President Donald Trump's staff and Chinese officials reportedly fought over the U.S. "nuclear football" during a visit to China last November, Axios reported on Sunday.Five unnamed sources told the news and information website that the "skirmish" between Chief of Staff John Kelly, a U.S. Secret Service agent and Chinese officials took place during Trump's trip to Beijing's Great Hall of the People.The nuclear football is a briefcase that contains military plans and communication tools that the president can use to order a strike. A military aide carrying the briefcase must travel close to Trump at all times.The scuffle began when the U.S. military aide carrying the nuclear football was blocked from entering the Great Hall, according to the sources. Another official quickly informed Kelly, who then came over and told the officials to walk in. "We're moving in," he said."[The] Chinese security official grabbed Kelly, and Kelly shoved the man's hand off of his body," Axios reported. "Then … [Read more...] about John Kelly and Chinese Officials Scuffled Over ‘Nuclear Football’ During Trump’s Beijing Visit
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SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korean President Moon Jae-in said Thursday the global diplomatic push to defuse the nuclear standoff with North Korea is at a “critical crossroads” and called for China to continue serving a “positive role” in denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula and stabilizing peace. Moon made the comments during a meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi at Seoul’s presidential Blue House. Wang made his first visit in four years amid efforts to patch up relations damaged by South Korea’s deployment of a U.S. anti-missile system China perceives as a security threat. “The process for the complete denuclearizing of the Korean Peninsula and permanently stabilizing peace is at a critical crossroads,” Moon said. “I would like to ask for continuous support from the Chinese government until the new era of a peaceful and denuclearized Korean Peninsula opens.” Wang called for stronger “strategic … [Read more...] about Moon calls for Chinese role in denuclearizing North Korea
© AP Photo / US Navy - Ryan C. McGinleyUS Sends Sea-Based Radar to Korean Peninsula to Counter N Korean Nuclear ThreatBEIJING (Sputnik) — Beijing hopes to work together with Washington and Pyongyang to support the peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and to denuclearize the region, Geng Shuang, spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, said Friday. "The level at which the nuclear problem in North Korea is now, do you think this problem is easy to solve? We have repeatedly said that the root of the problem is in the disagreements between North Korea and the United States. We hope that these two sides can share responsibility and work together with China to support peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and on its denuclearization," the spokesman said. On February 12, North Korea launched a medium-range ballistic missile into the Sea of Japan and declared the test … [Read more...] about China Hopes to Work With US, North Korea on Peace on Korean Peninsula – Ministry
NEW YORK (AP) — The New York City Ballet’s production of “The Nutcracker” has cast a black dancer to play Marie for the first time. The New York Times reports Nebres is a student at the School of American Ballet. Her mother’s family is from Trinidad and her father’s family is from the Philippines. The 11-year-old Nebres says she remembers being inspired by Misty Copeland becoming the first African-American female principal Nebres will be joined by a diverse group of young leads. Nebres’ Prince, Tanner Quirk, is half-Chinese. Sophia Thomopoulos, who will also play Marie, is half-Korean, half-Greek. Sophia’s Prince will be played by Kai Misra-Stone, who is half-South Asian. … [Read more...] about NYC Ballet casts first black Marie in ‘The Nutcracker’
New Delhi is approaching Gota with an open mind, observes N Sathiya Moorthy. IMAGE: Prime Minister Narendra Damodardas Modi greets Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa at Hyderabad House in New Delhi, November 29, 2019. Photograph: Arun Sharma/PTI Photo As is to be expected, Sri Lanka's new President Gotabaya Nandasena Rajapaksa's maiden overseas visit, to New Delhi, has come in for multiple interpretations at the hands of India's strategic community. It used to be the case with his elder brother and predecessor once removed, President Percy Mahinda Rajapaksa, during his second term in office -- after he had successfully headed the nation in eliminating the LTTE with multiple conventional military capabilities. India has had an open mind to the Gota election back home, and his subsequent Delhi visit. There was no jubilation of the kind that had attended that of predecessor Maithripala Sirisena -- or the attendant electoral defeat of incumbent Mahinda R, in elections 2005. 'Cautious … [Read more...] about Can India trust Gota and the Rajapaksas?