World Bank warns recession risk rising
The threat of a global recession is growing as central banks focus on bringing down soaring inflation rates, the World Bank warned Thursday, calling on governments to help boost supply to ease the constraints behind rising prices. Inflation worldwide has been rising at the fastest pace seen in decades, due to supply constraints amid high demand as countries emerged from the pandemic. It has been exacerbated this year by the Russian invasion of Ukraine and Covid lockdowns in China. In a new paper, World Bank economists warn that the actions may not be enough to bring high prices under control, leading to a need for more interest rate hikes, which in turn will put the brakes on growth.Global GDP growth would slow to 0.5% in 2023 – a 0.4 percent contraction in per capita growth – meeting the technical definition of a global recession.
Putin acknowledges China’s concerns over Ukraine
Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday he understood China’s Xi Jinping had concerns about the crisis in Ukraine. Since Russia invaded Ukraine in February, China has trod a careful line, criticising Western sanctions against Moscow but stopping short of endorsing or assisting in the military campaign. “We highly value the balanced position of our Chinese friends when it comes to the Ukraine crisis,” Putin told Xi at their first meeting since the war began. “We understand your questions and concern about this.” Xi did not mention Ukraine in his public remarks in the meeting, which took place in Uzbekistan. Xi said China was willing, together with Russia, “to provide strong mutual support on issues that affect mutual fundamental interests and to deepen practical cooperation in trade, agriculture, connectivity and other fields”.
On the Taiwan issue, Xi appreciated Russia’s adherence to the principle of ‘One China’ and stressed that Taiwan is part of China. “No country has the right to stand as a judge on the Taiwan issue”, he said. China said on Thursday it had lodged “solemn representations” with the United States, after a US Senate panel advanced legislation that would enhance US military support for Taiwan.
‘440 bodies found in Izyum mass grave’
Ukrainian President Zelensky has announced that a mass grave was found in Izyum, the city in the Kharkiv region recently recaptured by Ukraine forces. According to the police, there would be at least440 bodies. Some have been killed (by gunfire), others by artillery fire, or by the explosion of mines. Some have died in air strikes.
‘Ukraine progress is not the end of the war’ – Stoltenberg
“Ukraine’s progress on the ground is not only due to their own courage, but also to the support of NATO, but we must realize that the war is not over,” according to the Alliance’s secretary general Jens Stoltenberg. On the possible regrets regarding the possibility of accelerating the accession of Kiev to NATO and of a “weight” of this entry on the Russian invasion, he stressed: “We have given the green light to the entry of Ukraine in 2008. But the allies they had different opinions.”
von der Leyen vows ‘unfaltering’ support for Ukraine
European Commossion president Ursula von der Leyen said Thursday that war-torn Ukraine would have Europe’s support for “as long as it takes”. Also, in an interview with ‘Bild’, von der Leyen said: “Give the tanks to Ukraine. If they say they need combat tanks, then we should take them seriously and supply them.” Meanwhile, Germany announced it would send two more multiple rocket launchers as well as 50 armoured personnel carriers to Ukraine. Greece would also soon send 40 infantry fighting vehicles to Ukraine while the US will soon announce a new $600 million weapons package for Ukraine’s military. In an airborne news conference while travelling from Kazakhstan, Pope Francis said it was morally legitimate for nations to supply weapons to Ukraine to help the country defend itself from Russian aggression.
Queen Elizabeth to get private burial
Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II will be laid to rest with her late husband, Prince Philip, during a private service and burial on Monday. Buckingham Palace released more details of the state funeral and private interment of the monarch who died last week. More than 2,000 people, including royalty and heads of state from around the world, were expected to attend the funeral service in Westminster Abbey in central London. Two minutes of silence will be observed across the UK at the end of the service. Ending 10 days of national mourning, Elizabeth will finally be laid to rest at a chapel at her Windsor Castle home alongside her husband of 73 years Prince Philip, who died last year.
Horses trained for tears
The horses taking part in the procession that will carry the coffin of Elizabeth II from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall have received special and appropriate training. The animals will then know how to react to the crowd and to any manifestations of pain, even to the sound of subjects in tears. “They will be exposed to loud noises, crowds, flags, flowers, people in tears,” explained Sergeant Tom Jenks, who will guide the carriage with the coffin of the sovereign. One of the horses, 18-year-old Cassius, already attended the funeral of former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in 2013.
‘To govern will need courage, common sense’ – Meloni
“Whoever should govern this country (Italy) will not inherit an easy situation because of our public accounts and a series of macro-economic factors,” Fratelli f’Italia leader Giorgia Meloni said Thursday. In video connection with an initiative of Confartigianato in Rome, Meloni said, “I believe that it takes a lot of clarity, common sense and a fair amount of courage to quickly implement clear, understandable measures that can reverse such a trend.”
Six dead, three missing as heavy rains hit Italy
Bad weather Brought the Italian Marche region to its knees, killing at least six people while three others are still missing in the province of Ancona. About 420mm of rain fell in two or three hours, half of what it rains in a year in the region, turning the streets into real streams and dragged cars away. The mayor of Cantiano appealed for citizens to remain calm and avoid risky situations.
134 killed in Sudan floods
Flooding in Sudan has killed at least 134 people, injured another 120 and destroyed more than 128,000 homes in the northeast African country’s ongoing wet season. The Civil Defence Council said the main causes of death were collapsing homes, drowning and electrocution.
Judge refuses DOJ request to access cards seized from Trump
‘The New York Times’ reports victory for Donald Trump! Federal Judge Aileen Cannon rejected the Justice Department’s request to regain access to 100 top secret papers seized by the FBI from Donald Trump in Mar-a-Lago and named a candidate suggested by the tycoon’s legal team as a special master.
Nine dead at Guatemala independence concert
At least nine people died and over 20 others were injured in Xela, Guatemala, due to a crowd stampede at the end of a concert for national independence. ‘Prensa Libre’ reported numerous ambulances were on the spot, while the Public Prosecutor’s Office and the national police are already working to try to reconstruct the dynamics of the accident.
Tennis: King Roger retires
Roger Federer has announced his retirement from tennis. The Swiss champion, in a post on Instagram, declared that next week’s ‘Rod Laver Cup’ will be his last match and then he will no longer participate in slam or ATP tournaments. Federer leaves behind an extraordinary career, made up of legendary victories, indelible images, but also mind-boggling numbers, which alone can tell an important slice of what the Swiss champion represented for the history of tennis. He is the player with the most games played (429, the only one over 400) and the most games won (369) in Grand Slam tournaments in the Open era. Federer remained 237 consecutive weeks at number 1 in the ATP ranking and 750 overall weeks in the top 10: both are the longest streaks since the ranking was introduced in 1973.