05/20/2022, 10.26
ASIA TODAY
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Israel, Arab congresswoman resigns: Bennett government in minority

Today’s headlines: Canada bans Chinese 5G systems; Indonesia lifts block on palm oil exports; 30 people indicted in India for 2018 environmental protests in Tamil Nadu; Debt dafault for Sri Lanka; Chinese hi-tech exports to Russia fall.

ISRAEL

Naftali Bennett-led governing coalition goes into minority. Ghaida Rinawie Zoabi, an Arab deputy from the leftist Meretz party, has resigned in protest of harsh treatment of her community. Zoabi said she made the decision after the death of reporter Sherine Abu Aqla during an Israeli security operation against Palestinian militants.

CANADA-CHINA

Ottawa will ban the use of technology systems from Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE, a ban already adopted by its Five Eyes allies, the intelligence alliance with the U.S., U.K., Australia and New Zealand. Equipment for 5G internet from the two Chinese vendors must be removed by June 2014; by the end of 2027 those for 4G.

INDONESIA

President Widodo lifts controversial palm oil export ban, which will expire May 23. Adopted April 28, the measure aims to lower the domestic price of cooking oil, a staple for Indonesian households.

INDIA

Federal police have indicted 30 people for rioting in connection with 2018 environmental protests against Vedanta Ltd, operator of a copper mine in Tamil Nadu. During the clashes, security forces had killed 12 protesters, an action also criticized by the UN. No police or government officials have ever been charged over the incident.

SRI LANKA.

For the first time in its history, Colombo has gone into default, failing to pay an external debt that came due yesterday. The unpaid amount is million. The country is experiencing a serious economic and institutional crisis, with large parts of the population calling for the resignation of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

RUSSIA-CHINA

Technology exports from China to Russia fell sharply in March after Western sanctions were enforced: notebooks fell by 40 percent, smartphones by two-thirds, internet equipment by 98 percent. Beijing is showing that it is keeping a very cautious attitude toward its northern neighbor.

RUSSIA

Patriarch Kirill spoke at the 10th Parliamentary Conference at the Moscow Federal Council, the Russian Senate, where Catholic Archbishop Msgr. Paolo Pezzi, among others, was present with a lengthy report on the re-reading of Russian history. According to Kirill, "the division of the historical peoples of Rus', which has come to the present conflict, is the result of the interference of hostile political forces from outside."

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