Lebanon central bank cuts rates to ease country’s worst financial crisis Feb 14, 2020 0 79 12345 AFPBeirutLebanon’s central bank on Thursday told commercial banks to lower interest rates on dollar and Lebanese pound deposits in the latest attempt to ease the country’s worst financial crisis in decades.The central bank imposed a temporary interest cap of 4 percent on dollar deposits and 7.5 percent on Lebanese pound deposits, according to a circular seen by AFP.It was the second time in two months that the central bank has taken such a measure.Earlier in December, it capped interest rates on dollar and local currency deposits at 5 and 8.5 percent respectively. The latest reduction comes weeks after Lebanon’s finance minister, Ghazi Wazni, called for slashed rates to “spur economic activity and to ease pressure on public finances”.A banking source close to the matter said the latest central bank measure was part “of a more comprehensive economic rescue plan”.The source asked not to be named because he is not authorised to speak on the issue.The new prime minister, Hassan Diab, has said his cabinet would draw up an emergency rescue plan for the country by the end of the month. RELATED ARTICLES Turkey threatens force against ‘radicals’ in Syria’s Idlib Feb 14, 2020 0 96 Twenty-three dead after bandit attack on Nigerian village Feb 14, 2020 0 1825 Ethiopia passes contested ‘hate speech’ law Feb 14, 2020 0 396 US military begins adjusting presence in Africa Washington: The US announced on Wednesday an initial plan for adjusting its military presence in Africa amid concerns the country will reduce forces fighting radical jihadists. The first change will see part of one .. New clashes in Libya despite UN ceasefire call AFP Tripoli Rival forces clashed in the Libyan capital on Thursday, causing new civilian casualties in the grinding conflict a day after a UN Security Council resolution called for a “lasting ceasefire”. The resolution .. Italian foreign minister flies to Libya to meet militia leader Haftar Rome: Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio flew on Thursday to Libya’s eastern city of Benghazi to meet military strongman Khalifa Haftar, one of the main players in an ongoing civil war. The talks were taking place a day .. Syria parliament recognises the killing of 1.5mn Armenians as genocide AFP Damascus Syria’s parliament on Thursday recognised the 1915-1917 killings of up to 1.5 million Armenians as genocide, as tensions run high with Turkey after deadly clashes in northwest Syria. “The parliament... .. Settlement report shows UN bias against Israel, says Pompeo Washington: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Thursday denounced the UN release of a list of companies involved with Israeli settlements, saying it proved the world body was biased against the Jewish state. “Its .. Hundreds of Iraqi women defy cleric to protest AFP Baghdad Hundreds of Iraqi women of all ages flooded central Baghdad on Thursday alongside male anti-government protesters, defying an order by powerful cleric Moqtada Sadr to separate the genders in the rallies. .. Algeria media group chief arrested for ‘corruption’ Algiers: The powerful head of Algerian private media group Ennahar, Anis Rahmani, has been arrested on corruption and other charges, a security source said on Thursday. The 49-year-old journalist has been accused of .. Israel planning ‘massive’ drone acquistion to counter Iran threat Jerusalem: Israel is to buy and develop drones on a “massive” scale to increase its military edge over its enemies -- Iran and its allies -- the army said on Thursday. “This plan will improve the lethality of the Israeli .. Turkey slams Syria’s ‘hypocrisy’ over Armenian genocide move Istanbul: Turkey on Thursday slammed the Syrian parliament’s recognition of World War I killings of Armenians as genocide as a “hypocrisy”, as tensions run high amid deadly clashes in northwest Syria. “This is a picture .. Regime offensive in NW Syria displaces more than 800,000: UN Beirut: A Russia-backed Syrian regime offensive on the last major rebel bastion in the country’s northwest has displaced more than 800,000 people since December, the UN said on Thursday. “Of the more than 800,000 people ..