As we recently hinted, concerns are mounting that Turkey is headed toward Shariah law implementation as the Presidency is consolidated, and particularly given Parliament Speaker Ismail Kahraman’s comments that secularism should be taken out of Turkey’s new constitution last week, moving it instead to a "religious constitution."
Turkey's Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu says he will stand down at an extraordinary congress of his ruling AK Party later this month. Speculation about his resignation has been rife since Mr Davutoglu met President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday. He is long thought to have disapproved of Mr Erdogan's plans to move Turkey to a presidential system of government. He announced his resignation after holding talks with party leaders. The congress would be held on 22 May.
While markets remain relatively subdued ahead of tomorrow's nonfarm payrolls report, after several days of losses in US stocks which pushed the S&P500 to three week lows, overnight markets ignored the latest weak data out of China where the Caixin Services PMI was the latest indicator to disappoint (dropping from 52.2 to 51.8), and instead focused on crude, which rebounded from yesterday's post inventory-build lows and briefly printed above $45/bbl over uncertainty related to the impact of Canada wildfires on production and how long will last. The bounce in WTI has meant Brent briefly traded at parity with West Texas for the first time in 6 weeks.
As another political crisis appears ready to grip Turkey, moments ago we got confirmation that the latest scandal, this time one involving the president and the prime minister, is about to become acute and will likely lead to a party Convention as well as the resignation of the Prime Minister. The immediate response: the biggest crash in the Turkish Lira since October 2008.
Earlier this week we observed that in what may be Europe's latest mistake, the European Union is about to grant visa-gree travel to 80 million Turks: a key concession that Erdogan obtained as a result of the ongoing negotiations over Europe's refugee crisis which has pushed Turkey into the key player spotlight. And then, overnight, the European Commission officially granted its support to a visa-free travel deal with Turkey after Ankara threatened to back out of a landmark migration deal. It proposed to lift visa requirements by the end of June.
While there was no unexpected overnight central bank announcement unlike yesterday's surprise by the RBA which unleashed volatility havoc in the FX market, which promptly spilled over into all asset classes, overnight stocks around the world saw another leg lower without a tangible catalyst, while EM currencies fell to a one-month low after two Fed presidents raised concern investors had become too complacent in their belief that U.S. interest rate raises will stay on hold. Or perhaps all that is happening is that after ignoring Trump, the market is starting to finally price in the possible reality of the Donald in the White House (although as Jeff Gundlach pointed out, Trump would be a far better president for the economy and the market than Hillary or Bernie).
German Coverup Scandal: Ministry Urged Erasing "Rape" From "Monstrous" Cologne Migrant Attack ReportSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 05/03/2016 15:17 -0400
A high-ranking police officer has alleged that his seniors tried to strike the word rape from an internal police report after the mass sexual assaults in Cologne over New Year. A chief superintendent in the Cologne police told the investigative committee established in the wake of the attacks that the interior ministry in North Rhine-Westphalia had sought to influence the investigations.
No one disputes that U.S. military forces are fighting in combat in Iraq and Syria -- except maybe President Barack Obama and some members of his administration.
Of all the inane, self-serving, deals German Chancellor Angela Merkel made with Turkey, visa-free travel for 80 million Islamic Turks tops the list. “This is all a nightmare,” said one diplomat charged with making the deal work. Nightmares aside, Brussels Prepares Legal Groundwork on Visa-Free Travel for Turks.
Seymour Hersh has reported that the Obama Administration falsely blamed the government of Syria’s Bashar al-Assad for the sarin gas attack that Obama was trying to use as an excuse to invade Syria, exposing that a secret agreement in 2012 was reached between the Obama Administration and the leaders of Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar, to set up a sarin gas attack and blame it on Assad so that the US could invade and overthrow Assad. Notably, multiple reports suggest the US Consulate in Benghazi Libya was operating a "rat line" for Gaddafi’s captured weapons into Syria through Turkey; and now, for the first time, Hersh has implicated Hillary Clinton directly in this "rat line."
Is Turkey the support behind ISIS? A new documentary lays out evidence that would lead to that conclusion... one we first exposed here, here, and here. The documentary takes place just days after the YPG took back the town of Shaddadi (a former ISIS stronghold), and what is revealed will most certainly go under reported, but is important nonetheless.
The initial refugee welcome in Germany is rapidly turning to rejection as the nation plan to ban EU migrants from most unemployment benefits for five years after arrival as a senior German politician has called for an "Islam law" that would limit the influence of foreign imams and prohibit the foreign financing of mosques in Germany. As The FT reports, the proposals, which are far tougher than had been expected even a few months ago, highlight the government’s concern over growing public anxiety about immigration and the related advance of the Alternative for Germany party, the most popular rightwing grouping since the second world war.
Depressed oil prices, rampant corruption, and pipeline vandalism are only parts of Nigeria’s oil problem. It’s now losing a massive 400,000 barrels of crude daily to pirates in the Gulf of Guinea, an amount equal to the entire daily export capacity of its Forcados terminal. Overall damage from piracy, theft and fraud for Africa’s largest oil exporter is estimated at some $1.5 billion a month...