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Hong Kong elite says bill withdrawal a first step as city braces for weekend protests

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Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam on Friday said measures announced this week to help restore order in the Chinese-ruled city are a first step, and disagreed with a credit downgrade by rating agency Fitch after months of sometimes violent protests.

The Asian financial hub is bracing for more demonstrations this weekend, with protesters threatening to disrupt transport links to the airport, after Lam’s withdrawal of a controversial extradition bill failed to appease some activists.

“The four actions are aimed at putting one step forward in helping Hong Kong to get out of the dilemma,” Lam told reporters during a trip to China’s southern region of Guangxi. “We can’t stop the violence immediately.”

Lam on Wednesday withdrew a controversial extradition bill that would have allowed people to be sent to mainland China for trial in courts controlled by its ruling Communist Party and announced three other measures to help ease the crisis.

The Beijing-backed leader said she disagreed with the Fitch downgrade, adding that said some of the activists’ demands, such as dropping charges against protesters who used violence, violated the law.

Demonstrations have gripped Hong Kong for three months, at times paralyzing parts of the city amid running street battles between protesters and police whose violence has drawn international attention.

Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel raised the issue of Hong Kong with Chinese premier Li Keqiang in Beijing, saying a peaceful solution is needed.

“I stressed that the rights and freedoms for (Hong Kong) citizens have to be granted,” Merkel said during a visit to China.

“In the current situation violence must be prevented. Only dialogue helps. There are signs that Hong Kong’s chief executive will invite such a dialogue. I hope that materializes and that demonstrators have the chance to participate within the frame of citizens’ rights.”

Li told a news conference with Merkel, “The Chinese government unswervingly safeguards ‘one country, two systems’ and ‘Hong Kong people govern Hong Kong people’”.

Beijing supported the territory’s government “to end the violence and chaos in accordance with the law, to return to order, which is to safeguard Hong Kong’s long-term prosperity and stability,” he added.

24 Hours Across Africa

Liverpool maintain perfect start after beating Chelsea

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Alexander Arnold’s 15th minutes thounderous strike and Firmino effort at Stamford bridge earn Liverpool five points lead over Manchester city.

Liverpool are the first team to win their opening six Premier League games in successive seasons.

After an intensed play, Chelsea have a goal rule out over Var decision, on 71th minutes Ngolo konte score a hard fought goal.

Liverpool fans has loud Adrian over his resilience performance after saving chances from Tammy Abraham, Michy Batshuayi and Mason Mount.

 

 

 

 

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Health & Lifestyle

WHO accused Tanzania of hiding information on Ebola victims

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Ebola virus has cause major loss of life and socioeconomic disruption in Africa.

The number of cases has began to decline gradually, following the commitment of substantial international resources.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has rebuked Tanzania for failing to provide information about possible Ebola virus infections.

The WHO said it had learned of one suspected fatal case in Dar es Salaam and two others but, despite repeated requests, was given no information

Tanzania has said it has no suspected or confirmed cases.

The latest outbreak has killed more than 2,000 in eastern DR Congo, with Uganda battling to stop any spread.

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