Delegation Led by Mike Gallagher Says U.S. Support for Taiwan Is Firm

Visiting U.S. lawmakers sought to assure Taiwan on Thursday that the United States would stand by it in the face of pressure from China, though a bill that includes support for the island has stalled in Congress, and divisions over aid for Ukraine have fanned wider questions about Washington’s commitment to its partners. “Today we’ve come as Democrats and Republicans to show bipartisan support for this partnership,” Representative Mike Gallagher, the Wisconsin Republican who is leading the congressional delegation to Taiwan, told President Tsai Ing-wen in Taipei, the capital. Journalists…

Alleged Japanese Crime Boss Accused of Trafficking Nuclear Material

new york —  A leader of a Japan-based crime syndicate conspired to traffic uranium and plutonium from Myanmar in the belief that Iran would use it to make nuclear weapons, U.S. prosecutors alleged Wednesday. Takeshi Ebisawa, 60, and his confederates showed samples of nuclear materials that had been transported from Myanmar to Thailand to an undercover Drug Enforcement Administration agent posing as a narcotics and weapons trafficker who had access to an Iranian general, according to federal officials. The nuclear material was seized, and samples were later found to contain…

Cargo ship fractures bridge in Guangzhou, southern China, sending vehicles into the water below

Breaking | Cargo ship fractures bridge in Guangzhou, southern China, sending vehicles into the water below A cargo ship rammed into a bridge over the Pearl River in the city of Guangzhou, southern China on Thursday morning, sending vehicles into the water below. Authorities are on the scene managing traffic and investigating, but details of casualties remain uncertain. The cargo ship was travelling from Foshan’s Nanhai district towards Nansha in Guangzhou, southern China., Photo: X/whyyoutouzhele Images shown on state broadcaster CCTV show the Lixinsha bridge in the city’s Nansha district…

Japan’s stock market passes record closing level after 34 years

Stay informed with free updates Simply sign up to the Japanese business & finance myFT Digest — delivered directly to your inbox. Japan’s stock market has climbed past its all-time closing high, exceeding the record level struck during the country’s late-1980s asset bubble after a 34-year wait. The Nikkei 225 index of the biggest Japanese companies briefly passed its 38,915-point record close during intraday trading on Thursday, capping a powerful rally during 2024, driven by rises in chip-related stocks such as Screen, Tokyo Electron and Advantest. Takeo Kamai, head of…

Why Japan may have outgrown ‘go for it’

Unlock the Editor’s Digest for free Roula Khalaf, Editor of the FT, selects her favourite stories in this weekly newsletter. Go for it! Just a few more steps! Breathe in a bit, the suit still fits! The reason the Japanese word “gambatte!” (and the very slightly more brusque “gambare!”) is so tricky to translate lies partly in its ubiquity and partly in its versatility.  And, perhaps now, in its inappropriateness. In both progress and setback, the word has reigned as Japan’s supreme motivator: a nuanced, context-dependent call for effort, persistence,…

China food security: inflated crop yields threaten ‘rigour, authority’ of scientific research

China’s increased efforts to seek technological advancement in agriculture to ensure food security could be undermined by exaggerated figures in crop yield tests, state media has warned. While record-breaking yields of newly-developed food crop varieties have frequently hit the headlines in recent years, many of the results had been massaged for publicity purposes, said China Comment, a bimonthly magazine produced under the state-backed Xinhua News Agency. Local authorities and agricultural companies fabricated results to either enhance their image or secure financial support as China, with 1.4 billion mouths to feed,…

US Lawmaker Who Chairs China Committee Arrives in Taiwan

taipei, taiwan —  U.S. Representative Mike Gallagher, who chairs the House of Representatives select committee on China, arrived in Taiwan on Thursday with a delegation of other lawmakers and will meet senior Taiwanese leaders. Gallagher, who is being accompanied by four other lawmakers on a trip ending Saturday, has been a strong friend of Chinese-claimed Taiwan and a fierce critic of China. “The delegation will meet with senior Taiwan leaders and members of civil society to discuss U.S.-Taiwan relations, regional security, trade and investment, and other significant issues of mutual…

China’s Inviting Sympathetic Foreign Media to Xinjiang Can Backfire

hong kong —  Albanian Canadian scholar Olsi Jazexhi seemed to be the perfect foreign writer for the Chinese government to invite to Xinjiang, its westernmost province and home to the ethnic Uyghur Muslim minority so mistreated by Beijing that its critics have called it cultural genocide. “My initial intention was to visit Xinjiang myself to investigate and to prove the West wrong,” Jazexhi tells VOA. During an interview for a journalist visa at the Chinese Embassy in Tirana, Albania, in 2019, he says he told the consular official, “I want…

Growth in CO2 emissions leaves China likely to miss climate targets

China is off track on all of its core 2025 climate targets, despite the fact that clean energy is now the biggest driver of the country’s economic growth, analysis has found. After years of extraordinarily rapid growth, China is now grappling with a slowdown that is causing ripples internally and internationally. The government has supercharged the growth of the renewable energy industry but it has imultaneously poured stimulus funds into construction and manufacturing, and continues to approve coal power. China’s total energy consumption increased by 5.7% in 2023, in the…

Climate change: China at risk of missing its goals unless it takes drastic action to rein in coal expansion, new research finds

“Another year of rapidly rising emissions in 2023 leaves China way off track against its target of cutting carbon intensity by 18 per cent between 2021 and 2025,” said Lauri Myllyvirta, lead analyst at the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA). “As a result, carbon dioxide emissions would now need to fall by 4 to 6 per cent by 2025 to hit the goal.” The approaching deadline for achieving peak carbon dioxide emissions before 2030 appeared to have led many developers to pursue a wave of carbon-intensive…