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Trump says US, Chinese teams to restart trade talks ahead of G20


June 19, 2019

United States President Donald Trump said on Tuesday he had spoken to Chinese President Xi Jinping and that the two leaders’ teams would restart trade talks after a long lull in order to prepare for a meeting at the G20 summit later this month. US and China are in the middle of a costly trade war that has pressured financial …

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UN gives Myanmar aid cut warning over Rohingya camp closures


June 19, 2019

The United Nations warned it will pare back aid to thousands of Rohingya Muslims left destitute as Myanmar’s government closes camps in Rakhine state, over fears that it’s continued support “risks entrenching segregation”. Aid agencies are facing an increasingly sharp dilemma in the region as they balance relief for desperate communities with leverage over the government. Read more: Amnesty accuses …

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Sri Lanka policeman defies president to testify at attack probe


June 19, 2019

A Sri Lankan police officer on Tuesday defied President Maithripala Sirisena and testified before a parliamentary investigation into the Easter Sunday suicide bombings that killed 258 people. Sirisena has come in for major criticism after ordering top brass not to allow police, military or intelligence personnel to take part in hearings into the attacks being held by a parliamentary committee. …

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Iran says CIA spy network dismantled as tensions ratchet up


June 19, 2019

Iran said on Tuesday it had dismantled a US spy network, after Washington announced it would deploy 1,000 more troops to the Middle East and as key powers expressed concerns about regional tensions. Tehran’s announcement came a day after it said its uranium stockpile would on June 27 surpass a limit agreed in the 2015 nuclear deal, a multilateral agreement …

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Pakistan, Japan sign MoU on defence cooperation


June 19, 2019

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and Japan on Tuesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on defence cooperation and exchanges. The MoU was signed after the 10th round of military-to-military talks at the Ministry of Defence in Rawalpindi. Additional Defence Secretary Rear Admiral Owais Ahmed Bilgrami led the Pakistani delegation, while the director general for International Affairs at Japan’s Bureau of Defence Policy …

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Brexit campaigner Boris Johnson advances on Britain’s top job


June 19, 2019

Brexit campaigner Boris Johnson advanced on the prize of Britain’s top political job on Tuesday, winning 40 percent of votes in the second round of a contest to replace Prime Minister Theresa May. Johnson, the face of the official Brexit campaign in the 2016 referendum, won 126 out of 313 votes and so goes through to a third ballot between …

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Merkel suffers shaking bout during ceremony


June 19, 2019

BERLIN: German Chan­cellor Angela Merkel dismissed concerns about her health after visibly trembling at an official ceremony on Tuesday, saying she was just a bit dehydrated in the heat. Merkel appeared unste­a­­dy and was shaking as she stood in the mid-day sun be­­side visiting Ukrainian Pre­si­dent Volodymyr Zelensky, whom she was welcoming to her office building with military honours. Asked …

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Shanahan drops bid to lead Pentagon, cites ‘painful’ past


June 19, 2019

WASHINGTON: After months of unexplained delays, US acting Defence Secretary Patrick Shanahan stepped down on Tuesday before his formal nomination went to the Senate, citing a “painful” family situation that would hurt his children and reopen “wounds we have worked years to heal”. President Donald Trump announced Shanahan’s departure in a tweet, saying that Army Secretary Mark Esper would be …

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Qatar sends technical experts to Israel, eyes new Gaza power line


June 19, 2019

GAZA: A Qatari technical delegation held talks in Israel and the Gaza Strip this week about helping pay for a proposed new power line between them, officials on both sides said on Tuesday, marking a potential expansion of Doha’s aid efforts for Palestinians. Qatar has in recent years funnelled hundreds of millions of dollars into relief projects in Hamas-controlled Gaza, …

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Pakistan, eight other countries to account for half of population growth by 2050


June 19, 2019

ISLAMABAD: The world’s population is expected to increase from 7.7 billion currently to 9.7bn by 2050, and Pakistan will be among the nine countries where more than half of the projected increase will be concentrated, according to projections released by the United Nations. According to the World Population Prospects 2019 released by the UN Population Division, the population of Pakistan …

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