World News in Brief: March 27

Wednesday, 2019-03-27 10:22:39
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The Leo Wattimena airport in Indonesia's North Maluku province was closed on March 26 as volcanic ashes from Mount Dukono volcano endangered flights, an official of an affected airline said. Mount Dukono is one of the 129 active volcanoes in Indonesia, a vast archipelago nation made up of over 17,500 islands.

* China will work harder this year for a more enabling business environment by tackling areas of weakness to better energize the market and stimulate social creativity, the State Council's executive meeting chaired by Premier Li Keqiang decided on March 26.

* Russia has enough resources to implement its national projects outlined by Russian President Vladimir Putin for the next five years, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said on March 26.

* Venezuelan schools and offices on March 26 were ordered to shut down for 24 hours as officials worked to restore electricity following a second widespread blackout, Communications Minister Jorge Rodriguez said.

* Russia is ready to make further efforts to enhance economic cooperation with the United States, which currently falls short of its potential, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on March 26.

* The UN Security Council members from the European Union (Belgium, Britain, France, Germany, and Poland) said on March 26 that they do not recognize Israel's sovereignty over the occupied Golan Heights.

* China and France have pledged to jointly safeguard multilateralism and improve global governance, according to a joint statement issued on March 26 during Chinese President Xi Jinping's state visit to the European country.

* The US House of Representatives failed on March 26 to override President Donald Trump's veto of a congressional resolution blocking his declaration of a national emergency at the nation's southern border with Mexico. The lower chamber, controlled by Democrats, voted 248-181, short of the two-thirds majority needed for an override.

* A Chinese UN envoy said on March 26 China wishes to stress once again that a two-state solution is the fundamental solution to resolve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, and any new initiative should contribute to the realization of the two-state solution.

* French European Affairs Minister Nathalie Loiseau on March 26 announced she quit office to head President Emmanuel Macron's party list for the European elections in May.

* The head of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) on March 26 said that Cyclone Idai which has left 1.85 million people in dire humanitarian need in three countries is a "massive humanitarian emergency."

* The United States remained the top financial donor for Ukraine in 2018, allocating more than US$2 billion for 124 projects, Ukraine's Economic Development and Trade Ministry said in a report on March 26.

* China's State Council Information Office on March 27 issued a white paper on democratic reform and the leap of development in Tibet over the past six decades.

* Morocco and Madagascar signed on March 26 in the Moroccan city of Marrakech nine agreements to strengthen bilateral cooperation, local media reported.

* An Israeli government official said on March 26 that there is no ceasefire with the Islamic Hamas movement in Gaza Strip and the fighting could resume "at any moment."

* Croatia and India are interested in strengthening bilateral relations and intensifying economic cooperation, Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic and visiting Indian President Ram Nath Kovind agreed in Zagreb on March 26.

* The Turkish and Russian forces on March 26 carried out the first "independent but coordinated" patrol in northern Syria region of Tal Rifaat, Turkish Defense Ministry said.

* Bangladesh on March 26 celebrated the country's 49th Independence Day amid tight security. The day, a national holiday in Bangladesh, was celebrated with parades and paying of respect at Jatiyo Smriti Soudho, the national memorial at Savar on the outskirts of Dhaka.

* The African Risk Capacity (ARC), a specialized agency of the African Union (AU), said on March 26 it is working on some mechanism to help member countries prepare for natural disasters like cyclones.

Xinhua