Taiwan Fights for Its Diplomatic Survival in Latin America

Advertisement Of the 14 small diplomatic allies that recognize the Republic of China (Taiwan), eight are in Latin America and the Caribbean. This is a region that has become one of the main arenas of the growing geopolitical dispute between China and the United States. The question of Taiwan’s diplomatic survival as a state has become central to China-U.S. relationship and Latin America will be a key region in that context. China has made steady progress in recent decades in the region, becoming the top trading partner of most Latin…

Students Protest Covid Lockdowns at Elite Beijing University

A group of students at a campus of China’s elite Peking University protested strict Covid-19 lockdown requirements on Sunday, arguing that the measures were poorly communicated and unfair. The government quickly moved to censor videos and photos that spread on China’s internet. The students were upset that they were unable to order food and that they were required to isolate, while teachers and their families were allowed to leave the campus freely, according to posts on a school forum and one student. The authorities tried to put up a wall…

Shanghai to end Covid lockdown and return to normal life in June amid economic slowdown

Shanghai has set out plans for the return of more normal life from 1 June and the end of a painful Covid-19 lockdown that has lasted more than six weeks and contributed to a sharp slowdown in China’s economic activity. In the clearest timetable yet, deputy mayor Zong Ming said on Monday that Shanghai’s reopening would be carried out in stages, with movement curbs largely to remain in place until 21 May to prevent a rebound in infections, before a gradual easing. “From June 1 to mid- and late June,…

Dark week for journalism as four reporters killed around the world

Ten days before she was assassinated outside a Mexican convenience store, Yesenia Mollinedo noticed two mysterious stalkers following her on a motorbike. “We know where you live, bitch,” one of them warned the journalist, the director of an online news outlet called El Veraz (The Truthful One) whose motto is “Journalism with Humanity”. For more than a year, Mollinedo, 45, had been trying to shrug off what she hoped were empty threats designed to silence the stories she published about crime in the coastal town of Cosoleacaque. She repeatedly changed…

China’s struggle delights some – but should make us all nervous | Larry Elliott

China has been central to the story of globalisation over the past 30 years but now it is struggling. More than two years after Covid-19 cases were discovered in Wuhan, the world’s most populous country has yet to get on top of the virus. Draconian lockdowns have been imposed because China’s vaccines are less effective than those available in the west, and immunity levels are lower as well. Growth is slowing and not just because of the tough restrictions insisted upon by President Xi Jinping. Flaws in China’s economic model…

Secret British ‘black propaganda’ campaign targeted cold war enemies

The British government ran a secret “black propaganda” campaign for decades, targeting Africa, the Middle East and parts of Asia with leaflets and reports from fake sources aimed at destabilising cold war enemies by encouraging racial tensions, sowing chaos, inciting violence and reinforcing anti-communist ideas, newly declassified documents have revealed. The effort, run from the mid-1950s through to the late 70s by a unit in London that was part of the Foreign Office, was focused on cold war enemies such as the Soviet Union and China, leftwing liberation groups and…

China is wary of Hong Kong’s bureaucratic elite

HAVING TAKEN 99.2% of the vote as the sole candidate in an election from which an even higher proportion of Hong Kong’s people were excluded, the territory’s next chief executive, John Lee, made clear why China’s Communist Party engineered his victory. “Protecting Hong Kong from internal and external threats and ensuring its stability”, he said, would be of “paramount importance” under his leadership. Mr Lee is a former policeman. The party trusts him to keep Hong Kong in line. Trust is something that the party does not have in abundance…

China’s Grand Canal is full for the first time in decades

WHEN KUBLAI KHAN tired of spending winters at his pleasure-dome in Xanadu, the Mongol overlord of China, who ruled during the 13th century, built a new capital in what is now Beijing. In order to feed the city, he launched a decade-long hydrological project, extending the Grand Canal, which already snaked through much of eastern China. The oldest sections of the waterway had been constructed centuries before. Kublai Khan was hardly the first ruler to demand that China’s waters do his bidding. Nor was he the last. “To rule a…

The pandemic has made life harder for China’s homeless

SPARE A LITTLE pity for a Chinese beggar called Mr Jiang. Last month he was blamed for a small covid-19 outbreak in the city of Haining. The media labelled him “patient zero”. The authorities noted his “super-strength infectiousness”. Samples from the public toilets and empty shops where Mr Jiang slept came back positive for the virus. He tested positive, too. The authorities are prosecuting him for allegedly not co-operating with contact-tracers. Listen to this story.Enjoy more audio and podcasts on iOS or Android. Your browser does not support the <audio>…

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