1. SQUABBLES ERUPT AS G7 LEADERS OPEN SUMMIT IN FRENCH RESORT
BIARRITZ: Squabbles erupted among G7 nations on Saturday as their leaders’ gathering exposed sharp differences on global trade tensions, Britain’s exit from the EU and how to respond to the fires raging in the Amazon rainforest.
The planned three- day meeting hosted by French President Emmanuel Macron aimed to unite a group of wealthy countries that has struggled in recent years to speak with one voice.
However, in a bleak assessment of relations between once-close allies, European Council President Donald Tusk said it was getting “increasingly” hard to find common ground among the leaders and that the meeting may be the last moment to restore the political community.
Macron set an agenda for the group of France, Britain, Canada, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States that included the defense of democracy, gender equality, education and the environment where he invited Asian, African and Latin American leaders to join them for a global push on these issues.
2. NORTH KOREAN LEADER KIM OVERSAW TEST OF ‘SUPER-LARGE MULTIPLE ROCKET LAUNCHER’
SEOUL: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un yesterday, oversaw the test of a “super-large multiple rocket launcher”.
Photos released by North Korean state media showed rockets launching from large tubes mounted on the back of an eight-wheel vehicle, which was what analysts said to be the fourth new missile system unveiled by North Korea since the stalled of denuclearization talks between Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump.
American officials have been trying to restart the stalled talks with North Korea over its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs, which are heavily sanctioned.
Kim Jong Un said, North Korea must step up development of new strategic and tactical weapons to counter “ever-mounting military threats and pressure offensive of the hostile forces”.
3. BRAZILIAN STATES ASK FOR MILITARY HELP AS AMAZON FIRES RAGE
BRASILIA: Six states in Brazil’s Amazon region requested military help on Saturday to combat record fires that are tearing through the rainforest.
A spokeswoman for the president’s office said, the states of Para, Rondonia, Roraima, Tocantins, Acre and Mato Grosso have requested military assistance, a day after President Jair Bolsonaro authorized the military to step in.
According to the joint chief of staff for the country’s military, Raul Botelho, Brazil has 44,000 troops stationed in its northern Amazon region that are available to combat forest fires but did not say how many troops would be involved and gave few operational details of how they would be used and where.
Defense Minister Fernando Azevedo said forces would be concentrated in certain areas depending on the individual mission.