World News in Brief: September 21

China's foreign ministry urged all parties to engage in dialogue and consultation and find a way to address the security concerns of all parties after Russian President Vladimir Putin warned the West over what he described as "nuclear blackmail".
The pandemic remains a global emergency but the end could be in sight if countries use the tools at their disposal, a spokesperson for the World Health Organisation said.
The pandemic remains a global emergency but the end could be in sight if countries use the tools at their disposal, a spokesperson for the World Health Organisation said.

* United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Tuesday that food security is "ground zero" for inclusive multilateralism while warning that today's crisis could turn into tomorrow's catastrophe.

* The 13th edition of Cuba's major international nature tourism event, Turnat 2022, opened Tuesday after a two-year hiatus caused by COVID.

* The Asian Development Bank (ADB) maintained its economic growth forecast for Cambodia at 5.3 percent in 2022, but lowered the 2023 forecast to 6.2 percent from the earlier prediction of 6.5 percent due to weaker global growth, according to its updated outlook report released on Wednesday.

* Russia will draft 300,000 reservists to support its military campaign in Ukraine, Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Wednesday in televised remarks.

* Tajikistan accused Kyrgyzstan on Wednesday of failing to withdraw military hardware from their mutual border after last week's deadly conflict and hiding it instead, a charge Bishkek denies.

* NATO is ready to ramp up troops in Kosovo if tensions among minority Serbs flare again, the deputy commander of the alliance's peacekeeping mission (KFOR) said on Tuesday as a deadline in a spat with the government over car license plates approaches.

* France and Britain need to show that they are allies and friends in this complicated world, President Emmanuel Macron said on Tuesday after meeting newly appointed British Prime Minister Liz Truss.

* Sanctions imposed by the United States are driving more Venezuelans to emigrate to neighboring countries, Venezuelan Labor Minister Francisco Torrealba told the United Nations Human Rights Council on Tuesday.

* The Indian government has extended the last date for the exports of broken rice in transit till Sept. 30, confirmed a senior official on Wednesday.

* Greece and Türkiye as neighboring countries should engage in dialogue, even if it is not always fruitful, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said on Tuesday during an interview with a local radio station Sfera.

* Iran needs reassuring guarantees as well as the closure of the ongoing inquiry into the Islamic republic by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) before a nuclear deal can be reached, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said on Tuesday.

* A peak of 28 million Britons watched Queen Elizabeth's funeral on their screens at home, the BBC reported on Tuesday, making it one of the most-watched events in years.

* The US Federal Reserve is expected on Wednesday to lift interest rates by three-quarters of a percentage point for a third straight time and signal how much further and how fast borrowing costs may need to rise to tame a potentially corrosive outbreak of inflation.

* The European Central Bank (ECB) President Christine Lagarde on Tuesday defended the central bank's decision to raise interest rates in a forcible way and pledged to hike the rates further to tame the inflation.

* Cambodia on Wednesday set a new monthly minimum wage for workers in the country's garment, footwear and travel goods sector at some 200 USD from 2023, up 3.09 percent from the current level of 194 USD, Labor Minister Ith Samheng said.

* Japan's government is considering allowing hotels to refuse entry to guests who do not wear masks and follow other measures to control infection during an outbreak, Fuji News Network said.

* The EU diplomat to Lebanon said in Beirut on Tuesday that the bloc is ready to support Lebanon on condition that the crisis-ridden country implements needed structural reforms, according to the Lebanese presidency.

* Russia's Gazprom GAZP.MM said on Wednesday that it will ship 42.4 million cubic metres of gas to Europe via Ukraine on Wednesday, in line with recent days.

* Britain said on Wednesday it would cap the wholesale cost of electricity and gas for businesses at less than half the market rate from next month, following a similar scheme for consumers, helping relieve the pressure of soaring energy costs.

* Denmark on Tuesday pledged over 13 million USD (100 million Danish crowns) to support developing nations that have experienced losses caused by climate disruptions, becoming the first country to offer "loss and damage" compensation to the most climate-vulnerable areas.

* The American Petroleum Institute (API) on Tuesday reported an increase of 1.035 million barrels of crude oil in US inventories for the week ending Sept. 16.

* Canada's annual inflation rate eased more than expected in August even as food prices rose at their fastest pace in 41 years, data showed, with economists saying now smaller rate hikes may be best.

* Pakistan's economy is expected to slow to 3.5 percent in fiscal year (FY) 2023 running from July 2022 to June 2023 amid devastating floods, policy tightening, and critical efforts to tackle sizable fiscal and external imbalances, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) said Wednesday.

* The Portuguese Directorate-General for Health (DGS) on Tuesday announced a preventive vaccination for the most vulnerable groups against monkeypox.

* Cypriot rescuers saved at least 477 irregular migrants in two separate operations in unfavorable sea conditions in the past 24 hours, the Joint Rescue Coordination Center (JRCC) said here on Tuesday.

* Ethiopia attracted about 3.31 billion USD in foreign direct investment (FDI) in the Ethiopian 2021/2022 fiscal year which ended on July 7, the Ethiopia Investment Commission (EIC) disclosed Tuesday.

* The South Sudanese government said Tuesday it is stepping up vigilance along its borders following an outbreak of the Ebola-Sudan strain in neighboring Uganda.

* For the first time in New Zealand, satellite images have been used to track coastal water health to collect data of changes in suspended sediment in order to prevent threats to marine life.

* Residents in Australia's already drenched east coast have been told to prepare for further thunderstorms, intense rain, hail and gusty winds as the nation confronts another series of wild weather conditions.

* Fiona has strengthened into a Category 4 hurricane as it moves away from the Turks and Caicos Islands, the US National Hurricane Center (NHC) said on Wednesday.

* Skin infections, diarrhoea and malaria are rampant in parts of Pakistan's flood-ravaged regions, killing 324 people, authorities said on Wednesday, adding that the situation may get out of control if required aid doesn't arrive.

* Marine conservation experts were rushing to the Australian state of Tasmania on Wednesday to try and rescue a pod of about 230 whales stranded on the west coast, with officials fearing half of them may have already died.

VNA, Reuters, Xinhua