World News in Brief: July 4

Thursday, 2019-07-04 11:07:56
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A ranger and a local villager were killed and four others were injured in a gun attack and a bomb blast in southern Thailand's Yala province on Wednesday (July 3). Police said the insurgents might aim to create unrest in the area. More investigations are underway.

* Top representatives from the United States and China are arranging to resume talks next week to try to resolve a year-long trade war between the world's two largest economies, White House Economic Adviser Larry Kudlow told reporters in a briefing on Wednesday.

* Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday held talks with Bulgarian President Rumen Radev in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, and they decided to lift state-to-state ties to a strategic partnership.

* Campaigning began on Thursday (July 4) for Japan's July 21 upper house election, with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's ruling bloc expected to keep a majority but perhaps with fewer seats.

* Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday signed a bill into law suspending the country's participation in the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty with the United States. The law, published on Russia's legal information website, became effective immediately.

* Prime Minister Theresa May will urge her successor on Thursday to strengthen the bonds between England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, in a veiled criticism of those in her party who are widely thought to prefer Brexit to the union.

* Iran's President Hassan Rouhani said Wednesday that Iran will increase the percentage of its enriched uranium to higher purity in the coming days if the parties to the Iranian 2015 international nuclear deal fail to observe their commitments, Tasnim news agency reported.

* US President Donald Trump warned Iran on Wednesday against making threats that can "come back to bite you like nobody has been bitten before," after Tehran announced it would breach a 2015 nuclear deal.

* The International Monetary Fund Executive board approved a three-year, US$6 billion loan package for Pakistan on Wednesday to rein in mounting debts and stave off a looming balance of payments crisis, in exchange for tough austerity measures.

* At least 26 people died after a lobster-fishing boat capsized off the Atlantic coast of Honduras during poor weather conditions, an armed forces spokesman said on Wednesday, in one of the country's worst-ever accidents at sea.

* A tornado swept through the northeastern Chinese province of Liaoning on Wednesday, killing six and injuring 190, the state broadcaster said, amid a series of "extreme" weather events that government forecasters have linked to climate change.

* Peru has invited China, Russia, Cuba, the United States and dozens of other countries to Lima on August 6 to discuss the political crisis in Venezuela, Peru's foreign minister Nestor Popolizio said on July 3.

* A volcano on the Italian island of Stromboli erupted on Wednesday, releasing hot trapped magma in a powerful explosion, killing one person and enveloping the popular tourist destination in ash, witnesses and local officials said.

* Austrians will go to the polls again on Sept. 29 to elect a new National Council, lawmakers decided on Wednesday.

* US major social media platforms of Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and Twitter are experiencing global problems Wednesday as users reported failed attempts to upload pictures and other posts.

* Some details about Monday's fire on a Russian deep-water apparatus, which killed 14 people on board, are classified and will not be made public, the Kremlin said Wednesday.

* Pakistan Army chief and Russian Ground Force Commander-in-Chief on Tuesday discussed to enhance security and training cooperation besides taking measures to further expand joint military ties between the two countries, said a statement of Pakistan army's media wing the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR).

* An air strike hit a detention centre for mainly African migrants in a suburb of the Libyan capital Tripoli late on Tuesday (July 2), killing at least 44 people and wounding more than 130, the United Nations said.

Xinhua, Reuters