World News in Brief: September 11

Senior officials from the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) economies wrapped up a meeting on Saturday, during which they focused on efforts to promote the recovery of the region's micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs).
Ratings agency Standard & Poor's (S&P) upgraded Portugal's long-term issuer rating to 'BBB+' from 'BBB', seeing further improvement in the country's public finances, and good economic prospects despite external headwinds.
Ratings agency Standard & Poor's (S&P) upgraded Portugal's long-term issuer rating to 'BBB+' from 'BBB', seeing further improvement in the country's public finances, and good economic prospects despite external headwinds.

* Li Zhanshu, chairman of China's National People's Congress (NPC) Standing Committee, paid an official goodwill visit to Russia from Wednesday to Saturday, at the invitation of Chairman of the Russian State Duma Vyacheslav Volodin.

* Kim Jong Un, the top leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), made a policy speech at the seventh session of the 14th Supreme People's Assembly on Thursday, the official Korean Central News Agency reported Saturday.

* The coffin of Queen Elizabeth will be taken from her home in the Scottish Highlands on a slow, six-hour journey to Edinburgh on Sunday, giving the public a chance to line the roads in tribute to the monarch who died after seven decades on the throne.

* The number of international tourists to Cambodia has increased at a faster-than-expected pace, prompting the kingdom to lift its target to 2 million tourists for 2022, up from earlier forecast of 1 million, Tourism Minister Thong Khon said on Saturday.

* Japan's government must take steps as needed against excessive declines in the yen, deputy chief cabinet secretary Kihara Seiji said on Sunday, repeating authorities' warnings about the currency's slide to 24-year lows.

* Swedes vote on Sunday in an election pitting the incumbent centre-left Social Democrats against a right-wing bloc that has embraced the anti-immigration Sweden Democrats in a bid to win back power after eight years in opposition.

* Iran on Saturday condemned the new US sanctions against its intelligence ministry, which has been accused of launching an alleged cyber attack on Albania.

* Ukraine is negotiating for a 1.5 billion USD loan tranche from the US Export-Import Bank to purchase natural gas, Ukraine's Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal wrote on Telegram on Saturday in a summary of a call with US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen.

* The European Commission will present in the second half of October proposed changes to European Union fiscal rules that are likely to offer countries individual debt reduction paths, Commission Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis said on Saturday.

* Operations at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine have been fully stopped as a safety measure, Energoatom, the state agency in charge of the plant, said on Sunday.

* UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Saturday that developed economies are responsible for the vast majority of greenhouse gas emissions to the atmosphere throughout history. The secretary-general made the remarks in a press briefing in Pakistan's southern port city of Karachi during his visit to the flood-affected areas of the country.

* Iran's ambassador to Lebanon Mojtaba Amani on Saturday reiterated his country's readiness to provide Lebanon with fuel commodities, construct new power stations, and rehabilitate existing power networks, the National News Agency reported.

* Dutch trade unions said on Sunday they had reached a deal with NS Railways to increase workers' pay by an average of 9.25% over 18 months, ending a long-running wage dispute.

* Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said on Saturday the minimum wage would rise again next year and pensions would increase for the first time since the financial crisis erupted more than a decade ago.

* An area of northern Switzerland near the border with Germany will be proposed as the site for a planned deep-underground nuclear waste site on which construction is due to start in 2045, the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (BFE) said on Saturday.

* Mainland China reported 1,303 new coronavirus cases for Sept. 10, of which 234 were symptomatic and 1,069 were asymptomatic, the National Health Commission said on Sunday.

* India's daily COVID-19 caseload Sunday decreased to 5,076, officials said. According to federal health ministry data released on Sunday morning, 5,076 new cases of COVID-19 were reported during the past 24 hours, taking the total tally to 44,495,359 in the country.

* Malaysia reported 1,971 new COVID-19 infections as of midnight Saturday, bringing the national total to 4,803,624, according to the health ministry.

* Myanmar has accelerated its control and prevention measures for COVID-19 as transmission increases in the country, according to media reports.

* An earthquake of magnitude 7.6 struck Papua New Guinea on Sunday, reportedly injuring people, damaging property and spreading widespread panic among residents.

* Members of an Islamic State affiliate in Mali killed about 30 civilians in an attack this week on a town in a violence-plagued area bordering Burkina Faso and Niger, a coalition of pro-government militia said late on Friday.

* Rwanda may provide logistical support to help Benin tackle a worsening Islamist insurgency that is threatening parts of the West African region, a Benin government spokesperson said on Saturday.

* About 200 people evacuated to higher ground after an earthquake of magnitude 6.1 struck islands in western Indonesia on Sunday, causing some property damage, the country's disaster mitigation agency BNPB said.

* At least 18 people were killed Saturday when a tanker truck carrying fuel collided with a bus, catching fire on a highway in the northeastern state of Tamaulipas, the state's Attorney General's Office reported.

VNA, Reuters, Xinhua