When asked if China will stop exporting rare earth mat

aterials to the US, Gao Feng, the ministry’s spokesman, said China

has been the world’s largest supplier of rare earth materials and has always been keen to m

eet the demand of its trade partners on this material to promote the rare earth industry.

The ministry made the remarks after the Trump administration starting May 10 raised tariffs on Chinese goods and rest

ricted Huawei’s business operations, which has harmed the interests of companies and financial markets on both sides.

“While satisfying domestic demand, China is always willing to fulfill other coun

tries’ rightful needs for rare earth materials,” he said. “But if any country plans to use the rare earth materials that Ch

ina exports to make products that will suppress China’s development, it is not acceptable.”

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Disaster-proofing the world’s largest infrastructure ini

nitiative is a challenge, but achievable,” she said, adding that at the heart of this challenge lies great potenti

al for innovation and creativity, such as new disaster risk prediction and analysis, and disaster-resilient infrastructures.

Huang Runqiu, vice-minister of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, said dis

aster risk reduction of natural hazards along the initiative is crucial for its success and sustainability.

Regions at the heart of the initiative, such as the Tianshan-Pamir Platea

u, the Himalayas, eastern parts of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and South Asia, are facing serio

us disaster threats due to tectonic movements, fragile ecosystems and extreme weather, he said.

Henrik Slotte, a senior disaster management expert from the UN Environm

ent Program, said poorly managed infrastructure projects can damage the ecosystem.

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The legacy plan for the Olympic and Paralympic Win

ter Games was unveiled in February. Plans aim to optimize the

venues’ designs and operations to be beneficial to the hosting regions after 2022.

“Here, you have the venues from 2008 that are going to be used in 2022 for a complete set of winter sports. This is a wonde

rful legacy story,” said Juan Antonio Samaranch, vice-president of the International Olympic Committee.

Powering all the 2022 venues using green energy while minimizing environmental impacts, while

planning for their post-Games operations, are key in venue preparation this year, Liu said.

To support the preparations financially, Beijing 2022 has signed nine domestic market

ing partners and four second-tier sponsors, while the Games’ licensing program, whic

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Firefighter and ambulances have arrived at the scene for

It was reported that the fire could be caused by lightening strike.

Moscow’s transport prosecution office is investigating into the incident and it will check i

f there were violations of the flight safety legislation, according to Sputnik news agency.

Sarah Daley, a student at the University of Virginia, has deep connectio

ns with China. She spent the summer of 2018 teach

ing English in Hebei province and has a younger sister who was adopted from China in 2009. Both experiences left

her with positive impressions of Chinese people and long-lasting friendships.

Those connections led to Daley being honored by the Chinese embassy

in the United States during an award ceremony in Washington on Saturday, after she sha

red her stories with the world through an event hosted by the embassy and China Daily.

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The Abuja–Kaduna Railway, as the first segment of the

 Lagos–Kano standard gauge project, the first standard gauge railway in Nigeria and West A

frica, was officially inaugurated and started commercial operation on July 26, 2016.

The railway, constructed by China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, is the first overseas railway fully adopting the Chinese r

ailway standard. Spanning 186.5 kilometers, it alleviates traffic tension, improves the investment envir

onment and promotes the coordinated development of regional economy and society.

By Jan 11, the train service had delivered 1.23 million passengers and had safely operated for 900 days without any major accident recorded since its inception.

The China-funded Colombo Port City, the largest project between C

hina and Sri Lanka under the Belt and Road Initiative, completed land reclamation of 269 hectares in January.

In addition, hydro-structure construction will be completed by the middle

of this year. The port city’s municipal facilities construction is expected to be completed in J

uly 2020. At the same time, investment promotion of the city is also being carried out.

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First, what does “poverty” mean in China today? People

whose annual net income was less than 200 yuan ($30) were defined as living below the p

overty line in China in 1985. The line was raised to less than 2,300 yuan by 2011.

Second, how are policies designed to help the poorest people? Chinese policies aim to give the poor a roof over their heads, guarantee

food, clothing and basic medical services, and provide their children with nine years of compulsory education.

Funds and resources have been made available for agricultural subsidies and cheap loans to rural far

mers. Funds also went into rural revitalization, to integrate regional development and build infrast

ructure connecting villages to markets so that farmers could sell their products more easily. Villagers have been enco

uraged to be innovative, with incentives and loans for them to become self-employed and to set up micro-businesses.

Moreover, teams of officials have been traveling to faraway and isolated rural areas to help individual

s and families with individualized plans that target specific problems, such as whether there is ill

ness or disability in the household. In other words, China has not taken a “one-size-fits-all” approach for the tough cases.

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May has come under intense pressure to quit the prime minis

 minister’s post as the price of winning support for the deal.

At a meeting Sunday at the prime minister’s country retreat, Chequers,

prominent Brexiteers told May they might back the deal — if she agreed to step d

own so a new leader could take charge of the next phase of negotiations, which will

settle Britain’s future relations with the EU.

Former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, who attended the meeting and is likely to be a conten

der in any future Conservative leadership race, accused the government

of lacking “gumption” and chickening out on delivering Brexit.

Britaina’s best-selling newspaper, The Sun, put a call on its front page for the

prime minister to resign under the headline “Time’s up, Theresa.”

May is hanging on, hoping she can persuade Brexit-backing lawmakers that

rejecting her deal means Britain may never leave the EU.

She told lawmakers that Britain would not leave the EU without a deal unless

Parliament — which has already rejected the idea — voted for it.

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China, Italy agree to expand legislative exchanges

ROME, March 22 — Visiting President Xi Jinping met with Italian Senate Speaker Maria Elisabetta Alberti

Casellati here Friday on expanding exchanges and cooperation between the two countries’ legislative institutions.

China and Italy have enjoyed a traditional friendship, with the ancient Silk Road closely linking the two peoples, Xi said.

Since they established diplomatic relations nearly 50 years ago, the China-Italy ties have seen healthy and stable devel

opment, and the two countries have become important partners who trust each other and work together, Xi said.

The visit is meant to consolidate the stability and strategic nature of the China-Ita

ly relations in the long term, and comprehensively elevate the level of their mutually beneficial cooperation, Xi said.

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Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel on Saturday also

extended her condolences to the victims and their families and people who are affected by the attacks.

“Our thoughts go to the victims and their families and everyone that being affect,” Dalziel said

. She also acknowledged the extraordinary response from the police and first responders.

“An attack on the Muslin community is an attack on us, on Christchurch and on New Zealand,” Dalziel said.

She believed that Christchurch people will go thro

ugh this together by “looking after each other … in many diverse communities in our city.”

Calling the event “an unspeakable tragedy,” the mayor told Xinhua, “We need to make

sure that everyone feels safe, everyone feels welcome and everyone feels a part of the city.”

Major public events during the weekend have all been cancelled across New Zealand a

fter the attacks. Flags were flown at half-mast in government buildings to mourn the victims.

The Chinese Consulate General in Christchurch has confirmed there was no casualty of Chinese citizen in the mosque attacks.

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Mikaela Shiffrin extends record run as Marcel Hirscher hints

  She’s ski racing’s undoubted new queen, but Mikaela Shiffrin finished the

slalom season in regal fashion with victory in the final race in Andorra.

  The 24-year-old clinched her 16th win of a record-breaking season

Saturday to take her tally to 59 World Cup titles overall.

  The victory was also her 40th slalom win to equal the record of Swedish great

Ingemar Stenmark, who heads the all-time list with 86 World Cup wins.

  Overall champion Shiffrin, who topped the slalom standings from Slovakia’s P

etra Vlhova and Swiss Wendy Holdener,

is hot favorite to clinch the giant slalom crystal globe Sunday.

  The American has a 97-point lead over Vlhova, with 100 points available to the winner in Andorra.

  Shiffrin, who passed Vreni Schneider’s mark of 14 wins in a season

earlier this month, could become the first skier — mal

e or female — to win the World Cup title in overall, slalom, giant slalom and the

faster super-G discipline in the same season.

  She secured a third straight World Cup overall crown earlier this season and first super-G c

rystal globe to add to a fourth consecutive slalom world title in Sweden last month. She also won super-G gold in Are.

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