World News in Brief: January 6

Monday, 2020-01-06 16:13:05
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Death toll in the collapse of a six-story building in southwest Cambodia's Kep province on Friday (January 3) rose to 36, as rescue had completed, Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen said on Sunday (January 5).

* Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Sunday ordered the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to prepare for a possible evacuation of 7,600 Filipinos in Iran and Iraq in case security situation worsens in the Middle East following the US assassination of a prominent Iranian general in Baghdad.

* India's External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar held phone conversations with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo as well as foreign ministers of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Oman, respectively, on Sunday night, over the evolving situation in the Gulf amidst escalated tensions between Washington and Tehran.

* Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro on Sunday recognized the newly elected board of directors of the National Assembly, and president of the legislative body, Luis Parra.

* US President Donald Trump on Sunday threatened to impose harsh sanctions on Iraq after the war-torn country's parliament passed a resolution urging the government to expel foreign troops.

* The Iraqi parliament on Sunday passed a draft law requiring the government to end the presence of foreign forces in Iraq and prevent them from using Iraqi airspace and water.

* Pakistani army said on Sunday the country will remain neutral in the current conflict between the United States and Iran after a US airstrike killed an Iranian commander in Iraq. Pakistan's military spokesman Major General Asif Ghafoor said Pakistan will not become part of any action that undermines the regional stability.

* Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis said on Sunday that Europe should urge both the United States and Iran not to escalate current hostility. He said this after an official luncheon with President Milos Zeman.

* Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday evening that Turkey is "gradually" sending troops to Libya under a deal inked with its UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA).

* Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah urged on Sunday its fighters to attack US soldiers in the region in retaliation for the assassination of Iranian top commander Qassem Soleimani by the United States.

* Iran on Sunday announced the fifth and final step to end its commitments to the landmark 2015 nuclear deal, official IRNA news agency reported.

* Bangladesh's total exports in the first half of the current 2019-20 fiscal year (July 2019-June 2020) reached over US$19 billion, down 5.84 percent year on year, official data showed Monday. According to the country's Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) data, Bangladesh fetched US$19,302.16 million from exports in the first six months of the current fiscal year.

Xinhua