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Here are today’s picks from our editors.
Xi Jinping meets with Taiwan delegation led by Lien Chan
Chinese President Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, on Friday met with a delegation of people from various sectors in Taiwan, led by former chairman of the Kuomintang (KMT) party Lien Chan.
"We have the confidence and ability to keep a firm hold on the correct direction, work for the peaceful development of cross-Strait relations and advance the process toward the peaceful reunification of China," Xi said.
Xi called on compatriots on the two sides of the Taiwan Strait to work together to uphold the 1992 Consensus, which embodies the one-China principle, and to resolutely oppose and deter "Taiwan independence."
Lien proposed upholding the one-China principle, promoting peaceful cross-Strait relations and mutually beneficial integration, and revitalizing the Chinese nation.
The current situation in the Taiwan Strait has been destabilized and is causing harm to the security and wellbeing of Taiwan residents, Lien noted. (Xinhua)
Pilot crew fired for making flight plunge
Air China has fired the pilot crew responsible for causing flight CA106 to plunge due to the co-pilot smoking an e-cigarette in the cockpit, according to the airline's statement Friday night.
Preliminary investigations found that the co-pilot had, without telling the pilot, attempted to turn off a circulation fan to prevent smoke from his electronic cigarette from reaching the cabin. The co-pilot instead mistakenly switched off the air conditioning, which resulted in insufficient oxygen in the cabin.
On Tuesday, 30 minutes after flight CA106 left Hong Kong for Dalian carrying 153 passengers and nine crew members, oxygen masks dropped from the ceiling after the plane plummeted to an altitude of 3,000 meters. The plane regained its altitude and no injuries or damage to the plane was reported. (China Daily)
12 Russians accused of hacking Democrats in 2016 US election
Twelve Russian intelligence officers were indicted on charges for hacking into Democratic emails and releasing the information before the 2016 US presidential election, the Justice Department said Friday.
The indictment comes days before US President Donald Trump is set to hold a summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The indictment details efforts to break into key Democratic email accounts, including those belonging to the Democratic National Committee, the Clinton campaign and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. (AP)
Senior UN official wraps up visit to North Korea
UN Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock wrapped up a four-day visit to North Korea on Thursday, according to Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).
Lowcock said at a press briefing Wednesday that North Korea has made a lot of progress in improving on the humanitarian front since 2012, although challenges remain regarding child malnutrition as well as the lack of safe water and medical supplies.
Lowcock said the UN plans to provide North Korea with a $111 million humanitarian package. (CGTN)
First space tourist flights could come in 2019
The two companies leading the pack in the pursuit of space tourism say they are just months away from their first out-of-this-world passenger flights -- though neither has set a firm date.
Virgin Galactic, founded by British billionaire Richard Branson, and Blue Origin, by Amazon creator Jeff Bezos, are racing to be the first to finish their tests.
Reports say that it will cost $250,000 for each Virgin Galactic passenger. Blue Origin has not commented on its admission price. (AFP)
2.1 million year-old ancient human found in China
The first humans in China could have come from northwest China’s Shaanxi province, after a research team led by the Chinese Academy of Sciences recently discovered a Paleolithic site dating back to between 1.26 and 2.12 million years ago.
Yuanmou Man, who lived 1.7 million years ago, has long been regarded as the first Homo erectus found in China, but the excavated Shangchen site in Lantian area, Shaanxi province, is very likely to redefine the birth of China's earliest humans.
The world-renowned Nature Journal also published the new scientific research. (People’s Daily Online)
Thanks for listening and be sure to catch us tomorrow.
And now for the Question of the Day:
What is the very first dynasty in Chinese history?
Xia dynasty (2070–1600 BC)
Today’s quote is from Martin Luther King Jr.
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others’?”
(Produced by Nancy Yan Xu, Ryan Yaoran Yu, and Raymond Mendoza)