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EU promises to try to save Iran nuclear deal despite setback

JAKARTA: President Joko Widodo visited an island in waters disputed by China on Wednesday to assert Indonesia’s sovereignty amid a standoff between Indonesian and Chinese vessels.The confrontation began in mid-December when a Chinese coast guard vessel, accompanying Chinese fishing boats, entered waters off the coast of Indonesia’s northern Natuna islands, prompting Jakarta to summon Beijing’s…

EU promises to try to save Iran nuclear deal despite setback

JAKARTA: President Joko Widodo visited an island in waters disputed by China on Wednesday to assert Indonesia’s sovereignty amid a standoff between Indonesian and Chinese vessels.The confrontation began in mid-December when a Chinese coast guard vessel, accompanying Chinese fishing boats, entered waters off the coast of Indonesia’s northern Natuna islands, prompting Jakarta to summon Beijing’s ambassador.Widodo told reporters on Natuna Besar island that the disputed waters belong solely to Indonesia.“We have a district here, a regent, and a governor here,” he said. “There are no more debates. De facto, de jure, Natuna is Indonesia.”

Selamat pagi, Indonesia. Pagi ini, saya meninggalkan ibu kota menuju Natuna, Kepulauan Riau.Saya hendak meninjau Sentra Kelautan dan Perikanan Terpadu Selat Lampa, meninjau jajar kapal, dan bertemu dengan para nelayan. pic.twitter.com/1K4aCe1mmZ
— Joko Widodo (@jokowi) January 8, 2020

Widodo also met with fishermen on the island. Earlier this week, Indonesia deployed more ships and fighter jets to patrol the surrounding waters. Nursyawal Embun, the director of sea operations at the Maritime Security Agency, said as of Wednesday morning that there were two Chinese coast guard vessels present, and 10 Indonesian ships on patrol.China has not claimed the Natuna islands themselves, but says it has nearby fishing rights within a self-proclaimed Nine-Dash Line that includes most of the South China Sea — a claim that is not recognized internationally.In 2017, Indonesia renamed the northern reaches of its exclusive economic zone in the South China Sea as the North Natuna Sea, as part of a push back against China’s maritime territorial ambitions.The dispute has soured Indonesia’s generally friendly relationship with China, its biggest trading partner and a major investor in Southeast Asia’s largest country.In an interview with Reuters on Wednesday, Luhut Pandjaitan, coordinating minister for maritime resources and investment, said that both Beijing and Jakarta will forge ahead with diplomatic discussions.“What’s the point of war? Nothing. Wars are the last step to a failing diplomatic process,” Pandjaitan said.The South China Sea is a global trade route with rich fishing grounds and energy reserves and China claims most of it based on what it says is its historic activity. But Southeast Asian countries, supported by the United States and much of the rest of the world, say such claims have no legal basis.On Tuesday Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said Beijing has “opened diplomatic channels” with Indonesia since the latest incident, and said “both countries shoulder responsibility for maintaining regional peace and stability.”The last peak in tensions between Indonesia and China over the South China Sea was in 2016. At the time, Widodo held a meeting with several of his ministers on board a naval ship in a show of support.

 

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Bangladesh starts Pfizer vaccination program for workers bound for Saudi Arabia and Kuwait

Draghi confirms Italy’s support for Iraqi government’s fight against terrorism ROME: Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi confirmed his country’s “commitment and support” to the Iraqi government, which he called a “key ally” in the fight against international terrorism. Draghi had a long meeting in Rome with Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi, which was attended also…

Bangladesh starts Pfizer vaccination program for workers bound for Saudi Arabia and Kuwait

Draghi confirms Italy’s support for Iraqi government’s fight against terrorism

ROME: Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi confirmed his country’s “commitment and support” to the Iraqi government, which he called a “key ally” in the fight against international terrorism.

Draghi had a long meeting in Rome with Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi, which was attended also by several ministers of both government.

The meeting was a “fruitful discussion focused on strengthening the historic bilateral partnership and on the main regional challenges,” an Italian diplomatic source told Arab news.

“Italy’s commitment … to ensure the stabilization and socioeconomic development of the country and the Middle East was reaffirmed, starting with the fight against international terrorism and crisis resolution processes,” the source added.

Italian Business and Enterprise Minister Giancarlo Giorgetti told Arab News: “We will soon organize a joint Italian-Iraqi forum with firms from both countries. We are ready to offer our expertise to Iraq in every possible field, and we know that cooperation is possible.”

Italian diplomatic sources said that Draghi confirmed a “significant contingent” of the Italian military will remain in Iraq “in respect of Iraqi sovereignty and in full agreement with the local government,” in order to help the country deal with terrorism.

Al-Kadhimi was also received by Pope Francis in the Vatican. During the meeting, the first following his historic visit to Iraq last March, Pope Francis evoked “the moments of unity experienced by the Iraqi people.” 

The pair went on to highlight the importance of protecting the historical presence of Christians in the country with adequate legal measures, and the significant contribution they can make to the common good, highlighting the need to guarantee them the same rights and duties as other citizens.

According to Vatican sources, the pope also noted “the efforts made by Iraq, with the support of the international community, to re-establish a climate of trust and peaceful coexistence.”

Al-Kadhimi gave the pontiff a leather reproduction of Leonardo Da Vinci’s masterpiece “The Last Supper,” made by a female victim of Daesh during her imprisonment, and a wooden cross from the church of Mar Addai in Karemlash. He then had a bilateral meeting with the Vatican Secretary of State Pietro Parolin and Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher, the Vatican’s foreign minister.

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Prince Harry’s wife Meghan returns to Canada amid royal storm

LONDON: Prince Harry’s wife Meghan has returned to Canada following the couple’s bombshell announcement that they were quitting their frontline royal duties, their spokeswoman said on Friday. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex spent an extended Christmas break in Canada with their baby son Archie, before returning to break the news that has rocked the…

Prince Harry’s wife Meghan returns to Canada amid royal storm

LONDON: Prince Harry’s wife Meghan has returned to Canada following the couple’s bombshell announcement that they were quitting their frontline royal duties, their spokeswoman said on Friday.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex spent an extended Christmas break in Canada with their baby son Archie, before returning to break the news that has rocked the royal family.
“I can confirm reports that the duchess is in Canada,” the couple’s spokeswoman told AFP, without providing further details.
The Daily Mail newspaper reported that the royals left eight-month-old Archie with his nanny in Canada when they flew to Britain earlier this week.
It said Meghan, a former US television actress, headed back to rejoin him on Thursday and “she may stay there for the foreseeable future.”
An unnamed source was quoted as saying by the domestic Press Association news agency the duchess had traveled to the UK “to attend some meetings” before returning to Canada
Senior royals were caught off guard by Wednesday’s announcement that the couple wanted to “step back” from their roles.
Queen Elizabeth II reportedly held crisis calls on Thursday involving Harry, his brother Prince William and their father Prince Charles, the heir to the throne.
William, Harry and their wives have been viewed as the modern face of the royal family, hailed for bringing fresh energy into the institution.
But Harry and Meghan last year admitted to struggling with the spotlight following their wedding at Windsor Castle in May 2018 and Archie’s birth a year later.
The couple have lashed out at negative news coverage — Harry calling some of it racist — and taken several papers to court.
The prince also confirmed he was growing apart from his brother, who is second in line to the throne.
The couple said they wanted to forge “a progressive new role,” split their time between Britain and North America and become financially independent.
A palace source on Thursday said the queen had instructed aides to work “at pace” with Meghan and Harry and the government “to find workable solutions.”
Key questions include whether they will keep their royal titles and how much of their funding — mostly from Prince Charles — they will maintain.
The couple’s decision follows a turbulent year for the wider royal family.
Prince Andrew announced he was retiring from public duties after a disastrous TV interview about his friendship with the late US sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
 

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Deadlock over Nile dam as Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan look to Washington for talks

LONDON: Prince Harry’s wife Meghan has returned to Canada following the couple’s bombshell announcement that they were quitting their frontline royal duties, their spokeswoman said on Friday.The Duke and Duchess of Sussex spent an extended Christmas break in Canada with their baby son Archie, before returning to break the news that has rocked the royal…

Deadlock over Nile dam as Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan look to Washington for talks

LONDON: Prince Harry’s wife Meghan has returned to Canada following the couple’s bombshell announcement that they were quitting their frontline royal duties, their spokeswoman said on Friday.The Duke and Duchess of Sussex spent an extended Christmas break in Canada with their baby son Archie, before returning to break the news that has rocked the royal family.“I can confirm reports that the duchess is in Canada,” the couple’s spokeswoman told AFP, without providing further details.The Daily Mail newspaper reported that the royals left eight-month-old Archie with his nanny in Canada when they flew to Britain earlier this week.It said Meghan, a former US television actress, headed back to rejoin him on Thursday and “she may stay there for the foreseeable future.”An unnamed source was quoted as saying by the domestic Press Association news agency the duchess had traveled to the UK “to attend some meetings” before returning to CanadaSenior royals were caught off guard by Wednesday’s announcement that the couple wanted to “step back” from their roles.Queen Elizabeth II reportedly held crisis calls on Thursday involving Harry, his brother Prince William and their father Prince Charles, the heir to the throne.William, Harry and their wives have been viewed as the modern face of the royal family, hailed for bringing fresh energy into the institution.But Harry and Meghan last year admitted to struggling with the spotlight following their wedding at Windsor Castle in May 2018 and Archie’s birth a year later.The couple have lashed out at negative news coverage — Harry calling some of it racist — and taken several papers to court.The prince also confirmed he was growing apart from his brother, who is second in line to the throne.The couple said they wanted to forge “a progressive new role,” split their time between Britain and North America and become financially independent.A palace source on Thursday said the queen had instructed aides to work “at pace” with Meghan and Harry and the government “to find workable solutions.”Key questions include whether they will keep their royal titles and how much of their funding — mostly from Prince Charles — they will maintain.The couple’s decision follows a turbulent year for the wider royal family.Prince Andrew announced he was retiring from public duties after a disastrous TV interview about his friendship with the late US sex offender Jeffrey Epstein. 

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