World News in Brief: September 12

Thursday, 2019-09-12 15:27:06
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Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Wednesday (September 11) told the media that his administration had established a command center to tackle flood problems, especially in northern Thailand.

* Philippine security forces have killed a Abu Sayyaf terror group's bomb expert in a clash in a remote village in southern Philippine province Sulu, a military spokesman said on Wednesday.

* Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Wednesday reshuffled his cabinet with the hefty revamp aimed at boosting public support while retaining the services of his allies holding similar political views in key ministerial and executive positions.

* Russian officials on Wednesday condemned the new US sanctions against Russian law enforcement officers, saying retaliatory measures will follow.

* The Chairman of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) Kim Jong Un again guided a test-firing of "super-large multiple rocket launcher" Tuesday, the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said Wednesday. The KCNA reported two rounds of test-firing, giving no details of the site where it took place.

* China and Malaysia on Thursday (September 12) agreed to establish a bilateral consultation mechanism on maritime issues. The agreement was reached during talks between Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Malaysian Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah in Beijing.

* Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel on Wednesday called for solidarity and unity of Cubans in mitigating the impact of fuel shortage caused by US sanctions against the country.

* Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi on Wednesday held two meetings with the United Nations top envoy to Iraq and the Turkish ambassador to Iraq, discussing cooperation between Iraq, the international organization and neighboring Turkey.

* The French government, which has already pledged EUR824 million (US$907.1 million) to end the strike by the country's emergency medical staff, has no plan to table additional proposals after emergency room (ER) workers decided to continue their social movement, a government official said on Wednesday.

* A total of 27,400 Syrian refugees have returned home from Jordan since last October, state news agency SANA reported on Wednesday. SANA said that the Syrian government is providing the returnees with all necessities to help them have safe stay home.

* Brexit and its implications for Europe were central topics in German Chancellor Angela Merkel's speech during the general debate in the Bundestag (federal parliament) in Berlin on Wednesday.

* Iran's envoy to the United Nations Majid Takht-e Ravanchi said that negotiations with the United States are unlikely unless the latter decides to remove anti-Iran sanctions, Press TV reported on Wednesday.

* The US policy toward Russia is unlikely to change dramatically after US President Donald Trump fired his national security advisor John Bolton, Russian officials said Wednesday.

* Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Wednesday that he wants the country's newly installed Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi to step up peace treaty negotiations with Russia that have halted due to a long-standing territorial dispute.

* Flags were flown at half-staff, wailing bagpipes reverberated through the streets, and a moment of solemn silence was observed across New York City on the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people here 18 years ago.

* The 2019 China International Fair for Investment and Trade (CIFIT) concluded Wednesday with a total agreed investment of CNY559.1 billion (about US$78.6 billion). A total of 2,100 cooperation agreements have been signed at this year's CIFIT held in Xiamen, east China's Fujian Province.

* Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Thursday that Israel "will probably have no choice" but to launch a war in Gaza to halt rocket fire at its southern part.

* The Mexican government Wednesday announced a US$5-billion investment in the state-owned oil company Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) to strengthen its finances and operation.

* Government representatives, experts of academic fields, NGOs and the private sector from the participating members of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) gathered in Prague on Wednesday to discuss economic and environment issues in the OSCE area.

* Sudan's government and armed groups have agreed to hold peace talks on October 14, according to a declaration released by Sudan's sovereignty council on Wednesday.

* Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan held a phone conversation on Wednesday with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, state run Anadolu Agency reported. The two leaders discussed migration, developments in Syria and Libya as well as bilateral relations.

* The mission of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has arrived in Ukraine and started the negotiations on a new cooperation program for Ukraine, Ukrainian Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk said in Kiev on Wednesday.