chui are accused of numerous war crimes
(using children under the age of 15 to take active part in
hostilities, directing an attack against a civilian
population such or against individual civilians not taking
direct part in hostilities, wilful killings, destruction of
property, pillaging, sexual slavery, and rape) as well as
crimes against humanity (murder, rape, sexual slavery).
3) Prosecutor v Bosco Ntaganda (DRC)-01/04-02/06
Former alleged Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the
Patriotic Forces for the Liberation of Congo (FPLC) and
former alleged Chief of Staff of the Congress National Pour
la Defense du People (CNDP) armed group, active in North
Kivu in the DRC.
4) Prosecutor v Jean-Pierre Bemba Gombo (Central African
Wanted for two crimes against humanity (murder and rape),
and three counts of war crime (murder, rape and pillaging)
5) Prosecutor v Joseph Kony, Vincent Otti, Okot Odhiambo,
and Dominic Ongwen (Uganda)-02/04-01/05
All wanted for alleged crimes done while leading Lord’s
Resistance Army (LRA).
6) Prosecutor v Ahmad Muhammad Harun and Ali Muhammad Ali
Abd-Al-Rahman (Darfur, Sudan)-02/05-01/07
Harun- wanted for crimes committed while Minister of State
for the Interior of the Government of Sudan and Minister of
State for Humanitarian Affairs of Sudan.
Abd-Al-Rahman- wanted for crimes committed while being the
alleged leader of the Militia/Janjaweed
7) Prosecutor v Omar Hassan Ahmad Al Bashir (Darfur, Sudan)-
Wanted for five counts of crimes against humanity (murder,
extermination, forcible transfer, torture, and rape) and two
counts of war crimes (intentionally directing attacks
against a civilian population such as or against individual
civilians not taking part in hostilities and pillaging).
8) Prosecutor v Bahar Idriss Abu Garda (Darfur, Sudan)-
Wanted for three war crimes (violence to life in the form of
murder, whether committed or attempted, intentionally
directing attacks against personnel, installations,
material, units or vehicles involved in a peacekeeping
Countries/parties with complaints received against them
include, but aren’t limited, to: Afghanistan, Colombia,
Gambia, Iraq, Italy, Kenya, South Africa, Israel,
Somalia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Zimbabwe.
What criticisms are directed at the ICC?
There have been many criticisms of the ICC, but the main
three are its tendency to exacerbate current conflicts, its
supposed unfair treatment of those on defence, and its
history of being unclear about the reasons for which it
chooses its cases. The LRA’s Joseph Kony, currently on trial
for war crimes, stated he would agree to a peace deal if the
ICC agrees to drop indictments against him and other LRA
leaders. The ICC’s refusal to do so has caused the violence
to continue in Uganda. In terms of unfair treatment of the
defence, current complaints from Lubanga’s defence team
include smaller budgets than the Prosecutor, slow arrival of
evidence and witness statements, and that documents have
often times been impossible to read due to heavy redacting
What have been the most significant challenges
encountered by the ICC?
One of the most major challenges that has faced the ICC is
the lack of support given by influential countries such as
the US and China. Other major challenges include its
reliance on foreign cooperation and compliancy. For example,
the ICC is dependent on countries to extradite individuals
suspected of war crimes, in order for an adequate and fair
|Royal altar walk stirs controversy
(Al-Jazeera) After eight years of media scrutiny and gossip,
the Swedish Crown Princess finally got her prince.
Victoria’s decision to marry Daniel Westling, her former
fitness trainer, was controversial in itself.
The future queen fell in love with a commoner from a small
town, and rumour has it that her father, King Carl Gustaf
XVI, initially opposed the marriage, because Westling was
not “good enough”.
But as the engagement was announced and preparations for the
June 19 wedding finally went ahead, it was the planned
layout of the wedding ceremony that caused a media storm.
Victoria asked to be escorted to the altar by her father,
contradicting the Swedish tradition of couples entering the
In a country that prides itself as being one of the absolute
front runners in the field of gender equality, the move was
interpreted as much more than a ceremonial act.
Critics referred to the Anglo-Saxon practise as “sexist” and
a “backlash for feminism”, and the row, dubbed Altargate,
“The old Swedish tradition, when a couple goes in together,
has an important meaning,” Annika Borg, an outspoken priest
of the Church of Sweden, wrote in the daily Dagens Nyheter.
“The woman [has the legal right] to make her own decisions
and stands beside her future husband of her own free will.
“Bride handover has its roots in a completely different
mindset. It’s about a woman’s [right of self-determination]
being left over from her father to the man.”
The Royal Court defended Victoria’s decision, saying the
royal ceremony should not be seen as an ordinary wedding.
“It’s the wish of the Crown Princess,” Nina Eldh, a
spokeswoman, told reporters.
“It’s not a father who gives away the daughter to another
man. It is the King of Sweden leading the heir to the
nation’s throne to the altar – and to the man who has been
Nine bishops wrote a letter to the bridal couple, asking
them to change their mind.
Helle Klein, an editorial writer for the tabloid
Aftonbladet, urged the Archbishop to intervene.
“Bride handover builds on an attitude towards women, which
takes us several centuries back. As a role model, the Crown
Princess should consider this,” she wrote.
“Archbishop Anders Wejryd must prevent that the Hollywood
idea of the wedding becomes the expression of the Swedish
Church. Say ‘No’, for the sake of the women, the church and
the Swedish culture!”
Wejryd said he had advised the couple to walk down the aisle
together, but said it was up to the couple to decide what
they wanted to do.
“Being given away is a new phenomenon, which occasionally
occurs in the Church of Sweden. I usually advise against it,
as our marriage ceremony is so clear on the subject of the
spouse’s equality,” he said in a statement.
When Victoria’s parents, King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia,
married in 1976, they followed Swedish tradition and walked
As some bloggers pointed out, the situation would have been
very different, had it not been for the decision taken three
years after Victoria was born - to make the Act of
In 1980, Sweden became the first country to allow the throne
to be passed to the first-born child, whether male or
This meant that her younger brother, Carl Philip, was
snubbed of his Crown Prince title just seven months after he
As the debate dragged on in media and on blogs, the King
told the tabloid Aftonbladet, that it was an “unnecessarily
But a week before the wedding, the Royal Court finally
announced a compromise, citing the design of the church as
the decisive factor - Victoria and her groom would meet
halfway to the altar.
And on Saturday, in front of about 1,000 guests, including
royalties from around the world, the current head of State
led his daughter to the steps to the altar, where she met
The couple then proceeded together up the stairs and to the
altar, where they both said “Yes”.
UN says situation in
The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian
Affairs (OCHA) said Friday that the situation in Kyrgyzstan
It said the situation in Osh in southern Kyrgyzstan has
improved with many small shops and banks opening up, traffic
in circulation and farmers from neighbouring provinces
bringing in products.
However, food, shelter, non-food items and hygiene kits
remain important needs, it said.
It is still tense and humanitarian workers are finding it
difficult to reach all of those in need due to security
concerns, OCHA noted.
A high-level UN delegation visited Osh on Thursday and met
with the local authorities, non-governmental organisations
and UN agencies.
OCHA said that in Osh, the interim government had registered
a total of 2,200 tonnes of humanitarian relief, in addition
to relief items that had not been registered by the
The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for
Refugees (UNHCR) said that amid the mass returns from
Uzbekistan to Kyrgyzstan, its field officers had been
visiting groups of returning refugees and displaced people
near Osh and Jalalabad.
According to the Kyrgyz authorities, 70,000 refugees have
returned so far.
UNHCR said that both refugees and internally displaced
persons had expressed mixed feelings about going back;
although they wanted to be reunited with their families,
many were worried for their safety and about going back to
destroyed, damaged or looted homes. (Xinhua)
|First polls show new Australia PM
The shadowy deposing of Australian leader
Kevin Rudd by his female deputy appears to be paying off,
with the first polls suggesting Julia Gillard would win the
election with a commanding lead.
Gillard became Australia’s first female prime minister
Thursday after disposing of Rudd in a bloodless party-room
coup prompted by his massive slump in public opinion polls
ahead of elections expected this year.
A Nielsen poll published Saturday showed a 14-point jump in
the ruling Labour Party’s primary vote to 47 percent under
Gillard, compared with 42 percent for the conservative
With preference votes from the left-wing Greens party, the
Labour party would storm to power with 55 percent of votes
to the opposition’s 45 percent, Nielsen said.
Gillard’s rating as preferred prime minister was a
commanding 55 percent to rival Tony Abbott’s 34 percent, a
six-percentage-point bump on Rudd’s final polling. Voters
preferred Gillard by 44 percent to Rudd’s 36 percent.
Labour’s primary and two-party preferred vote both polled
higher than before the 2007 election which Rudd won by a
landslide, and Labour stood to gain 11 more seats if the
polls translated into votes on election day, the Sydney
Morning Herald said.
A second poll, conducted by Galaxy and published by the
Daily Telegraph, also showed a boost in Labour’s fortunes
under Gillard, with 58 percent preferring her as prime
minister to Abbott’s 32 percent. Labour’s primary vote grew
four percentage points to 41 percent versus the opposition’s
42 percent, but on Greens preferences the ruling party held
52 percent of the vote to the conservatives’ 48 percent.
More people thought the change of leadership was a bad
decision (48 percent) than a good one (45 percent), but the
sentiment was reversed among Labour voters, with 52 percent
approving of the move and 41 percent against it. Most polled
(59 percent) thought Gillard should delay the election
rather than calling it as soon as possible (36 percent) and
a majority (67 percent) said she shared responsibility with
Rudd for Labour’s decisions to date.
The Daily Telegraph tipped an election for either October 23
or 30, with the earliest likely dates August 21 or 28. The
latest it can be held is April 16, 2011.
Polling by McCrindle Research published in The Australian
newspaper also showed Labor leading the opposition, 54
percent to 46 percent on Greens preferences, and Gillard as
preferred leader 64.8 percent to Abbott’s 35.2 percent.
|Euro is a ‘credible, solid’ currency :
French Finance Minister Christine
Lagarde Friday called the euro “a credible, solid” currency
and expressed confidence that troubled eurozone member
Greece will be able to cut its public debt.
Asked in an interview with the BBC whether the European
currency faced a threat to its continued existence, Lagarde
said: “I know that that’s some sort of an existential dream
of some economists.
“They’re very pleased to drive those sorts of dark scenarios
and my position is I don’t want to drive those dark
“What I’m focussed on is what is going to work so that the
eurozone stays together, supports the euro together, because
the euro is a credible, solid and good currency for all of
us and it’s our public good,” she added.
She dismissed as “just a lot of rubbish” speculation about
Greece’s ability to repay its debts within the next 18
“The plan that we’ve put together for Greece is a five-year
plan, with a three-year grace period when they pay back
nothing and then there are 24 monthly installments over the
next two years,” Lagarde said
“So let’s not mess around with 18 months,” she said, adding
that Greece was “currently delivering against its
Greece has adopted austerity cuts to secure a
110-billion-euro (135-billion-dollar) bailout loan from the
European Union and the International Monetary Fund and save
itself from default. It is struggling to reduce a debt of
nearly 300 billion euros while mired in a deepening
Lagarde also said there was “no difference, no crack”
between France and Germany over how to deal with the
“We’re both driven by the two-fold objective to maintain
growth and of cutting deficit and debts, and this is our
joint commitment,” she said.
Asked whether Germany was doing enough in the crisis, she
said, “Germany is doing everything it can at the moment.
“We can all do more and some can do more in cutting deficits
and debts, some can do a little bit more in spending and
consuming,” she added. (AFP)
British PM warns against ‘destruction’
British Prime Minister David Cameron warned against “the
destruction” of BP as its shares plummeted close to a
14-year low amid the battle against the Gulf of Mexico oil
The new British leader, who will hold his first bilateral
talks Saturday with US President Barack Obama, said it was
important for transparency over the British company’s
liability in the catastrophe.
“I think it is also in all our long-term interests that
there is some clarity, some finality, to all of this, so
that we don’t at the same time see the destruction of a
company that is important for all our interests,” he told
Canadian broadcaster CBC. (AFP)
Greece probes ‘terrorist’ bomb killing at
Greece launched a hunt Friday to find how a parcel bomb that
ripped through the police ministry, killing the minister’s
own security chief, was smuggled into the heavily guarded
Police said it was too early to blame any specific group for
the attack on Thursday evening that killed the close aide of
Citizens’ Protection Minister Michalis Chryssohoidis and
damaged offices on the ministry’s seventh floor.
But serious questions have arisen regarding security at the
building which is the heart of police operations in Greece
and is supposed to be one of the country’s most heavily
The Greek national intelligence service (EYP) is also based
Zimbabwe diamond talks in deadlock
Talks between members of the Kimberley Process diamond
certification scheme were deadlocked Thursday over whether
to allow Zimbabwe to resume trade in gems from its
controversial Marange fields.
Delegates at a KP conference in Tel Aviv failed during an
all-night session to reach consensus over whether to resume
certification of the fields, which was withdrawn in November
over claims of brutal abuse of workers by the army. (AFP)
|New US Gulf oil drilling ban
(BBC News) US Interior Secretary Ken Salazar has said he
will issue an order for a new moratorium on deep water oil
drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, after a court blocked an
A federal judge ruled on Tuesday that the six-month
moratorium put in place in the wake of April’s massive oil
spill was too broad.
But suspending drilling “was and is the right decision”,
The White House had already said it would challenge the
The judge said the lengthy ban was “invalid” and could not
be justified, as the negative impact on local businesses was
simply too great.
“I will issue a new order in the coming days that eliminates
any doubt that a moratorium is needed, appropriate, and
within our authorities,” Salazar said in a statement.
The explosion on April 20 at the Transocean Deepwater
Horizon rig killed 11 people and caused the worst US oil
spill in US history.
The government’s decision, in the immediate aftermath, to
suspend deep water oil drilling in the region, brought
operations to a standstill at 33 offshore rigs, with
companies considering relocating their giant drilling rigs,
the longer it went on.
The ban was challenged by the oil industry, when
Louisiana-based Hornbeck Offshore Services filed a lawsuit.
It was joined by more than a dozen other companies.
After hearing arguments in the case, Federal Judge Martin
Feldman said: “The court is unable to divine or fathom a
relationship between the findings and the immense scope of
Feldman has been criticised in the US for his record of
investing in oil companies.
But Salazer said: “We see clear evidence every day, as oil
spills from BP’s well, of the need for a pause on deepwater
Earlier this month, the International Energy Agency (IEA)
warned that the disaster would raise costs, delay new
projects and bring a thorough review of offshore regulation.
“April’s sinking of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig and
the ongoing oil spill may... prove to be a supply-side game
changer,” the IEA said in its monthly Oil Market Report.
|Australia has first woman PM
(BBC News) Australia’s Julia Gillard has become the
country’s first female prime minister, after Kevin Rudd
stood aside from a party ballot.
Rudd took the step in the knowledge he would suffer an
embarrassing defeat, correspondents say.
His successor said the government had been losing its way
and she promised to make it strong for this year’s general
The Labour Party had suffered a sharp drop in support in
Ms Gillard, who was deputy prime minister before the
challenge to Rudd, stood unopposed at a vote of the Labour
Party’s 112 members of parliament at a meeting on Thursday
Finance minister Wayne Swan was elected the new deputy
leader, also unopposed.
Ms Gillard was born in Barry Island in Wales, moving to
Australia with her family at the age of four.
‘Losing its way’
Emerging from the party vote at Parliament House in
Canberra, Ms Gillard told reporters: “I came to the view
that a good government was losing its way.
“I believe too I have a responsibility to make sure at the
next election that Labour is there at its strongest.”
On the issue of a planned super tax on mining, which had
dogged Rudd, she said she wanted a consensus.
“We need to do more than consult, we need to negotiate... we
need to end this uncertainty,” she said.
“Today, I am throwing open the government’s door to the
mining industry and in return, I ask the mining industry to
open its mind.”
She said the government would cancel paid advertising
canvassing for the mining tax and in return, would ask the
mining industry to call off its campaign.
On Rudd, she said: “He was the leader who saw us through the
global financial crisis.
“He came within a breath of brokering an international
agreement on climate change.”
For his part, Rudd said he would devote himself to helping
Labour get re-elected.
“I have given it my absolute all, and in that spirit, I am
proud of the achievements we have delivered to make this
country fairer,” he said.
“I am proud of the fact we kept Australia out of the global
Fall from grace
Rudd had called a late-night news conference on Wednesday
(23) to announce the ballot, after Ms Gillard said she would
Rudd, who led Labour to a landslide election victory against
the Liberal government in 2007, blamed “a number of
factional leaders” within the party, for plotting against
Announcing he would stand in the leadership ballot, a
defiant Rudd had said: “I was elected to do a job. I intend
to continue doing that job. I believe there is a strong body
of support for the continuation of my leadership.”
But the BBC’s Nick Bryant in Australia said that by Thursday
(24) morning, Rudd could not even muster enough support to
contend the ballot.
His popularity had plummeted, following setbacks on his
mining tax plans and the shelving of an emissions trading
Our correspondent adds that Rudd has always been more
popular with the public than with his colleagues - he is
regarded as intellectually arrogant and aloof.
So, when his approval ratings started to slump, his critics
within the Labour Party moved against him, Nick Bryant says.