World News

Compiled by Wenshu Wang

Russia

One day after the U.S. declared it would pull out the agreement, Russia has announced it is suspending in the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces treaty. Russian President Vladimir Putin announced this move last Saturday. Following the decision by the U.S. to suspend compliance with the INF treaty, Putin held a special meeting with Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. According to the Kremlin’s official website, “We will proceed as follows. We will have a tit-for-tat response. American partners have announced that they are suspending their participation in the treaty, so we are suspending ours as well,” said Putin. “They announced that they are engaged in research & technological development work, and we will do the same.” (CNN)

 

United Arab Emirates

Pope Francis has arrived in the United Arab Emirates for the first ever visit by a pope to the Arabian Peninsula. He landed in Abu Dhabi, and he was greeted by Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan. The Pope took part in an interfaith conference and held Mass in which 120,000 people were expected to attend. He expressed concern about the war in Yemen, in which the UAE is involved. “The population [in Yemen] is exhausted by the lengthy conflict and a great many children are suffering from hunger, but cannot access food depots,” the Pope said. (BBC)

 

Afghanistan

Omar Daudzai, the head of the High Peace Council of Afghanistan, told CNN on last Fri that a rapid U.S. troop withdrawal would increase violence in his country. “If it happened in a matter that’s not orderly…if it happens that it leaves a vacuum behind, then obviously bloodshed would increase,” Daudzai said. U.S. officials and Taliban negotiators finished a series of talks in Doha to discuss plans of ending the U.S.’s 17-year role in Afghanistan. The U.S. Embassy in Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad sent tweets, “We made significant progress on two vital issues: counter terrorism and troop withdrawal. That doesn’t mean we’re done. We’re not even finished with these issues yet, and there is still work to be done on other vital issues like intra-Afghan dialogue and a complete ceasefire.” (CNN)

 

Venezuela

Hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans are protesting in cities worldwide last Saturday to pressure President Nicolás Maduro, out of office. Venezuelans filled the streets in more than 70 cities around the world, including Caracas, Miami, Madrid, Milan, Frankfurt, Melbourne, Athens and Beirut. Maduro succeeded Chávez after his death in 2013, and was sworn in on Jan. 10 for a second six-year term following an election that was criticized internationally as illegitimate. Opposition leader Juan Guaidó announced that humanitarian assistance would begin to flow within the next few days, despite objections by Maduro. (NBC)

 

United Kingdom

Japanese car producer Nissan will not make their new model in the British city of Sunderland, citing uncertainty of a no-deal U.K. departure from the EU. “Nissan has to make optimal use of its global investments for the benefits of its customers,” Executive Vice President Hideyuki Sakamoto said in a statement last Sunday. The UK is set to leave the EU at the end of March, but many are warning that the country will need more time to negotiate the Brexit to avoid fallout from a sudden departure. “While we have taken this decision for business reasons, the continued uncertainty around the U.K.’s future relationship with the EU is not helping companies like ours to plan for the future,” Nissan company said. (The Washington Times)

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