5 March 2017

China trims 2017 growth target, warns against trade controls

Bus ushers in ethnic minority costumes walk on Tiananmen Square during the opening session of the annual National People's Congress in Beijing, Sunday, March 5, 2017. China's top leadership as well as thousands of delegates from around the country are gathered at the Chinese capital for the annual legislature meetings.
China's top economic official trimmed the country's growth target and warned Sunday of dangers from global pressure for trade controls as Beijing tries to build a consumer-driven economy and reduce reliance on exports and investment.

In a speech to the national legislature, Premier Li Keqiang promised more steps to cut surplus steel production that is straining trade relations with Washington and Europe. He pledged equal treatment for foreign companies, apparently responding to complaints Beijing is trying to squeeze them out of technology and other promising markets.

Somalia: 110 dead from hunger in past 48 hours in drought

In this Saturday, Feb. 25, 2017 file photo, malnourished baby Ali Hassan, 9-months-old, left, is held by his mother Fadumo Abdi Ibrahim, who fled the drought in southern Somalia, at a feeding center in a camp in Mogadishu, Somalia. Somalia's prime minister said Saturday, March 4, 2017 that 110 people have died from hunger in the past 48 hours in a single region as a severe drought threatens millions of people.
Somalia's prime minister said Saturday that 110 people have died from hunger in the past 48 hours in a single region — the first death toll announced in a severe drought threatening millions of people across the country.

Somalia's government declared the drought a national disaster on Tuesday. The United Nations estimates that 5 million people in this Horn of Africa nation need aid, amid warnings of a full-blown famine.

Malaysia expels North Korean ambassador over Kim probe

In this Monday, Feb 20, 2017 photo, North Korea's Ambassador to Malaysia Kang Chol speaks to the media outside the North Korean Embassy in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Malaysia’s foreign minister said Saturday, March 4, 2017 that the government has expelled North Korea’s ambassador for refusing to apologize for criticizing investigations into the murder of the exiled half-brother of Pyongyang's leader.
Malaysia said it expelled North Korea's ambassador on Saturday for refusing to apologize for his strong accusations over Malaysia's handling of the investigation into the killing of the North Korean leader's half brother.

Foreign Minister Anifah Aman said a notice was sent to the North Korean Embassy at around 6 p.m. declaring Ambassador Kang Chol persona non grata. The notice said Kang must leave Malaysia within 48 hours.