World News in Brief: May 28

Saturday, 2022-05-28 17:38:00
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Beijing will ease curbs in some low-risk areas of the Chinese capital on Sunday to allow a return to normal life, city officials said on Saturday.
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Thailand's exports, a key driver of the country's economic growth, climbed 9.9 percent year on year in April, data showed on Friday.

* The UN Security Council on Thursday failed to adopt a resolution aimed to impose new sanctions on the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK). The draft, which won the approval of 13 members of the Security Council, was vetoed by China and Russia.

* French President Emmanuel Macron is willing to work with Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese to "rebuild" French-Australian relations, the French Presidential Palace Elysee said Thursday.

* Turkey's objections to Sweden and Finland joining the NATO alliance persist despite diplomatic efforts and are not likely to change until the two Nordic countries refrain from supporting anti-Turkey groups, experts said.

* During a 45-minute phone discussion with Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer, Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday gave assurances to continue supplying natural gas to Austria, Austrian news agency APA reported.

* Italy's Prime Minister Mario Draghi and Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskiy discussed unblocking wheat exports from Ukraine to tackle the food crisis which is threatening the world's poorest countries, Draghi's office said on Friday.

* Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said on Friday he has discussed his country's post-conflict reconstruction with Germany's Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development Svenja Schulze during their talks in Kiev.

* Fiji Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama said on Saturday he had a “wonderful meeting” with Australia's Foreign Minister Penny Wong, who travelled to Fiji days after being sworn in to show the new government's attention to the Pacific Islands.

* The Group of Seven countries on Friday agreed stringent environmental controls should govern deep-sea mining and that they would consent to such mining projects only if they did not seriously harm the marine environment.

* The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has received $40 billion in pledges for its new Resilience and Sustainability Trust to address challenges such as climate change, IMF head Kristalina Georgieva said on Friday, close to their target set last month.

* Global markets enjoyed a broad-based rally on Friday, while the yield on benchmark US Treasuries fell after data showed that US consumer spending rose in April and the uptick in inflation slowed, two signs the world's largest economy could be on track to grow this quarter.

* Slovakia's state gas firm SPP has struck deals to buy enough piped Norwegian gas and other shipments of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to cover around 65% of the country's demand until the end of next year, Economy Minister Richard Sulik said on Friday.

* Pakistani Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif has announced a new relief package worth 28 billion rupees (around 140 million USD) per month to mitigate the impact of the increase in the prices of petroleum products on the lower-income people of the country.

* The European Union is working on a common purchasing agreement for vaccines and antivirals against monkeypox, as cases of the viral disease usually endemic to Africa gather steam in Europe and beyond.

* Argentina confirmed the first case of monkeypox in Latin America on Friday and reported another suspected case of the disease, the Ministry of Health said in a press statement.

* Italy's health ministry said on Friday total monkeypox cases in the country had risen to 12, while one was still under scrutiny.

* India's COVID-19 tally rose to 43,150,215 on Saturday, including 2,685 new cases registered during the past 24 hours across the country, showed the federal health ministry's latest data.

* The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea's daily fever cases dropped to below 100,000 for the first time, state media said on Saturday, less than three weeks after the country's first acknowledgement of a COVID-19 outbreak.

* Malaysia reported 1,877 new COVID-19 infections as of midnight Friday, bringing the national total to 4,500,934, according to the health ministry.

* Switzerland will destroy more than 620,000 expired doses of Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine, health officials said on Friday, as demand for the shots drops dramatically.