China hits back at Trump’s ‘absurd logic’ on N. Korea denuclearization

China has slammed US President Donald Trump’s “absurd logic” in blaming Beijing for an apparent delay in Washington’s denuclearization talks with North Korea. It follows Trump accusing China of “pressuring” Pyongyang.

Pressure has been mounting on Trump to explain why his much-vaunted talks with North Korea in June have yet to deliver any results, with Pyongyang failing to show any concrete steps towards its promise of denuclearizing the region.

The US president on Wednesday shrugged off any responsibility and instead sought to shift the blame onto Beijing – North Korea’s only ally in the region – citing its “tremendous pressuring” of Pyongyang.

READ MORE: Trump says ‘no reason’ for costly war games with South Korea, blames China for stalemate with North

“President Donald J. Trump feels strongly that North Korea is under tremendous pressure from China because of our major trade disputes with the Chinese government,” Trump said on Twitter.

He added that China providing North Korea with a series of other “commodities” is “not helpful.” 

China’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman hit back during a press briefing. “A lot of people, like me, feel that the US is first in the world when it comes to twisting the truth, and irresponsible and absurd logic,” she said. “This logic is not easily understood by all.”

Trump then seemed to take a more amicable tone as he said that – despite North Korea’s current failure to return concessions – there is “no reason” right now to spend loads of money on US military exercises with South Korea.

@realDonaldTrump

STATEMENT FROM THE WHITE HOUSE

President Donald J. Trump feels strongly that North Korea is under tremendous pressure from China because of our major trade disputes with the Chinese Government. At the same time, we also know that China is providing North Korea with...

Trump took military commanders by surprise in June when, after talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, he announced that “provocative” drills with Seoul would be suspended.

In yet another episode of White House officials contradicting their leader, the comments were at odds with Defense Secretary James Mattis on Tuesday, who said the drills would not be suspended for the time being.

That was just a day after the announcement that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s visit to North Korea would be canceled because of the peninsula’s failure to denuclearize.

  • Published in World

Trump-McCain: Quarrel among Wolves

The death of John McCain shows, among other things, the existent contradictions in the core of the extreme right sector of United States.

The Washington Post revealed, last Monday that Donald Trump refuted praises aimed at the republican senator John McCain, recently deceased.

Regarding the delicate condition of the senator, the spokesman of the White House, Sarah Huckabee Sanders; the Chief of Staff, John Kelly, and others agreed to draft an official statement after he passed away praising his service as “hero” during the invasion to Vietnam in the 60’s of the last century.

The Post added that “they both kept a tense relationship”, Trump discarded the official note and he rather posted in Twitter: “my deepest condolences and respect for the family.”

The above-mentioned breaks the customary protocol of the Presidents of the United States, who elaborate documents where they highlight supposed achievements and prowesses of outstanding personalities after their death.

The newspaper, reflected that Trump’s attitude shows his level of hostility towards McCain.

The differences between them were evident since Trump’s electoral campaign in 2015, when he minimized that John McCain was war prisoner for five years in Vietnam, when saying “I prefer people who have not been captured."

Since the president took office, McCain criticized his foreign policy, he voted against eliminating the Obama Care and alerted of its "egotism" and "sympathy for autocrats."

According to the North American press, collaborators and other close to McCain informed the White House that the senator didn't want Donald Trump's presence at his funeral.

The ceremony is scheduled for next Saturday at the National Cathedral of Washington, VP Mike Pence has been invited to the ceremony.

They also invited to mass the former presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush.

The burial ceremony will take place on Sunday September 2nd at Annapolis Naval Academy.

The funeral services of the veteran legislator will be divided among the North American capital, where he made a career as a politician for more than three decades, and the state he represented in the Senate, Arizona where he died.

John McCain, died at 81 due to an aggressive brain cancer.

Cubasi Translation Staff / Amilkal Labañino Valdés

Iran To Open Lawsuit Against US Sanctions In World Court

The Hague: Iran will argue Monday against renewed sanctions imposed by the United States, as a bitter legal battle between Tehran and Washington opens before the UN's top court.

US President Donald Trump reimposed a wave of tough unilateral sanctions on Iran three weeks ago, bringing back into effect harsh penalties that had been lifted under a landmark 2015 agreement.

A second round of measures is to come into effect in early November, targeting Iran's valuable oil and energy sector.

Tehran filed its case before the International Court of Justice in late July, calling on the Hague-based tribunal's judges to order the immediate lifting of sanctions, which it said would cause "irreparable prejudice."

The US had no right to reinstate such measures, Tehran added, as it demanded compensation for damages.

Iran maintained restoring the penalties lifted under the historic 2015 deal, aimed at curbing Tehran's nuclear ambitions, violated a decades-old treaty signed between the two nations in 1955.

The ICJ -- set up in 1946 to rule in disputes between countries -- is expected to take a couple of months to decide whether to grant Tehran's request for a provisional ruling, while a final decision in the case may actually still take years.

Trump described the 2015 deal between Iran and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, as well as Germany, as a "horrible one-sided deal (that) failed to achieve the fundamental objective of blocking all paths to a Iranian nuclear bomb."

Even though all of the other parties pleaded with him not to abandon the pact, Trump pulled out and announced he would reinstate sanctions.

'Neither war, nor negotiations'

Tehran -- which argues that the move violates the little-known 1955 Treaty of Amity and Economic Relations -- says that the new sanctions are already hurting its economy. Iran's currency the rial has lost around half its value since April.

A raft of international companies -- including France's Total, Peugeot and Renault, and Germany's Siemens and Daimler -- have suspended operations in Iran in the wake of the move.

Both Air France and British Airways announced Thursday they were halt flights to Tehran next month, saying they were not commercially viable, but the British carrier added the decision was unrelated to the new tranche of sanctions.

In his executive order, Trump argued that the sanctions would turn up the financial pressure on Tehran to come to a "comprehensive and lasting solution" regarding activities that the international community regarded as "malign" such as Iran's "ballistic missile programme and its support for terrorism."

Earlier this month, Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei appeared to rule out any immediate prospect of talks, saying "there will be neither war, nor negotiations," with the US.

Washington's lawyers will present their case on Tuesday, with experts believing they are to challenge the ICJ's jurisdiction.

  • Published in World

The Movement of Non-Aligned Countries Defended in PDRK

Pyongyang, Aug 25 (Prensa Latina) The existence of the Movement of Non-Aligned Countries (Mnoal), the second largest organization of countries after the UN, is being defended today in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).

The aforementioned defense is played by the important DPRK newspapers Rodong Sinmun (RS), the official organ of the Workers' Party of Korea (PTC) and Minju Joson (MJ), official media of the government of this country.

The fact occurs on the anniversary of the 43rd anniversary of the incorporation of North Korea into this forum of political agreement consisting of 120 member countries, plus another 15 as observers.

RS recalls that the incorporation of the DPRK in 1975 to the group of countries raised the position and prestige of Pyongyang in the international arena.

The MJ newspaper said that the DPRK will be faithful in the future also to the principles and ideal of NAM and will fulfill its mission and duty in the materialization of the independence cause throughout the world.

Both newspapers of the capital recall that at present the movement faces complicated problems such as aggressions against its member countries, wars and intervention in internal affairs of the imperialists to their affiliates.

They urged the member nations of the Mnoal to continue the fight with more audacity than ever against the aggressive and warlike maneuvers of the imperialist forces.

Rodong Sinmun and Minju Joson mention that more than eight decades after the incorporation of the DPRK into the Mnoal, this country maintains the invariable position of actively contributing to the consolidation and development of the organization, in congruence with its foreign policy of independence.

  • Published in Cuba

Is there point in talking to US until midterms? China seems to think it’s a ‘no’

Beijing doesn’t appear to be interested in more negotiations with Washington until after November’s mid-term elections, according to a report, after talks between the countries locked in a trade war ended inconclusively.

The officials from both sides of the Pacific haven’t scheduled further talks, a person familiar with the discussions told Bloomberg. But the Chinese delegation “had raised the possibility” that no further negotiations could happen until after the US mid-term elections, which are to take place November 6.

 

Chinese workers make flags for Donald Trump’s 2020 re-election campaign © Aly Song

US and Chinese officials held contentious trade talks this week amid low expectations. A Chinese delegation headed by Vice Minister for Commerce Wang Shouwen, travelled to Washington for two-day negotiations which started on Wednesday. Treasury Undersecretary for International Affairs David Malpass represented the US. 

According to a short statement from the Chinese Commerce Ministry after the meeting, the negotiators had “constructive and frank exchanges” over trade issues, and the parties would “keep in touch.”

Washington’s remarks were even more vague. White House Deputy Press Secretary Lindsay Walters said only that the sides “exchanged views on how to achieve fairness, balance, and reciprocity in the economic relationship.” 

The rivalry between the two economic powerhouses has escalated in recent months, as US and China slapped billion of dollars’ worth of retaliatory tariffs on one another.

READ MORE: China ditching US coal imports for domestic supply in trade tariff tit-for-tat

The US trade war with China will be “extremely damaging” for American businesses and ordinary people, Arvin Vohra, 2020 presidential hopeful for the US Libertarian Party, told RT. “We’ve already seen it is damaging because now businesses have to spend more money on things like steel rather than spending money and resources on innovation, skilled labor, better computers, etc. This is a massive drain on American innovation, on the American economy.”

  • Published in World

FARC: Venezuelan Military Intervention, Catastrophic for LatAm

The FARC urge "the progressive and democratic peoples and governments of Latin America, the Caribbean and the world, not to allow more interference on sovereign Venezuela."

The Revolutionary Alternative Forces of the Commons (FARC) party stated, in a release, Thursday that "Colombia cannot support a foreign intervention against Venezuela."

RELATED: 'We Are No Longer Your Backyard': Bolivia's Evo Morales Condemns US Interventionism in Venezuela, Latin America

In the statement, the political party rejected the Colombian Government favoring a military intervention against Venezuela, led by the Venezuelan far-right and its foreign allies.

The release highlighted that "the political, diplomatic, economic, social and military siege aims to destabilize and overthrow the legitimate government of President Nicolas Maduro and to reverse the Bolivarian Revolution, resorting to whatever means that are within its reach; it is a real element that the Venezuelan national extreme right, its allies abroad and the empire itself cannot deny."

|| Colombia no puede prestarse para una intervención extranjera contra Venezuela.

The FARC party also said that the repercussions of a military intervention would be catastrophic for Latin America in general and for Colombia in particular, "with the burden of death and desolation that it would imply."

The group is urging for the unfriendly and aggressive actions against Venezuela to stop, and calling for "the progressive and democratic peoples and governments of Latin America, the Caribbean and the world, not to allow more interference on sovereign Venezuela."

FARC call on the Latin American people to reject foreign intervention in the South American continent and highlighting that the "continent is a zone of peace and we must not allow ourselves to be deprived of that right."

  • Published in World

Negative Impact of Lack of Staff in US Embassy in Cuba Worries Congressmen

Washington, Aug 23 (Prensa Latina) The negative impact of the reduction of personnel in the US embassy in Cuba ordered by the Trump Administration was today reflected in a memorandum from the Congressional Research Service (CRS), some media reported.

Democratic representative Eliot Engel, ranking House Foreign Affairs Committee member, announced this week he asked the CRS to assess the effects of the situation in the diplomatic legation in Havana, after the number of staffers was reduced from over 50 to only 14. The Hill, a newspaper on Congressional affairs, highlighted staff at the U.S. embassy in Havana are taking on multiple responsibilities and say they are undermined in their ability to carry out embassy duties by drastic staff reductions imposed by the Trump administration. The administration  unilaterally took the decision to cut personnel in September last year, following alleged health incidents reported by US officials who worked in the Cuban capital, but providing no evidence of the ailment whose causes are unknown until now.

Additionally, the US Administration suspended the delivery at its mission in Havana of visas for immigrants and non-immigrant's, expelled 17 Cuban diplomats from Washington and increased to level three, of a maximum of four, its travel warning to Cuba.

From the moment these measures were implemented, both the Island's Government and US sectors, including legislators, warned of the negative effects they would have for families in both countries and the risk that the United States would fail to comply with its commitments.

CRS memorandum, quoted by media such as The Hill and by the Engage Cuba coalition, referred to the fact that the majority of Cubans applying for a visa to travel to the US must resort to US embassy or consulate in a third nation.

As a result, it is more difficult for Cubans to visit their relatives in the United States, while trips of people from the private sector are also difficult and some cultural groups have had to cancel their presentations in the United States.

During the first nine months of fiscal year 2018, which began on October 1, less than 4,000 immigrant visas were granted to Cubans. The migration agreement reached in 1994 between the two nations establishes the granting by Washington of 20,000 visas a year. According to Engage Cuba, the memo also indicates that there are limited services to serve US citizens in Cuba and problems maintaining 45 diplomatic residences, most of which are now empty.

The report noted that the staff situation 'potentially reduces the capacity of the State Department to understand the situation on the ground', among other issues.

The news on this report is released after this month the US Government reduced to one year the term that its diplomats can stay in Cuba, under the argument of security reasons, although many sectors of this country recognize the island as a very safe place.

  • Published in Cuba

Is Trump’s Situation Worsening?

After a long list of setbacks and scandals in the core of the United States government, now looms a situation particularly delicate for Donald Trump.

On Wednesday a journalist from the Associated Press, AP, Laurie Kellman wrote in Washington, that the current president "faces real political threats".

His former lawyer Michael Cohen and Paul Manafort, former head of his electoral campaign, made very compromising statements for the head of the White House.

Almost all conflicts derive from the investigations carried out by district attorney Robert Mueller, the New York prosecuting office and lawyers of women who suit him.

Other intimidations have to do with Michael Cohen involving the leader in financing crimes during his 2016 campaign.

Cohen also declared that he is willing to grow deeper in his accusations.

As part of his defense, Trump has said that the above-mentioned is "a witch hunt" and "fake news".

Journalist Kellman affirmed that next to what was published soon will take place the parliamentary elections in November, where North Americans will judge the work done by republicans in the presidency and the Congress.

The Associated Press writes:

What is known: The president that demands loyalty to his allies cannot assure they will give it back to him.

What is unknown: From whom, and at which point in Trump’s landscape, a new blow could come.

Among the threats against the president, his family and republicans who defend their majority in the Congress are, among others:

Cohen said that he and Trump agreed on the payments to porn actress Stormy Daniels and to the former Playboy model Karen Mc Dougal to keep them quiet on their "affairs" with the president.

Manafort was found guilty by a jury for eight charges of bank and fiscal fraud.

Mueller’s final report could go up to the Congress, which would be even more significant if democrats seize control of it in this year elections.

The first two republican legislators who supported Trump during 2016 primary elections, Duncan Hunter and Chris Colllins were accused of corruption.

The journalist Laurie Kellman points out that what was said unleashed a wave of uncertainty for the allies of President Donald Trump.

Under the current circumstances comes to mind the very same question: Will the president finish his current term in office?

Cubasi Translation Staff / Amilkal Labañino Valdés

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