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Xi-Kim Set to Renew Their Diplomatic Vows

France 24 – Xi is the first Chinese president to visit North Korea in 14 years, after relations between the Cold War era allies deteriorated over Pyongyang’s nuclear provocations and Beijing’s subsequent backing of UN sanctions.

Xi and Kim have been working to repair ties, with the young North Korean leader visiting his older ally four times in China in the past year and Beijing calling for sanctions to be relaxed.

But the Chinese leader waited to reciprocate the visit, biding his time to see how nuclear talks between Kim and Trump would play out before deciding to travel to Pyongyang, according to analysts. | go to source

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How Fintech Makes it Easier to Migrate…..People

Space Daily – The money transfer business is personal for Ismail Ahmed. It was cash wired by his family that allowed him to make the final leg of his journey from escaping fighting in his native Somaliland to London in 1988 to take up a university scholarship.

Today, Ahmed leads WorldRemit, one of a handful of fintech firms that is upending the remittances business that has long been dominated by three US firms — Western Union, MoneyGram and Ria — as well as banks.

Piggybacking on the development of mobile money systems in Africa and other developing countries, these fintech firms offer migrant labourers a more convenient way to send money home at a lower cost. | go to source

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British Empire Gets UN Hack

From The NY Times –

The United Nations General Assembly dealt Britain an embarrassing defeat on Wednesday in a protracted dispute over the Chagos Islands in the Indian Ocean, demanding that the British surrender the archipelago — home to an important American military base — to Mauritius, a former British colony. | go to source

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Taiwan Plays War Games with the Dragon

from The Japan News –

Taiwan’s Navy held a major live-fire exercise Wednesday off the island’s east coast in an area increasingly threatened by Chinese ships and planes.  The drills are part of annual Han Kuang exercises that simulate an attack by China, which claims Taiwan as its own territory to be annexed by force if necessary. | go to source

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North Korea’s Food Supply at Critically Low Levels

Reuters (via War News Updates) – 10 million North Koreans face food shortage after worst harvest, says United Nations  * The UN found North Korean protein intake to be very low, with some families consuming protein only a few times a year

North Korea has cut food rations to 300 grammes a day – less than 11 ounces – the lowest ever for this time of year, and further cuts are likely after the worst harvest in a decade, the United Nations said on Friday. | go to source

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New 2500 BCE Burial Site Discovered in Egypt, Near Tombs

NDTV – Egypt’s antiquities ministry on Saturday unveiled a 4,500-year-old burial ground near the Giza pyramids containing colourful wooden coffins and limestone statues dating back to the Old Kingdom.

The site on the southeastern side of Giza plateau contains tombs and burial shafts from various periods, but the oldest is a limestone family tomb from the fifth dynasty (around 2500 BC), the ministry said. | go to source

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Israel Amps Up Gaza Response, Promises More

Al Jazeera – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has ordered “massive strikes” on the Gaza Strip after a two-day escalation that killed 24 Palestinians and four Israelis.

Israeli warplanes and gunboats continued to target the Gaza Strip on Sunday as fighters in the besieged enclave fired a barrage of rockets into southern Israel. | go to source

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Crypto Banditry Tops $1.2 Billion This Quarter of 2019

Venture Beat – Cryptocurrency thefts, scams, and fraud seem like they’re subsiding as the technology goes mainstream, right? Wrong. Crypto criminals and fraudsters stole more than $1.2 billion in the first quarter of 2019, according to a report by cryptocurrency security firm CipherTrace. | go to source

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Russian Pussy Riot Activist Allies Granted Swedish Asylum

CTV News – Swedish broadcaster SVT says two activists linked to the Russian protest group Pussy Riot have successfully appealed their rejected asylum application and received shelter in Sweden.

Broadcaster SVT says Lusine Dzhanyan and Alexei Knedlyakovsky, who have two children, on Tuesday won their appeal of a 2018 ruling, where Swedish authorities said their situation didn’t justify asylum. | go to source

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11 Percent of Mexico’s Gas Stations Stiff You on Liters

Mexico Daily News – The consumer protection agency estimates that 11% of Mexico’s 12,000 gas stations do not sell complete liters of fuel, which many drivers have either realized or suspected for many years.

Profeco chief Ricardo Sheffield Padilla revealed that crooked gas stations tend to rob 100 milliliters of every liter of gasoline sold. He said Profeco inspects an average of 200 gas stations per week. | go to source

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Convicted of Raping Teen, Bus Driver Gets 10 Years Probation

NDTV – Last Thursday, Shane Piche, a former bus driver for the school district in Watertown, N.Y., received his sentence. Two months earlier, the 26-year-old had pleaded guilty to third-degree rape. According to the Watertown Daily Times, Piche had raped a 14-year-old girl who was on his bus route.  But rather than hand Piche a prison sentence, Jefferson County Judge James McClusky gave the defendant 10 years probation, and assigned him the lowest level status on New York’s sex offender registry. The judge’s ruling goes against prosecutors’ hopes – and against the wishes of the victim’s family. | go to source

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Over 3,000 Political Prisoners in Turkey Are Engaging in a Massive Hunger Struke

Times of India – A Turkish human rights group says close to 3,000 prisoners have joined a hunger strike to press authorities to end the alleged isolation in jail of Kurdish rebel leader Abdullah Ocalan. Human Rights Association head Ozturk Turkdogan said Tuesday that 2,983 people in 90 prisons are refusing food in protest of the jail conditions for Ocalan, whose family members and lawyers reportedly have been denied visits. | go to source

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So We Are Back to Zero Discovered Moons Outside the Solar System, Science Says

New Scientist – Evidence for what seemed to be the first moon ever discovered outside our solar system looks like it may actually just be a statistical blip……In 2017, New Scientist reported that David Kipping and Alex Teachey at Columbia University in New York had spotted a possible exomoon…..(they) switched to the Hubble Space Telescope to take another look….new analyses of the Kepler data cast questions on the conclusion. …….Hubble observations seemed to spy the signal of a Neptune-sized exomoon….But according to a new analysis by Laura Kreidberg at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Massachusetts and her colleagues, that evidence isn’t so solid after all.  | go to source

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Putin Pledges to Aid Silk Road In Face of Mounting Challenges

The  Moscow Times – Putin is back in Beijing now for the new Silk Road’s second forum and this time, with opposition to Xi’s grand vision growing in the West, he’s bringing more than just bromides. After six years of wrangling, Russia has quietly approved its first project designed specifically for the Belt and Road Initiative — a toll road linking China’s western neighbor Kazakhstan with Belarus, which borders Poland and two other EU members. | go to source

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Did Wikileaks Drive Satoshi Underground?

Crypto News – In response to an article that was published on news portal PC World Mag on Wikileaks open to accepting donations in bitcoin, Nakamoto as the inventor obviously had an opinion on that. In 2010, when the article was first published he had said, “It would have been nice to get this attention in any other context. WikiLeaks has kicked the hornet’s nest, and the swarm is headed towards us.”  Providing context to the cryptic quote a Redditor mindless_snail said on Thursday, when the thread was brought up again, “You completely left out the actual context, which is that Wikileaks announced that they were accepting Bitcoin donations because they were kicked off of every other major payment platform. Wikileaks was all over the news for publishing confidential military documents and the first time many people ever heard of Bitcoin was when it was mentioned in association with Wikileaks.” | go to source

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Canada Moves Forward With Legal Action Against Facebook Over Privacy Laws

The Guardian UK – Facebook broke Canadian privacy laws when it collected the information of some 600,000 citizens, a top watchdog in the country said on Thursday, pledging to seek a court order to force the social media company to change its practices.  Canada’s privacy commissioner, Daniel Therrien, made his comments while releasing the results of an investigation, opened a year ago, into a data sharing scandal involving Facebook and the now-defunct British political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica. | go to source

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Ukraine Parliament Passes Anti-Russian-Language Law

 China Mail – The Ukrainian parliament has approved a language law that seeks to increase the use of Ukrainian in a country where Russian is also widely used.  The Supreme Rada on Thursday voted overwhelmingly to support the bill which will force increased use of Ukrainian in the media and in public administration. | go to source

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Drones, UAV’s Done in Sri Lanka Following Easter Bombings

NDTV – Sri Lanka has banned the use of drones and unmanned aircraft following the massive Easter Sunday bombings that killed over 350 people and injured more than 500 in the country’s worst terror attack.  The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) said that the ban will be in effect until further notice.  The use of drones and unmanned aircraft has been temporarily banned within the Sri Lankan airspace, Colombo Gazette reported. | go to source

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Southeast Asia Communities Becoming China’s Plastics Dumping Sites

Resource.org -Communities in Southeast Asia have been flooded with plastic waste diverted from China following the introduction of the Chinese Government’s waste ban at the start of 2018, according to a new report.  The report by the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA) and Greenpeace, entitled  ‘Discarded: Communities on the frontlines of the global plastic crisis’, brings the impact of China’s waste ban on communities in Southeast Asia into stark relief. | go to source

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Easter Suicide Bomber’s Pregnant Wife Kills Herself, Children, 3 Cops, in Suicide Bombing

TheNews.com – Wife of a Sri Lanka suicide bomber blew herself up with unborn child and three children when police arrived to raid her home.  Fatima Ibrahim, the wife of one of the suicide bombers set off a bomb killing her three children when police came to raid her home. Fatima is said to be wife of the suicide bomber– a Sri Lankan millionaire businessman-turned-Daesh terrorist Inshaf Ahmed Ibrahim. | go to source

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India to Launch Nation’s First Anti-Satellite Missile

Military and Aerospace Electronics – Modi declared that India had conducted an anti-satellite (ASAT) missile test, lauded the scientific establishment, emphasized that this was a measure for national security without contravening any international law, and assured that the step wasn’t aimed toward any specific state.  The exercise, dubbed as “Mission Shakti,” involved the use of a direct ascent hit-to-kill, where a missile from Earth, without any explosive warhead, destroys the targeted satellite upon impact through kinetic energy alone. | go to source

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Mozambique Faces Tropical Cyclone Kenneth Today

Channel News Asia – Another tropical cyclone is expected to make landfall on Mozambique’s coast on Thursday (Apr 25), just over a month after a more powerful storm struck the Mozambican port city of Beira further south and killed hundreds of people.  Weather forecasters say Cyclone Kenneth will bring heavy rainfall, strong winds and waves of several metres to the southern African nation, which is still reeling from the effects of devastating Cyclone Idai. | go to source

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China Rattles Sabre Over US-Taiwan Arms Deal

China Mail – China resolutely oppose the recent $500 million military deal between the United States and Taiwan, calling the move “a complete mistake” and “very dangerous”, a spokesman for the Ministry of National Defense said on Wednesday.  The new deal, approved by the US State Department on April 15, is currently being reviewed by Congress. It consists of training programs for Taiwan F-16 pilots and maintenance crews in the US. The State Department said the sale is meant to improve the defensive capabilities of Taiwan. | go to source

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Allies Bomb Germany Over 70 Years After Hostilities End

BBC – A 250kg (550lb) World War Two bomb caused damage in a German city when it exploded on Wednesday under controlled circumstances.  It was discovered in the southern city of Regensburg during construction work.  The bomb could not be transported or defused, experts found. So they instead evacuated some 4,500 people in a 1.5km (one mile) radius. | go to source

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Latest Public Saudi Executions See 37 Terrorists Die, Bodies then Pinned to Poles as Warning

Al Jazeera – Saudi Arabia executed 37 of its citizens on Tuesday for what it said were “terrorism” related crimes, publicly pinning two of the bodies to a pole as a warning to others.  The individuals were found guilty of attacking security installations with explosives, killing a number of security officers, and cooperating with “enemy organisations” against the interests of the country, the interior ministry said in a statement. | go to source

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Report Alleges 8 in 10 Women Report Sex Abuse When in Custody of Mexican Police

El Universal – The most alarming information was provided by the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI). It reported that 8 in every 10 women arrested in Mexico between 2009 and 2016 were tortured before being presented before a judge. It emphasized that 76% of the victims said the torture took place during the arrest, and the other 65% said that it happened while they were in custody. | go to source

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Drone Misses Virgin Atlantic Plane by Mere Seconds

The B787-9 Dreamliner was transporting 264 passengers as it flew over Brentford in Essex, UK, shortly before 5pm on February 14.  The incident report stated: “The first drone was slightly low and a bit further out, whereas the second was close in at the same level and seemed to take avoiding action.”  –  Yahoo News | go to source

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After Church Attacks, Sri Lankans Face Curfew

COLOMBO: Sri Lankan government on Sunday ordered a night-time curfew after the island nation was rocked with eight blasts targeting churches and hotels that killed nearly 160 people across the country. (curfew runs Sunday night 6pm until 6am Monday morning local time) – Times of India | go to source

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Sudanese Form Civilian Council, Challenging Military Rule

A leading organiser says Sudan’s protest movement hopes to “exert more pressure” on the ruling military by announcing the composition of a civilian transitional council on Sunday.  Mohammed al-Asam of the Sudanese Professionals Association tells The Associated Press that “we are ready with a clear plan for a transition with qualified names”  News24.com | go to source

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Anonymous Troll Comments Might Soon Be Illegal in Austria

Austria’s government has introduced a draft law that would require you to provide your real name and address to larger sites before commenting. You could still use a nickname in public, but authorities would have an easy way to find you if they believe you’re harassing users or otherwise violating the law. Companies that didn’t honor the law could face fines up to €500,000 (about $562,000) if they didn’t comply, and twice that with a repeat offense.  Engadget  | go to source

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Guatemalan Presidential Candidate Arrested in US For Drugs

A DEA investigation led to the arrest of a Guatemalan presidential candidate in Miami, Florida. The investigators allege that he conspired to provide assistance to the Sinaloa Cartel with importing planeloads of cocaine into the United States in exchange for millions of dollars for his failing presidential campaign.  –  Breitbart News | go to source

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China’s Marine Lizards Threaten the South China Sea

The Marine Lizard built by a subsidiary of the China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation is equipped with various armaments, can operate on land and at sea, and can carry troops into battle or conduct autonomous unmanned operations, the company claimed on social media..  – INSIDER | go to source