Ma Xiaoguang, spokesman for the State Council’s Taiw

wan Affairs Office, said in a statement on Tuesday that the exercise aimed to protect national sover

eignty and territorial integrity, as well as protect the common interests of people from both sides of the straits.

Taiwan’s administration, led by the Democratic Progressive Party, used the drill as an opport

unity to “deceive and mislead the residents of Taiwan and to provoke and escalate a cross-Straits confrontation,” Ma said.

“Its goal of undermining cross-Straits relations and the peace and security of the region will not succeed,” Ma said. “Nobo

dy should underestimate our adamant resolve and ability to protect national sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

On Tuesday, Taiwan leader Tsai Ing-wen said she will not be intimidated by the military d

rill, calling the exercise “a threat to Taiwan” and an act of “coercion”, the island’s media reported.

Tsai also thanked the United States for considering a deal with Taiwan to renew a $500

million training program in the US for Taiwan F-16 pilots and maintenance crews.

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He noted that since the first Belt and Road Forum for

 International Cooperation two years ago, more countries and inter

national organizations have joined in the construction of the Belt and Road.

So far, 125 countries and 29 international organiz

ations have signed BRI cooperation documents with China, according to Lu.

Among them are 16 Central and Eastern European countries and Gr

eece. Italy and Luxembourg signed cooperation agreements with China last month to join

tly build the Belt and Road. Jamaica also signed similar agreements on Thursday.

During Premier Li Keqiang’s European visit last week, both sides agreed to seek greate

r synergy between the BRI and the European Union’s strategy for connecting with Asia.

Yang Jiechi, director of the Office of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the Comm

unist Party of China Central Committee, said last month that representatives of more than 100 coun

tries, including about 40 foreign leaders, have confirmed their attendance at the Beijing forum.

www.renrencanzheng.org

Inside Beijing’s must-attend April eventbassador to

Guests like Austrian ambassador to China Friedrich Stift, p

erformances from the Strauss Festival Orchestra Vienna, and reality TV star Allen Wu as

host have made the event the most talked-about on Beijing’s April social calendar.

The dapperly attendees and the venue at the Kempinski Hotel Beijing Lufthansa Center, a lux

ury hotel in downtown Beijing, will make April 13 a night of waltz, high fashion and haute cuisine.

With tickets priced 1,500 yuan ($224), the ball has sold out every ye

ar during its five-year history in Beijing, according to organizer, the Kempinski Hotel.

In this video interview with China Daily’s website, both the ambassador and Brice Péan, mana

ging director of the Kempinski Hotel, give a preview of what to expect at this year’s ball.

www.yuyingleyou.com.cn

Urgency rises for tackling hazardous wastesipate after

The deadly blast at a chemical plant in Jiangsu province last month that left 78 dead clearly hig

hlights the urgent need to properly handle hazardous waste management in the country.

As central authorities tighten management by revising laws and issuing detailed

policies to support hazardous waste treatment, experts are calling for mandating

that facilities to process such waste be built in all chemical industry parks nationwide.

The explosion occurred on March 21 in Xiangshui county, Yanch

eng, at a Jiangsu Tianjiayi Chemical Co Ltd plant. The accident also injured more than 600.

The State Council, China’s Cabinet, set up an investigation

group and the probe into the cause of the blast is ongoing.

Multiple sources have suggested that the casual handling of hazard

ous chemical waste produced by the company could be a cause of the deadly blast.

China Chemical Industry News reported that the blast originated at

the company’s hazardous waste storage facility, citing a source close to the investigation group.

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They are both staunch supporters of free trade and mul

ultilateralism, and with the United States increasingly opting for unilateralism in international affairs, China and the EU can str

engthen their coordination within the framework of the United Nations and buttress the role of multilateral mecha

nisms including the World Trade Organization and the International Monetary Fund.

Beijing and Brussels are also two important voices advocating internati

onal efforts to combat climate change and promote sustainable development.

It is hoped that the leaders attending the China-EU Summit in Brussels will send positive signals that the two sides are commi

tted to deepening their strategic and reciprocal cooperation. By strengthening their consensus and solida

rity, they can boost confidence that they will work together to address shared and global challenges.

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It is not the first time in our European history to have suc

 such an attitude. Any nation with very strong and rapid growth is always in a very difficu

lt position in public opinion because we are afraid about the strength of others,” he said.

“For example, we were afraid of cultural pressure from the United States in the 1960s, and 20 ye

ars later, we had the same feelings against Japan with its technological projects. Now, China is bac

k around the table of big nations. I think we have to accept that and not be afraid, but to discuss.”

Raffarin said the two countries are expected to close contracts and announce new projects. He also

said the dialogue between France and China could be very useful in forming a new vision for multilateralism in a changing world.

In addition to strong existing collaboration between France and China, including in the automotive, aviation and healthcare sectors, Raffarin said the most

important thing for the future of Sino-French relations is to identify third-country projects, such as the Hinkley Point C nu

clear power plant in the United Kingdom, which is jointly financed by China and France, as well as opportunities in Africa.

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hinese President Xi Jinping sent a message of condolenc

to New Zealand Governor-General Patsy Reddy on Friday over the deadly shooting incidents earlier Friday in New Zealand’s Christchurch City.

In his message, Xi said he was shocked to learn about the serious shooting incidents which have caused heavy casualties.

On behalf of the Chinese government, the Chinese people and in his ow

n name, Xi expressed deep sympathy with and sincere condolences to the New Zealand gov

ernment and the New Zealand people, while expressing grief for the victims and wishing the injured an early recovery.

Also on Friday, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang sent a message of condolence to New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Arder

n, expressing grief for the victims while extending sincere sympathies to the injured and the bereaved families.

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A UK Foreign Office spokesperson said that the governme

  nt would look at the judgment “carefully.” “The defens

e facilities on the British Indian Ocean Territory help to protect people here in Britain and arou

nd the world from terrorist threats, organized crime and piracy,” the spokesperson added.

  rom Singapore to Djibouti and Bahrain to Brazil, today the US operates about 80

0 military bases and logistical facilities outside its sovereign territory — more than any other nation.

  ”If you take all the other foreign bases owned by countries together there are only ab

out 30,” says Daniel Immerwahr, a professor of history at Northwestern University.

  Most of America’s bases were acquired during the era of decolonization, after World War II, when trad

itional colonial powers such as Britain and France were shedding colonies around the world, especially in Asia.

www.shanghaidianbaobao.cn

Trump, who has faced backlash for saying he took Kim’s

  word that the North Korean leader was unaware of former prisoner Otto Warmbier’s c

apture, said Saturday that he was torn between his obligation to negotiate and his support for the Warmbiers.

  ”I’m in such a horrible position,” Trump said. “Because in one way I have to negotiate. In

the other way, I love Mr. and Mrs. Warmbier. And I love Otto. And it’s a very, very delicate balance.”

  Democrats and socialism

  Trump also accused congressional Democrats of accepting socialism and trying to “replac

e individual rights with total government domination” during the speech.

  ”Just this week more than 100 Democrats in Congress signed up for a socialist takeover of Am

erican health care,” he said, apparently referencing the Medicare For All bill currently supported by many House Democrats.

  Trump said that the plan “would lead to colossal tax increases” and “take away private covera

ge from over 180 million Americans,” as opposed to the private plans and new cooperative plan backed by hi

s administration “where you get better insurance than Obamacare for a fraction of the cost.”

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Once implemented, the law will replace three existing

 laws on Chinese-foreign equity joint ventures, non-equity joint ventures and wholly foreign-

owned enterprises, which were mainly legislated between 1979 and 1988 and then revised.

“The draft law reflects experience on foreign investment governance that China has accumulated over the past decade, and

it sets up a comprehensive basic law framework that resonates well with China’s current situation in attract

ing foreign investment,” said Cui Fan, a professor at the University of International Business and Economics.

“When the three old laws were made, foreign investment came to China mainly because of t

he low human resources cost, but now China’s huge market potential is much more alluring.”

In addition, as globalization goes further, competition between countries and regions is intensifying, which has indu

ced China to further adjust laws and regulations to create a better environment for foreign investment, he said.

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