Read: Former Pakistani President Seeks Covert US Support to Regain Power and North Korea Launched No Missiles in 2018. Continue reading for more…
1. Donald Trump Says ‘Big Progress’ Being Made on Trade Deal with China
U.S. President Donald Trump said on Twitter on Saturday that he had a “long and very good call” with Chinese President Xi Jinping and that a possible trade deal between the United States and China was progressing well.
“Just had a long and very good call with President Xi of China,” Trump wrote. “Deal is moving along very well. If made, it will be very comprehensive, covering all subjects, areas and points of dispute. Big progress being made!”
The two nations have been in a trade war for the greater part of 2018 which has shook world financial markets as the flow of hundreds of billions of dollars worth of goods between the world’s two largest economies has been disrupted by tariffs.
2. Congo Boils Ahead of Crucial Election
Voters in the Democratic Republic of Congo will elect their new president on Sunday 30 December after two years of delay and political uncertainty. However, residents in Ebola-hit areas have been excluded from the vote until March, a move that has sparked outrage.
“This decision is totally unfair,” Johnson Ishara, the head of a civil society group in the eastern province of North Kivu, one of the regions where voting has been postponed,” has said.
The National Electoral Commission, CENI this week delayed voting in Beni, Butembo and Yumbi in the west, in a claimed response to insecurity and the Ebola outbreak in North Kivu and ethnic violence in Mai Ndombe.
Critics see the move as a maneuver by the government to suppress the vote in cities known as ‘Bastions of the Opposition’.
3. Ronaldo’ Brace Gives Juve Contentious Win over Unlucky Sampdoria
Cristiano Ronaldo scored a brace, the second goal a contentious penalty, to give Juventus a dramatic 2-1 win over Sampdoria who had a stoppage-time equaliser chalked off following a long VAR review in Serie A on Saturday.
Riccardo Saponara thought he had given Sampdoria a point when he curled a delightful shot past Mattia Perin and was booked for throwing off his shirt as he celebrated.
But, after a delay of nearly three minutes, referee Paolo Valeri ruled that there had been an offside in the buildup.
4. Angelina Jolie Hints at Possible Move into Politics
Angelina Jolie has hinted she could one day enter politics, as she urged global leaders to do more to help refugees and women in conflict.
Asked whether she was moving towards a political career, the Hollywood star, an envoy for the UN refugee agency who has also campaigned on sexual violence against women, said she would “go where I’m needed”.
“If you asked me 20 years ago, I would’ve laughed,” she said in an interview with the BBC.
“I don’t know if I’m fit for politics, but then I’ve also joked that I don’t know if I have a skeleton left in my closet.”
Jolie said her work with the United Nations and other organisations enabled her to “get a lot done without a title”, but did not rule out a future switch.
5. Germany Airport Closed After Man Crashes Car onto Runway
Airport traffic was suspended at Hannover airport on Saturday after a man crashed a car through a barrier onto the runway.
“A security incident occurred at Hannover airport. A man broke through a barrier in a car which went onto the runway,” Hanover police announced on Twitter.
The man, whose car was registered in Poland, was quickly arrested for questioning.
6. China Firms Offer Subsidized Huawei Phones After Top Official’s Arrest in Canada
Chinese firms are encouraging staff to buy Huawei smartphones following Canada’s arrest of a top Huawei executive on a US extradition request. This has triggered an outpouring of nationalist support.
Several companies are offering employees subsidies for Huawei phone purchases, while others have even warned staff against buying Apple products.
In eastern China, Fuchun Technology said “nearly sixty” out of its 200 employees have taken advantage of 100 to 500 yuan ($15 to $29) Huawei phone subsidies as of Saturday.
Another tech firm, Chengdu RYD Information Technology, has offered 15 percent subsidies to its employees.
7. Egypt Forces Kill 40 Terrorists After Giza Bus Attack- Ministry
Egyptian police killed 40 terrorists in separate raids early Saturday, a day after a roadside bomb near the Giza pyramids killed three Vietnamese tourists and their guide, the Egyptian interior ministry said.
It said authorities acted after receiving information that the suspects were preparing a series of attacks against state and tourist institutions and churches.
8. Video Shows former Pakistani president Seeking “Covert US Support” To Regain Power
In an embarrassment to Pervez Musharraf, the former Pakistani dictator was seen in a series of video clips, seeking covert US support to regain power and telling American lawmakers that he was “ashamed” of Pakistan’s spy agency ISI for being negligent about Al Qaeda chief Osama Bin Laden’s whereabouts.
The undated video clips also shows the self-exiled former Pakistani president saying that he thinks that the negligence of the ISI or Inter-Services Intelligence was “pardonable” as the CIA was also allegedly involved in the same level of negligence on 9/11.
Pervez Musharraf, 75, was Pakistan’s president between 2001 and 2008, before resigning to avoid impeachment.
9. Australia Strips Citizenship from Alleged ISIS Recruiter
The Australian government has stripped citizenship from a man it believes is a top recruiter for ISIS, Australia’s home affairs minister said on Saturday.
The Australian Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton said Melbourne born Neil Prakash had been central to ISIS efforts in the Middle East, was “a very dangerous individual” and had his citizenship stripped.
Under Australia’s citizenship laws, a dual national can lose their Australian citizenship if they act contrary to their allegiance to Australia by choosing to be involved in terrorism.
10. North Korea Launched No Missiles in 2018
North Korea didn’t carry out any missile or nuclear tests in 2018.
North Korea conducted its last nuclear test in September 2017 and its last missile launch a month later. US Donald Trump has gone from ridiculing the North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un as “little rocket man” to declaring he “fell in love” with the young dictator.
“The missiles and rockets are no longer flying in every direction, nuclear testing has stopped,” Trump told the United Nations General Assembly in September.