World Briefs

CHINA Jack Ma, co-founder of China’s most valuable company, was officially confirmed as a member of the Communist Party in a state-backed newspaper recognizing business leaders for their contributions to the country’s development.

NORTH KOREA is accusing the Trump administration and some supporters of trying to “stoke confrontation” instead of promoting peace efforts by calling for a U.N. Security Council meeting to discuss human rights in the country.

THAILAND German Chancellor Angela Merkel is encouraging Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha to lead his country toward democracy. The Thai government has previously said it would return to electoral democracy, but has repeatedly found reasons to postpone the polls.

PHILIPPINESPresident Rodrigo Duterte accepted the resignation of his adviser on peace talks with insurgents and sacked two other officials due to corruption in an anti-poverty program created for insurgency-hit areas.

RUSSIA-UKRAINE Russian President Vladimir Putin yesterday blamed the latest standoff with neighboring Ukraine on the presidential ambitions of Ukraine’s leader, as the Russian military announced it was boosting its defenses in Crimea.

INDIA-PAKISTAN Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan yesterday attended a groundbreaking ceremony for the first visa-free border crossing with India, a corridor that will allow Sikh pilgrims to easily visit their shrines on each side of the border. 

NETHERLANDS The Dutch national railway company is setting up a commission to investigate how it can pay individual reparations for its role in mass deportations of Jews by Nazi occupiers during World War II.

BRITAIN will be poorer after leaving the European Union than if it had stayed in, no matter what sort of trade deal it has with the bloc, the government said yesterday — bad news for Prime Minister Theresa May as she tries to sell her Brexit divorce deal to a skeptical nation.

COLOMBIA Venezuelan migrants aboard a U.S. Navy hospital ship were undergoing surgery for everything from tooth extractions to hernias that have proven difficult to treat both in the country they fled and the one receiving them.

ARGENTINA Authorities say that Buenos Aires will be an armored city when world leaders arrive for this week’s G-20 summit. But security failures that marred a soccer championship and deeper unrest over an economic austerity program are now raising concerns about the country’s ability to ensure safety.

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