Toys R Us built a kingdom and the world’s biggest toy store. Then, they lost it.

Toys R Us’ status as the most important toy store in town left it cavalier, if cocky at times, according to conversations with former employees, executives and industry insiders, who spoke to CNBC on the condition of anonymity. The story begins with Lazarus, the store’s visionary who wanted the “R” written backward — an ode to childlike scrawl. Lazarus, who has been described as one of the great merchants of his time, expanded a baby furniture store he owned into a toy store. In its heyday in th


Toys R Us’ status as the most important toy store in town left it cavalier, if cocky at times, according to conversations with former employees, executives and industry insiders, who spoke to CNBC on the condition of anonymity. The story begins with Lazarus, the store’s visionary who wanted the “R” written backward — an ode to childlike scrawl. Lazarus, who has been described as one of the great merchants of his time, expanded a baby furniture store he owned into a toy store. In its heyday in th
Toys R Us built a kingdom and the world’s biggest toy store. Then, they lost it. Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-01-26  Authors: lauren hirsch, eduardo munoz, jacques m chenet, corbis, getty images, scott mlyn, peter foley, bloomberg, jason alden
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, written, toy, biggest, toys, worlds, built, went, store, lost, stores, lazarus, world, week, kingdom, important


Toys R Us built a kingdom and the world's biggest toy store. Then, they lost it.

The toy emporium that Charles P. Lazarus envisioned has been reduced to dusty floors and empty shelves.

Much has been said about the demise of the toy empire, which this week announced its plan to liquidate. There have been fingers pointed at corporate raiders, Amazon and big-box stores. All contributed to its undoing.

Ultimately, though, Toys R Us’ collapse is a story of loyalty run dry. The store in its early days fostered devotion from customers and toymakers. In the end, it lost hold on both.

Toys R Us’ status as the most important toy store in town left it cavalier, if cocky at times, according to conversations with former employees, executives and industry insiders, who spoke to CNBC on the condition of anonymity. It didn’t invest in its stores, even as it was adding to the fleet, leaving it vulnerable when new competition moved in.

The story begins with Lazarus, the store’s visionary who wanted the “R” written backward — an ode to childlike scrawl. Lazarus, who has been described as one of the great merchants of his time, expanded a baby furniture store he owned into a toy store. By 1978, he had created a toy superstore large enough to become a public company.

In its heyday in the 1980s and 1990s, it was the most important toy store in the country, if not the world. Its strength grew as competitors Kiddie City and Child World went out of business.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-01-26  Authors: lauren hirsch, eduardo munoz, jacques m chenet, corbis, getty images, scott mlyn, peter foley, bloomberg, jason alden
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, written, toy, biggest, toys, worlds, built, went, store, lost, stores, lazarus, world, week, kingdom, important


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China’s ‘pent up demand’ may prop up Hong Kong’s property market in 2019

Hong Kong property prices have fallen sharply and look set to continue their downward trend until the end of 2019— but there’s no danger of an all-out crash, experts said Monday. That’s because resilient local economic fundamentals and pent-up demand from mainland Chinese who have moved to Hong Kong will likely stem the decline next year, they told CNBC. “If you look at the basic fundamentals, unless we get a financial crisis in China or something like that, I think we’re looking at a correction


Hong Kong property prices have fallen sharply and look set to continue their downward trend until the end of 2019— but there’s no danger of an all-out crash, experts said Monday. That’s because resilient local economic fundamentals and pent-up demand from mainland Chinese who have moved to Hong Kong will likely stem the decline next year, they told CNBC. “If you look at the basic fundamentals, unless we get a financial crisis in China or something like that, I think we’re looking at a correction
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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: kelly olsen, getty images, -peter churchouse
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, fundamentals, mainland, kong, end, crisis, china, kongs, economic, 2019, property, look, hong, demand, market, chinas, pent, prop


China's 'pent up demand' may prop up Hong Kong's property market in 2019

Hong Kong property prices have fallen sharply and look set to continue their downward trend until the end of 2019— but there’s no danger of an all-out crash, experts said Monday.

That’s because resilient local economic fundamentals and pent-up demand from mainland Chinese who have moved to Hong Kong will likely stem the decline next year, they told CNBC.

“If you look at the basic fundamentals, unless we get a financial crisis in China or something like that, I think we’re looking at a correction — not a crisis in the Hong Kong property market,” said Peter Churchouse, founder of Hong Kong-based real estate investment firm Portwood Capital.

Housing is a key economic component in crowded and land-scarce Hong Kong, where about 7.4 million people inhabit small, mountainous islands and a craggy peninsula bordering the southern end of mainland China.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: kelly olsen, getty images, -peter churchouse
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, fundamentals, mainland, kong, end, crisis, china, kongs, economic, 2019, property, look, hong, demand, market, chinas, pent, prop


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Canada says China has granted consular access to second detainee

Canadian diplomats received consular access on Sunday to the second of two men detained by China over the past week, Canada’s foreign ministry said in a statement that gave few details. John McCallum, Canada’s ambassador to Beijing, met Michael Spavor, the statement said. Spavor and Michael Kovrig were both picked up after Canada arrested a senior Chinese executive on a U.S. extradition request. China has demanded Canada free Meng and threatened unspecified consequences if it does not. “In the s


Canadian diplomats received consular access on Sunday to the second of two men detained by China over the past week, Canada’s foreign ministry said in a statement that gave few details. John McCallum, Canada’s ambassador to Beijing, met Michael Spavor, the statement said. Spavor and Michael Kovrig were both picked up after Canada arrested a senior Chinese executive on a U.S. extradition request. China has demanded Canada free Meng and threatened unspecified consequences if it does not. “In the s
Canada says China has granted consular access to second detainee Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: kim kyung-hoon
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, kovrig, detained, told, met, meng, granted, statement, second, detainee, canada, spavor, consular, china, access, michael


Canada says China has granted consular access to second detainee

Canadian diplomats received consular access on Sunday to the second of two men detained by China over the past week, Canada’s foreign ministry said in a statement that gave few details.

John McCallum, Canada’s ambassador to Beijing, met Michael Spavor, the statement said. Spavor and Michael Kovrig were both picked up after Canada arrested a senior Chinese executive on a U.S. extradition request.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau — who said on Friday the detentions were unacceptable — told CTV his government was taking the situation very seriously.

“We have engaged with the Chinese officials to determine what exactly conditions are they being detained under? Why are they being detained?” he said in an interview aired on Sunday.

McCallum met Kovrig for the first time on Friday.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Friday that China should free the two men.

Spavor, a businessman, and Kovrig, a former diplomat, were detained after Canadian police arrested Huawei Technologies Chief Financial Officer, Meng Wanzhou, on Dec 1. U.S. prosecutors accuse Meng of misleading multinational banks about Iran-linked transactions, putting the banks at risk of violating U.S. sanctions.

Meng, who is the daughter of Huawei’s founder, has said she is innocent. China has demanded Canada free Meng and threatened unspecified consequences if it does not.

On Monday, influential state-back newspaper the Global Times said in an editorial that an escalation in the spat with Canada could be coming.

“In the struggle with Canada, China needs to prepare for the possibility of conflict escalation,” it said.

“Beijing must take the contest seriously and maximize the support of international public opinion, leaving Western media no smear to slander its counterattacks as ‘degradation of China’s opening-up.'”

Trudeau told CTV that Canada would continue trying to build up trading ties with China.

“We need to do so in a way that is true to our values and stands up for Canadians’ interests, and getting that balance right is complex. (It) has been made more difficult by recent trends,” he said.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: kim kyung-hoon
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, kovrig, detained, told, met, meng, granted, statement, second, detainee, canada, spavor, consular, china, access, michael


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Qatar reportedly considering increasing its stake in Deutsche Bank

Qatar is considering increasing its stake in Deutsche Bank, newspaper Handelsblatt reported on Sunday. The Qatari royal family already holds a 6.1 percent stake in Deutsche Bank, according to Deutsche Bank’s website. “We will invest in a large financial institution in Germany. This, and the fact that Christian Sewing, CEO of Deutsche Bank, was the only top manager of a German group to take part in the Doha Forum over the weekend clearly point to Deutsche Bank, the paper said. A spokesman for Deu


Qatar is considering increasing its stake in Deutsche Bank, newspaper Handelsblatt reported on Sunday. The Qatari royal family already holds a 6.1 percent stake in Deutsche Bank, according to Deutsche Bank’s website. “We will invest in a large financial institution in Germany. This, and the fact that Christian Sewing, CEO of Deutsche Bank, was the only top manager of a German group to take part in the Doha Forum over the weekend clearly point to Deutsche Bank, the paper said. A spokesman for Deu
Qatar reportedly considering increasing its stake in Deutsche Bank Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: martin leissl, bloomberg, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, considering, qatar, increasing, institution, forum, doha, bank, deutsche, ceo, financial, handelsblatt, stake, reportedly


Qatar reportedly considering increasing its stake in Deutsche Bank

Qatar is considering increasing its stake in Deutsche Bank, newspaper Handelsblatt reported on Sunday.

The Qatari royal family already holds a 6.1 percent stake in Deutsche Bank, according to Deutsche Bank’s website. Qatar controls over 9 percent, once derivative positions are take into consideration, Handelsblatt said.

“We will invest in a large financial institution in Germany. This was discussed in the margins of the Doha Forum and will be announced shortly,” Yousuf Mohamed Al-Jaida, CEO of the state-owned Qatar Financial Center, told Handelsblatt.

Al-Jaida did not want to name the company, but he confirmed that it was an institution in which Qatar was already involved, Handelsblatt reported.

This, and the fact that Christian Sewing, CEO of Deutsche Bank, was the only top manager of a German group to take part in the Doha Forum over the weekend clearly point to Deutsche Bank, the paper said.

A spokesman for Deutsche Bank declined to comment.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: martin leissl, bloomberg, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, considering, qatar, increasing, institution, forum, doha, bank, deutsche, ceo, financial, handelsblatt, stake, reportedly


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Saudi Arabia rejects US Senate position on killed journalist Jamal Khashoggi

Saudi Arabia early on Monday rejected “the position expressed recently by the United States Senate,” saying that the Jamal Khashoggi murder is a crime that does not reflect the policy of the kingdom, a statement by Saudi’s foreign ministry said. “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia rejects the position expressed recently by the United States Senate, which was based upon unsubstantiated claims and allegations, and contained blatant interferences in the Kingdom’s internal affairs, undermining the Kingdom’


Saudi Arabia early on Monday rejected “the position expressed recently by the United States Senate,” saying that the Jamal Khashoggi murder is a crime that does not reflect the policy of the kingdom, a statement by Saudi’s foreign ministry said. “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia rejects the position expressed recently by the United States Senate, which was based upon unsubstantiated claims and allegations, and contained blatant interferences in the Kingdom’s internal affairs, undermining the Kingdom’
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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: mohammed al-shaikh, afp, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, killed, murder, states, statement, saudi, position, khashoggi, kingdoms, united, jamal, kingdom, senate, rejects, journalist, arabia, saidthe


Saudi Arabia rejects US Senate position on killed journalist Jamal Khashoggi

Saudi Arabia early on Monday rejected “the position expressed recently by the United States Senate,” saying that the Jamal Khashoggi murder is a crime that does not reflect the policy of the kingdom, a statement by Saudi’s foreign ministry said.

“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia rejects the position expressed recently by the United States Senate, which was based upon unsubstantiated claims and allegations, and contained blatant interferences in the Kingdom’s internal affairs, undermining the Kingdom’s regional and international role,” the statement carried by Saudi Press Agency said.

“The Kingdom has previously asserted that the murder of Saudi citizen Jamal Khashoggi is a deplorable crime that does not reflect the Kingdom’s policy nor its institutions and reaffirms its rejection of any attempts to take the case out of the path of justice in the Kingdom.”

The U.S. Senate delivered a rare double rebuke to President Donald Trump on Saudi Arabia last week, voting to end U.S. military support for the war in Yemen and blame the Saudi crown prince for the murder of journalist Khashoggi.

The statement also added “the Kingdom hopes that it is not drawn into domestic political debates in the United States of America, to avoid any ramifications on the ties between the two countries that could have significant negative impacts on this important strategic relationship.”


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: mohammed al-shaikh, afp, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, killed, murder, states, statement, saudi, position, khashoggi, kingdoms, united, jamal, kingdom, senate, rejects, journalist, arabia, saidthe


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Britain’s ASOS adds to retail gloom with profit warning

Online fashion group ASOS cut its annual sales growth and profit margin forecasts on Monday, becoming the latest British retailer to highlight a major downturn in November trading, sending its shares sharply lower. The stock was down 36 percent at 0829 GMT, as ASOS’s warning showed that even previously high-flying online-only clothing retailers were not immune to a growing crisis in the UK retail sector. Shares in direct rival Boohoo were down 9 percent, even though it said it was trading in lin


Online fashion group ASOS cut its annual sales growth and profit margin forecasts on Monday, becoming the latest British retailer to highlight a major downturn in November trading, sending its shares sharply lower. The stock was down 36 percent at 0829 GMT, as ASOS’s warning showed that even previously high-flying online-only clothing retailers were not immune to a growing crisis in the UK retail sector. Shares in direct rival Boohoo were down 9 percent, even though it said it was trading in lin
Britain’s ASOS adds to retail gloom with profit warning Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: bloomberg, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, previously, group, asos, britains, high, profit, trading, retailer, runup, gloom, adds, retail, warning, street, christmas, clothing, worse


Britain's ASOS adds to retail gloom with profit warning

Online fashion group ASOS cut its annual sales growth and profit margin forecasts on Monday, becoming the latest British retailer to highlight a major downturn in November trading, sending its shares sharply lower.

The stock was down 36 percent at 0829 GMT, as ASOS’s warning showed that even previously high-flying online-only clothing retailers were not immune to a growing crisis in the UK retail sector.

Shares in other British clothing groups fell on a read across to ASOS’s update and fears of poor Christmas trading – Marks & Spencer was down 2.4 percent and Next was down 3.8 percent.

Shares in direct rival Boohoo were down 9 percent, even though it said it was trading in line with expectations.

“We knew the high street was struggling due to structural shifts, but ASOS slashing guidance suggests things are even worse in the run-up to Christmas than previously thought for the sector and the strife extends well beyond the high street,” said Markets.com chief market analyst Neil Wilson.

The gloom in the run-up to Christmas has been building. Last week sportswear retailer Sports Direct said November trading was “unbelievably bad”, while clothing group Bonmarche said it was faring much worse than during the financial crisis.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: bloomberg, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, previously, group, asos, britains, high, profit, trading, retailer, runup, gloom, adds, retail, warning, street, christmas, clothing, worse


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Indonesia’s trade deficit in November reaches widest since July 2013

Indonesia posted its widest monthly trade deficit in over five years in November as exports, especially that of palm oil and pulp, slumped, data from the statistics bureau showed on Monday. The deficit in November was $2.05 billion, larger than October’s revised deficit of $1.77 billion and the biggest trade gap since July 2013, according to Refinitiv data. The rupiah weakened slightly after the trade data to 14,620 a dollar at 0545 GMT, from 14,600 before the announcement. Fakhrul Fulvian, econ


Indonesia posted its widest monthly trade deficit in over five years in November as exports, especially that of palm oil and pulp, slumped, data from the statistics bureau showed on Monday. The deficit in November was $2.05 billion, larger than October’s revised deficit of $1.77 billion and the biggest trade gap since July 2013, according to Refinitiv data. The rupiah weakened slightly after the trade data to 14,620 a dollar at 0545 GMT, from 14,600 before the announcement. Fakhrul Fulvian, econ
Indonesia’s trade deficit in November reaches widest since July 2013 Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: dimas ardian, bloomberg, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, earlier, current, reaches, indonesias, oil, trade, deficit, palm, statistics, data, indonesia, billion, widest


Indonesia's trade deficit in November reaches widest since July 2013

Indonesia posted its widest monthly trade deficit in over five years in November as exports, especially that of palm oil and pulp, slumped, data from the statistics bureau showed on Monday.

The deficit in November was $2.05 billion, larger than October’s revised deficit of $1.77 billion and the biggest trade gap since July 2013, according to Refinitiv data. A Reuters poll had expected a deficit of $830 million.

The rupiah weakened slightly after the trade data to 14,620 a dollar at 0545 GMT, from 14,600 before the announcement.

Exports surprisingly fell 3.28 percent in November from a year earlier to $14.83 billion, the worst monthly performance since June 2017. The poll’s median was for a 3.95 percent increase for exports.

A decline in overseas sales of a range of products, such as palm oil, jewellery, pulp and paper and crude oil, was the main reason for the drop, Suhariyanto, the statistics bureau head said in a news conference.

Export revenues from vegetable oils, including palm and coconut oil, fell nearly 19 percent in November from a year earlier due to weak prices, he said.

November imports stood at $16.88 billion, up 11.68 percent from a year earlier, topping the poll’s 10.50 percent estimate, but down from the nearly 24 percent growth in October.

Southeast Asia’s largest economy has been struggling to contain imports in recent months. Some measures, including higher tariffs, have been imposed to curb imports.

Authorities have also sped up negotiations for free trade deals in order to gain better access for exports, in a bid to reduce the trade gap and support the rupiah.

Bank Indonesia has also hiked interest rates six times since May to try to attract portfolio investment needed to fund the widening current account deficit.

Fakhrul Fulvian, economist at Trimegah Sekuritas, said the worse-than-expected trade deficit would “lower the expectation of improving current account balance” in the fourth quarter.

But, he argued, BI would not have to raise rates again because it already did in November.

Maybank Indonesia economist Myrdal Gunarto agreed.

“The movement of the exchange rate in domestic market remains manageable and the trade deficit was supported by returning foreign inflows,” Gunarto said. “With that, we project BI will still maintain its policy interest rate at the current level.”


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: dimas ardian, bloomberg, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, earlier, current, reaches, indonesias, oil, trade, deficit, palm, statistics, data, indonesia, billion, widest


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Germany to compensate those who fled Nazis as children

Germany has agreed to one-time payments for survivors, primarily Jews, who were evacuated from Nazi Germany as children, many of whom never saw their parents again, the organization that negotiates compensation with the German government said Monday. The New York-based Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany said the government had agreed to payments of 2,500 euros ($2,800) to those still alive from among the 10,000 people who fled on the so-called “Kindertransport.” This year is th


Germany has agreed to one-time payments for survivors, primarily Jews, who were evacuated from Nazi Germany as children, many of whom never saw their parents again, the organization that negotiates compensation with the German government said Monday. The New York-based Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany said the government had agreed to payments of 2,500 euros ($2,800) to those still alive from among the 10,000 people who fled on the so-called “Kindertransport.” This year is th
Germany to compensate those who fled Nazis as children Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: john macdougall, afp, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, compensate, survivors, germany, jewish, payments, schneider, parents, nazi, fled, conference, children, nazis, agreed


Germany to compensate those who fled Nazis as children

Germany has agreed to one-time payments for survivors, primarily Jews, who were evacuated from Nazi Germany as children, many of whom never saw their parents again, the organization that negotiates compensation with the German government said Monday.

The New York-based Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany said the government had agreed to payments of 2,500 euros ($2,800) to those still alive from among the 10,000 people who fled on the so-called “Kindertransport.”

This year is the 80th anniversary of beginning of the transport of the children to Britain from Nazi Germany and elsewhere in Europe.

About 1,000 survivors are thought to be alive today, with about half of those still living in Britain, and the payment is seen as a “symbolic recognition of their suffering,” Claims Conference negotiator Greg Schneider said.

“In almost all the cases the parents who remained were killed in concentration camps in the Holocaust and they have tremendous psychological issues,” Schneider told The Associated Press.

Following the Nazis’ anti-Jewish pogrom in November 1938 known as Kristallnacht, or the Night of Broken Glass, the British government agreed to allow an unspecified number of Jewish children as refugees from Nazi Germany or territories it had annexed.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: john macdougall, afp, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, compensate, survivors, germany, jewish, payments, schneider, parents, nazi, fled, conference, children, nazis, agreed


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Sri Lanka’s president accuses newly reappointed premier of corrupt leadership

Sri Lanka’s president accused newly reappointed Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe of corrupt leadership in a scathing speech Sunday in which he voiced doubts about their ability to work together and signaled the 2-month political crisis is far from resolved. “Now I will assume duties of the office of prime minister,” Wickremesinghe told his cheering supporters. Sirisena’s choice for prime minister, former strongman Mahinda Rajapaksa, lost two no-confidence votes in Parliament but continued to


Sri Lanka’s president accused newly reappointed Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe of corrupt leadership in a scathing speech Sunday in which he voiced doubts about their ability to work together and signaled the 2-month political crisis is far from resolved. “Now I will assume duties of the office of prime minister,” Wickremesinghe told his cheering supporters. Sirisena’s choice for prime minister, former strongman Mahinda Rajapaksa, lost two no-confidence votes in Parliament but continued to
Sri Lanka’s president accuses newly reappointed premier of corrupt leadership Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: ishara s kodikara, afp, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, corrupt, prime, wickremesinghe, sri, leadership, court, president, reappointed, lankas, sirisena, rajapaksa, suspension, supreme, accuses, speech, minister, premier, newly


Sri Lanka's president accuses newly reappointed premier of corrupt leadership

Sri Lanka’s president accused newly reappointed Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe of corrupt leadership in a scathing speech Sunday in which he voiced doubts about their ability to work together and signaled the 2-month political crisis is far from resolved.

President Maithripala Sirisena administered the oath that returned Wickremesinghe to office, then gave a speech soon after the ceremony, telling the prime minister and a group of his lawmakers that he can’t find people of honesty and integrity to help him take the country forward.

“With the issues we have, I am not sure what guarantees we have that we could go on this journey together,” Sirisena told Wickremesinghe.

The swearing in took place privately, with only a few lawmakers in attendance and media not permitted. It initially indicated an end to the impasse, but Sirisena’s speech is a sign of more acrimony, possibly leading to early parliamentary elections. A new Cabinet is expected to be sworn in soon.

Wickremesinghe spoke separately at his official residence and refrained from responding to Sirisena. “Now I will assume duties of the office of prime minister,” Wickremesinghe told his cheering supporters.

“Unfortunately, during the past few weeks, the progress of this country and the development programs that we undertook were stalled,” he said. “Not only that, the country went backward. Today we commit firstly to bring back normalcy and resuming the development program.”

In his televised speech, Sirisena said his reasons for firing Wickremesinghe included a lack of interest in helping investigate an alleged insider trade during a bond issue, in which a former Central Bank governor who is a close friend of Wickremesinghe is implicated.

He also said Wickremesinghe’s ministers alienated Buddhist monks by having them arrested for keeping unlicensed captive elephants at temples. Sri Lanka is a predominantly Buddhist nation with an influential clergy.

Sirisena also criticized Wickremesinghe for investigations into alleged abuses during the long civil war that ended in 2009. The president said Wickremesinghe had only government soldiers arrested but had not looked into prosecuting former Tamil Tiger rebels he said were hiding in foreign countries.

“My view is that we should prosecute everyone, or else we should negotiate with the international community and free our soldiers (from accusations),” he said.

Both sides were accused of grave wartime abuses. According to a U.N. report, at least 40,000 ethnic Tamil civilians were killed just in the final months of the fighting.

Wickremesinghe had insisted his abrupt firing on Oct. 26 was unlawful. Sirisena’s choice for prime minister, former strongman Mahinda Rajapaksa, lost two no-confidence votes in Parliament but continued to hold the office with Sirisena’s support.

When his opponents went to court, the Court of Appeal suspended Rajapaksa and his Cabinet from functioning in their offices. Rajapaksa asked the Supreme Court to lift the suspension, but it refused and extended the suspension until mid-January, forcing Rajapaksa to resign on Saturday.

The suspension had left Sri Lanka without a government and in danger of being unable to spend government money from Jan. 1. It is also committed to repay $1 billion in foreign debts in January.

“We can be proud of the way our Parliament and Supreme Court did their duties according to the law,” Wickremesinghe said Sunday, adding that the Supreme Court had strengthened the freedom of the citizens by interpreting the law accurately.

“We all need a normal life, we need our progress and it is to this that we are committed,” he said.

Sirisena was health minister in Rajapaksa’s Cabinet when he defected to join Wickremesinghe and challenge Rajapaksa in the 2015 presidential election. After winning the election, he formed a government with Wickremesinghe as prime minister, but the two leaders started to have differences over economic policy and the investigations of alleged wartime abuses.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: ishara s kodikara, afp, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, corrupt, prime, wickremesinghe, sri, leadership, court, president, reappointed, lankas, sirisena, rajapaksa, suspension, supreme, accuses, speech, minister, premier, newly


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Putin says rap should be controlled in Russia, not banned

Alarmed by the growing popularity of rap among Russian youth, President Vladimir Putin wants cultural leaders to devise a means of controlling, rather than banning, the popular music. Putin says “if it is impossible to stop, then we must lead it and direct it.” Putin noted that “rap is based on three pillars: sex, drugs and protest.” But he is particularly concerned with drug themes prevalent in rap, saying “this is a path to the degradation of the nation.” Husky climbed onto a car, surrounded b


Alarmed by the growing popularity of rap among Russian youth, President Vladimir Putin wants cultural leaders to devise a means of controlling, rather than banning, the popular music. Putin says “if it is impossible to stop, then we must lead it and direct it.” Putin noted that “rap is based on three pillars: sex, drugs and protest.” But he is particularly concerned with drug themes prevalent in rap, saying “this is a path to the degradation of the nation.” Husky climbed onto a car, surrounded b
Putin says rap should be controlled in Russia, not banned Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: dennis grombkowski, getty images sport, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, russian, popular, month, nov, known, rap, controlled, banned, putin, rapper, russia, shut, music


Putin says rap should be controlled in Russia, not banned

Alarmed by the growing popularity of rap among Russian youth, President Vladimir Putin wants cultural leaders to devise a means of controlling, rather than banning, the popular music.

Putin says “if it is impossible to stop, then we must lead it and direct it.”

But Putin said at a St. Petersburg meeting with cultural advisers Saturday that attempts to ban artists from performing will have an adverse effect and bolster their popularity.

Putin noted that “rap is based on three pillars: sex, drugs and protest.” But he is particularly concerned with drug themes prevalent in rap, saying “this is a path to the degradation of the nation.”

He said “drug propaganda” is worse than cursing.

Putin’s comments come amid a crackdown on contemporary music that evoked Soviet-era censorship of the arts.

Last month, a rapper known as Husky, whose videos have garnered more than 6 million views on YouTube, was arrested after he staged an impromptu performance when his show was shut down in the southern Russian city of Krasnodar.

The 25-year-old rapper, known for his lyrics about poverty, corruption and police brutality, was preparing to take to the stage on Nov. 21 when local prosecutors warned the venue that his act had elements of what they termed “extremism.”

Husky climbed onto a car, surrounded by hundreds of fans, and chanted “I will sing my music, the most honest music!” before he was taken away by police.

On Nov. 30, rapper Gone.Fludd announced two concert cancellations, citing pressure from “every police agency you can imagine,” while the popular hip hop artist Allj cancelled his show in the Arctic city of Yakutsk after receiving threats of violence.

Other artists have been affected as well — pop sensation Monetochka and punk band Friendzona were among those who had their concerts shut down by the authorities last month.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-17  Authors: dennis grombkowski, getty images sport, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, russian, popular, month, nov, known, rap, controlled, banned, putin, rapper, russia, shut, music


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