World News in Brief: September 17

Tuesday, 2019-09-17 11:19:29
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Takehiko Nakao announced on Tuesday (September 17) his resignation as president of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), effective January 16, 2020, the Manila-based bank said in a statement. According to the statement, the election for the new president of ADB will be in accordance with the open, transparent and merit-based procedure.

* Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi met Bulgaria's President Rumen Radev and Prime Minister Boyko Borissov in Sofia on Monday (September 16) for talks on ways to expand bilateral ties.

* Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, went on an inspection tour in central China's Henan Province Monday.

* The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) on Monday welcomed the upcoming working-level negotiation with the United States. In a statement released by the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), the Director General of the Department of US Affairs of the Foreign Ministry said the DPRK-US dialogue has two options, either improve the relations or add to the hostility toward each other.

* Chinese Premier Li Keqiang arrived in St. Petersburg Monday for a three-day official visit to Russia. During the visit, Li and Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev will co-chair the 24th regular meeting between Chinese and Russian heads of government.

* The Russian Foreign Ministry on Monday condemned the recent drone attacks on oil production facilities in eastern Saudi Arabia while condemning rushed accusations against Iran.

* US President Donald Trump said on Monday that his administration has reached an "initial" trade deal regarding tariff barriers with Japan, indicating that the agreement doesn't need to be approved by the US Congress.

* In his message on the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer on Monday, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that "As we rightly focus our energies on tackling climate change, we must be careful not to neglect the ozone layer and stay alert to the threat posed by the illegal use of ozone-depleting gases."

* Turkey, Russia and Iran focused on the security issue in Syria on Monday in Ankara during a three-way talk and emphasized the need of a long-lasting truce in the northwestern Idlib region of the war-torn country.

* French President Emmanuel Macron and Jordan's King Abdullah II on Monday voiced their concern over Israel's plan to impose its sovereignty over the Jordan Valley, the French presidency said in a statement. At a phone call, the two leaders "reiterated that there was no alternative to the two-state solution", the Elysee said.

* British Prime Minister Boris Johnson ended a hectic day in Luxembourg Monday insisting Britain will leave the European Union on October 31. Johnson held talks with President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker. He gave an interview to British reporters to explain his side of how the day had progressed.

* The Israelis started casting their ballots on Tuesday morning in the parliamentary elections that will decide whether the nation's longest-serving prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu could stay in power.

* Technical negotiations between irrigation ministers of Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan over the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) built on their shared Nile River made no breakthrough, Egyptian irrigation ministry said on Monday.

* The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Energy Minister, Suhail Al Mazrouei, said on Monday that the UAE, as an OPEC member, is ready to support Saudi Arabia by providing additional capacity after drone attacks caused half of the kingdom's production to go temporarily offline.

* Russia's UN envoy said Monday that the latest ceasefire for Syria's Idlib has been breached by Jihadist rebels. Idlib is the last rebel stronghold in Syria in the long-running civil war.

* French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian on Monday voiced his country's support for the current transitional period in Sudan to achieve peace and justice.

* US President Donald Trump held a rally in New Mexico on Monday night, with an eye to turning the southwest state red in the 2020 election. The rally was the first stop of a three-day trip that will also take Trump to California for fundraisers.

* The Egyptian government announced on Monday that the country's exports during 2018 rose to US$29.2 billion.

* The joint American-Ukrainian military drills Rapid Trident 2019 kicked off in the Lviv region in western Ukraine, the press service of the Ukrainian ministry of defense reported on Monday.

* Cyprus and Greek are planning to jointly demand a new European policy on migration as both countries are shouldering an undue burden, Cyprus' Interior Minister Constantinos Petrides said on Tuesday.

* Militants loyal to Taliban destroyed several power pylons in Afghanistan's northern Baghlan province over the weekend, leaving thousands of families in at least 12 provinces in darkness.

* Azerbaijan's armed forces embarked on massive operational and tactical exercises on Monday to strengthen counter-offensive abilities, according to the country's defense ministry.

* Around 300 tourists, mostly foreigners, have been stranded at Tenzing Hillary Airport in Lukla of Nepal's Solukhumbu district, which lies close to Mt. Qomolangma, because of bad weather, an airport official said on Tuesday.

Xinhua