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Last updateTue, 21 Nov 2017 8pm

World News

Iraq rebuffs US call to disband Iran-backed militias.

Iraq's prime minister has defended Iran-backed militias, during talks with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson who had criticised their role.


Japanese Prime Minister promises to tackle North Korea

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has promised strong "counter-measures" against North Korea, after winning a decisive victory in yesterday's election. Mr Abe had called an early election for a greater mandate to deal with "crises", including the growing threat from Pyongyang, which has fired missiles over Japan in recent months. His ruling coalition has retained a two-thirds majority in parliament. This paves the way for Mr Abe to amend Japan's post-war pacifist constitution. Mr Abe has previously called for the existence of the country's armed forces to be formalised, a controversial move which he says is needed to strengthen Japan's defence, although critics say it is a step towards re-militarisation.

King Felipe the Sixth says Catalonia 'will remain' Spanish

King Felipe the Sixth of Spain has said Catalonia "is and will remain" an essential part of Spain. It is his second intervention in the Catalonia secession crisis. Catalonia's leader has threatened to declare independence, and Madrid is making plans to impose direct rule.


Jacinda Ardern becomes New Zealand's youngest woman leader.

New Zealand is set for a centre-left coalition government led by Labour head Jacinda Ardern. Ms Ardern has been opposition leader for the last three months. At 37, she is set to be the country's youngest prime minister since 1856. Her Labour Party came second in September's election, where no party was able to secure a majority. They are now tipped for power after the small New Zealand First party agreed to join them in government.

California hepatitis A outbreak death toll climbs to 19


The death toll from California's hepatitis A outbreak has reached 19, one week after the state's governor issued a health state of emergency.More than 500 people in California have contracted the viral disease since November, many of whom are homeless.Hepatitis A, which attacks the liver, is usually spread through faecal matter, transmitted through sex or by touching contaminated food or objects.It is the second-largest US outbreak of hepatitis A in the past 20 years.

The Chinese president pledges to lead China to realize “socialist modernization” by 2035.

Chinese president Xi Jinping said today that the Communist Party of China will lead the country to realize “socialist modernization” by 2035. Xi made these remarks in a report to the 19th National Congress of The Communist Party of China, held at The Great Hall of the People, in central Beijing. Xi called the plan, The Communist Party's "strategic vision for developing socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era."

Catalan Separatists in Spanish Custody

A Spanish judge has jailed two key members of the Catalan independence movement. Jordi Sánchez and Jordi Cuixart, who lead prominent separatist groups, are being held without bail while they are under investigation for sedition. The men were leading figures in the October 1st independence vote, which the Spanish Government regarded as illegal. Their detention led to protests overnight, with more expected across Catalonia today. They are being investigated over a protest on the 20th of September in which a crowd blocked Civil Guard officers inside a building in Catalonia's regional capital, Barcelona.

A painting by Leonardo Da Vinci themed as “Salvator Mundi” to be unveiled at a New York auction, tomorrow

A painting by Leonardo Da Vinci themed as “Salvator Mundi”, which translates to English as “Saviour of the World”, is due to be unveiled at the Christies New York Auction House, tomorrow.  Da Vinci painted this image of Jesus Christ at about the same time as Mona Lisa, which is around the year 1500. It was identified as a work of Da Vinci in 2011. “Salvator Mundi” is a painting of the most iconic figure in the world by the most important artist of all times.

Trump aims blow at Iran and threatens landmark nuclear deal

US President Donald Trump has condemned Iran as a "fanatical regime" and refused to continue signing off on a landmark international nuclear deal. Speaking at the White House, Mr Trump said he was acting in order to deny Iran "all paths to a nuclear weapon". In a combative speech yesterday, Mr Trump accused Iran of sponsoring terrorism and proposed new sanctions, accusing Iran of breaching the nuclear agreement. However, International observers say Iran has been in full compliance with the nuclear agreement.

Spain celebrates National Day amid political turmoil

Spain's royal family is attending National Day celebrations amid a political crisis sparked by Catalonia's disputed independence referendum. The public display of unity comes a day after Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy told parliament the country was facing the most serious threat to its 40-year-old democracy.


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