World News in Brief: December 16

Monday, 2019-12-16 12:26:17
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The UN Climate Change Conference (COP25) came to an end on Sunday (December 15) after an unprecedentedly long extension, as negotiators failed to reach an agreement on Article 6 of 2015 Paris Agreement about the details of carbon market mechanisms.

* Tremors of the 6.9-magnitude quake in the Philippines were strongly felt in Indonesia's North Sulawesi province on Sunday, but not potential for tsunami, the meteorology and geophysics agency said.

* China and the European Union (EU) should firmly uphold multilateralism and give the world more stability, as unilateralism and power politics are going on the rampage, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said in Madrid on Sunday. He made the remarks when meeting with the EU's High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell on the sidelines of the 14th Foreign Ministers' Meeting of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM).

* New Zealanders across the country observed a minute of silence on Monday to honour the victims of last week's fatal volcanic eruption, as police continued efforts to recover two bodies. The official death toll from the surprise eruption on White Island, also known by its Maori name of Whakaari, stands at 16. Two people whose bodies are believed to be in the waters around the island are still officially listed as missing.

* Indonesia has filed a lawsuit at the World Trade Organization against the European Union, claiming the bloc's restrictions on palm oil-based biofuel are unfair, the country's trade ministry said in a statement on Sunday.

* The United States foments "dangerous instability" in Latin America to further its own interests, members of a regional bloc said on Saturday. At the close of the 17th Summit of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA) held in Havana, participating countries issued a final declaration that accuses the United States of meddling to prop up pro-US powers in the region.

* Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh on Sunday said that Palestine rejects the US peace plan, or the "Deal of the Century." The plan is a "US project that we reject," the prime minister said in a ceremony marking the national teacher's day in the West Bank city of Ramallah.

* The navy forces of Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) have powerful presence in the Gulf, Commander of the IRGC's Navy Ali Reza Tangsiri said on Sunday. He noted that monitoring foreign vessels in the Gulf is "an inalienable right" of Iran.

* King Abdullah II of Jordan on Sunday met with Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono to discuss the strategic partnership between the two countries and means of enhancing cooperation, especially in defense.

* Taliban militants have intensified attacks in Afghanistan following the pause in peace talks between the armed group and the US delegation in Qatar's capital Doha as the militants in latest offensive have killed nearly two dozen security personnel in the eastern Ghazni province on Saturday.

* Turkey could shut down its Incirlik air base, which hosts US nuclear warheads, in response to threats of US sanctions and a separate US Senate resolution that recognized mass killings of Armenians a century ago as genocide, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday.

* Talks between Saudi Arabia and Qatar to heal their two-year rift are a good development for the whole Gulf region, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Sunday in Doha.

Xinhua, Reuters