Libyan politicians sign UN-sponsored peace deal - and more 11am Zedlines

Nouri Abusahmain, leader of the New General National Congress in Libya, one of the parties with power in Libya. Image Source: WikiCommons

QLD debt plan deemed short-term and unsustainable

A report released yesterday by Queensland’s auditor-general Andrew Greaves has criticised the government’s debt plan as short-term and unsustainable.

The plan, which was outlined in the state budget earlier this year, aims to reduce an estimated eighty billion dollars in debt through funneling funds towards government-owned power companies and adjusting some public servant benefits.

The report also notes Queensland has the highest debt of all states in Australia, with debt levels outgrowing the state’s economy and becoming less affordable.

$1 coal mine to reopen, creating 150 jobs

A Queensland coal mining company will reopen a mine it bought for one dollar less than a year ago.

Stanmore Coal has awarded a three year contract to Golding Contractors in a deal predicted to produce 1.1 million tonnes of coking coal per annum.

While Stanmore says the mine will create 150 jobs, more than 4000 jobs have been lost from Australian coal mines in the last two years.

ASIO head calls for politicians to use moderate language surrounding Islam

Some Coalition MPs have raised concerns over ASIO head Duncan Lewis calling politicians and urging them to use moderate language when discussing Islam in the interest of national security.

Foreign affairs minister Julie Bishop has defended Mr Lewis’ actions, despite several politicians questioning the move as curtailing free speech.

This comes after Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull attempted to moderate discourse about Islam in a series of speeches earlier this year, naming Muslims as Australia’s best allies in the battle against terrorism.

Melbourne Airport worker was temporarily suspended after conducting security check on Julie Bishop

It has been revealed a worker at Melbourne Airport was suspended in September this year after conducting a security screening on Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop.

Melbourne Airport said in a statement the worker was stood down for not adhering to standard security screening procedures, stating her request to scan Ms Bishop was not random.

A spokesperson for Ms Bishop said no official complaints were made by her or her staff and Ms Bishop is more than happy to be treated on the same basis as other travelers.

The worker has since been reinstated.

Danish government to seize jewelry and cash from refugees entering Denmark

The Danish Government is considering a law that would allow authorities to seize jewelry and cash from refugees entering the country.

The law would allow authorities to search clothes and luggage of asylum seekers as well as those who have already sought refuge in the country.

The Integration Ministry said the new rule on seizure will only apply to items of considerable value in an attempt to cover the expenses of housing the asylum seekers.

The bill will almost certainly pass parliament and will take effect in February next year.

Libyan politicians sign UN peace deal in Morocco

Several Libyan politicians have signed a UN-sponsored peace deal in Morocco which unifies the two rival governments operating in the country, despite some of the active parties denouncing the agreement.

The deal was made with hopes to end the bloody civil war and political violence plaguing the country for five years since the uprising against dictator Muammar Gaddafi.

Western powers hope uniting warring factions in Libya will allow the government to focus instead on eradicating threats from Islamic State, which has seized areas of the country’s coastline.

Analysts are warning of the unsustainability of the UN-decreed unification, with fears it will have little impact on the ground.