Politics

Biden to host state dinner for India’s Modi on June 22

BLOOMBERG US President Joe Biden will host India’s Narendra Modi for a state dinner on June 22, the White House confirmed on Wednesday, marking his third such formal event after dinners for the leaders of France and South Korea. “The upcoming visit will affirm the deep and close partnership between the United States and India and the warm bonds of ...

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Italy intends to exit China Belt and Road pact

BLOOMBERG Italy has signalled to the US that it intends to pull out of a controversial investment pact with China before the end of the year. Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni reassured US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy during a meeting in Rome that while a final decision hasn’t been taken, her government is favouring an exit from its role in ...

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Ukraine reports local breakthrough in Bakhmut

BLOOMBERG Ukraine said troops pushed back Russian forces near Bakhmut in the eastern Donetsk region, though the Russian Defense Ministry said its units were advancing in the west and northwest of the devastated town. Ukraine advanced 2.6 kilometres into Russian-held areas near Bakhmut along a 3 kilometre stretch of front line, according to Andriy Biletskyi, a commander of the brigade ...

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US prepares to fast track $500mn of arms for Taiwan

BLOOMBERG The Biden administration is preparing a $500 million weapons package for Taiwan, using a fast-track authority that it has relied on to speed arms to Ukraine. The package will involve sending existing stockpiles of US weapons or support equipment to Taiwan under what’s known as a Presidential Drawdown Authority. The equipment to be in the package wasn’t immediately known. ...

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Ukraine should get concrete path to join Nato, says Estonia

BLOOMBERG The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (Nato) allies need to spell out the concrete steps for Ukraine to become a member of the military alliance and move beyond repeating the standing position that it’s welcome to join the bloc, according to Estonia’s top diplomat. “It’s not enough anymore just to repeat the already existing position that Ukraine is welcomed to ...

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Japan, S Korea seek to mend ties at rare summit in Seoul

BLOOMBERG The leaders of South Korea and Japan said they planned to discuss cooperation on global issues and security concerns raised by North Korea as they started their first formal summit held in Seoul in about a dozen years. South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol told Fumio Kishida at their on Sunday meeting that he sees the visit of the ...

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Ukraine says it shot down Russian Kinzhal missile for first time

BLOOMBERG Ukraine’s military confirmed the interception of a Russian “Kinzhal” hypersonic air-launched ballistic missile after it deployed Patriot air-defense systems obtained this spring from Western allies. The rocket was launched from a Mikoyan MiG-31 fighter jet towards the Kyiv region of May 4, according to Mykola Oleshchuk, Ukraine’s air force commander. The confirmation followed discussion on social media that a ...

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Thailand begins early voting ahead of general election

BLOOMBERG More than two million Thais who registered for early voting began casting their ballots on Sunday ahead of next week’s general election, with opposition parties projected to win a majority. The vote is taking place amid an intensifying struggle for power in Thailand. The May 14 election pits supporters of the ruling military-backed coalition led by Prime Minister Prayuth ...

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State of emergency declared in Canada’s Alberta over wild fires

ALBERTA / WAM Canadian province of Alberta declared a provincial state of emergency after tens of thousands of Albertans have been forced to evacuate their homes as “unprecedented” wildfires rage on in Alberta, Premier Danielle Smith, head of the ruling United Conservative Party (UCP) said at a press conference. More than 24,000 Albertans had been evacuated from their homes, with ...

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Russian pro-war writer hit by car blast

BLOOMBERG Russian pro-war novelist and politician Zakhar Prilepin was injured and his driver killed in a car bombing as he was returning from Ukraine’s occupied territories, according to media reports. The attack, which took place about 460 kilometres (285 miles) east of Moscow in the Nizhny Novgorod region, followed two high-profile bombing deaths of Russian war supporters in recent months. ...

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