Ukraine supporters hope election leads to EU


Capital News Service

LANSING — The victory of pro-European parties in the recent election in Ukraine is inspiring hope among Michigan’s Ukrainian residents that the country will eventually become a member of the European Union.

The Communist Party won’t have a seat in the new parliament for the first time since the country’s independence from the Soviet Union.

“The results are a strong statement,” said Vera Andrushkiw of Troy and vice president of the U.S.-Ukraine Foundation in Washington, D.C.
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EU membership will elude Turkey, Michigan Turks say


Capital News Service

LANSING — Turks in Michigan say they’re not hopeful about the success of an initiative by the new government of Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu to accelerate negotiations to win European Union membership for Turkey.

In the second cabinet meeting after Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s election as president, “the focus and primary agenda was the European Union,” said Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc.

Arinc outlined a three-step plan to begin this year as “a new but scheduled course of action” to be carried out within five years. The strategy aims at preparing Turkey for EU membership by 2019.
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MSU students watch Hong Kong protest with eye on future


Capital News Service

LANSING – Vicky Lee, a sophomore in human development and family studies at Michigan State University, had slept less than four hours in three days.

“Every time I am going to sleep, there is something big that happened there,” she said of the current protests in Hong Kong against the Chinese government concerning the procedure for electing the region’s chief executive.
She is one of about three dozen students from Hong Kong at MSU, according to its Office for International Students and Scholars.

The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress has decided that Hong Kong residents can elect their chief executive from a field of two to three candidates in 2017. Before that election, however, candidates must get more than half the votes of a nomination committee.
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Planned military measures might not defeat ISIS, Michigan experts say


Capital News Service

LANSING – As the fight against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria intensifies, some Michigan-based foreign policy and Middle East experts are expressing doubts about the effectiveness of airstrikes and the importance of international support in combating ISIS.

In a speech to the United Nations General Assembly, President Barack Obama said that the United States will continue a coordinated campaign of airstrikes in Iraq and Syria but that it cannot work alone and a coalition of countries offering aid and troops on the ground is essential.

A new study from the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, a think tank in Washington, D.C., reported that the U.S. has already spent $780 to $930 million combating ISIS.
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