News Headlines - 27 January 2020

Trump Tied Ukraine Aid to Inquiries He Sought, Bolton Book Says - The New York Times

President Trump told his national security adviser in August that he wanted to continue freezing $391 million in security assistance to Ukraine until officials there helped with investigations into Democrats including the Bidens, according to an unpublished manuscript by the former adviser, John R. Bolton.
The president’s statement as described by Mr. Bolton could undercut a key element of his impeachment defense: that the holdup in aid was separate from Mr. Trump’s requests that Ukraine announce investigations into his perceived enemies, including former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and his son Hunter Biden, who had worked for a Ukrainian energy firm while his father was in office.
Mr. Bolton’s explosive account of the matter at the center of Mr. Trump’s impeachment trial, the third in American history, was included in drafts of a manuscript he has circulated in recent weeks to close associates. He also sent a draft to the White House for a standard review process for some current and former administration officials who write books.

A year on, Juan Guaidó’s attempt at regime change in Venezuela has stalled | The Guardian

A year ago, on 23 January 2019, Juan Guaidó, chairman of Venezuela’s opposition-controlled national assembly, proclaimed himself president of the country and vowed to remove Nicolás Maduro from power. Guaidó’s pretender government was swiftly recognised by the Trump administration, as well as by the UK, France, Germany, Spain and Brazil, and eventually some 50 countries in total. As street protests flared in Caracas, it seemed to many outside Venezuela that Maduro’s days in office were numbered – and with them those of Chavismo, the radical left-populist movement that first surged to power in 1998 under Maduro’s predecessor, Hugo Chávez. Yet, one year on, Maduro remains firmly ensconced in the presidential Miraflores Palace. And not only has the US-backed attempt at regime change failed to dislodge him, but it is now Guaidó’s position at the head of the Venezuelan opposition that is looking shaky.

Wuhan mayor admits 'withholding info' about China coronavirus | Daily Mail Online

The mayor of a Chinese city ravaged by a new deadly virus has admitted that his government withheld information about an outbreak from the public.
Zhou Xianwang, the mayor of Wuhan, confessed that his team had not released information about the situation 'in time'. He also said that the city was seeing human-to-human transmission of the novel coronavirus 'on a large scale'.
The revelations came after Mr Zhou yesterday disclosed that around five million Wuhan residents had left the city before it went into lockdown last Thursday.

North Korea: Kim Jong-un’s aunt makes surprise public appearance, six years after husband’s shock execution | South China Morning Post

Kim Jong-un’s aunt has made a surprise public appearance, six years after her husband was executed as a traitor.
Kim Kyong-hui, 73, was with Kim Jong-un and other party officials when they watched a Lunar New Year’s music performance, the North’s official KCNA news agency reported Sunday.

SUMO/ Lowest ranked wrestler wins New Year sumo tournament:The Asahi Shimbun

For only the second time, the lowest ranked sumo wrestler in the top makuuchi division walked away with the Emperor’s Cup... The last time the lowest ranked makuuchi wrestler came out on top was when Takatoriki won the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament of 2000 as maegashira No. 14.
But Tokushoryu, whose highest rank until now was maegashira No. 4, is the first wrestler to win a tournament marking his return to the makuuchi division.







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