Kim Jong-un supervises test of new tactical guided weapon

Kim Jong-un, top leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) supervised the

test-fire of a new tactical guided weapon, state media Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported on Thursday.

Kim “supervised and guided a test-fire of a new-type tactical guided weapon cond

ucted by the Academy of Defense Science on Wednesday,” the KCNA reported.

The design indexes of the weapon, with advantages of “the p

eculiar mode of guiding flight and the load of a powerful warhead,” were “perfectly verified at the test-fire con

ducted in various modes of firing at different targets,” the report said, giving no details of the weapon.

“Tactical” implies a short distance weapon instead of a long-range ballistic missile in military battles.

According to the report, Kim described the development as “an event of v

ery weighty significance in increasing the combat power of the People’s Army,” sayi

ng that the scientists and workers have done a great work in increasing the country’s capabilities of

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Paris fire sends alarm on relics protectionhedral in Pa

An inferno that destroyed the spire and a large portion of the wooden roof structure of the 12th-century Notre Dame Cathedral in Pa

ris on Monday reinforced a cautionary message to Chinese authorities about the need to better protect vulnerable heritage sites.

The National Cultural Heritage Administration held a staff meeting on Tuesday night at wh

ich officials discussed the Paris fire and six major fires that have taken place at Chinese cultural heritage sites this year.

“The fire at Notre Dame in Paris rang the warning bell for us,” Song Xi

nchao, deputy director of the administration, said in an interview on Tuesday.

“The safety of cultural heritage sites is a red line that can never be crossed. It’s a global issue,” he said.

The six fires were in Sichuan, Fujian, Jiangxi, and Zhejiang provinces, officials said.

On Jan 6, a hall at Yunyan Temple in Jiangyou, Sichuan province, burned down. On

Feb 2, a wooden family temple from the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) in Nanchang, Jiangxi, was destroyed by fire.

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Fiscal spending can directly influence fixed-asset inves

tment, and it could also leverage on more bank lending and attract private funds to increase investment, said Xu.

In the meantime, allowing retail access to local government bonds will help diversify the

investor base and increase market liquidity, said Amanda Du, an analyst at Moody’s Investors Service.

The analyst expected access for retail investors to widen to encompass all local government bonds in 2020.

hina’s economy grew at a faster-than-expected 6.4 percent year-on-year in the first qua

rter, according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics on Wednesday.

The growth was unchanged from that registered in the fourth quarter of last year.

The country’s industrial output posted steady growth in the same period, up by 6.5 percent

year-on-year, compared with 5.7 percent in the previous quarter, official data showed.

Fixed-asset investment growth was 6.3 percent in the first quarte

r, compared with 6.1 percent in the first two months, according to the NBS.

Retail sales increased by 8.3 percent year-on-year in the same pe

riod, compared with 8.2 percent in the first two months, the data showed.

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In early April, the US increased military interactions

with the island by officially acknowledging that military personnel have been posted in the Taipei office of the American Institute in Taiwan since 2005.

US weapons manufacturer Raytheon was also granted a $9 million contract to upgrade Taiwan’s Patriot missile defense system.

Senior Colonel Liang Fang, a professor at PLA National Defense Universit

y, said the recent drill will test and enhance the PLA’s joint operating capabilities.

“It will increase the PLA’s ability to protect national sovereignty, and warn thos

e who are trying to undermine it to abandon their illusions,” she said. “Similar drills

will be more common in the future, with increasingly sophisticated equipment and training methods.”

Xiu Chunping, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Social

Sciences’ Institute of Taiwan Studies, said the recent drill serves to warn the US and separati

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The two sides can help jointly find solutions to glob

 and bilateral issues despite remaining difficulties in bilateral relations, he said.

The thawing of ties between China and Japan was marked by Li’s visit to the country in

May, the first by a Chinese premier in eight years, and the visit by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to China in October.

The economic dialogue between the two countries was launched in 2007,

and deteriorated relations due to disputes over a number of issues resulted in an eight-ye

ar hiatus until last April, when the two sides restarted with the fourth round of dialogue in Tokyo.

China said on Monday that the Belt and Road Initiative is open to economic cooperation with

other countries and regions, and it does not become involved in territorial disputes of relevant parties.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said at a daily news briefing tha

t although the initiative was proposed by China, it is an international project for the public good.

While advancing the initiative, China upholds the principle of equality, openness and transparency and sticks to enter、

prise-oriented market operations as well as market laws and well-accepted international rules, Lu said.

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The latest official tone came from central bank’s D

puty Governor Chen Yulu over the weekend. He reassured that monetary policy will remain “p

rudent” and “with proper intensity”. The growth of broad money supply (M2) and aggregate social financi

ng should align with nominal GDP growth, according to a statement on the central bank’s website.

The deputy governor delivered a speech at the 39th mee

ting of the International Monetary and Financial Committee in Washington.

Chen also stressed that the further improvement of the exchange rate regime wo

uld “keep the renminbi exchange rate generally stable at an adaptive and equilibrium level”.

Lu Ting, chief economist in China with Nomura Securities, wrote in a research note that de

spite solid credit growth, underpinned by ongoing monetary and credit easing measures, the government is u

nlikely to engineer another long and large-scale “credit boom” due to much narrower policy room than before.

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schedule must not be imposed on workersschedule

Editor’s note: The “996” schedule (working from 9 am to 9 pm, six

days a week) has sparked a heated public debate, because many workers don’t get any ove

rtime pay and, worse, could end up in the “”. The “996” phenomenon is rampant in the high-tech and internet compani

es. Some internet company chiefs have added fuel to the debate by saying they want their workers to “work hard”. T

hree experts share their views on the issue with China Daily’s Yao Yuxin. Excerpts follow:

Labor Law should never be violated

Given the fierce competition in the high-tech sector industries, start-

ups have to take drastic measures to survive, let alone thrive. To develop new products, and pr

oduce and market them, companies need a great deal of resources and ski

lled manpower. Perhaps this is the reason they make their employees work overtime.

But forcing the “996” schedule on the workers is illegal. To p

rotect the rights of workers, the Labor Law stipulates that employers

should not force their workers to work more than eight hours a day, or more than 44 hours a week. If emplo

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Underscoring the increasingly important role of railw

way in social and economic development, leaders from China and the CEECs voiced support fo

r moving forward practical cooperation in the development of the China-Eur

ope Land Sea Express Line and making use of European Union (EU)-Chin

a Connectivity Platform to promote development of intermodal freight transportation.

Taking note of the Three Seas Initiative, the participants to the leaders’ meeting expressed their welcome to port cooperat

ion between China and the CEECs, including the opportunities deriving from inland waterways and the interm

odal connections to further enhance the cargo transportation between Asia and Europe.

Leaders from China and the CEECs also expressed their willingness to explo

re the possibilities of establishing a China-CEEC Customs Information Center in Hungary and

their support for the holding of the 5th China-CEEC Transport Ministers’ Meeting in 2020 in Croatia.

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awmakers Julian Assange should face justice in Sweden

More than 70 British legislators have urged the government to make sure WikiLeaks found

er Julian Assange faces Swedish justice if prosecutors there reopen a rape allegation against him.

The lawmakers signed a letter late Friday urging Home Secretary Sa

jid Javid to “do everything you can to champion action that will ens

ure Julian Assange can be extradited to Sweden in the event Sweden makes an extradition request.”

Sweden suspended its investigation of serious sexual misconduct two years ago because Assange wa

s beyond their reach while he was living in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London with political asylum status.

He was arrested Thursday after Ecuador withdrew his asylum a

nd is now in British custody facing an extradition request

from the United States on charges of conspiring to break into a Pentagon computer.

He is in Belmarsh Prison in southeast London wait

ing to be sentenced for jumping bail in Britain, and plans to fight extradition to the US.

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If Britain receives competing extradition requests, law

yers say the Home Secretary would have some leeway in deciding which takes priority. Considera

tions would usually include which request came first, and which alleged crime was more serious.

Most of the lawmakers who signed the letter are from the opposition Labour Party, whose leader, Jere

my Corbyn, wants Britain to refuse to send Assange to the US After Assange’s arrest, he prai

sed Assange for exposing US atrocities committed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Some Conservative Party members are also backing the move. Prom

inent lawmaker Alistair Burt, a former Foreign Office mini

ster, said the “minimizing of the issues in relation to sexual assault are really quite disturbing.”

He said the testimony of the women who have been involv

ed makes it “essential” that Assange face justice to either be cleared or convicted.

Assange, 47, has denied the sexual misconduct allegations, which he claims are politically motivated.

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