All Articles Tagged "IMF"
(New York Times) — The sexual assault case against Dominique Strauss-Kahn, with its deep undercurrents of international power, sex, race and political ambition, seemed a good Rorschach test for how New Yorkers see their city. Some sided with the hotel housekeeper, a native of Guinea, whom they saw, initially, as a paragon of the immigrant work ethic. Others said they suspected opportunism from the start. Some reveled in seeing a powerful man laid low; others saw the news media’s intense coverage as an unfair spectacle, a trial by headline. Now, with Mr. Strauss-Kahn, the former managing director of the International Monetary Fund, freed from house arrest and his accuser’s credibility gravely undermined, a case that could have been written for television has grown even more complex. To many New Yorkers, it has also revealed more about how the city works, for better or for worse.
(Wall Street Journal) — The sexual-assault case against former International Monetary Fund leader Dominique Strauss-Kahn appeared to be weakening Thursday as prosecutors and his defense team prepared to raise questions about the credibility of the maid who accused him, people close to the case said. Problems with the prosecution’s main witness are expected to be made public at a last-minute court hearing scheduled for Friday morning before State Supreme Court Justice Michael Obus. Defense lawyers are likely to ask the judge to end house arrest and electronic monitoring, two restrictive conditions of Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s bail. ”There will be serious issues raised by the district attorney’s office and us concerning the credibility of the complaining witness,” said Benjamin Brafman, a lawyer for Mr. Strauss-Kahn.
(New York Times) — She was born in a mud hut in an isolated hamlet in Africa with no electricity or running water, a 10-minute hike to the nearest road. Unschooled, she was married off to a distant cousin as a teenager, had a daughter and was soon widowed. Not long after, in her early 20s, she arrived in the United States — one more anonymous immigrant struggling to make a new life. She served stew in a cubbyhole of an African restaurant in the Bronx, and landed a more stable job a few years ago as a housekeeper changing the sleek sheets at the Sofitel New York, in Midtown Manhattan. Then came the encounter on May 14. The woman told the authorities that she was sexually assaulted by the French politician Dominique Strauss-Kahn while cleaning his suite at the hotel. Now she finds herself in the glare of international scandal.
(AP) – The former International Monetary Fund head charged with trying to rape a Manhattan hotel housekeeper formally said he was innocent of the charges Monday in his first court appearance in the case in two weeks. Dominique Strauss-Kahn pleaded not guilty in a strong voice at the brief proceeding, standing between his defense team as his wife, journalist Anne Sinclair, watched. He had already said he’s innocent. State Supreme Court Justice Michael Orbus went through the formality of telling Mr. Strauss-Kahn he needed to appear in court and had a right to be present at his trial to which the economist said “yes.” His next court date is set for July 18.
(Wall Street Journal) — Tests matched a DNA sample submitted by former International Monetary Fund director Dominique Strauss-Kahn and semen found on the shirt of the hotel maid who told police she had been sexually assaulted by him, law-enforcement officials said. Meanwhile, witnesses provided an account of the minutes just after the alleged assault, one of the officials said. Witnesses told police Mr. Strauss-Kahn passed by the maid, who was visibly upset, outside his room as he made his way to the elevator to leave the hotel. The former French finance minister and presidential hopeful was indicted Thursday for sexual assault and attempted rape. Mr. Strauss-Kahn subsequently resigned his position with the IMF but has maintained his innocence. The case has been front-page news on both sides of the Atlantic. One of Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s attorneys, Benjamin Brafman, declined to comment.
by R. Asmerom
Amidst allegations of rape and sexual assault, the head of the International Monetary Fund Dominique Strauss-Kahn has stepped down from his post in order to focus on defending his innocence in court. “I want to protect this institution which I have served with honor and devotion, and especially — especially — I want to devote all my strength, all my time, and all my energy to proving my innocence,” he said in a written statement.
Strauss-Kahn was accused by a maid, who was working during his stay at the Sofitel Hotel in New York, of sexual assault and forcing her to have oral sex. Reuters reports the maid is a single mother and widow from Guinea in West Africa. Other news outlets have reported her to be 32 years of age.
The 62 year-old Frenchman was expected to be the next President of France. He’s had a great reputation as head of the IMF and also had a reputation as “the Great Seducer” and as a philanderer. He is now charged with criminal sexual acts, attempted rape, sexual abuse, unlawful imprisonment and forcible touching. If convicted, he can be sentenced to 25 years in prison.
By Steven Barboza
While Washington is preoccupied with war in Afghanistan and Arab liberation movements, Beijing is feeding its insatiable “Made in China” machine by cranking out mega-deals to develop Africa’s infrastructure in return for rights to grab resources, such as minerals and oil.
Some African leaders compare these resource-for-infrastructure swaps to Marshall Plans — deals big enough to jumpstart economies. But critics in the West say the swaps amount to a “Great Chinese Takeout” or a series of sweetheart deals for the Asian colossus.
China’s biggest bet on the continent is a $6 billion accord with Congo, a country buried in debt but rich in virtually every known mineral, from gold and diamonds to coltan, a key element in cell phones, computer chips, nuclear reactors, and PlayStations. Congo has 80% of the world’s coltan reserves.
In return for rights to extract more than 11 million tons of copper and 620,000 tons of cobalt from Congo mines over 25 years, China has agreed to build 2,000 miles of roads and 1,800 miles of railway tracks, hundreds of schools and health clinics, and two airports.
Though the U.S. already operates huge mining projects in the Congo, Westerners gripe about the so-called “bonanza” from which China stands to profit $42 billion on its initial investment.
“I don’t see the Congress of the United States allocating money for building the Democratic Republic of Congo,” Faida Mitifu, Congo’s ambassador to the U.S., told the Atlanta Post. “So the Congolese have decided for the first time to rightfully trade their mineral resources in exchange for developing infrastructure in different areas. I don’t see anything negative about a country wanting to improve its infrastructure.”
By global business standards, this deal may not be the biggest. Still, it is roughly the equivalent of Congo’s annual national budget: a mere $5.69 billion for one of Africa’s most populous countries, with 68 million people.
Joseph Kabila, Congo’s president, said his ministers identified several infrastructure needs, then he shopped around for help. Now Chinese-led crews are filling potholes, laying asphalt over dirt roads and generally helping to bring the nation one step closer to the 21st century so Congolese farmers and merchants can deliver their goods to market.
“We are still at the very beginning, but it’s opening jobs for Congolese. We hope [the deal] will open up greater opportunities in terms of jobs and infrastructure. That will eventually change greatly the lives of the Congolese,” said Mitifu. “Little by little we are eliminating our dependency on imported food.”
She estimated that 70% of workers in new projects will be Congolese, and 30% will be Chinese.
(CNBC.com) – Many advanced economies will face high unemployment through 2011 even though job growth will return this year, the International Monetary Fund said on Wednesday.
In its initial chapters of the World Economic Outlook, the IMF said combating unemployment was a key policy challenge as the global economy emerges from the worst recession since World War Two.
It will release the full report next week.
“The nature of the recent recession in several advanced economies weighs against unemployment moderating any time soon,” the Fund said.