News ID: 108759
Publish Date : 08 November 2022 - 21:28
BEIJING (Reuters) -- A spokesman for China’s foreign ministry said he was not aware of reports of President Xi Jinping’s planned visit to Saudi Arabia, when asked about it at a regular news briefing on Tuesday. The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday that Xi was planning the visit before the end of the year, citing people familiar with the trip preparations.
MOSCOW (AFP) – Pro-Russian authorities in Ukraine’s southern region of Kherson said Tuesday that power had been fully restored to its main city, after blaming Kyiv for attacks that disrupted water and electricity supplies. “There is electricity, despite sabotage and attacks,” Kirill Stremousov, the Russian-appointed deputy head of the Kherson region said on social media Tuesday. Ukraine troops have been pushing closer towards the city in recent months and its capture by Kyiv would be a significant defeat for Moscow. The news Sunday of the outages followed reports from Russian officials that the Kakhovka dam, also in Kherson, had been damaged by a Ukrainian strike. The dam supplies the Crimean peninsula, which Moscow annexed in 2014 and was used as a launching pad for the beginning of the campaign in Ukraine.
PARIS (AFP) -- October temperatures in Europe were the warmest on record, the European Union’s Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) said Tuesday, hitting nearly 2 degrees Celsius above the 1991-2020 reference period. “The severe consequences of climate change are very visible today and we need ambitious climate action at COP27 to ensure emissions reduction to stabilize temperatures close to the Paris Agreement target of 1.5 degrees,” said C3S deputy director Samantha Burgess, referring to UN climate talks currently taking place in Sharm el-Sheikh. The climate monitor said a warm spell “brought record daily temperatures to western Europe, and a record-warm October for Austria, Switzerland and France”.  Large parts of Italy and Spain also saw records shattered last month. “Canada experienced record warmth, and much warmer-than-average conditions also occurred in Greenland and Siberia,” C3S said. It noted that colder-than-average temperatures were seen in Australia, far eastern Russia, and in parts of west Antarctica.
SHARM EL SHEIKH, Egypt (AFP) -- The United Nations on Monday unveiled a five-year plan to build a global early warning system for deadly and costly extreme weather events amplified by climate change. The price tag -- a relatively modest $3.1 billion, or less than 50 cents per person -- is a small price to pay for proven methods that can save thousands, if not millions, of lives, UN chief Antonio Guterres said at the COP27 climate summit in Egypt. Even as climate-enhanced extreme weather is multiplying, half the world’s countries lack advanced early warning systems that can save lives. Countries with inadequate infrastructure see, on average, eight times greater mortality from disasters than countries with strong measures in place, according to the UN. Proper early warning systems for floods, droughts, heatwaves, cyclones or other disasters allow for planning that minimizes adverse impacts.
ATHENS (AFP) -- Greece’s prime minister on Monday said reports he wire-tapped his own ministers were “an incredible lie” as the main opposition party threatened to mount a no-confidence motion over the snowballing scandal. Kyriakos Mitsotakis’s conservative government came under increased pressure after a bombshell media report at the weekend alleged that more than 30 politicians, journalists and business executives had been targeted by state surveillance. The Supreme Court has ordered an investigation, while Syriza, the far-left party of former prime minister Alexis Tsipras, demanded the government to shed light on the affair before the next election due in 2023. Mitsotakis hit back on Monday, calling the report by left-wing weekly newspaper Documento, which is close to Syriza, “shameful”. Documento reported on Saturday that the mobile phones of 33 high profile public figures had been targeted illegally by spyware known as Predator and technology employed by state intelligence agency EYP. 
WASHINGTON (AFP) -- Armenia and Azerbaijan held peace talks on Monday, mediated by the United States, just hours after a fresh shootout along their troubled border in a conflict which has left hundreds dead in recent months. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken hosted the foreign ministers of the rival nations. An American official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the meeting was less about peace negotiations in the full sense of the term, and more about providing an opportunity for the warring parties to meet and talk.  A week ago, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev “agreed not to use force” to resolve their dispute over the Nagorno-Karabakh territory, during a summit in Russia hosted by President Vladimir Putin. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Monday called on both parties to “refrain from the actions and steps that could lead to an escalation of tensions.”
BEIJING (Reuters) -- China has vowed resolute opposition to any efforts by Taiwan to collude with external forces and pursue independence, a spokesman of its foreign ministry said on Tuesday. The remarks came in response to a query about a plan announced this week by the self-ruled island to invest more than 10 million euros ($10 million) towards chip production in Lithuania. Tension in the Taiwan Strait is due to authorities of Taiwan’s ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) colluding with external forces, the spokesman, Zhao Lijian, added at a regular briefing in the Chinese capital of Beijing.
* Comment: