Small tsunamis detected in New Caledonia and Vanuatu after magnitude 7 undersea quake

SYDNEY (Reuters) – A powerful magnitude 7 undersea earthquake struck east of New Caledonia’s Loyalty Islands in the South Pacific on Monday, sending small tsunamis towards New Caledonia and neighbouring Vanuatu, where authorities ordered evacuations. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center (PTWC) in Hawaii issued a tsunami warning for coastlines within 300 kms (186 mile) of…

Pinera wins first round of Chile election, faces runoff

SANTIAGO (Reuters) – Conservative billionaire Sebastian Pinera will face center-left Senator Alejandro Guillier in a runoff for Chile’s presidency next month, after a first round vote on Sunday that Pinera won, but with fewer votes than expected. Both candidates would keep in place the top copper exporter’s longstanding free-market economic model, but former president Pinera…

Merkel fourth term in doubt as German coalition talks fail

BERLIN (Reuters) – Chancellor Angela Merkel’s efforts to form a three-way coalition government that would secure herself a fourth term hit a major setback after a would-be coalition partner unexpectedly pulled out of talks, thrusting Germany into a political crisis. Merkel, whose conservatives were weakened after an election they won with a reduced number of…

German parties at impasse as deadline passes with no deal

BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s would-be coalition partners appeared to have reached an impasse over immigration policy as a self-imposed Sunday evening deadline for agreeing the outlines of a government programme passed with no deal. A deadline of 1700 GMT passed with no announcement being made, suggesting Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives, the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP)…

Lebanon’s Hariri to visit Egypt on Monday

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Saad al-Hariri, who announced his resignation as Lebanese prime minister from Saudi Arabia on Nov. 4, will visit Egypt on Monday, a leader in Hariri’s Future Movement said. Hariri has since Saturday been in Paris, where he met French President Emmanuel Macron, and has said he will return to Lebanon by Wednesday…

Mugabe agrees to stand down as Zimbabwe president

HARARE (Reuters) – Robert Mugabe agreed on Sunday to resign as Zimbabwe’s president hours after the ruling ZANU-PF party fired him as its leader following 37 years in charge, a source familiar with the negotiations said. ZANU-PF had given the 93-year-old less than 24 hours to quit as head of state or face impeachment, an…