David Miliband

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Ed Miliband Edges Brother to Take Over Labour Party

40-year-old replaces former Britain PM Gordon Brown

(Newser) - Britain's opposition Labour Party elected young lawmaker Ed Miliband as its new leader today after he narrowly defeated his older and better-known brother in a contest to replace former prime minister Gordon Brown. Miliband, the 40-year-old ex-climate change secretary, squeaked by David Miliband, the 45-year-old former foreign secretary, in the... More »

Did Bush, Blair Plot vs. Gordon Brown?

Labour sources drop bomb ahead of Blair memoir

(Newser) - Tony Blair and George Bush plotted to have Blair stay on as prime minister because Bush wasn't sold on Gordon Brown, claims the Sunday Telegraph . Labour Party sources tell the Telegraph that Bush's team expressed doubts about Brown after he "harangued" Condi Rice in a private meeting. Rice subsequently... More »

UK to Pope: Uh, Sorry About the Abortion Joke

Brit memo suggested pontiff should open clinic on visit

(Newser) - Pope Benedict is headed to the UK in the fall, and while there he's slated to ... open an abortion clinic? Unveil a line of papal-branded condoms? Let loose and sing a duet with the queen? This according to a cheeky memo circulated in Britain's Foreign Office, and obtained by the... More »

Gordon Brown Survives Secret Ballot Coup Attempt

Opposition calls for an immediate general election

(Newser) - Gordon Brown narrowly dodged the latest attempt to unseat him yesterday, after two senior members of his party called for a secret ballot on his leadership. Brown came out on top in the vote, but looked weakened, with several members of his cabinet offering only belated, tepid statements of support.... More »

Iran Seizes 5 British Yacht Crew Members

Vessel nabbed en route from Bahrain to race in Dubai

(Newser) - Iran is holding five British sailors after stopping their racing yacht in the Persian Gulf, the British government said today. The yacht, owned by Sail Bahrain, was stopped on its way from the tiny island country to Dubai on Wednesday when it "may have strayed inadvertently into Iranian waters,... More »

Clinton: I Didn't Want The Job

Obama gave his secretary of state the hard sell

(Newser) - Hillary Clinton accepted the Secretary of State job only because Barack Obama badgered her into it. In a glowing profile in Vogue , Clinton tells Jonathan Van Meter that she was “stunned” Obama wanted her. “I didn't want to do it. I just really had a lot of doubts,... More »

Clinton: Taliban Threat to Pakistan Is Rising

But secretary, on European tour, sees no danger of nukes falling into terrorist hands

(Newser) - An audacious Taliban attack on Pakistan's army headquarters shows there is a growing terrorist threat to the nuclear-armed US ally, Hillary Clinton said today. The secretary of state, speaking at a joint news conference with British counterpart David Miliband, added that while extremists were "increasingly threatening the authority of... More »

US, Brits Press Plans for Taliban Talks

(Newser) - British commanders backed by US officials aim to use the success of recent offensives to persuade mid-level Taliban leaders to come in for talks and give up the fight, the Guardian reports. Conditions are right for the "second-tier" leaders who control large numbers of fighters in southern Afghanistan to... More »

Iran Still 'Interrogating' 4 of 9 British Embassy Staffers

Four still held as UK decries 'harassment'

(Newser) - Four of the nine staff members arrested at the British embassy in Tehran are still "being interrogated," reports the BBC, for what Iranian media described as collusion with the protests. The Iranian regime has condemned Britain throughout the crisis for meddling in the country's affairs. More »

Iran Detains British Embassy Staff

Says 8 local employees had taken part in election protests

(Newser) - Iranian authorities have detained several local employees of the British Embassy in Tehran, a move that Britain's foreign secretary today called "harassment and intimidation" and reflected a hardening of the regime's stance toward the West. Iranian media said eight local embassy staff were detained for an alleged role in... More »

EU Urges Sri Lanka Ceasefire; 50K Trapped

British, French foreign ministers arrive on island as war rages

(Newser) - The foreign ministers of France and Britain arrived in Sri Lanka today and urged the government to accept a ceasefire in its war with ethnic Tamil rebels. Bernard Kouchner and David Miliband insisted that the fighting must stop now in order to safeguard the estimated 50,000 civilians trapped in... More »

UK Judges Keep Gitmo Secret After US 'Threat'

Government tells courts to withhold evidence in torture case

(Newser) - Binyam Mohamed, a British detainee at Guantanamo Bay, alleges that he has been tortured, and his lawyers petitioned a high court in London to release a document detailing his treatment. But yesterday two judges declined—after the British government informed them that the US might stop sharing intelligence with the... More »

'War on Terror' Approach a Big Mistake: UK Official

Foreign sec Miliband rips Bush label

(Newser) - The notion of a "war on terror" is ill-conceived and may have done more harm than good in the fight against extremism, according to the British foreign secretary. There is no "unified transnational enemy," and the phrase coined by President Bush led officials to believe that... More »

As Crisis Bites, UK Changes Stance on Tibet

After a century of hedging, Britain says region is part of China

(Newser) - Last month Gordon Brown called on China to pump more money into the International Monetary Fund, whose coffers are nearly bare as more nations succumb to the global financial crisis. Only a few days later, writes Robert Barnett in the New York Times, the British government quietly announced a change... More »

Britain Will Resist US Calls for Afghan Buildup

Army stretched too thin, top commander says

(Newser) - Britain should oppose any calls from President Obama to shift troops to Afghanistan as they are pulled out of Iraq, the country's defense chief says, arguing that UK troops need a breather. “I have said for a very long time that the British armed forces are stretched,” Sir... More »

Congo's Crisis at Breaking Point

EU, African Union scramble to broker peace deal as Nkunda attacks

(Newser) - European and African officials held crisis talks last night to avert a complete meltdown in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where the civil war risks degenerating into genocide. The diplomatic push came as Laurent Nkunda, the Tutsi general, led 10,000 rebels into battle in a province bordering Rwanda, which... More »

Putin: US Sparked Georgia War

Part of plot to win votes for McCain, he claims

(Newser) - Invoking the era of Cold War conspiracies, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has accused the US of sparking conflict in Georgia to give John McCain a campaign boost. “They need a small victorious war,” the told CNN. He insisted the US encouraged Georgia to attack their two breakaway... More »

EU Threatens Sanctions on Russia

Asian alliance, including China, condemns aggression

(Newser) - The European Union is considering sanctions against the Great Bear over its incursion into Georgia, French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said today, as EU leaders head to an emergency summit. And a Russian plea for support from the East was strongly rebuffed by members of an Asian alliance that includes... More »

West to Put Screws to Russia

New fury at Russia's formal recognition of breakaway states

(Newser) - The West is preparing to crank up diplomatic pressure on Russia after its challenging move formally recognizing breakaway Ossetia and Abkhazia in the wake of its invasion of Georgia. The US, Europe and NATO have condemned the action, but Russia remains defiant. "We are not afraid of anything, including... More »

Leaked Blair Memo Blasts Brown 'Vacuity'

Leadership challenge gains steam as ex-PM slams successor

(Newser) - Gordon Brown took further lashed from his own party over the weekend as allies of Tony Blair leaked an old memo from the former prime minister bashing Brown's tenure. In the memo, written last year after Brown called off a mooted snap election, Blair accuses his successor of "hubris... More »

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