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Biden on mission to nook China visits Samsung



US President Joe Biden arrived in Seoul on Friday to kick off his first Asia journey and was scheduled to have the primary summit with South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol on a string of points, and analysts stated Biden might use the US-led Indo-Pacific financial framework and threats from North Korea as appearing factors to additional pull South Korea nearer. Nevertheless, what advantages a geopolitical software will carry to South Korea stays a query and many individuals alerted that standing unconditionally with the US won’t maximize South Korea’s pursuits.

In line with Yonhap Information, after Biden arrived, he and Yoon visited a Samsung chip plant in Pyeongtaek, “underscoring the 2 nations’ dedication to working collectively to strengthen provide chains.” On Saturday, Biden and Yoon will meet once more to debate the complete vary of safety and financial challenges dealing with them and the area.

Biden’s go to, which got here 10 days after Yoon took his oath as South Korea’s president, is the second time for a US president to go to South Korea forward of the brand new South Korea president’s go to to the US since 1993, and it’s additionally uncommon to see US president make South Korea the primary vacation spot earlier than Japan in an Asia journey. Some observers stated such preparations underscored Biden’s scheme to drag South Korea into its methods to include China.

Even earlier than Biden launched into the Asia journey, the US and Japan had racked their brains to hype China subjects. US Nationwide Safety Adviser Jake Sullivan stated Wednesday that Biden intends to grab the Asia journey – “this pivotal second” – to claim “daring and assured American management” within the Indo-Pacific and ship a message to China that the West and its Asian companions won’t be divided and weakened. Nevertheless, he additionally famous that the US needed not a lot to confront China on the journey.

In response to Biden’s Asia journey and Sullivan’s remarks, Chinese language International Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin stated at a press convention on Friday that China hopes the US’ actions can be in keeping with its remarks. He urges the US to work with regional nations for cooperation and to not collude for divisions or confrontations, or carry chaos or disturbance to the area.

Hyping threats

North Korea can be used as an appearing level for the US to additional pull South Korea nearer, analysts stated, as Yonhap Information reported that subjects on “the rising risk of North Korea’s nuclear and missile packages” will high the agenda of the leaders’ summit to bolster “mixed protection and deterrence.”

Chung Youngjune, a South Korean scholar who now works in Tongji College, informed the International Occasions that the Yoon authorities might focus on restoring joint navy drills with the US, of which the dimensions shrank throughout the Moon authorities, and reactivate the Prolonged Deterrence Technique and Session Group (EDSCG) over the everlasting deployment of US strategic property to South Korea on a rotational foundation.

Chung stated that as there are presumptions on North Korea’s attainable nuclear exams, the US and South Korea are very involved in strengthening navy cooperation.

Nevertheless, the principle subjects of the summit between South Korea and the US should stay in financial safety, not navy safety, as two nations wish to enhance cooperation within the provide chain of semiconductors and batteries, digital economic system, setting technological requirements, and clear vitality, stated Chung.

As one side of the US’ Indo-Pacific Technique, launching the Indo-Pacific Financial Framework is considered one of Biden’s primary missions. One pillar of the IPEF is a steady provide chain and that is why Biden made Samsung his first cease in South Korea, Da Zhigang, director of the Institute of Northeast Asian Research at Heilongjiang Provincial Academy of Social Sciences, informed the International Occasions.

The IPEF, which was unveiled by Biden on the East Asia Summit final October to strengthen US financial cooperation with Indo-Pacific companions, is broadly considered as an anti-China coalition aimed toward excluding China from world provide chains.

Samsung takes a big account of the worldwide high-end chips and in November 2021, Samsung introduced a website in Texas for its new $17 billion pc chip plant, amid a worldwide scarcity in semiconductors, which is the South Korean electronics large’s greatest  US funding.

To push the US-proposed Chip Alliance into actuality, discussions between governments should not sufficient and firms must also be concerned. This is the reason Biden went to Samsung to have interactions. Furthermore, the best way to include China is the unstated tune of Biden’s journey and he may ship a message to Samsung to take again  cooperating with China, Da stated.

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US urged to vary notion on China



BEIJING: China has all the time been a builder of world peace, a contributor to world growth and a defender of the worldwide order, Chinese language International Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian mentioned on Wednesday at an everyday press convention.

Final week on the NATO Public Discussion board, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken mentioned that the connection with China is “probably the most complicated and consequential” relationship and all of the international locations in NATO are “making an attempt to make it possible for collectively we’re upholding the rules-based worldwide order – wherever it’s being challenged. And if China’s difficult it in a technique or one other, we are going to stand as much as that.”

In response, Zhao mentioned that the remarks of Blinken “turned a blind eye to details” and have been “stuffed with Chilly Warfare mentality and ideological bias.”

Noting that China has by no means invaded any nation nor engaged in proxy wars and shaped army blocs, Zhao mentioned that China has lived in concord and pursued win-win cooperation with different international locations to construct a neighborhood with a shared future for mankind.

“Ways resembling reining in NATO, exaggerating the competitors with China and scary confrontations between blocs is not going to succeed,” the Chinese language spokesperson mentioned.

Moreover, Blinken’s assertion that NATO is not going to search battle is hypocritical and unfaithful. Historical past has proved that it’s not China posing any systemic problem to NATO, however NATO more and more posing systemic challenges to world peace and safety, the spokesperson mentioned.

Third, the so-called “rules-based worldwide order” established by the U.S. is definitely a legislation made by just a few international locations to serve its hegemonic self-interest.

“The U.S. has all the time been above the worldwide legislation, making use of or discarding worldwide guidelines primarily based on whether or not they conform to the U.S.’s pursuits, which is the most important breach of the worldwide order,” Zhao mentioned.

We urge the U.S. aspect to appropriate its notion of China and quit its plans to destabilize the Asia-Pacific area and observe the trail of mutual respect, peaceable coexistence and win-win cooperation, Zhao expressed.

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New US examine helps de-mystify Covid mind fog



WASHINGTON: A small new examine printed Tuesday by scientists on the US Nationwide Institutes of Well being means that the immune response triggered by coronavirus infections damages the mind’s blood vessels and could possibly be answerable for lengthy Covid signs.

The paper, printed within the journal Mind, was based mostly on mind autopsies from 9 individuals who died immediately after contracting the virus.

Moderately than detecting proof of Covid within the mind, the workforce discovered it was the folks’s personal antibodies that attacked the cells lining the mind’s blood vessels, inflicting irritation and injury.

This discovery might clarify why some folks have lingering results from an infection together with headache, fatigue, lack of style and scent, and lack of ability to sleep in addition to “mind fog” — and may additionally assist devise new remedies for lengthy Covid.

NIH scientist Avindra Nath, the paper’s senior creator, mentioned in an announcement: “Sufferers usually develop neurological issues with COVID-19, however the underlying pathophysiological course of is just not nicely understood.”

“We had beforehand proven blood vessel injury and irritation in sufferers’ brains at post-mortem, however we didn’t perceive the reason for the injury. I feel on this paper we’ve gained essential perception into the cascade of occasions.”

The 9 people, aged 24 to 73, have been chosen from the workforce’s prior examine as a result of they confirmed proof of blood vessel injury of their brains based mostly on scans.

Their brains have been in comparison with these from 10 controls, with the workforce analyzing neuroinflammation and immune responses utilizing a method known as immunohistochemistry.

The scientists found that antibodies produced towards Covid-19 mistakenly focused cells that kind the “blood-brain barrier” — a construction designed to maintain dangerous invaders out of the mind whereas permitting mandatory substances to move.

Harm to those cells may cause leakage of proteins, bleeding and clots, which elevates the chance of stroke.

The leaks additionally set off immune cells known as macrophages to hurry to the location to restore injury, inflicting irritation.

The workforce discovered that ordinary mobile processes within the areas focused by the assault have been severely disrupted, which had implications for issues resembling their capacity to de-toxify and to control metabolism.

The findings supply clues concerning the biology at play in sufferers with long-term neurological signs, and might inform new remedies — for instance, a drug that targets the build-up of antibodies on the blood-brain barrier.

“It’s fairly doable that this identical immune response persists in Lengthy COVID sufferers leading to neuronal harm,” mentioned Nath.

This may imply {that a} drug that dials down that immune response might assist these sufferers, he added. “So these findings have crucial therapeutic implications.”

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‘Unbelievable feeling’: Abroad Hajj pilgrims rejoice after 2-year Covid absence



MEKKAH, SAUDI ARABIA: Of the a whole bunch of 1000’s of Muslims arriving right here in Mekkah this week for the annual Hajj pilgrimage, maybe none had a extra arduous journey than Adam Mohammed, a 53-year-old electrical engineer from the UK.

Mohammed, who’s of Iraqi-Kurdish origin, determined final yr to journey on foot to Saudi Arabia, a journey of greater than 7,000 kilometres (4,350 miles) that took him by way of 9 nations earlier than he crossed over from Jordan into the northwestern Saudi city of Tabuk.

The journey was made all of the extra dramatic by the truth that when he began his trek 11 months in the past, pushing a cart in entrance of him that contained his meals and different provides, he had no concept whether or not he would have the ability to entry the holy mosques in Mecca and Medina.

It was solely in April that Saudi Arabia, which barred abroad pilgrims in 2020 and 2021 as a part of efforts to mitigate the coronavirus pandemic, introduced that a million Muslims, together with 850,000 from overseas, would have the ability to take part this yr.

Now safely in Mekkah, some 15 kilograms lighter than when he began, Mohammed has no regrets.

“I cried after I first arrived. It’s an unbelievable feeling,” he advised AFP.

“My journey was exhausting. I ended in lots of locations for relaxation. However I used to be targeted on one factor: I’m 53 years previous, so what if I spare 11 months on the highway to succeed in the home of God? It’s doable.”

Mohammed stated Saudi authorities granted him and his spouse and two daughters, who’ve flown from the UK to the Gulf kingdom, a allow to carry out the Hajj.

A lot of the different foreigners performing the pilgrimage have been chosen by way of a lottery system.

‘It’s my dream’

One of many 5 pillars of Islam, the Hajj should be undertaken by all able-bodied Muslims who’ve the means a minimum of as soon as of their lives.

However pandemic restrictions compelled numerous would-be pilgrims primarily based exterior Saudi Arabia to place their plans on maintain.

Often one of many world’s largest spiritual gatherings, about 2.5 million individuals participated in 2019, earlier than the pandemic started.

The next yr, foreigners had been blocked and the overall variety of worshippers was capped at 10,000 to cease the hajj from turning into a worldwide super-spreader.

That determine rose to 60,000 absolutely vaccinated Saudi residents and residents in 2021.

Although the quantity is far larger this yr, there are nonetheless some restrictions: members should be Muslims aged beneath 65 who’re absolutely vaccinated and may submit a detrimental Covid-19 PCR end result from a take a look at taken inside 72 hours of journey.

The Hajj formally begins Wednesday, and Mekkah is already overrun with worshippers who, like Mohammed, are relieved to have lastly reached their vacation spot after lengthy, traumatic waits.

A 30-year-old Russian pilgrim who gave her title as Halima stated she had been imagining her keep in Mekkah for greater than a decade.

The Hajj prices a minimum of $5,000 per individual, and Halima stated she shared her story with mates to drum up funds for each her and her father to come back.

“Yesterday was the primary time I noticed the Holy Kaabah,” she stated. “It’s my dream to be right here, and now I’m dwelling it.”

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