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China accuses US of ‘coercive diplomacy’ after trade remarks From “World News Headlines, Latest International News, World Breaking News – Times of India”



Representational photo.BEIJING: China on Friday accused the United States of “coercive diplomacy” following comments by Secretary of State Antony Blinken to his Australian counterpart that the US “will not leave Australia alone on the field — or maybe I should say alone on the pitch’ — in the face of economic coercion by China.” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying accused the US of imposing economic sanctions and strong-arming other countries over trade issues to achieve its “strategic goals.” Hua said China’s telecommunications and other high-tech industries are now falling victim to US “economic coercion,” an apparent reference to firms including Huawei and ZTE that have faced US restrictions. “Coercive diplomacy is a specialty of the United States, which has provided the world with classic textbooks and cases of coercive diplomacy through its policies and actions,” Hua said at a daily briefing. “There are now a growing number of people in the United States who are calling for strengthened dialogue and cooperation with China and urging the two countries to work toward each other to improve relations. They believe that a healthy, stable and sustained US-China relationship is in the interest of the people of both countries,” she added. Like the United States and China, Australia and China are in the midst of several major disputes as Beijing seeks to apply pressure over commerce and influence. In their Thursday meeting, Blinken told Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne the United States and Australia are bound together by deeply held shared values that no other nation, including China, can uproot. Both said that presenting a united front toward China is key and called for a more thorough and complete investigation into the origin of the coronavirus pandemic that emerged in China in 2019. China-Australia relations have plunged to a multi-decade low, with Beijing blocking imports of Australian coal, wheat and other goods over the past year. But it has failed to force Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s government to offer concessions. Australia decided in April to cancel two deals signed by the state of Victoria with China’s multibillion-dollar “Belt and Road” construction initiative. Beijing warned then it might respond, which it did by suspending the China-Australia Strategic Economic Dialogue, accusing Australia of abusing “so-called national security reasons to severely restrict and suppress economic and cultural cooperation projects.” FacebookTwitterLinkedinEMail







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Can digital diplomacy be an alternative? From “Al Jazeera – Breaking News, World News and Video from Al Jazeera”



Face-to-face meetings used to be considered key for diplomacy, but the pandemic has upended traditions.







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Beijing tells Manila to keep hands off Chinese islands, asks FM to comply with basic etiquette of diplomacy after ‘dirty’ remarks From “RT World News”



The Chinese foreign ministry has issued a stern rebuke after Philippines’ foreign minister ordered Beijing’s vessels to “get the f**k out” of Manila’s waters. Beijing says Huangyan Island is Chinese territory.

Speaking on Tuesday, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said that the Huangyan Island (known in Philippines as Panatag Shoal) and the nearby sea were under China’s jurisdiction and urged Manila to respect Beijing’s sovereignty over the unpopulated landmass. Wang stated that microphone diplomacy cannot change the facts that this island belongs to China, after Philippines’ Secretary of Foreign Affairs Teodoro Locsin told Beijing, in a tweet, to “get the f**k out” of what Manila considers to be its territory.China’s spokesman said it is hoped that the relevant people, a probable reference to Locsin, “will comply with the basic etiquette and identity when making their remarks,” when asked by a journalist about the “dirty” language used by Manila.Wang said that Beijing also hopes that such differences and contradictions between the two countries on individual issues will not impact friendship and cooperation. “China has always and will continue to work with the Philippines to properly resolve differences and promote cooperation through friendly consultations and continue to provide assistance to the Philippines within its capacity in fighting the epidemic and restoring the economy,” the spokesman noted. 

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‘GET THE F**K OUT’: Philippines foreign secretary issues not-so-diplomatic request to China amid maritime dispute

Wang’s comment came after Locsin’s fiery remarks on Twitter on Monday. “China, my friend, how politely can I put it? Let me see… O…GET THE F**K OUT. What are you doing to our friendship? You. Not us. We’re trying. You. You’re like an ugly oaf forcing your attentions on a handsome guy who wants to be a friend; not to father a Chinese province,” the foreign secretary tweeted.Locsin’s tweet came after a statement by his country’s foreign affairs department, which protested the “illegal presence” of Chinese ships in parts of the South China Sea, called the Luzon Sea in the Philippines and recognized by the Hague court as belonging to Manila. Huangyan Island, also known as the Scarborough Shoal, sits about 230 kilometers from the Philippines and 650 kilometers from the nearest part of China. Recently, Manila informed Beijing of its discontent after 220 Chinese vessels moored in the Julian Felipe Reef, also known as the Whitsun Reef, citing bad weather, but did not leave when requested. Manila says the reef falls within its 200 nautical mile exclusive economic zone (EEZ).Islands and reefs within the South China Sea are hotly contested between China, the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Taiwan and Brunei.Like this story? Share it with a friend!







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US should push North Korea diplomacy, not pressure From “Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines”



The New York TimesBiden’s Proposals Aim to Give Sturdier Support to the Middle ClassPerhaps the most striking difference between the middle class of 50 years ago and the middle class today is a loss of confidence — the confidence that you were doing better than your parents and that your children would do better than you. President Joe Biden’s multitrillion-dollar suite of economic proposals is aiming to both reinforce and rebuild an American middle class that feels it has been standing on shifting ground. And it comes with an explicit message that the private sector alone cannot deliver on that dream and that the government has a central part to play. “When you look at periods of shared growth,” said Brian Deese, director of Biden’s National Economic Council, “what you see is that public investment has played an absolutely critical role, not to the exclusion of private investment and innovation, but in laying the foundation.” Sign up for The Morning newsletter from the New York Times If the Biden administration gets its way, the reconstructed middle class would be built on a sturdier and much broader plank of government support rather than the vagaries of the market. Some proposals are meant to support parents who work: federal paid family and medical leave, more affordable child care, free prekindergarten classes. Others would use public investment to create jobs, in areas like clean energy, transportation and high-speed broadband. And a higher minimum wage would aim to buoy those in low-paid work, while free community college would improve skills. That presidents pitch their agendas to the middle class is not surprising given that nearly 9 out of 10 Americans consider themselves members. The definition, of course, has always been a nebulous stew of cash, credentials and culture, relying on lifestyles and aspirations as much as on assets. But what cuts across an avalanche of studies, surveys and statistics over the past half-century is that life in the middle class, once considered a guarantee of security and comfort, now often comes with a nagging sense of vulnerability. Before the pandemic, unemployment was low and stocks soared. But for decades, workers have increasingly had to contend with low pay, sluggish wage growth and more erratic schedules as well as a lack of sick days, parental leave and any kind of long-term security. At the same time, the cost of essentials like housing, health care and education have been gulping up a much larger portion of their incomes. The trend can be found in rich countries all over the world. “Every generation since the baby boom has seen the middle-income group shrink and its economic influence weaken,” a 2019 report from the Organization for Economic Development and Cooperation concluded. In the United States, the proportion of adults in the middle bands of the income spectrum — which the Pew Research Center defines as roughly between $50,000 and $150,000 — declined to 51% in 2019 from 61% 50 years ago. Their share of the nation’s income shrank even more over the same period, to 42% from 62%. Their outlook dimmed, too. During the 1990s, Pew found rising optimism that the next generation would be better off financially than the current one, reaching a high of 55% in 1999. That figure dropped to 42% in 2019. The economy has produced enormous wealth over the past few decades, but much of it was channeled to a tiny cadre at the top. Two wage earners were needed to generate the kind of income that used to come in a single paycheck. “Upper-income households pulled away,” said Richard Fry, a senior economist at Pew. Corrosive inequality was just the beginning of what appeared to be a litany of glaring market failures, like the inability to head off ruinous climate change or meet the enormous demand for affordable housing and health care. Companies often channeled profits to buy back stock instead of using them to invest or raise wages. The evidence was growing, liberal economists argued, that the reigning hands-off economic approach — low taxes on the wealthy; minimal government — was not producing the broad-based economic gains that sustained and grew the middle class. “The unregulated economy is not working for most Americans,” said Joseph Stiglitz, a Nobel laureate in economics. “The government has an important role,” he emphasized, in regulating the private sector’s excesses, redistributing income and making substantial public investments. Skeptics have warned of government overreach and the risk that deficit spending could ignite inflation, but Biden and his team of economic advisers have nonetheless embraced the approach. “It’s time to grow the economy from the bottom and middle out,” Biden said in his speech to a joint session of Congress last week, a reference to the idea that prosperity does not trickle down from the wealthy but flows out of a well-educated and well-paid middle class. He underscored the point by singling out workers as the dynamo powering the middle class. “Wall Street didn’t build this country,” he said. “The middle class built the country. And unions built the middle class.” Of course, the economy that lifted millions of postwar families into the middle class differed sharply from the current one. Manufacturing, construction and mining jobs, previously viewed as the backbone of the labor force, dwindled — as did the labor unions that aggressively fought for better wages and benefits. Now only 1 out of every 10 workers is a union member, while roughly 80% of jobs in the United States are in the service sector. And it is these types of jobs — in health care, education, child care, disabled and senior care — that are expected to continue expanding at the quickest pace. Most of them, though, fall short of paying middle-income wages. That does not necessarily reflect their value in an open market. Salaries for teachers, hospital workers, lab technicians, child care providers and nursing home attendants are determined largely by the government, which collects tax dollars to pay their salaries and sets reimbursements rates for Medicare and other programs. They are also jobs that are filled by significant numbers of women, African Americans, Latinos and Asians. “When we think about what is the right wage,” Stiglitz asked, “should we take advantage of discrimination against women and people of color, which is what we’ve done, or can we use this as the basis of building a middle class?” Biden’s spending plans — a $2.3 trillion infrastructure package called the American Jobs Plan and a $1.8 trillion American Families Plan that concentrates on social spending — aim to take account of just how much the workforce and the economy have transformed over the past half-century and where they may be headed in the next. The president’s economic team took inspiration from Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal and the public programs that followed it. After World War II, for instance, the government helped millions of veterans get college educations and buy homes by offering tuition assistance and subsidized mortgages. It created a mammoth highway system to undergird commercial activity and funneled billions of dollars into research and development that was used later to develop smartphone technology, search engines, the human genome project, magnetic resonance imaging, hybrid corn and supercomputers. Biden, too, wants to fix roads and bridges, upgrade electric grids and invest in research. But his administration has also concluded that a 21st-century economy requires much more, from expanded access to high-speed broadband, which more than one-third of rural inhabitants lack, to parental leave and higher wages for child care workers. “We’ve now had 50 years of the revolution of women entering the labor force,” and the most basic necessities that make it possible for parents to fully participate in the workforce are still missing, said Betsey Stevenson, a professor at the University of Michigan and a former member of the Obama administration’s Council of Economic Advisers. She paused a few moments to take it in: “It’s absolutely stunning.” Right before the pandemic, more women than men could be found in paying jobs. Ensuring equal opportunity, Stevenson noted, includes “the opportunity to get high-quality early-childhood education, the opportunity to have a parent stay home with you when you’re sick, the opportunity for a parent to bond with you when born.” When it comes to offering this type of support, she added, “the United States is an outlier compared to almost every industrialized country.” The administration also has an eye on how federal education, housing and business programs of earlier eras largely excluded women, African Americans, Asians and others. In the Biden plan are aid for colleges that primarily serve nonwhite students, free community college for all, universal prekindergarten and monthly child payments. “This is not a 1930s model anymore,” said Julian Zelizer, a political science professor at Princeton University. And it is all to be paid for by higher taxes on corporations and the top 1%. Passage in a sharply polarized Congress is anything but assured. The multitrillion-dollar price tag and the prospect of an activist government have ensured the opposition of Republicans in a Senate where Democrats have the slimmest possible majority. But public polling from last year showed widening support for the government to take a larger role. “What is so remarkable about this moment is this notion that public investment can transform America, that these are things government can do,” said Felicia Wong, president of the left-leaning Roosevelt Institute. “This is fundamentally restructuring how the economy works.” This article originally appeared in The New York Times. © 2021 The New York Times Company







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North Korea Dismisses Spurious US Diplomacy: Report From “NDTV News – World-news”



North Korea warned President Joe Biden that he had made a “big blunder” with his “outdated” stanceSeoul: North Korea branded US diplomacy “spurious” on Sunday, dismissing the idea of talks with Washington a day after the Biden administration said it was open to diplomatic negotiations on denuclearization, state media reported.Diplomacy was a “spurious signboard” for the United States to “cover up its hostile acts,” the North Korean foreign ministry said in a statement run by the KCNA news agency.It also warned President Joe Biden that he had made a “big blunder” with his “outdated” stance towards the country.In a separate statement also run by KCNA, the foreign ministry accused Biden of insulting Kim Jong-Un, and added: “We have warned the US sufficiently enough to understand that it will get hurt if it provokes us.”Biden had said in his first address as president to Congress on Wednesday that he would use “diplomacy as well as stern deterrence” to contain North Korea’s nuclear ambitions.The White House said Friday that its goal remains “the complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.”US policy will see “a calibrated, practical approach that is open to and will explore diplomacy” with North Korea, Biden’s press secretary Jen Pskai told reporters.Psaki gave little indication of what kind of diplomatic initiative this could entail, but suggested that Biden had learned from the experience of previous administrations, who have struggled for decades to deal with the dictatorship in North Korea or, in recent years, its growing nuclear arsenal.She said Washington would not “focus on achieving a grand bargain,” apparently referring to the kind of dramatic over-arching deal that former president Donald Trump initially suggested was possible when he met with North Korea’s leader.Neither would the White House follow the more standoff approach called “strategic patience,” espoused by Barack Obama, Psaki said.In April, South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who is due to visit the White House on May 21, urged Biden to engage directly with Kim on denuclearization.Moon told the newspaper he favored “top-down diplomacy.”(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)







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Iran’s foreign minister warns military wields too much power over diplomacy in leaked tape From “Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines”



Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif made the comments in a tape leaked to the media – AFP/AFPIran’s foreign minister has complained that the military wields too much power over the country’s ruling elite, according to a leaked tape recording that grants rare insight into power struggles at the heart of the Islamic Republic.In the recording, which Iran says was not intended for publication, Javad Zarif is heard warning that “in the Islamic Republic the military field rules.””I have sacrificed diplomacy for the military field rather than the field servicing diplomacy,” he added in the tape, which was first published by the New York Times and the London-based news channel Iran International.It came as Iran and the United States continued to hold indirect talks in Vienna this week which hope to salvage the Obama-era nuclear deal.In the same interview, Mr Zarif claimed that Russia wanted to stop the nuclear deal, something apparently so sensitive that he warned the interviewer: “You definitely can never release this part.”The unusually frank comments offer rare insight into the regime’s inner circle and its apparent lack of control over Iran’s military establishment, including its powerful Revolutionary Guard Corps.Iran said that the comments made in the three-hour tape recording were “confidential” and should not have been released.”What was published was not an interview with the media,” foreign ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh told reporters in Tehran, but did not dispute the tape’s authenticity.File image of centrifuge machines in the Natanz uranium enrichment facility in central Iran – AP/APHe added that the recording represented just a portion of a seven-hour interview Mr Zarif gave to an economist, and that it was meant to be held for posterity by a pro-regime think tank.It came as Iran’s president reportedly hailed “significant progress” in talks in Vienna on bringing the regime back into the 2015 nuclear deal on Monday.The deal, which former US president Donald Trump abandoned in 2018, was designed to end sanctions on Iran in return for Tehran ending its nuclear programme.Story continuesSince then, Iran has ramped up uranium enrichment at its Natanz nuclear facility, which was struck by a mysterious sabotage attack earlier this month, heightening tensions in the region. The attack is widely believed to have been carried out by Israel, Iran’s arch-nemesis.The European Union confirmed on Monday afternoon that the talks would continue the following day, though there were no indications of a breakthrough beyond Mr Rouhani’s comments.”Participants will continue their discussions in view of a possible return of the United States (to the accord) and on how to ensure the full and effective implementation (of the accord), the bloc said in a statement.







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