DRC News Feed
By Niklas Pollard and Simon Johnson STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Sweden's centre-left Social Democrat leader Stefan Lofven emerged as victor in Sunday's general election after a voter backlash against tax cuts and trimmed welfare by a centre-right government, but he fell short of a parliamentary majority. The Nordic region's biggest economy and one of the few star performers in Europe now faces a weak minority government with a possible political impasse as the anti-immigrant far right emerged as the third biggest party to hold the balance of power. Lofven's Social Democrats and two other opposition parties, the Greens and Left, garnered 43.7 percent of the vote, against 39.3 percent for Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt's coalition. Now Sweden has answered that we need a change." A projection by the election authority showed that the three centre left parties - who have not as yet created a formal bloc - won 159 parliamentary seats, short of the 175 need for a majority.
The party of former Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo withdrew from the country's election commission on Sunday, setting back efforts to draw it into the political mainstream before a scheduled presidential election next year. Gbagbo's Ivorian Popular Front (FPI) boycotted parliamentary polls in 2011 and local elections last year. Negotiations in recent months between President Alassane Ouattara's government and the FPI, however, had led to the party agreeing to participate in the elections commission, raising hopes it would take part in next year's poll.
AC Milan clung on to beat Parma 5-4 away in Serie A on Sunday despite an dreadful defensive display which included Mattia De Sciglio scoring an extraordinary own goal from near the halfway line late in the match. Goalkeeper Diego Lopez injured himself in a vain attempt to stop the ball and had to hobble through injury time with Milan having already made three substitutions. Inter Milan had a much more straightforward time as they routed hapless Sassuolo 7-0 for the second season in a row with Argentine striker Mauro Icardi grabbing a hat-trick and Pablo Daniel Osvaldo scoring twice. Mateo Kovacic and Fredy Guarin were also on target.
By Michelle Chen HONG KONG (Reuters) - A disappointing first year for Shanghai's much-hyped free-trade zone, seen as a pet project of Premier Li Keqiang and billed as a reform laboratory, raises questions about China's commitment to opening up its markets as it wrestles with a slowing economy. The 29 square kilometre zone on the outskirts of China's commercial capital - hailed as Beijing's boldest reform in decades - was meant to test changes such as currency liberalisation, market-determined interest rates and free trade. "There has been some progress in the Shanghai free trade zone, but the progress is much slower than the market had expected, especially in the financial market sector," said Zhu Haibin, chief China economist at JP Morgan in Hong Kong.
By James Pearson SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea sentenced U.S. Miller joins Kenneth Bae to become the second American currently serving a hard labour sentence in North Korea. A third, Jeffrey Fowle, is awaiting trial. "He committed acts hostile to the DPRK while entering the territory of the DPRK under the guise of a tourist last April," the short statement said.
By Leah Schnurr TORONTO (Reuters) - "The Imitation Game," a biopic about British mathematician and World War Two code-breaker Alan Turing, won the top prize at the Toronto International Film Festival on Sunday. The film, which stars Benedict Cumberbatch as Turing, took the Groslch People's Choice award for best film at the 39th edition of the festival. Accepting the award on behalf of director Morten Tyldum, Elevation Pictures' Noah Segal said simply, "Yummy, delicious," a reference to an audience member who had declared the same about Cumberbatch during a question-and-answer session following the film's screening during the festival. The award, which is chosen by audience members and has in the past gone to Oscar best picture winners such as "Slumdog Millionaire," and last year's "12 Years a Slave," will likely ramp up the buzz around the film.
Before Europe's top domestic leagues were interrupted by players jetting off around the world to play for their countries, Manchester United's supposed new dawn under Louis van Gaal was obscured by dark clouds. Two points from three very winnable league games and a humiliating Capital One Cup defeat by third tier Milton Keynes Dons had punctured all the optimism gleaned from an impressive pre-season. On Sunday, at the fifth time of asking and after some serious cash-splashing at the end of the transfer window, Van Gaal could finally celebrate a win. His side crushed Queens Park Rangers 4-0 with the kind of football the Old Trafford faithful have been spoiled with over the past couple of decades.
By Ian Chadband LONDON (Reuters) - The deadline day boys led by Radamel Falcao and Danny Welbeck came, saw and largely conquered, their weekend Premier League debuts bringing fresh vibrancy, new energy and rekindled hope to the clubs who have invested so lavishly in them. Nowhere was the tonic of fresh blood so obviously felt than at a reenergised Old Trafford. When Falcao finally emerged in the 67th minute to thunderous cheers with Manchester United, inspired by their record signing Angel di Maria and Dutch deadline day capture Daley Blind, already cruising at 4-0 up against Queens Park Rangers, it felt like the dreaming was beginning all over again in the old theatre.
By Steve Tongue LONDON (Reuters) - They cheered him to the Old Trafford rafters just for warming up on the touchline, then roared their approval when he finally made it onto the pitch as a Manchester United player in the 67th minute of Sunday's 4-0 win over Queens Park Rangers. All that was missing from Radamel Falcao's debut in English football was a goal, but the crowd of more than 75,000 went away convinced that it will not be long in coming. United supporters love a goal scorer as much as any other set of fans, and a flamboyant one more than most. I would like to be a United legend," he told Sky Sports before the game.
By Erik Kirschbaum and Michelle Martin BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's eurosceptic Alternative for Germany (AfD) party surged to win more than 10 percent of the vote in two states on Sunday in a growing challenge to Chancellor Angela Merkel as her new right-wing rival makes further inroads into her power base. Merkel's conservative Christian Democrats (CDU) could also suffer an ominous loss of power in the state of Thuringia if the hardline Left party can persuade the Social Democrats (SPD) to switch allegiances and elect Germany's first Left state premier. The AfD, which was founded in early 2013 to oppose euro zone bailouts, surpassed all forecasts to win 10.2 percent of the vote in Thuringia and 11.9 percent in Brandenburg, according to projections broadcast on German television late on Sunday.