Cuba has a new leader and it’s not a Castro
Miguel Díaz-Canel has been named first secretary of the Cuban Communist Party (PCC), the most powerful role on the island. He will be the first person without the name Castro to run Cuba since the 1959 revolution.
The move, announced Monday, was widely expected. It means the tall, silver-haired 60-year-old now holds Cuba’s two most important positions, head of the party and president of the state, and buries rumours that he was a placeman, subject to more powerful forces.
“I never believed that rumour,” says former Cuban diplomat Carlos Alzugaray. “He was in charge, probably in direct consultation with Raúl Castro. But I think the signal is that he’s in charge of everything now. He stands way over everybody else.”
An electrical engineer by training, Díaz-Canel has for much of his life been a party functionary, albeit a fast-rising one. He was born a year after the revolution, in Villa Clara, the province where Che Guevara broke the will of Fulgencio Batista’s troops, bringing about the revolution.
Raúl Castro first appointed him vice president (of the council of ministers) in 2012, shortly after he himself had replaced his brother Fidel as first secretary of the party. It was the first real indication that Díaz-Canel was being prepared for power.
The makeup of the new Politburo that will guide Cuba through the next years was also announced Monday. Its members face huge challenges as the state struggles with the coronavirus, United States sanctions, crumbling infrastructure and embedded bureaucracy, according to Al Jazeera.
The unprecedented escalation of Russian-Western tensions
Russia and the West are going through the worst period of tension since the Cold War, with sanctions and deportations in response.
The day after the Czech government accused the staff of the Russian military intelligence agency of being involved in a series of mysterious explosions at an ammunition depot in 2014 and the expulsion of 18 Moscow diplomats, the government of the General. President Vladimir Putin on April 18 announced a response when he asked 20 Czech diplomats to return home.
The latest expulsion signals escalating tensions between the Kremlin and Western governments, reaching levels not seen since the Cold War. Tensions between Russia and the Czech Republic come just days after Washington imposed a series of harsh sanctions on Russian government officials and businesses, in response to a large-scale attack on the US government computer system.
The Russian Foreign Ministry called the Czech accusations “unreasonable” and said that the government had become a “puppet” of the United States. “To please the US after the recent sanctions against Russia, the Czech government in this case even surpassed foreign masters,” said the Russian Foreign Ministry on April 18.
Deportation decisions are likely to undermine Czech diplomatic presence in Russia, where Prague has only a few dozen staff. In contrast, the Russian embassy in Prague, the Czech capital, is believed to be one of the Kremlin’s largest diplomatic organizations in Europe and is used as a preparation center for intelligence operations in several countries. West, according to security experts.
The US Embassy in Prague announced on Twitter that Washington “always stands side by side with its allies first and foremost. We appreciate this move by the Czech Republic, forcing Russia to pay the price for the danger in the Czech territory”.
On the same day, French President Emmanuel Macron also expressed his opinion to Russia, saying that world powers should “draw red lines” with Moscow and consider punishing if they cross this line.
“We must have a clear red line with Russia,” he said in an interview with US broadcaster CBS on April 18.
“This is the only reliable way. Punishment is not enough, but it is part of many measures,” he said, agreeing with US President Joe Biden’s readiness to speak with Russian President. Vladimir Putin amid heightened tensions.
Recent tensions between Russia and the West are also “heating up” with developments in the Ukraine border area and the Crimean peninsula.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky during the April 16 talks “shared concerns about Russia’s strengthening” at the border with Ukraine and the Crimean peninsula.
Russia has recently deployed a variety of weapons, including tanks, artillery and heavy armored vehicles, to areas near the border with Ukraine and the Crimean peninsula. The Russian troop movement was started at the end of March and made the US uneasy, Electrodealpro reported.
Putin Will Address International Climate Summit Via Video Link – Kremlin
Russian President Vladimir Putin will on April 22 address an international climate summit hosted by the United States, the Kremlin said Monday, despite a sharp deterioration in ties between Moscow and Western capitals.
"Vladimir Putin will outline Russia's approaches within the context of establishing broad-ranging international cooperation aimed at overcoming the negative consequences of global climate change," the Kremlin said in a statement.
Confirmation of Putin's participating in the U.S.-hosted summit comes amid a sharp deterioration in ties between Moscow and the West. (Photo: Moscow Times)
Confirmation of Putin's participating in the summit via video link comes as Moscow trades barbs with Washington and the European Union over jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny and the conflict in Ukraine.
Despite mounting tensions, Russia and the United States held climate negotiations earlier this year and identified forests, nuclear energy and the Arctic as areas of cooperate, The Moscow Times reported.
New lockdown measures called ‘Red Zones’ in Myanmar
Prime Minister Hun Sen this afternoon announced new measures to be implemented by law enforcement during the lockdown of Phnom Penh and nearby Takhmao city, which are called “Red Zones”.
All individuals in a Red Zone are prohibited from leaving their home, including the exclusion of sports activities.
The new measures are aimed to strengthen the current lockdown of the capital and Takhmao city, which started on April 14 to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and the supplemental measures instituted on April 17.
|(Photo: Khmer Times)|
It noted that authorities implementing the lockdown will take immediate action to distribute emergency aid, including rice, noodles, canned fish, fish sauce and soy sauce to vulnerable, poor and disadvantaged people in the Red Zones.
The Ministry of Commerce will arrange for the supply, transportation and distribution of food, including rice and drinking water as well as other essential food items to sell to people living in Red Zones by implementing a systematic sales service, as reported by The Khmer Times.
Gold price forecast – gold markets form exhaustion candle
Gold markets rallied a bit during the trading session on Monday but then gave back the gains as we approached the 200 day EMA.
Gold markets have rallied a bit during the trading session on Monday to reach towards the 200 day EMA, but then gave back the gains to form a bit of a shooting star. The shooting star suggests that we are running out of momentum, but more importantly we are stuck between the 50 and the 200 day EMA indicators. That suggests that the market probably has a lot of noise in this area, and if that is going to be the case it is likely that we will see this market gyrate, FX Empire reported.
|(Photo: PK Team)|
|World breaking news today (April 16): Chicago police shot and killed a 13-year-old boy |
World breaking news today (April 16): Chicago police shot and killed a 13-year-old boy. Meanwhile, U.S. imposes wide array of sanctions on Russia for ‘malign’ ...
|World breaking news today (April 15): Biden to pull US troops from Afghanistan, end ‘forever war’ |
World breaking news today (April 15): Biden to pull US troops from Afghanistan, end ‘forever war’. Meanwhile, Vladimir Putin Gets Second Dose Of COVID-19 Vaccine, ...
|World breaking news today (April 14): US and China deploy aircraft carriers in South China Sea |
World breaking news today (April 14): Austria's health minister resigns, saying he's overworked. Meanwhile, Russia accuses US, NATO of moving troops to its border, US ...
Translated by Le Hang