Headlines 

Kim Jong-un greets Moon Jae-in as inter-Korean summit starts

Leaders take part in highly choreographed opening to three days of talks in Pyongyang, North Korea Kim Jong-un has greeted the South Korean president to cheers from crowds assembled at North Koreas Pyongyang airport as the pair begin their third summit. The North Korean leader emerged from the airport building to raucous cheering and walked up to President Moon Jae-in. The two leaders embraced and flashed wide smiles. South Korean President Moon Jae-in hugs North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un Photograph: AP The highly choreographed meeting set to dramatic music provided…

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Headlines 

North Korea making ‘rapid’ upgrades to nuclear reactor despite summit pledges

Monitoring group says work shows why a denuclearisation deal rather than a statement of lofty goals is needed North Korea has continued to upgrade its only known nuclear reactor used to fuel its weapons program, satellite imagery has shown, despite ongoing negotiations with the US and a pledge to denuclearise. Play Video 4:03 according to an analysis by monitoring group 38 North of commercial satellite images taken on 21 June. The cooling system for the plutonium production reactor has been modified and at least two new non-industrial buildings have been…

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Headlines 

Donald Trump shrugs off Kim’s human rights record: ‘He’s a tough guy’

As Fox News host presses Trump over North Korean regime, president is dismissive: A lot of people have done bad things Donald Trump has dismissed concerns about the widely condemned human rights record of the North Korean dictator, Kim Jong-un, praising him as a tough guy, a smart guy and a great negotiator. In an denuclearization summit with the North Korean leader, Trump declined to condemn the record of his interlocutor. International bodies have accused Kim of crimes against humanity including assassinations of political rivals, public executions and holding captive…

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Odds and Ends 

Trumps Negotiating Style Is Pure Art of the Moron

Im often on the receiving end of the Trumpentariats criticisms of Never Trump conservatives. Dont I get it? Dont I love how Trump is achieving the impossible, and soaring to heights to which no other president could aspire? Havent I gotten over the election yet?When, oh when, will I finally MAGA? I received an email Tuesday from a Trump fan asking why for once I couldnt congratulate Donald Trump for his work with North Korea. Leaving aside my usual critiques of Trump, which are, as you may have noticed, varied,…

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Headlines 

North and South Korean leaders promise ‘lasting peace’ for peninsula

Kim Jong-un and Moon Jae-in pledge denuclearisation and end to decades of hostility after summit The leaders of North and South Korea have promised after a landmark summit to bring lasting peace to the peninsula with a commitment to denuclearisation and to ending decades of hostilities. Speaking at the end of an extraordinary day that summit between Kim and Donald Trump. The US president, in his April 27, 2018 Speaking at the White House, Trump warned that the US was not going to be played by North Korea, later the…

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Headlines 

ECB’s Rimsevics Detained by Latvian Anti-Graft Bureau

Latvian central bank Governor Ilmars Rimsevics, a member of the European Central Bank’s governing council, was detained by the anti-graft bureau, in a flurry of actions by officials that ended early Monday with the financial regulator imposing payment restrictions on third-biggest lender ABLV Bank AS. The detention followed a search by authorities of the governor’s office and private property, state-owned LTV reported. Rimsevics’s lawyer, Saulvedis Varpins, said the governor considered the move against him as "clearly illegal." Finance Minister Dana Reizniece-Ozola said the detention would be explained on Monday and…

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Headlines 

Closer to Midnight: The Doomsday Clock and the Threat of Nuclear War

The accidental missile alert in Hawaii earlier this month made real for 38 terrifying minutes the vague, low-level dread that permeates American life today: Nuclear war seems closer and more real than it has in a generation. Even the pope—not exactly a fear-monger—said last week that the world now stood at “the very limit.” That existential fear was affirmed today by the organization of nuclear scientists who have spent seven decades trying to turn humanity away from nuclear weapons: The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists moved its Doomsday Clock 30 seconds…

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Headlines 

2018 Feels Ripe for Big Unexpected Crisis, Eurasia Group Says

This year could see a geopolitical crisis on the scale of the financial crash a decade ago, Eurasia Group warned in its annual outlook. Describing global political challenges as “daunting,” the New York-based political risk consultancy said that “if we had to pick one year for a big unexpected crisis — the geopolitical equivalent of the 2008 financial meltdown — it feels like 2018." The biggest uncertainty surrounds China’s move to fill a vacuum as U.S. influence continues to decline, stoking tensions between the two powers, it said. That’s likely to…

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Headlines 

North Korea Signals Olympics Truce, Seeks Talks With Seoul

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un called for urgent talks with South Korea to make the Winter Olympics next month a success even while repeating claims that he could strike the U.S. with a nuclear bomb if necessary. In an annual New Year’s day speech, Kim said that “we sincerely hope the games will be successful.” He said that both Koreas should seek to resolve problems among themselves rather than seek help from outside of the region. “It’s about time that the North and the South sit down and seriously…

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Headlines 

Kim Jong Un Says Nuclear Button to Hit U.S. Always on My Desk

Kim Jong Un repeated claims that he could hit the U.S. with a nuclear weapon, saying that its deterrent is “irreversible” and would prevent President Donald Trump from starting a war. Kim also said he planned to send a delegation to the Winter Olympics in South Korea next month, Yonhap News reported, even as he called for mass production of nuclear warheads. South Korean television stations stopped broadcasting the speech before it ended. “It’s reality, not a threat, that the nuclear button is always on my desk,” Kim said in…

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Headlines 

Trump Scraps Possible Formal Meeting With Putin

President Donald Trump will not meet formally with Russian President Vladimir Putin at an Asia-Pacific summit in Vietnam this week due to a scheduling conflict, the White House said Friday, amid U.S. concerns that the meeting wouldn’t create genuine progress on key issues. “Are they going to bump into each other and say hello? Certainly possible and likely,” Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters. “But in terms of a scheduled, formal meeting, there’s not one on the calendar and we don’t anticipate that there will be one.” Any Putin-Trump meeting…

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Headlines 

North Korea Warns That Nuclear War Could Break Out Any Moment

North Korea warned that a nuclear war “may break out any moment” as the U.S. and South Korea began one of the largest joint naval drills off both the east and west coasts of the peninsula. Kim In Ryong, North Korea’s deputy ambassador to the United Nations, said on Monday that his nation had become a “full-fledged nuclear power which possesses the delivery means of various ranges” and warned that “the entire U.S. mainland is within our firing range.” He also called North Korea “a responsible nuclear state.” “As long…

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Headlines 

North Korean Hack of U.S. War Plans Shows Off Cyber Skills

The techno soldiers of Kim Jong Un are growing more aggressive in defending North Korea’s supreme leader against threats from The Interview.” If Kim’s cyber warriors have indeed stolen the top-secret intelligence, it raises alarms about the security of U.S.-South Korea information and the effectiveness of potential military options. “The plan is fundamental to conducting a war operation and leakage of even a small part of it is very critical,” Rhee Cheol-hee, the ruling party lawmaker, said in a telephone interview. “How could we fight against an enemy and win a…

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