Because of sanctions, Iran’s health sector is struggling to

  keep up with soaring prices of medications and medical instruments, doctors tell CNN.

  European banks, fearing secondary US penalties, are reluctant to do business with Iranian companies even those not blacklisted b

y the US. Medical companies have had to resort to paying intermediaries exorbitant sums to secure ne

eded supplies, including imported medicines and medical instruments which have more than tripled in value du

ring Iran’s rapidly dropping currency, health professionals explain.Sanctions is the first problem in our country and in ou

r system. We can’t transfer the money and make the preparations for surgery. It’s a big problem for us,” says Dr. Mo

hammad Hassan Bani Asad, managing director of the Gandhi Hotel Hospital. “We have the procedures, but we don’t hav

e the instruments. It is very difficult for patients and maybe leads to death of some patients.”

  Though most of Iran’s medicines are domestically manufactured, much of the primary materials, m

any of them imported, are in short supply. And while the state provides universal healthcare, so

me of the treatment needed for critical cases cannot be covered by state insurance.

www.qianpadae.com

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.

www.gzbbas.com

The UK government, a key US ally on intelligence and security

  is expected to decide this spring which suppliers can provide technology for 5G networks. If it chooses to allow the use of Huawei gear

it could seriously undermine the US campaign against the company and influence other governments that are weighing how to handle the issue.

  The UK Department of Culture, Media and Sport said in a statement earlier this w

eek that it was “looking at a range of options” and that “no decisions have been taken.”

  ’A rigorous, ruthless advancement of China’s interests’

  The RUSI report — written by former diplomat Charles Parton, who spent 22 years working in mai

nland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan — warned that the UK government needed to stay alert for int

erference from the Chinese government across a range of fronts, including politics and research.

  Britain is a particularly appealing target for interference as a close

US ally with a large Chinese ethnic community and an open, advanced economy, Parton said.

  Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei: The US ‘cannot crush us’

  ”Beijing’s interference is not aimed at subverting the West, but represents a rigorous, ruthl

ess advancement of China’s interests and values at the expense of those of the West,” he wrote.

aishedesat.com

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.

sh419cl.com

In recent years, Japan and North Korea have interact

mainly on the issue of past abductions of Japanese nationals, and over Pyongyang conduc

ting nuclear and missiles tests which have Japan within their range. Whenever tensions soared on the Korean P

eninsula, Japan took a hard-line stance toward North Korea and proposed to enhance sanctions.

If Washington-Pyongyang ties improve, Tokyo may rethink its policy toward North Korea, participate in

efforts with other East Asian countries to push for peace on the Peninsula and ease geopolitical strains.

After the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, Tokyo has been marginalized over the Korean Peninsula.

Furthermore, on the abductions issue and North Korea’s nuclear issue, Japan’s right to speak is waning.

If the US’ basic request on North Korea is met, Japan may seek to normalize relations w

ith North Korea. Furthermore, Tokyo may help Pyongyang’s economy later by offering fin

ancial aid and investment. With these moves, Japan may intend to increase its influence on the Peninsula.

www.sh419as.com

On one hand, the EU and the US diverge over a number of

For instance, Trump urged NATO members to increase defense expenditures, while the EU is seeking more strategic independence by devel

oping a European army. But with a slowly recovering economy, Central and Eastern European countries are unable to

cover defense expenses and are not as supportive of the EU’s common defense plan as previously expected.

Meanwhile, with France and Germany signing the Aachen Treaty, the two will engage in more in-d

epth cooperation. Considering the continuous threat allegedly posed by Russia and di

vergences within the EU over defense cooperation, the US can provide a security shield for the Central and Ea

stern European region, such as deploying more troops and upgrading equipment which would gain support fro

m regional countries. Currently, these countries are more prone to NATO as the supplier of public security goods.

Besides public security goods, the US also provides the region with institutions and regu

lations facilitating Western democratic freedom. Actually, the US has never stopped its democratic pervasion and assistance. For example, projects fu

nded by the National Endowment for Democracy have spread across Central and Eastern Europe.

sh419tv.com

The actual reason for flaws in practice is that globalism needs

 unified global political will, which is difficult to find amid large sovereign nations. Hence, there is a huge gap between ideal globalism and its practice. Sovereign states should try to spare room for g

lobalism. Globalization is required by people and cannot be reversed at will. On the other hand, globalization has to take i

nto account the political reality of mass sovereign countries. The goals and agenda need to be limited within the flexible boundary of sovereign nations. Ot

herwise, it would disrupt some countries’ political and economic setup, breeding social antagonism.

In the era of exacerbating confusion, globalization may be not as appealing as before, but it is u

ndesirable to discard globalism, which has boosted the development of global economy and fought

common problems. In a highly connected and almost irreversible world, simply retreating to nationalism will generate nothing but disaster. We can

hold a selective attitude toward globalization. The part of judging from the perspective of strong nations’ i

nterests and submitting to capital is not advisable. The globalization we desire is to serve the interest of all people and

match the political system of sovereign countries. On the whole, what we need is a revised globalization.

ashkk.com

As election looms, Thais yearn for stabilityl Times Publish

Thailand’s Election Commission rejected Princess Ubolratana Rajakanya’s candidacy for next month’s general elec

tion on Monday. This is in keeping with the Thai tradition that says the monarchy must remain above politics.

This incident has added another twist to the election the run-up to which has been complicated.

In 2014, Thailand’s military seized control of the country after negotiations with rival political factions failed. Sub

sequently, then head of the army General Prayuth Chan-o-Cha took over as the Prime Minister. It is expected that the up

coming general election on March 24 would end the more than four-year-old rule of Prayuth’s junta.

However, originally scheduled for February, the election was postponed by one month due to King Maha Vajiralongkorn’s coronation, which led to unrest.

The military government has not done much for economic development, regardless of its con

tribution to social stability. Thus, the public hopes the election be held as soon as possible so th

at the junta can hand state power back to the people and the nation’s economy can be developed.

Hence, any news of election delay unsettles Thai people. Fortunately, one month is not too long a wait.

xzzygk.com

HK police Sina Weibo account brings nostalging Kong Spe

The police department of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) set up the Sina

Weibo account Hong Kong Police on Jan 29, which was welcomed by a large number of netizens.

The official account so far boasts more than 140,000 fans, with some posts receiving more than 10,000 comments.

The account Hong Kong Police focuses mainly on practical information like crime prevention and event ar

rangements, such as the Lunar New Year fireworks display and traffic control measures during the celebration parade.

The latest data from the Hong Kong Tourism Board shows that among the 58 million visitors to H

ong Kong in the first 11 months of last year, Chinese mainland visitors accounted for almost 80 percent.

Hong Kong Police Force hopes to increase engagement through t

heir Sina Weibo account with Chinese mainland tourists, new arrivals, and students stu

dying in Hong Kong, and effectively convey important messages in a timely and effective manner.

www.funhorsy.com

Which is why US President Donald Trump’s latest remarks

that the negotiations have been progressing “very well” and he might reportedly even let the March 1 deadline “slide for a little while” — have been taken as portents that progress is being made and a positive result may well be on the way.

Especially as White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders has raised the possibility of Trump meeting with Pres

ident Xi Jinping at the US president’s personal retreat at Mar-a-Lago in Florida, sometime in March — The White Ho

use has previously said the two leaders would have to meet to strike the final bargain.

The market never lies, as the saying goes. Let’s hope that’s true, because the stock market has already

cast a vote of confidence in China and the US being able to reach a deal. The bench mark S

hanghai Composite Index has rebounded more than 10 percent, and the Dow Jones industrial average, more than 15

percent, from their lows in December when Sino-US trade tensions were running high.

It is apt that melting snow symbolizes a new beginning, as positive progress in the talks would m

ean a convergence of expectations for bilateral relations and help ensure the Sino-US relationship has a s

olid foundation of mutual trust and good momentum for positive interaction at the start of its fifth decade.

www.ax142.cn

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