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Thursday, March 30, 2023

Country and world news at a glance

Country and world news at a glance

Biden’s State of the Union address touts economic policy victory

President Joe Biden will deliver his second State of the Union address on Tuesday, reminding Americans how their lives have improved during his first two years in office as he tries to navigate the tricky politics of a newly divided Washington. Instead of major new policy proposals, Biden is not expected to spend most of his speech emphasizing his efforts over the past two years to create jobs, fight inflation and improve the nation’s infrastructure. The speech came amid gloom in the country as Biden tries to hone his pitch to voters in the coming months before announcing that he will seek re-election in 2024.

9/11 Pakistani military ruler Pervez Musharraf dies

General Pervez Musharraf, who seized power in a bloodless coup and later led a reluctant Pakistan to aid the US war in Afghanistan, has died. He is 79 years old and his health has been declining. The general ruled Pakistan after a coup in 1999 through tensions with India, an atomic proliferation scandal and an Islamist extremist insurgency until he finally stepped down in 2008, facing possible impeachment. Although he attempted a political comeback in 2012, he spent his later life in self-imposed exile in Dubai to avoid criminal charges. The Pakistani consulate in Dubai confirmed his death and said diplomats were offering support to his family. The military also paid tribute to him.

Ukrainian Defense Minister Wants Western Help With Warplanes

Ukraine’s defense minister has expressed confidence in securing Western allies to agree to the country’s latest weapons request to use warplanes to repel Russian forces that invaded nearly a year ago. Oleksii Reznikov told a news conference in Kyiv on Sunday that Ukraine had received all the items in its “wish list for Santa Claus”, except the plane. “There will be planes, too,” he confidently predicts. So far, Ukraine has won the support of the Baltic states and Poland in its quest to acquire Western fighter jets. But some Western leaders have expressed concern that providing the jets could anger the Kremlin and push their countries deeper into the conflict. German-made tanks are on their way to Ukraine. Reznikov said his troops would start training on the Panther tanks on Monday.

Pope, Episcopalian, Presbyterian leaders condemn anti-gay law

Pope Francis, the head of the Anglican Church and the top minister of the Presbyterian Church spoke on LGBTQ rights. They jointly condemned the criminalization of homosexuality on Sunday and said homosexuals should be welcomed in the church. Three Christian leaders spoke at an unprecedented joint airborne news conference on their return home from South Sudan. They were there on a three-day ecumenical pilgrimage in an attempt to move the young nation’s peace process forward. They were asked about Francis’ recent comments to the Associated Press in which he declared laws criminalizing homosexuality were “unjust” and that “homosexuality is not a crime.”

Peru long sees financial stability at risk of instability

The Peruvian city of Cusco is often a bustling mecca for international tourists. But its picturesque streets are now silent as deadly demonstrations keep many foreigners away. The protests came after interim President Pedro Castillo was impeached and arrested in December for trying to shut down Congress. The violence has left 57 civilians dead and reignited class and ethnic divisions. Many Peruvians wonder if a long period of precarious economic stability is over.

Powerful earthquake kills at least 195 in Turkey, Syria

ANKARA, Turkey — A powerful 7.8-magnitude earthquake has rattled southeastern Turkey and Syria, knocking down buildings and sending panicked residents outside on a frigid winter night. At least 195 people were killed and hundreds injured in both countries, with the death toll expected to rise. Rescuers and residents frantically searched for survivors under the rubble of collapsed buildings in cities on both sides of the border. Dozens of people pulled away chunks of concrete and twisted metal in an earthquake-hit Turkish city. People on the street yelled at others inside the partially collapsed apartment block, leaning dangerously.

via wired source

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