North Korea shuts down Yongbyon reactor: US
North Korea has told the United States it has shut down its Yongbyon nuclear facilities, the State Department said on Saturday.
"We welcome this development and look forward to the verification and monitoring of this shutdown by the International Atomic Energy Agency team that has arrived in" North Korea, said spokesman Sean McCormack.
North Korea said last week it would consider suspending the operation of its nuclear facilities as soon as it received the first shipment of oil from South Korea under the February 13 aid-for-disarmament deal.
A South Korean tanker carrying 6,200 metric tons of fuel oil arrived early on Saturday at the port of Sonbong on North Korea's northeastern coast, the Unification Ministry in Seoul said.
McCormack said US negotiators looked forward to the next step of that February 13 agreement, in which North Korea "has committed to declaring all its nuclear programs and disabling all its existing nuclear facilities."
Ahead of President Joe Biden's official launch of the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) in Tokyo next week, the United States on Friday said that a “wide-ranging and comprehensive” set of countries are set to join the initiative and it will represent a significant milestone in US engagement in the region. India has not made an official decision on joining the pact, but New Delhi is examining the framework “positively”.
China on Friday hit out at Canada for banning Chinese telecoms giants Huawei and ZTE from Canadian 5G networks, warning of retribution and signalling a fresh bout of diplomatic tension between Beijing and Ottawa. Citing national security issues, Canada on Thursday said it plans to ban the use of China's Huawei Technologies' and ZTE Corp' 5G gear, joining the rest of the Five Eyes intelligence-sharing network comprising the US, Australia, New Zealand and the UK.
British finance minister Rishi Sunak and his wife Akshata Murthy have been included in the 'Rich List' of the 250 wealthiest British residents, Reuters reported. The couple's reported wealth is of 730 million pounds ($911.19 million). Sunak's inclusion in the The Sunday Times UK Rich List at the 222nd slot is a result of his wife Akshata Murthy, the daughter of Infosys co-founder N.R. Narayana Murthy and philanthropist mother Sudha Murthy.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees chief Filippo Grandi on Friday warned countries focussing on helping Ukraine to “not ignore the crises elsewhere”. The UNHCR said the global displacement crisis is also likely to worsen due to the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine. The Group of Seven (G&) countries are providing $19.8 billion in aid to bolster Ukraine's public finances. Several other countries, including Japan and Germany, are providing help to Ukraine.
Shanghai announced its first new COVID-19 cases outside quarantined areas in five days on Friday and imposed stricter curbs in two districts, but did not signal any change to the planned end of a prolonged city-wide lockdown on June 1. Another district, Hongkou, on Friday afternoon ordered all shops to shut and residents to stay home until at least Sunday as it plans to carry out mass testing.