Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia received on Saturday in Algiers the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Geoffrey Onyeama, who is making a working visit to Algeria. Mr. Onyeama, who is part of strengthening the strategic relationship between Algeria and Nigeria, provides an opportunity to take stock of multifaceted cooperation and to examine ways and means to give new impetus to the relations between Algeria and Nigeria. The visit, which will also take place on the eve of the 30th session of the African Union Summit, will allow the two sides to discuss the main items on the agenda of this session as well as regional and international issues of common interest, including the situation in the Sahel, the fight against terrorism, and organized crime that undermine this region.
A civilian was killed and another one was wounded in an explosion in Gardez city, in Paktia province.The incident took place after a magnetic improvised explosive device planted in a civilian vehicle went off. Provincial governor’s spokesman Abdullah Hasrat confirmed that one civilian was killed and another civilian was wounded in the explosion. Hasrat further added that the victim has been identified as Samiullah Ahmadzai who was serving with the directorate for labor, social affairs, and martyrs of Paktia province. No individual or group has claimed responsibility behind the incident. Paktia is located along the Durand Line close to Pakistan which is home to Taliban insurgents and the Haqqani terrorist network.
A group of insurgents have launched a coordinated attack on Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul city.
The ministry of interior spokesman Najib Danish said that the gunmen exchanged fire with security forces after storming the Intercontinental Hotel. He said the security forces have cordoned off the area and efforts are underway to bring the situation under the control. Danish added that the attackers appeared to have included suicide bombers, but has so far, not revealed any details of the incident or casualties. Another Interior ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi said that they believe four gunmen attacked the hotel, adding that the kitchen and parts of the hotel is on fire. According to Rahimi, Afghan special forces had cleared the first floor. There are no reports regarding the casualties and no individual or group has so far claimed responsibility behind the attack.
“The Chancellor of Austria is young, that is undeniable, and we are working to ensure that we are good partners” Chancellor Angela Merkel cheerfully affirmed the will to strengthen her partnership with Austria with phrases like these. After receiving the new Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz for his inaugural visit to Berlin with military honors, the two heads of government held a long conversation. It would have “little divisive found,” said Merkel in the subsequent press conference. The 31-year-old Kurz has been at the head of a coalition of the conservative Austrian People’s Party and the right-wing populists of the Freedom Party of Austria since December. In the past, he has repeatedly criticized Merkel’s “welcome policy” towards refugees. In a nutshell, he reiterated his call for “working external border management, which we urgently need”. “We have found little dividing”, said the german Chancellor at the subsequent press conference. They talked about economic and security policy, especially about migration policy. They and Kurz agreed that the illegal migration should be reduced and the external borders strengthened. Conversely, Kurz expressed his “interest as a neighbor in a stable government in Germany”. Kurz then stressed that he and the “esteemed Chancellor” were agreed that the EU states should grow together again and work together “on big issues such as foreign and defense policy”. Austria will take over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union for six months on 1 July 2018. Kurz hopes “to be able to make a contribution there as well”.
The Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs Le Drian will reiterate the full support of France to the personal envoy of the UN Secretary-General in the exercise of his mission, as well as our commitment to MINURSO, the UN peacekeeping mission in Western Sahara, established in 1991, which had paved way for a cease-fire in the conflict between Morocco and the Polisario Front over the contested territory of Western Sahara. Jean-Yves Le Drian will recall France’s commitment to full compliance with cease-fire agreements. He will reaffirm France’s support for a just, lasting and mutually agreed solution in Western Sahara, in accordance with UN Security Council resolutions, and recall that the Moroccan autonomy plan of 2007 constitutes a serious and credible basis for this end.
In a speech at the ‘Story of a Nation’ event, held at Cairo Masa Hotel under the auspices of the president, El-Sisi made a general balance over the past four years in order to inform the country of his achievements in economic and social sectors and of the challenges facing the country. The President stated that that 11,000 national projects have been implemented in the country, with an average of three projects a day. He also said that the economic reform programme started in 2014 improved all economic indicators, adding that in the war against terrorism the sacrifice of Armed Forces and police was decisive in this fight. El-Sisi spoke also about the important role of Egypt in the Arab Region, stressing that the decision of the country are totally independent.
Beijing said China does not need Taiwan’s permission to open new air routes, after Taipei complained that a new route, the M503, was opened over the Taiwan Strait that separates the two states saying it was a security risk and it was done without telling the island, contravening what the democratic government in Taipei said is a 2015 deal to first discuss such flight paths. Spokesman for the mainland’s Taiwan Affairs Office, Ma Xiaoguang, denied breaking the 2015 agreement and said Taiwan had been informed the route would be opening, “but this does not mean that opening air routes needs Taiwan’s agreement”, he said.
China says Canada meeting in Vancouver on North Korea showed ‘Cold War’ mentality. The 20-nation presenti in fact, in addition to ensuring that UN sanctions already in place are fully implemented,requested for tougher sanctions against North Korea, as “maritime interdiction” measures and the complete and irreversible de-nuclearisation of the Korean peninsula, and US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson warned Pyongyang that it could trigger a military response if it did not choose to negotiate. China had already condemned the meeting from which China and Russia were excluded saying “it would divide the international community and damage the chances of an appropriate settlement on the peninsula” and that “only through dialogue, equally addressing the reasonable concerns of all parties, can a way to an effective and peaceful resolution be found”.
The British project “Connecting Cities of the United Kingdom (UK) and the Western Balkans through Digital Technology – Digital Cities”, implemented by the “British Council”, has selected Sarajevo as one of the 12 Western Balkan cities to be connected to 12 cities around the United Kingdom. In this project, Sarajevo will play an important role in connecting businesses and educational institutions. UK Ambassador to BiH, Ferguson, and the Mayor of Sarajevo, Abdulah Skaka, discussed the importance of improving business relations and communication between the two countries through the establishment of a direct flight from London to Sarajevo.
Dialogue and cooperation are the key elements that emerged from the meeting held on January 17th between Prime Minister Zvizdić and Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic. The stabilization of relations between the two countries is necessary to strengthen cooperation in view of Bosnia-Herzegovina’s integration within the European Union.