CHINA Fresh Start: Podcast News (5/20/2018 Sun.)

CHINA

Fresh Start: Podcast News (5/20/2018 Sun.)

People's Daily app

10:11, May 27, 2018

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Welcome to Fresh Start.
This is People’s Daily app. 
Here are today’s picks from our editors.

China, US issue joint statement on economic, trade consultations

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China and the United States issued a joint statement on Saturday on economic and trade consul-tations, vowing not to launch a trade war against each other.

Based on the directions of Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump, the Chinese and US delegations conducted constructive consultations on trade on Thursday and Friday, the statement said.

The Chinese delegation was led by Xi's special envoy and Vice Premier Liu He while the US of-ficials included Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross and Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, according to the statement. (Xinhua)

China to launch relay satellite

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China plans to launch a relay satellite into space next Monday to provide communications for its upcoming lunar probe mission.

The Chang'e-4 lunar probe will make the first ever soft landing on the far side of the Moon while the relay satellite, named Queqiao, will transmit signals between the Earth and the Chang'e-4’s lander and rover.

Relay satellites can provide data relay and monitoring services for spacecrafts, improving the ef-ficiency and emergency capabilities of various satellites. They also enable data from Earth and other satellites to be transmitted in real time. (CGTN – People’s Daily app)

Cleric Muqtada al-Sadr’s bloc wins Iraq election

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A political bloc led by cleric Muqtada al-Sadr has won the country's parliamentary election, cap-turing 54 parliamentary seats, the electoral commission said on Saturday.

Sadr is an opponent of both the US and Iran, which has wielded influence in Iraq since a US-led invasion toppled Sunni dictator Saddam Hussein in 2003 and thrust the Shia majority into power.

The cleric has led two uprisings against US forces in Iraq and is one of the few Shia leaders to distance himself from Iran. (CGTN)

Cuba decrees two-day national mourning after plane crash

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Cuba has decreed two days of national mourning starting on Saturday, after a Cubana de Avi-acion plane crash claimed the lives of more than 100 passengers. 

The Council of State announced in a press release it decided to declare national mourning early Saturday morning and that the Cuban flag will be lowered to half-staff during this time.

The Boeing 737 plane, which had 105 passengers and six crew members onboard, crashed on Friday shortly after taking off from the Jose Marti International Airport.

Only four passengers survived initially, but one of them passed away shortly due to critical inju-ries. Another woman also died later in the evening after being treated by doctors.

The last two survivors are being treated at a hospital in Havana and are in critical condition. (Xinhua – People’s Daily app)

Jerusalem sees peaceful 1st Ramadan Friday amid Israel’s high alert

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The Israeli police said Friday that the first Friday prayer services of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan ended peacefully at Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque.

The Israeli police said about 90,000 attended prayers at the holy site on the second day and the first Friday of Ramadan.

Israeli security forces are on high alert for the Muslim fasting month this year at a time when ten-sions are heightened along the Israel-Gaza Strip border.

Israeli fire killed about 60 Palestinians at a mass rally along the Gaza Strip border on Monday, as the inauguration ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem was held. (Xinhua)

Iran nuclear deal not perfect but better than no agreement: Merkel

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The EU will not abandon the Iran nuclear deal after the US’ withdrawal from it, German Chan-cellor Angela Merkel said on Friday. 

"Although this agreement is not perfect, it is better than no agreement," Merkel said during a tel-evised press conference after she met with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Black Sea re-sort.

Merkel said the Iran nuclear deal was one of the main topics she discussed with Putin and that they were "united" in supporting continued talks with Iran on its nuclear and ballistic missile pro-grams.

The German leader also said the EU is discussing measures aimed at cushioning the effects of possible US sanctions against European entities cooperating with Iran. (Xinhua – People’s Daily app)

Russia unveils world’s first floating nuclear power station

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Russia on Saturday unveiled the world's first floating nuclear power station at a ceremony in the port of Murmansk, where it will be loaded with nuclear fuel before heading to eastern Siberia.

The station, which was built in Saint Petersburg, will be primarily used to power oil rigs as Russia pushes further north into the Arctic to drill for oil and gas. 

Experts say the station can produce enough electricity to power a town of 200,000 residents. (AFP – People’s Daily app)

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle declared husband and wife

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Prince Harry and US TV star Meghan Markle were married in Windsor Castle on Saturday in a star-studded ceremony watched live by cheering crowds and beamed into homes around the world.

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, declared the couple husband and wife after they ex-changed vows and rings.

The same morning, Queen Elizabeth II gave Prince Harry the title of Duke of Sussex. Now that Harry is married, his title is His Royal Highness The Duke of Sussex, while Markle is now Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Sussex. (AFP – People’s Daily app)

Thanks for listening and be sure to catch us tomorrow.

Today’s quote is from Greek philosopher Socrates:

“It is not living that matters but living rightly.”

(Produced by Nancy Yan Xu, Ryan Yaoran Yu, Raymond Mendoza and Terry Guanlin Li.)

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