Two of Russia's staunchest allies are assessing their ties with Moscow with the Ukraine crisis in mind.
(From L) Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian. (SERGEI KARPUKHIN/AFP/Getty Images, JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images, ALEXEY DRUZHININ/AFP/Getty Images)
"Russia is in deep crisis … the president [Putin] is going to want to look decisive and he hasn’t been, he’s failed in most things he has done,” said Friedman. “He’s had a lot of reversals, he needs to get some points on the board – if you can’t get it diplomatically, I’m afraid he is going to get it militarily."
"Of all the kings Saudi Arabia has had, King Salman’s ascension to the throne comes at the worst time in the history of the kingdom," Kamran Bokhari, adviser for Middle Eastern and South Asian affairs at Texas-based consulting firm Stratfor, said by telephone from Toronto. “He comes in with so many domestic and external challenges."
"Regardless of the technical and political purpose behind the decision to implement quantitative easing, and however defensible it is on its own grounds," Friedman writes, "the moral lesson is that Europe ultimately is a continent, not an idea."
Georgia will suspend trade talks with Russia because it does not make sense, Georgian Foreign Minister Tamar Beruchashvili said while on a visit to the United States, Trend news agency reported Jan. 30.
Congolese army Chief of Staff Didier Etumba officially announced the start of operations against the ethnic Hutu rebel group Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda on Jan. 29, Army spokesman Gen. Leon Kasonga said, France 24 reported.
The Jordanian government will not release prisoner Sajida al-Rishawi until the Islamic State provides evidence that Jordanian hostage Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh is alive, government spokesman Mohammed al-Momani said at a Jan. 29 press conference, Jordan Times reported.
A new audio message purportedly from Japanese journalist Kenji Goto said the Islamic State would kill a Jordanian pilot if Jordan did not hand over an Iraqi woman convicted of a suicide bombing by sunset Jan. 29, Hurriyet Daily News reported.