uventus beaten at Atletico to leave Ronaldo on brink

  Cristiano Ronaldo was supposed to be the final piece in the Juventus Champions League winning jigsaw.

  For so long, Juventus has dominated in Italy, winning seven successive league titles with an eighth almost inevitable.

  But it is the Champions League crown that it craves. Ronaldo was s

upposed to be the man to deliver for a club that has lost out twice in the final in the past four years.

  When Juventus turned to Ronaldo, a five-time winner, chasing a record-equ

aling sixth Champions League title, it was to inspire the team on nights like Wednesday.

  Only Sevilla (27) and Getafe (23) have conceded more goals to Ronaldo than Atletico Madrid.

  Yet, on a Wednesday night in Madrid, the city where he enjoyed such success with Re

al, he was unable to add to his career tally of 22 against the former neighbor.

  For Atletico Madrid, a team that has felt the full force of Ronaldo’s irrepressible scor

ing record during his time at Real, this 2-0 victory in the first leg of the last 16 tie was particularly sweet.

  Two second-half goals from Uruguayan defensive duo Jose Gimenez and Diego Godin secured the advantage for Diego Simeone’s side.

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Aid is piling up on Venezuela’s border. Here’s why it’s not

  On February 23, humanitarian aid will enter Venezuela one way or another,” the country’s self-declared president Juan Guaido d

eclared earlier this month. But not so fast — President Nicolas Maduro, who won reelection in a widely-criticized vote last year, has pr

omised to block the supplies, and organizations including the Red Cross and United Nations have refused to help.

  The slow advance of aid toward impoverished Venezuela has become a proxy measure of

the power struggle between its two rival presidents. At the same time, there is little doubt that the Ve

nezuelan people are in need of help. So why is it so hard to agree on aid?

  What is happening?

  Venezuela is dealing with the worst economic crisis in its history. One

in 10 Venezuelans are undernourished, and the economic crisis has triggered an exo

dus of at least three million people, according to the International Organization of Migration.

  Venezuela closes key maritime, air borders with neighbors amid growing aid crisis

  Guaido has thrown all his weight behind a “humanitarian channel” that would bring tons of mu

ch-needed aid from foreign countries into Venezuela. But the plan isn’t just benevolent — it’s als

o a direct jab at Maduro, who for years has denied that a humanitarian crisis was happening in Venezuela.

  ”The impact of the humanitarian aid is highly political,” admits Jua

n Miguel Matheus, an MP for the opposition. “Our first and primary goal is to provide relief for

the Venezuelan population, but after that, with this move we want to checkmate Maduro.

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She alleged that the riot policeman who killed her son co

and pulled down a visor on his helmet.
She said that there were numerous witnesses to the alleged killing by a policeman on the sce

ne. She said that she’s not reported the crime, because she fears retribution from the very same person who killed her son.

But her family is getting anonymous death threats and demands that she stop talking a

bout her son’s killing.
Police chief Michel-Ange Gedeon told CNN that there had been no report of the alleged crime.

“Whenever we receive a case we will investigate,” he told CNN.
That may come as a surprise to Haiti’s Prime Min

ister, Jean-Henry Ceant, who this week singled out Roberto’s tragic end for special mention in a televised address to the nation.

“As a father who can understand the pain of a parent, I send a special message to the mother of a y

oung boy, Roberto Badjo Thelusma who died in front of the State Hospital while he was helping his mother with her business.

“I remember how 40 years ago I used to help my mother with her meat business at the ‘Kwabosal’ m

arket place. Today I’m the Prime Minister, who knows what Roberto Badjo Thelusma could have become in this country.”

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Saudi investment in Pakistan reflects inclusiveness of

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has pledged $20 billi

on investment in Pakistan during his trip to the South Asian country over the we

ekend, the first leg of his Asian tour that also includes stops in neighboring India and China.

The unprecedented Saudi investment, half of which will support a refiner

y and petrochemicals complex in the port of Gwadar, is expected to shore up Pa

kistan’s economy hurt by widening current account and fiscal deficits and strengthen trade ties between the two countries.

Some observers are quick to compare the Saudi investment with the China-Pakistan Economic Cor

ridor (CPEC) project under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). But for Prime Minister Imran Khan, both are welcome.

“We have CPEC. We have links with China. So we welcome Saudi Arabia to participate with us,” he said.

The crown prince also stressed the potential of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor which will contribute to the development and prosperity of the region.

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The last time Japanese leaders visited Pyongyang was

during the administration of then prime minister Junichiro Koizumi. As then deputy chief cabinet secretary, Abe was also

part of the visiting delegation. Currently, the domestic politics in Japan is stable. Abe is set to remain in office u

ntil 2021. Abe’s diplomacy with Russia has been criticized at home as fawning toward Moscow. Abe would not risk visiting North Korea if Pyongyang does n

ot make obvious concessions. Japan’s strategic changes toward North Korea should come about gradually.

However, Abe and Kim may meet in a third state, which is friendly with both countries, such as Mon

golia. Their diplomats, special envoys may meet first, laying the ground for both leaders’ face-t

o-face talks. However, a meeting between Abe and Kim may unlikely happen in 2019.

In January, Thubten Gyatso from Moding village in the Garze Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Southwest China’s Sichuan Pr

ovince, went to Hainan Province for the first time in his life, where he attended an awards ceremony for rural teachers.

Together with 100 other teachers from China’s rural areas and 20 head

masters of rural schools, Thubten Gyatso received an award for what he has done for stud

ents from Moding village, located in a mountainous area 2,600 meters above sea level between Sichuan and Yunnan provinces.

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he increased bank lending could match the real econom

The monetary authority has rolled out a series of policies in recent mont

hs to ensure adequate liquidity in the financial sector and accelerated loan issuance to co

mpanies. The measures include a new lending facility, called the targeted medium-term lending facility, which was in

troduced in December to encourage commercial banks to increase lending to small and private firms.

The central bank further cut the required reserve ratio for financial institutions by 1 percentage point in January and inj

ected another 800 billion yuan of capital into the market. That followed four reserve ratio cuts last year.

Supported by the liquidity, the average interest rate in financial mark

ets had already declined by January, which actually provided much cheaper funding t

o commercial banks and borrowers in the corporate sector, Sun said.

Accompanied by the credit boost, growth of the broad money sup

ply, or M2, accelerated in January to 8.4 percent from 8.1 percent at the end of December, t

he central bank said. Government bond issuance, meanwhile, has also picked up since the start of this year.

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ercent from 8.1 percent at the end of December, the central

It’s hard to say that China entered a new cycle of credit expansion,” said Zhang Ming, chief eco

nomist at Ping An Securities. “For the whole year, the overall financing growth and money supply is expected to stabilize.”

Fast credit expansion means higher pressure on companies to repay debt and interest, and the space for sustainable credit growth i

s limited, given the current leverage level. Total outstanding debt has exceeded 250 percent of GDP, Zhang said.

The good news is that credit has been channeled effectively into the production sector, such as manuf

acturing and high-tech, and the healthier credit structure can support the overall economic r

estructuring reform, said Ruan Jianhong, head of the central bank’s statistics and analysis department.

hina and the United States will continue economic and trade consultations in Washington ne

xt week, after reaching consensus in principle on major issues during their high-level Beijing talks, State media reported.

According to Xinhua News Agency, the two sides had in-depth communication on topics of mutual concern including tec

hnological transfers, intellectual property rights protection, nontariff barriers, the service industry, agr

iculture, the trade balance and an implementation mechanism, as well as on particular issues of concern to China.

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Both sides had specific discussions about a memorandum

of understanding on bilateral economic and trade issues, Xinhua reported. The two sides said they will step up their work

within the time limit for consultations set by both heads of state, and strive for consensus.

Vice-Premier Liu He, US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin headed the talks.

After tit-for-tat exchanges of hefty import tariffs, China and the US agreed in December to halt new ta

riffs for 90 days to allow for talks. Since then, the world’s two largest economies have conducted i

ntense negotiations on a wide array of topics, such as trade and structural issues.

Wei Jianguo, vice-president of the China Center for International Economic Ex

changes, said China and the US have maintained close contacts in recent m

onths, which reflects their positive desire to solve genuine problems and foster cooperation.

Wei, a former vice-minister of commerce, underlined the importance of conducting rule-based negotiations and seeking win-win solutions.

Diao Daming, associate professor at Renmin University of China’s School of International Studies, said the world’s two la

rgest economies can deliver positive results in future trade talks to allay global concerns.

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Promising progress needs pushing forward to a deal Chin

In welcome news, it seems that the latest talks between China and the United States, which concluded on Friday, have further na

rrowed their differences and expanded their common ground on key trade and economic issues.

The two sides entered the two days of high-level talks on Thursday amid a flurry of positive sig

nals that progress was being made. And it seems that their candid discussions have continued to be rewarded.

There has clearly been movement on a number of topics that have been the focus of their recent tra

de rows. Speaking to President Xi Jinping after the talks wrapped up, US Trade Representative Ro

bert Lighthizer said the negotiators “feel we have made headway on very, very important and difficult issues”.

It is probably still too early to conclude that this heralds an end to the long-running trade d

ispute between the two countries, and it would be rash to be overly sanguine about the prospects for re

lations given Washington’s anxieties about China’s rise, which may simply be chann

eled in other ways. But the agreement between Xi and his US counterpart Donald Trump in December to press the pause button on frictions,

and the subsequent intense series of discussions to find ways to stop them escalating, show both sides are aware of ho

w damaging and potentially dangerous it would be to keep locking horns over their trade relations.

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Tianhe, another name for the galaxy in ancient China, imp

lies that the Chang’e 4 probe served as a pioneer in the history of human lunar exploration.

According to the IAU naming rules, the landing site name has the prefix of Statio in Latin. And so far onl

y two places have such a prefix, the first being the landing site of Apollo 11, Statio Tranquillitatis.

Zhinyu, Hegu and Tianjin are the names of stars in China’s ancient star chart, as the three pits in the lunar crater formed a shape similar to these three celestial bodies.

Mount Tai is one of the five most famous mountains in China in East China’s Shandong province and stands 1,545 me

ters tall above sea level. The central peak, Mons Tai, in the lunar crater measures 1,565 meters in height from its base.

In August 2010 and October 2015, China had applied to name the landing sites of Chang’e 1 and Ch

ang’e 3, and gained approval, and in January this year, China applied to the IAU for the five new names.

So far, a total of 12 lunar features have been named by China.

Naming entities on lunar surfaces started in the 17th century in Europe, and in the 20th century, the U

nited States and the former Soviet Union had the most names due to their lunar explorations.

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