Trump to meet over tariffs
President Donald Trump was yesterday to meet with his top trade advisers to decide whether to activate threatened tariffs on billions of US dollars in Chinese goods, a senior official said. Trump is due to unveil revisions to his initial tariff list targeting US$50 billion of Chinese goods today. People familiar with the revisions said that the list would be slightly smaller than the original, with some goods deleted and others added, particularly in the technology sector. Another official said that a draft document showed that the new list would still be close to US$50 billion, with about 1,300 product categories, but both the dollar amount and quantity of products were still subject to change.
Conditions to worsen fires
Fierce winds and bone-dry conditions were expected yesterday across a five-state region, where firefighters are wrangling several wildfires that have forced thousands to flee their homes. Red flag warnings have been issued for parts of Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Colorado and Wyoming, where winds gusts could reach 65kph and humidity could drop to 5 percent, the National Weather Service said. Weather conditions along with possible dry lightning could contribute to “extreme fire behavior” in the southwest, where more than two dozen wildfires are burning, the service said. The largest and most threatening blaze, the 416 Fire, has scorched 11,088 hectares of grass, brush and timber at the edge of the San Juan National Forest in southwestern Colorado. Crews had contained 15 percent of the blaze, fire officials said.
Two killed at mosque
A man stabbed two people to death in an attack at a mosque early yesterday, before being shot dead by officers, police said. Several people were also wounded in the attack in the town of Malmesbury near Cape Town. “The suspect believed to be in his 30s and armed with a knife charged at the police who tried to persuade him to hand himself over,” Western Cape Police spokesperson Noliyoso Rwexana said. The motive for the attack was not immediately clear.
Aussie given life for abuse
An Australian man on Wednesday was sentenced to life as part of a notorious child sexual abuse case in which prosecutors say he chained the victims like dogs. Peter Scully still faces another trial and dozens more charges, including allegations he made child pornography and murdered a young girl. Scully was convicted of trafficking and rape three years after he was arrested in the southern Philippines and accused of sexually abusing and filming girls, including an 18-month-old baby. The Cagayan de Oro court sentenced Scully and his local partner to life in prison without parole and imposed a fine of 5 million pesos (US$93,850) for trafficking girls then aged 10 and 12, the regional prosecutor said.
‘Dead’ man returns home
A woman has told police the body she thought was of her missing husband belonged to a stranger after her spouse turned up alive a year later. Tokyo police on Wednesday said that the body found in a river in eastern Tokyo in June last year was of another man reported missing about the same time. Police apologized for the mix-up and said the remains would be returned to the right family.
OFF BORDER ISLAND: The fisheries official disappeared from a patrol vessel wearing a life jacket and leaving behind his shoes, indicating an intentional move, Seoul said North Korean soldiers shot dead a suspected South Korean defector at sea and burned his body as a COVID-19 precaution after he was interrogated in the water over several hours, Seoul military officials said yesterday. It is the first killing of a South Korean citizen by North Korean forces for a decade, and comes with Pyongyang at high alert over the COVID-19 pandemic and inter-Korean relations at a standstill. The fisheries official disappeared from a patrol vessel near the western border island of Yeonpyeong on Monday, the official said. More than 24 hours later, North Korean forces located him in their waters and
ACADEMIC FREEDOM: One professor told her students to submit anonymized papers and not to record any online classes. Some US schools have announced similar steps Students at Oxford University specializing in the study of China are being asked to submit some papers anonymously to protect them from the possibility of retribution under the sweeping new security law introduced three months ago in Hong Kong. The anonymity ruling is to be applied in classes, and group tutorials are to be replaced by one-to-ones. Students are also to be warned that it will be viewed as a disciplinary offence if they tape classes or share them with outside groups. The Hong Kong National Security Law was imposed on June 30 by Beijing after more than a year of pro-democracy
Japan’s government yesterday urged people to seek help if they were struggling to cope, following Sunday’s death of the popular actress and Miss Sherlock star Yuko Takeuchi, 40. News of her death shocked the nation and follows other recent cases of Japanese celebrities taking their lives, with figures showing a recent rise in suicides. Takeuchi was a household name in Japan and had given birth to her second child in January. Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato did not mention a particular case, but said that some people were struggling to cope during the COVID-19 pandemic. “There has been an uptick in the number
China on Thursday lashed out at the US at a high-level UN meeting over its criticism on the COVID-19 pandemic, with its envoy declaring, “Enough is enough.” Two days after US President Donald Trump used his annual address to the General Assembly to attack China’s record, US Ambassador to the UN Kelly Craft, also took an outraged tone — after which her Chinese counterpart showed palpable anger. “I must say, enough is enough. You have created enough troubles for the world already,” Chinese Ambassador to the UN Zhang Jun (張軍) told a Security Council meeting on global governance attended through videoconference