Tag Archives: diplomatic

US to pull all remaining diplomatic staff from Venezuela

US to pull all remaining diplomatic staff from VenezuelaThe United States will withdraw all remaining diplomatic personnel from its embassy in Caracas as the crisis in Venezuela deepens, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said late Monday. The move worsens already tattered relations, with President Donald Trump having said he rules out no options including military intervention to oust President Nicolas Maduro as Washington monitors rapidly unfolding events in the oil-rich but crippled South American nation supported by Russia and China. The US has already imposed sanctions designed to choke off Venezuelan oil sales, the lifeblood of the leftist government in Caracas.



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U.S. Closes Jerusalem Consulate and Downgrades Its Diplomatic Mission to Palestine

U.S. Closes Jerusalem Consulate and Downgrades Its Diplomatic Mission to PalestineThe United States has officially shuttered its consulate in Jerusalem, downgrading the status of its main diplomatic mission to the Palestinians by folding it into the U.S. Embassy to Israel.



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President’s diplomatic approach to North Korea is artful

President’s diplomatic approach to North Korea is artfulKim Jong Un didn't leave Hanoi with any free handouts, writes retired Maj. Gen. Bob Dees, who commanded along the Demilitarized Zone in South Korea.



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Saudi Arabia's Mohammed bin Salman heads to Pakistan on Asian diplomatic offensive

Saudi Arabia's Mohammed bin Salman heads to Pakistan on Asian diplomatic offensiveSaudi Arabian crown prince Mohammed bin Salman flew to Pakistan at the start of a three nation diplomatic tour designed to repair the kingdom's reputation and bolster ties with key regional allies. The crown prince's visit could be overshadowed by dangerously spiraling tensions between Pakistan and India. The trip comes days after a suicide bomber killed 44 Indian paramilitary police in the disputed Kashmir region.  New Delhi has accused Pakistan of having a hand in Thursday's attack and vowed to punish Islamabad, which denies involvement. Iran, a regional rival of Saudi Arabia, accused Pakistan of harbouring and training militants behind a suicide bombing in Baluchistan that killed 27 troops on Wednesday.  Crown prince Mohammed is expected to travel to Dehli to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Monday. He will spend Thursday and Friday in China.  The three nation tour has been characterized as part of a Saudi "pivot to the east" and is in part meant to repair the crown prince's reputation following the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi and the ensuing state-led cover-up. Despite his vow to shift Saudi Arabia to renewable energy, the trip is also in part a roadshow to sell Saudi oil. China is the world’s largest buyer of Saudi crude, and India is close behind. As the guardians of the most holy site in Islam, the Saudi royal family carry great clout in Pakistan. The visit also deepens a long standing alliance that has seen Saudi Arabia propping up Pakistan's fragile economy.  Pakistani officials have said that Saudi Arabia will announce eight investment agreements during the visit, including a $ 10 billion refinery and petrochemicals complex in the coastal city of Gwadar, where China is building a port. Saudi Arabia has in recent months helped keep Pakistan's economy afloat by propping up its rapidly dwindling foreign exchange reserves with a $ 6 billion loan, giving Islamabad breathing room as it negotiates a bailout with the International Monetary Fund.



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Trump administration orders non-emegency US diplomatic staff to leave Venezuela

Trump administration orders non-emegency US diplomatic staff to leave VenezuelaAmerican diplomats in Venezuela are in the middle of an escalating dispute between the Trump administration and Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.



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U.S. rejects Maduro decision to sever diplomatic ties

U.S. rejects Maduro decision to sever diplomatic tiesThe US said it did not think he had the authority to cut ties and it would conduct relations with a government led by opposition leader Juan Guaido.



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Third Canadian arrested in China as Huawei diplomatic rows continue

Third Canadian arrested in China as Huawei diplomatic rows continueA third Canadian citizen has been detained in China following the arrest of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou in Vancouver.  A spokesperson for Global Affairs Canada said on Tuesday that they are “aware of a Canadian citizen” who has been taken into custody in China. An anonymous official later briefed that the department had "reason to believe that this case is linked to other recent cases of Canadians detained in China" Nevertheless there was speculation that the move was retaliation for the arrest of Ms Meng, who is facing extradition to the US. David Mulroney, a former ambassador to China, said it would be highly unusual if the third arrest was a coincidence.  "One detention is bad enough. Two is terrible. Three underlines how ruthless China can be," he told AFP. Ms Meng's arrest has been seen as politically motivated as it comes amid hightened security tensions between the US and China, and accusations that Huawei is a vehicle for state spying. Canada declined to name the latest person arrested or provide further details, citing a national privacy act. However, the National Post, which first reported the story on Wednesday, cited third-party sources who apparently spoke to the family of the person arrested and confirmed they are neither a diplomat nor an entrepreneur working in China. Hua Chunying, spokesman for China’s foreign ministry, denied any knowledge of the latest arrest in a daily press briefing in Beijing this morning. Two other Canadians — former diplomat and current advocacy group advisor Michael Kovrig, and businessman Michael Spavor — were arrested in China last week on charges of endangering the country’s national security.  Beijing has not said if the two arrests were made in retaliation for Meng’s detention, and the Canadian government has stressed that there is no explicit link between the cases. However, Western diplomats in Beijing and commentators have called the move “tit-for-tat” reprisals.  Adrian Zenz, an independent China researcher and lecturer at Columbia International University, told The Telegraph: “This [the third arrest] indicates that China is willing to escalate this delicate situation even further, and shows how important Huawei as a company is for the Chinese state. "Beijing is very concerned that Huawei's reputation in the West will deteriorate further. Also, China has been increasingly bold in its stance towards Western governments, notably in its strong rebuttal of a request of 15 diplomats to visit the re-education camps in Xinjiang. "Beijing's willingness to arbitrarily detain Canadian citizens in order to put pressure on Ottawa is in line with this new approach to the West, which is increasingly characterised by a use of sharp power instead of soft power.” The relationship between Ottawa and Beijing has become evermore important amid the ongoing trade war between China and the US, but news of a third arrest will heighten tensions further. After Ms Meng was detained China’s government and state-run media said Canada would face serious consequences, putting Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s hopes for free trade talks in jeopardy.  Mr Trudeau’s government has been under pressure to bar Huawei, one of the world’s leading mobile technology giants, from developing a 5G network in Canada due to cyber security and espionage concerns. The UK government and universities are also facing questions over contracts involving Huawei hardware. Ms Meng, who is accused by US prosecutors of putting multinational banks at risk by misleading them into trading with Iran in violation of US sanctions, was released on December 12 on C$ 10m (£6m) bail, but will return to court next year to face further legal proceedings. The 46-year-old, daughter of Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei, denies the charges.



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Meng Wanzhou: US ambassador told to 'immediately correct' arrest of Huawei CFO as diplomatic row deepens

Meng Wanzhou: US ambassador told to 'immediately correct' arrest of Huawei CFO as diplomatic row deepensChina has summoned the US ambassador to Beijing to demand Washington cancel an arrest warrant for a senior executive of telecoms giant Huawei. The arrest of chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou on 1 December has threatened to reignite a trade war between the two powers. Officials reportedly told Ambassador Terry Branstad the detention was “extremely egregious” and said the US must “immediately correct its wrong actions”.



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In phone calls, Turkey's Erdogan urges Putin, Poroshenko to diplomatic solution: Turkish source

In phone calls, Turkey's Erdogan urges Putin, Poroshenko to diplomatic solution: Turkish sourceTurkish President Tayyip Erdogan urged his Russian and Ukrainian counterparts in separate phone calls to resolve tensions between the two countries through dialogue and diplomacy, a source in Erdogan’s office said on Wednesday. Ukraine and Russia have been at loggerheads after Russia captured three Ukrainian vessels and their crews over the weekend in what Kiev fears could be a precursor to a full-scale Russian invasion. Russia accuses Ukraine of plotting with its Western allies to provoke a conflict.



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Justice For Jamal Khashoggi Now Depends On Trump's Moral Judgment And Diplomatic Skills

Justice For Jamal Khashoggi Now Depends On Trump's Moral Judgment And Diplomatic SkillsWASHINGTON ― As reports about missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi grow



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