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Chinese Stocks, U.S. Sanctions, Rolls Royce Bribes

Chinese Stocks, U.S. Sanctions, Rolls Royce Bribes


Chinese equities fell again today despite ending higher on Friday, following a devastating week for the country's stock markets. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index dropped 0.8%, and although the Shenzhen CSI 300 ended up 0.7%, both fell by as much as 4% at one point, Reuters reports. This came as the government launched a large-scale crackdown on people who allegedly spread false rumors leading to "disorders in stock market or society," Xinhua reports, quoting an official statement. The incriminated rumors are that a "man jumped to death in Beijing due to stock market slump," and that "at least 1,300 people were killed in Tianjin blasts." As many as 197 people have been "punished."


On August 31, we said hello to a violinist and bid farewell to a princess, as part of our daily video shot of history.


The United States are putting together what The Washington Post described as "a package of unprecedented economic sanctions" targeting Chinese individuals and companies that benefited from Beijing's alleged large-scale cyber attacks on the U.S. Such a move would raise tensions between the two countries further, amid an ongoing row in the South China Sea and Beijing's devaluation of its currency. The specter of sanctions comes ahead of Chinese President Xi Jinping's planned visit to the U.S next month.


"Hungary is part of Europe, which has values, and we do not respect those values by putting up fences that we wouldn't even use for animals," said France's Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, lashing out at Hungary, for its decision to erect a fence in an attempt to stop the influx of migrants travelling via Serbia, a non-European Union country. Fabius' Hungarian counterpart, Peter Szijjarto, slammed the French diplomat's "shocking and groundless judgments" and retorted that his country was following EU rules. Hungary has received almost 150,000 migrants so far this year, 50,000 this month alone. Read more from AFP.


The wasting of food continues in a world where too many people still go hungry. Still there are signs of a growing consciousness, writes Ignacio Zuleta in Colombian daily El Espectador. "The impact of wasting food is not just moral, financial or social. It's also environmental, given the amount of water and fertilizers used to produce it, the fuel burned in trash collection and the greenhouse gases these processes generate, which in turn foment more poverty.

The scandal is that the planet can evidently produce food for everyone, but our depraved consumer culture and typical ignorance mean that our food is instead being discarded in trash bags or being left to rot in fields because, for one example, the potatoes don't meet size standards. It's certainly a sin."

Read the full article, Our Food … Is In The Trash .


Photo: Bernard Gagnon/GFDL

ISIS terrorists have destroyed part of another 2,000-year-old temple in the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the group detonated more than 30 tons of explosives to blow up the Temple of Bel, the largest structure in the UNESCO-listed city. Read more from Al Jazeera.


There are now four suspects in the bombing earlier this month at a holy shrine in Thailand's capital that killed 20 people. See the latest from the Bangkok Post.


British giant Rolls-Royce has become the latest company to be dragged in the massive corruption scandal engulfing Brazil's state-oil company Petrobras, The Guardian reports. The car manufacturer is alleged to have paid bribes to Brazilian government officials and executives via an influent Brazilian businessman who is already under investigation. The company is also under criminal investigation in Britain over bribery allegations in Asia.


Italian energy company Eni announced late Sunday it had made "a world class supergiant gas discovery" off the Egyptian coast, enough to satisfy Egypt's natural gas demand "for decades," the company said in a statement. According to Forbes, the discovery is bad news for Israel.


Serena Williams will be looking to equal Germany's Steffi Graf's grand slam tally of 22 at the U.S. Open, which begins today. A victory in Flushing Meadows would see the American champion clinch her first single-season Grand Slam. Graff was the last female player to achieve this in 1988.



It was with a lengthy speech (even by his own standards) that Kanye West received a Video Vanguard Award yesterday at the MTV Video Music Awards, but the final revelation was worth the wait. "As of this moment, I have decided that I will be running for president in 2020," the rapper said, before dropping the mic and leaving the stage. This may have been a "joke" since he admitted moments before having "rolled up something" before coming on stage. Still, in the world of ludicrous White House candidates, West would be the perfect successor to Deez Nuts or Donald Trump.

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eyes on the U.S.

Eyes On U.S. – American Diplomacy Is Unable (Or Unwilling) To Adapt To A New World

Crises worldwide mean we need less nationalism and more cooperation, but the U.S., a weakened superpower, won't accept its diminished status.

Close up photo of a somber-looking flag of the U.S.

America the not-so-Great anymore

Juan Gabriel Tokatlian, Ginevra Falconi, Renate Mattar


BUENOS AIRES — There is widespread international consensus that the post-Cold War period, which began around 1990, is over. Initially, it heralded a "new order" under the guidance of the United States, which promised stability, justice and equity but became instead a run of crises, challenges, conflicts and failures.

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