World News Roundup: Taliban tells Berlin it will welcome German companies, aid; Denmark cancels tender for domestic coronavirus vaccine production and more
The Taliban took power in Afghanistan last month as foreign forces pulled out after a 20-year mission, and the country is facing an economic collapse and humanitarian crisis while donors and governments weigh up how to deal with the new leaders. Denmark cancels tender for domestic coronavirus vaccine production Denmark has cancelled its previously announced plans for a public tender to establish a national COVID-19 vaccine production facility as it bets on a vaccine already under development by a Danish firm, the Business Ministry said on Monday.
Following is a summary of current world news briefs.
The Taliban would welcome German investment in Afghanistan and help in areas including humanitarian aid, health care, education and infrastructure, the group's spokesman told Bild newspaper. The Taliban took power in Afghanistan last month as foreign forces pulled out after a 20-year mission, and the country is facing an economic collapse and humanitarian crisis while donors and governments weigh up how to deal with the new leaders.
Denmark cancels tender for domestic coronavirus vaccine production
Denmark has canceled its previously announced plans for a public tender to establish a national COVID-19 vaccine production facility as it bets on a vaccine already under development by a Danish firm, the Business Ministry said on Monday. Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen announced in April that Denmark aimed to produce COVID-19 mRNA vaccines by 2022 and that a tendering process would be initiated within a few weeks.
Former UK PM Blair warns West should prepare for bio-terrorism threat
Islamism remains a "first-order" security threat and the West should prepare for the potential use of biological weapons by extremist groups, former British prime minister Tony Blair said on Monday. The Taliban swept to power in Afghanistan last month as the United States withdrew its troops after a 20-year war, and Britain fears the group's return and the vacuum left by the West's chaotic withdrawal will allow militants from al Qaeda and Islamic State to gain a foothold there.
Taliban claim control of Panjshir, promise formation of government 'soon'
The Taliban claimed victory on Monday over opposition forces in the Panjshir valley northeast of Kabul, declaring that it completed the Islamist group's takeover of Afghanistan and promising to announce a new government soon. Pictures on social media showed Taliban members standing in front of the gate of the Panjshir provincial governor's compound after fighting over the weekend with the National Resistance Front of Afghanistan (NRFA), led by Panjshiri leader Ahmad Massoud.
Britain shows off Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier to anxious Japan
Britain showed off its HMS Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier to Japan's defense chief on Monday at a naval base near Tokyo, marking the start of a permanent military presence in a region trying to come to grips with China's growing power. Japan's defense minister, Nobuo Kishi, and senior Japanese military commanders were shown around the carrier, walking between F-35B stealth fighters on the deck as Royal Navy officers explained how the jets launched from the ramp at the bow.
Belarus protest leader Kolesnikova sentenced to 11 years in jail
Maria Kolesnikova, one of the leaders of mass street protests against Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko last year, was sentenced to 11 years in prison on Monday, the state-run Belta news agency and the Belarusian opposition reported. Kolesnikova, 39, was detained after ripping up her passport to prevent Belarusian security forces from deporting her in a standoff at the Ukrainian border in September.
Angry families of MH17 victims accuse Russia of lying
Relatives of the 298 victims of Malaysian Airlines flight 17 on Monday accused Russia of lying about its alleged role in the downing of the plane as they began testifying in the Dutch murder trial of four suspects. International investigators concluded that the passenger plane was shot down over eastern Ukraine with a missile fired by pro-Russian rebels. Moscow denies all responsibility.
Army coup leaders summon Guinea ministers after Conde's ouster
Soldiers who ousted Guinean President Alpha Conde summoned his ministers and top government officials to a meeting on Monday, a day after a coup that drew international condemnation. A spokesman for the army unit told state television that failure to attend the 1100 GMT meeting would be considered a "rebellion".
Qatar will soon resume funding for civil servants and poor families in the Gaza Strip under a new mechanism involving the Western-backed Palestinian Authority and the United Nations, the Gulf state's aid envoy said on Monday. Doha has underwritten Gaza rebuilding and infrastructure projects since the 2014 war between the Palestinian enclave's Islamist Hamas rulers and Israel, but another round of fighting in May prompted Israeli and the U.S. demands to revise the payouts.
Pope Francis has moved to allay Jewish concerns over comments he made about their books of sacred law, following a demand for clarification from Israel's top rabbis, Vatican, and Jewish community sources said on Monday. Last month Reuters reported exclusively that Rabbi Rasson Arousi, chair of the Commission of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel for Dialogue with the Holy See, had written a stern letter to the Vatican, saying Francis' comments appeared to suggest that the Torah, or Jewish law, was obsolete.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)