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donate blood at a donation point after a deadly chemical fact

The blast occurred on Thursday at the Chenjiagang Industrial Park in t

he city of Yancheng, in Jiangsu province, and the fire was brought under control on Friday.

Meng’s union has been offering free food and drinking water to those donating blood since the center was set up Thursday.

Gao Shuibao, a volunteer at the local Red Cross society, estimated at least 280 people do

nated their blood on Thursday and the number stood at more than 200 on Friday morning.

Zhang Yinlong, whose home is about 20 kilometers away from the donation point, had come in for the fourth time on Friday to give blood.

“I came at 5 pm yesterday, but only found an extremely long line. I went back home and

came back again at about 8 pm, but had to give it up after waiting for two hours,” said the 38-year-old.

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Xi made the remarks in a signed article published in the

Italian daily newspaper Corriere della Sera on Wednesday ahead of his European tour, with visits to Italy, Monaco and France.

Though far apart from each other, China and ancient Rome were linked by the old Silk Road over 2,000 years ago, Xi said in the ar

ticle, mentioning the cultural exchanges between the two countries in the distant past.

He said Beijing is willing to deepen cooperation with Rome in such areas as land and marine transportation, avia

tion, aerospace and cultural exchanges to build the Belt and Road in the new era.

“I’m willing to avail myself of this visit to work with Italian lea

ders on the blueprint of Sino-Italian relations and lead the ties into the new era,” Xi said.

He called on the two sides to tap more potential for partnership

in port logistics, shipping, energy, telecommunications and medicine, and encourage enterprises fr

om both countries to develop third-party cooperation to seek mutual benefit and win-win results.

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inister of Commerce Zhong Shan attends a press conference

Minister of Commerce Zhong Shan said a slew of measures will be taken this year to boost China’s social consumption, such as improving urban consumption, to promote

consumption upgrades, expand rural consumption, and develop service consumption while optimizing service supply.

The country will upgrade a number of pedestrian streets, optimize the layout of convenience stores, and encourage brand development and franchising.

The country will promote “selling agricultural products to the cities, while selling industr

ial products to the countryside”.hina’s investment environment is expected to become more stab

le, open and transparent, as the draft foreign investment law stipulates foreign enterprises will receive pre-established nati

onal treatment plus a negative list management system, according to the Ministry of Commerce on Saturday.

The foreign investment law is expected to help establish an environment where foreign co

mpanies can compete fairly in China, and better protect the legitimate rights and interests of foreign investors, Wang

Shouwen, vice-minister of commerce, said at a news conference during the two sessions.

Wang also cited that the law will protect the intellectual property rights of foreign investors an

d encourage technology cooperation based on voluntary principles and commercial rules.

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While there does appear to be some parallels between the

  start of the Arab Spring and the recent Algerian marches, experts are wary of drawing comparisons.

  McInerney says these protests feel very reminiscent of what was witnessed in Tunisia in Janua

ry 2011. He adds that similar protests erupted in Algeria at the same time but were quickly and violently quashed.

  ”In the past, the default position [for the regime] has been to crackdown on protests … The nature of these protests, they’ve chos

en not to do that. They’ve been more careful and thoughtful and strategic in how they respond,” he says.

  McInerney says there are some concerns the regime will try to trigger violent cl

ashes, perhaps by sending pro-regime thugs into the protests to create violence as a pretext for a crackdown.

  For now, protesters seem intent on continuing their calls for Bouteflika to withdraw and planning further peaceful marches.

  ”If the determination continues and if the protesters keep their demands clear … and i

f they remain peaceful, this might transform into a big social movement,” Carnegie research scholar Gha

nem says, adding that countries across the Mediterranean will be closely watching how events unfold.

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s someone who has been coming to China since 1988 and

 who has called Beijing home for 15 years, several of Premier Li’s points affect my family, so it should come as no surprise I paid special attention to these.

First is the environment. While politicians in the US are making the Green New Deal a zero-sum political football, China has

made great strides in improving its environment. While President Trump, is in the process of gutting established domestic envir

onmental regulations, China has become the global leader in promoting a sustainable environment for future gener

ations. While Trump began the process of pulling out of the Paris Climate Accords, whose passage was assu

red by the joint leadership of Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Barack Obama, China is stre

ngthening efforts to prevent and control pollution and boost environmental protection.

Fighting pollution is expensive so it’s heartening to hear from the GWR that China has budgeted 25 billion yuan ($3.73 bil

lion) to prevent and control air pollution, a 25 percent year-on-year increase. Likewise, China will reduce its sul

fur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions by 3 percent this year, in an effort to consolidate and increase prev

ious gains in its efforts to keep skies blue. It also will continue its quest to further decrease PM 2.5 density par

ticulate pollution in a number of key areas, such as the Yangtze River Delta and the Beijing-Tianjin Hebei region.

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Main goals for economic and social development in 2019

Premier Li Keqiang delivered the government work report at the second session of the 13th National People’s Congress that opened in Beijing on Tuesday.

Here are the main 2019 goals for economic and social development from the report.

— GDP growth of 6-6.5 percent

— Over 11 million new urban jobs, a surveyed urban unemployment rate of around 5.5 percent, and a registered urban unemployment rate within 4.5 percent

— CPI increase of around 3 percent

— A basic equilibrium in the balance of payments, and stable, better-structured imports and exports

— A macro leverage ratio that is basically stable, and effective prevention and control of financial and fiscal risks

— A reduction of over 10 million in the rural poor population

— Personal income growth that is basically in step with economic growth

— A further improvement in the environment

— A drop of around 3 percent in energy consumption per unit of GDP

— Continued reductions in the discharge of major pollutants

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Wang Junsheng, an international relations expert with

the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, expressed his optimism about the second summit and said that given the DPRK’s announcement that it would shift its strate

gic focus to economic development, the country will likely make concessions on giving up its nuclear weapons during th

is summit in exchange for the lifting of sanctions and the declaration of the end of the war.

Wang said denuclearization is an irreversible trend.

But Jenny Town, a research analyst at the Stimson Center in Washington, worried that it will be difficul

t for the two leaders to generate a specific road map and schedule for denuclearization at a single summit.

Also on Wednesday, the Republic of Korea’s presidential Blue House spokesman sa

id, “Whatever concessions Trump and Kim may make at their upcoming summit will be significant as th

ey will mean further progress toward the complete denuclearization of Pyongyang.”

Trump met separately with Vietnamese President Nguyen Phu Tro

ng and Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc earlier on We

dnesday. Kim is likely to meet the Vietnamese leaders during his two-day “official goodwill” visit after the summit w

ith Trump, given the local media reports saying Kim would leave the country on Saturday.

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Du Zhenqing, the actor playing the title role, said this play

  has been the biggest challenge in his over-40-year acting career. “I need to ful

ly grasp the Greek co-actors’ lines to keep the plot flowing. The director is very cre

ative and actively thinking. He integrates a lot of physical movements into the performance – It’s like nothing yo

u have seen in China, which creates a very unique experience for our audience.”

  ”Agamemnon shows remarkable directorial skills. Language, movement and

music, all the elements come together perfectly. It’s a joy to watch,” sai

d Luo Jinlin, renowned theater director and professor at the Central Academy of Drama.

  The production design and choreography also left a deep impression on the audience. “Co

mbining modernity and tradition creates a beautiful effect. I think the play is a successful introduction of

the Greek classic to Chinese people,” Song Shikun commented on Damai, the Ticketmaster of China.

  Performances will be staged at the National Theater of China through March 2.

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The same tactic has also been used within the United State

  said Van Jackson, a former Defense Department official in the Obama administration.

  ”Historically, there have been many — I know of half a dozen instances myself personally — where senior North Korean officials were brought around and shown what capi

talist industrialism looks like. They were shown what the stock market floor looks like on the New York Stock Exchange, or they were brought out to so

me tech lab in Silicon Valley,” said Jackson, author of “On the Brink: Trump, Kim, and the Threat of Nuclear War.”

  ”We’ve shown them what capitalism looks like … the idea that they will see something in Vietn

am physically that triggers something different than what we’ve shown them before is kind of non

sense.”There’s something for both Washington and Pyongyang to like when studying the US-Vietnam relationship.

  For North Korea, it’s an example of a single-party communist country that reformed its economy without democr

atizing. For the United States, it’s an example of how to redefine a relationship and make a buck at the same time.

  In 1995 — the year Hanoi and Washington normalized relations — US exports to and imports from Vietnam were

worth just $252 million and $199 million respectively. However in the first 11 months of 2018, the US exported more th

an $8 billion worth of goods to Vietnam and imported goods worth $45 billion, according to US Census figures.

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Some with extensive experience inside North Korea

  worry about overzealous use of the Vietnam comparison.

  Jean Lee is one of the few Western journalists who has worked in North Korea on a consistent basis. She opened the Associated Press’s bureau in Py

ongyang in 2012 after extensive haggling with the government, spending a total of three years on the ground in the country.

  She says that while Vietnam does boast options that “Kim Jong Un wants to show his people,” North Korea still sees itself as a superior nation.

  ”They will go into this discussion saying exactly that — hey, there’s no comparison here, we’re a nuclear power. And they’re goi

ng to be busting out this image of North Korea as a nuclear state as much as they can because it gives No

rth Korea much more leverage and a much stronger place at the table than if they were just another poor country,” Lee said.

  Andrei Lankov’s assessment is more blunt.

  ”Donald Trump and many other people in Washington essentially say if North Korea s

urrenders nuclear weapons and accepts foreign investment — like China did — it will become a very ric

h country, and the North Korean leaders will enjoy a lifestyle they cannot even dream of now,” Lankov said.

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