China holds Yulin dog meat festival amid worldwide protests









 







China’s notorious Yulin Lychee and Dog Meat Festival is underway despite earlier claims that the controversial event, which celebrates eating dog meat, would be banned this year. Our small commentary: This is definitely unacceptable in the West, BUT, and there’s a big BUT, not just a tiny one, BUT this is THEIR country and we have no right to tell them what to do and how to live their lives, just as THEY have no right to tell us Europeans how to live our lives!

Animal activists are engaging in stand offs with meat trucks en route to Yulin in China’s southern province of Guangxi. It is believed many of the dogs sold at the festival are stolen.

The festival opened Wednesday after Chinese authorities reached a compromise with vendors in which each stall would only display two dog carcasses, AFP reports.

Authorities told the media they have no power to ban the event, which is not officially sanctioned by the government, as eating dog meat is not illegal in the country.

Tense scenes have been reported at the Dongkou and Nanqiao markets where Beijing-based journalist Marcel Wink claimed foreign attendees were being watched closely by vendors.

The festival began in 2010 and is traditionally held during the summer solstice as dog meat is considered to be beneficial during the hot summer months. There is a long tradition of eating dog in China, South Korea and some other Asian countries. Supporters say foreigners should not interfere in local culture.

Activists estimate that in peak years, about 10,000 dogs and cats were killed and eaten during the 10-day festival. Between 10 million and 20 million dogs are killed for food annually in China, according to the Humane Society International (HSI)

The festival has garnered huge international attention over the years with activists from outside China joining protests. AFP says one of their reporters was told by vendors to delete photos taken at a stall.

Animal rights groups posted videos of efforts to block trucks carrying dogs destined for the market. The Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation claims it rescued dogs that were being clubbed in the face and skinned alive from several slaughterhouses in the area.

HSI says that more than 800 dogs and some cats in Guangzhou, China, were rescued after Chinese activists engaged in a 10-hour stand-off with a truck. The dogs were believed to be en route to Yulin. Police reportedly took custody of the dogs and brought them to a shelter in Guangzhou.

Meanwhile, Animals Asia believes the focus needs to be wider, calling for an outright ban on dog meat. The organization, along with scores of Chinese animal rights NGOs, is urging activists not to buy dogs from traders as it pushes up their prices and profits.

Chinese residents have expressed mixed opinions about the festival on Weibo. Some social media users voiced their opposition to eating dog meat pointing out the differences between canines and other animals.

Many others said they recognised the practice as a Chinese tradition and respected traders right to earn a living and people to consume the meat even if they didn’t eat it themselves.

Source






RELATED ARTICLES


Did you like this information? Then please consider making a donation or subscribing to our Newsletter.

Source Article from http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/TheEuropeanUnionTimes/~3/lun7kwj3Xzc/

To contain Russia and China, Pentagon requests more than $230 billion for nuclear weapons modernization

    

In the next 20 years, the Pentagon intends on spending $230 – 290 billion for the modernization of its nuclear forces. This was stated by US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, Robert Soofer, presenting the budget request in the Senate. Among the reasons justifying the need to develop nuclear weapons, Soofer pointed to the the size of Russia’s nuclear arsenal, which is not inferior in size to the US.

In his speech he explained the importance of further development of nuclear power and the need to allocate funds for the modernization to take place.

“Russia undertook aggressive actions against its neighbors, and has become a threat, including a nuclear threat to the US and its NATO allies,” – said Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense.

According to Soofer, the only country that can compete with the US on the size of the nuclear arsenal, has started modernization of nuclear weapons, in connection with which the presidential administration is invited to consider concrete steps that “would deprive the significant military advantage Russia.”

In addition, according to the Pentagon, a threat also exist from China, which is building up its own nuclear arsenal, and is North Korea.

“China’s actions in the Asia-Pacific region are evidence of its desire to occupy a dominant position. North Korean authorities have demonstrated that they are ready to accept the prospect of retaliatory economic sanctions and international isolation for the sake of increasing its nuclear capability and ballistic missiles, capable of striking the United States, as well as to our allies in the region “, – said Robert Soofer.

To confront the challenges, from 2018 to 2040 the US Department of Defense plans to spend from $ 230 billion to $ 290 billion on nuclear weapons.

This amount includes the total value of strategic nuclear weapon delivery systems, as well as part of the cost of the bomber B-21, which can be used with both nuclear and conventional warheads.

The US is spending on the maintenance of existing nuclear weapons a total sum of about $ 14 billion a year. However, in 2018 the Ministry of Defense plans to increase this amount to $ 19 billion, of which $ 5 billion will be allocated exclusively to modernization. The money will be spent on the development and creation of strategic submarines “Colombia”, a new generation of bombers, B-21, as well as the manufacture of modern ballistic and cruise missiles.

Increases are also planned for spending on the development of land-based strategic deterrence program, which involves the upgrading of ballistic missiles and related infrastructure, with $ 200 million in the fiscal year of 2018, to $ 2.5 billion in 2022. On the B-21 bombers, the US plans to spend $ 2.7 billion on an annual basis. Also in 2018 the Pentagon wants to allocate $ 2.8 billion for the production and modernization of intercontinental ballistic missiles that can attack targets at a distance of at least 5.5 thousand Km.

It is notable, according to SIPRI Research Institute, that in 2016 the United States spent $ 611.2 billion on the development of nuclear weapons, while Russia – only $ 69.2 billion.

According to the level of military expenditure, China ranked second in the world -. $ 215.2 billion. Thus, more than a third of the world’s military spending belongs to the US, while Russia’s budget is only 4.1% of the world’s.

“It would be wonderful, this is my dream, if no country had nuclear weapons, but if any state will have a nuclear weapon, we will be on top of the competition”, – said the US president.

Source Article from https://www.sott.net/article/354274-To-contain-Russia-and-China-Pentagon-requests-more-than-230-billion-for-nuclear-weapons-modernization

$28 hacking software used to break into webcams spreads in China

    

The notion of “the privacy of your own home” may be becoming a thing of the past. Cheap software has reportedly spread in the Chinese Internet, allowing web-connected cameras and home surveillance devices to be infiltrated.

Virtually anyone can buy the hacking software for just 188 yuan ($28) with an attached list of IP addresses and a manual on how to use the malware, China’s CCTV broadcaster reported after conducting an investigation. The malware scans for internet-connected webcams, giving its buyers easy access to them.

The tool has recently spread in Chinese online chat rooms such as QQ Messenger, along with usernames and passwords to affected devices, CCTV reported.

Lists of up to 200 to 400 compromised cameras and login credentials are given away each day, and are downloaded by hundreds of people, according to the Chinese media outlet.

Those with webcams and other easily hackable camera devices are advised to change their passwords immediately and often, as a safety precaution.

CCTV traffic monitoring cameras as well as other cameras in the city can be also hacked if their passwords are not safe enough, cybersecurity experts warned, as cited by South China Morning Post.

Those who exploit these gaps in security to invade personal space can be sentenced to up to three years in prison in China, the newspaper added.

Hijacked webcams have long been a cybersecurity concern, particularly after analysts concluded that massive DDoS attacks in October 2016 were the result of smart devices – including webcams and thermostats – being infiltrated to carry out the attacks. More than 80 popular websites were affected, including PayPal, Reddit, Amazon, Spotify, and Twitter.

Webcam hacking even seems to be cause for concern for Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

A sharp-eyed Twitter user noticed in June 2016 that a photo posted online by Zuckerberg showed his laptop in the background, with tape over the camera and microphone.

Source Article from https://www.sott.net/article/354185-28-hacking-software-used-to-break-into-webcams-spreads-in-China

Iran & China conduct joint naval exercises in Strait of Hormuz

A total of four vessels and two helicopters displayed their military capabilities on Sunday during a day of joint exercises in the strait connecting the Persian Gulf with the Gulf of Oman.

The Chinese fleet, which includes the Chang Chun guided-missile destroyer, the Chao Hu replenishment ship, the Jin Zhou frigate, and a helicopter, arrived in the Iranian southern port of Bandar Abbas on Thursday. An Iranian destroyer and a helicopter joined them for the drills.

READ MORE: The Qatar blockade, petro-yuan & coming war on Iran

The exercises, which had been planned in advance, are aimed at promoting interaction and strengthening confidence between the navies of the two nations, according to Rear Admiral Shen Hao, Commander of China Navy Task Force Group 150, as cited by Iran’s IRNA news agency.

Source Article from https://www.rt.com/news/392837-iran-china-hormuz-drills/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=RSS

Russia offers China joint development of engines for civil aviation

“We proposed to the Chinese that we jointly create an engine for a long-haul aircraft based on the Russian PD-14 engine,” Rostec spokesperson Viktor Kladov told RIA Novosti on the sidelines of the IV Russian-Chinese Expo in Harbin, China.

According to Kladov, Rostec hopes that the prototype engine will be ready by 2020.

Russia has been working on the Irkut MC-21, a twin-engine short- to mid-haul jet airliner with a capacity of 151 to 212 passengers, depending on the model and class configuration.

The producer hopes that the airliner will replace the aging fleet of Soviet-made passenger aircraft and compete for a share in the global market, thanks to its relatively low price and higher cruising speed.

China has been developing the twin-engine Comac C919, which can carry up to 158 passengers and has a range of 4,075km. A longer-range version can fly up to 5,555km.

Both aircraft have seen maiden flights in 2017. Russia’s MC-21 has been powered by US Pratt & Whitney PW1400G engines, but the version for the domestic market will use the new Russian-made PD-14 engine.

The C919 is powered by CFM International LEAP turbofan engines of France-US origin.

Source Article from https://www.rt.com/business/392564-russia-china-jet-engine/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=RSS

500 Pet Cats saved from Being on Restaurant Menus in China









 







A man was arrested in eastern China’s city of Jiujiang, in southern Jiangsu province for allegedly capturing pet cats and stray cats to sell to restaurants for 30 yuan (S$6) per feline, Chinese media said.

A raid by the Danyang city police uncovered more than 500 cats, all of which were later released. They were allegedly caught to be sold to restaurants in other Chinese cities, Chinese news site qq.com reported.

The police told the media on Sunday (June 11) that a journalist had tipped them off about a batch of cats meant for sale on a truck.

The cats were squeezed into tiny cages in the heat, and some of them were panting, with glazed eyes and mewling.

A villager who gave his name only as Mr Yang told the reporter that there were more cats in a hut nearby.

Mr Yang had made a police report after his pet cats started to go missing, the South China Morning Post reported on Monday.

At the hut, there were many more metal cages filled with different coloured cats, with a fan turned on to keep them from dying in the heat.

Mr Yang said the man caught the cats by using sparrows as bait.

Just last November, nearly 1,000kg of fresh and frozen cat meat was found in a raid of three buildings in Chengdu, in south-western Sichuan province. They were reportedly sold under the guise of rabbit meat.

Source






RELATED ARTICLES


Read More Stories About: , , , , , , , , , ,


Did you like this information? Then please consider making a donation or subscribing to our Newsletter.

Source Article from http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/TheEuropeanUnionTimes/~3/ohzcx-TlL-k/

China launches first X-ray space telescope to study black holes

    

China has launched its first X-ray space telescope, aimed at studying black holes, pulsars, and gamma ray bursts, state media reported. The launch is expected to bring “new breakthroughs in physics,” according to the project’s lead scientist. The 2.5-tonne Hard X-ray Modulation Telescope (HXMT), named ‘Insight,’ was launched on Thursday morning from Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China’s Gobi desert, Xinhua reported. It was delivered into orbit, 550km (341 miles) above the Earth, by the Long March-4B rocket. Chinese scientists say Insight will allow them to observe magnetic fields and the interiors of pulsars and better understand the evolution of black holes, AFP reported.

Specifically, Insight will seek out new black hole activity by searching the Milky Way for celestial bodies that emit X-rays.Although black holes are usually undetectable, scientists are able to study the X-rays emitted when matter falls into a black hole and is accelerated and heated, lead scientist Zhang Shuangnan said, as quoted by Xinhua. According to Zhang, Insight is more capable of finding black holes and neutron stars that emit bright X-rays than other countries’ space telescopes, because it has a larger detection area and a broader energy range which makes it easier to scan the galaxy.

And although very bright objects can typically result in image over-exposure due to a large number of photon particles, Insight’s designers have managed to avoid that problem by diffusing photons. “No matter how bright the sources are, our telescope won’t be blinded,” chief designer Chen Yong said. The telescope will also help scientists search for gamma-ray bursts related to gravitational waves, and study how pulsars can be utilized for spacecraft navigation. “We are looking forward to discovering new activities of black holes and studying the state of neutron stars under extreme gravity and density conditions, and physical laws under extreme magnetic fields,” Zhang Shuangnan said.

“These studies are expected to bring new breakthroughs in physics,” he added. The Thursday launch is the latest achievement from China’s ambitious multibillion-dollar space program. The country successfully docked its first cargo spacecraft with an orbiting space lab in April, a move seen as a major step towards its goal of having its own crewed space station by 2022. Last month, China launched a simulated ‘space cabin,’ allowing scientists to better understand what will be required for humans to live on the moon for extended periods of time. Beijing aims to send a probe to the dark side of the moon by 2018, and to put astronauts on the moon by 2036.

Source Article from https://www.sott.net/article/353772-China-launches-first-X-ray-space-telescope-to-study-black-holes

IMF urges China to cut skyrocketing non-government debt faster

    

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has urged China to tackle its skyrocketing debt, describing it as unusually high for a developing economy. Analysts are concerned that any turbulence in China would impact the global economy.

Beijing has begun to take action but it needs to move faster, said David Lipton, the IMF’s chief deputy managing director. He has met with Chinese finance, economic planning and central bank officials in Beijing.

“Reform progress needs to accelerate to secure medium-term stability and address the risk that the current trajectory of the economy could eventually lead to sharp adjustment,” Lipton told a news conference.

Estimates of China’s total nongovernment debt have grown from 170 percent of gross domestic product in 2007 to 260 percent of GDP last year, unusually high for a developing country. China turned to fast lending to counter the 2008 financial crisis.

At the same time, China’s external debt is low by international standards, at around 12 percent of GDP, according to the IMF.

The organization expects China’s economy to grow by 6.7 percent this year and slow down to an average of 6.4 percent in 2018-2020, Lipton said.

At the end of May, Moody’s ratings agency cut China’s credit rating, citing the risks from rising debt loads. This was the first downgrade since 1989.

The Chinese Finance Ministry responded by saying that “Moody’s has overestimated the difficulties faced by China’s economy and underestimated the government’s ability to deepen reforms.”

Chinese regulators are seeking to reduce the amount of loans. For example, they allow banks to accept stock to repay debt.

Source Article from https://www.sott.net/article/353771-IMF-urges-China-to-cut-skyrocketing-non-government-debt-faster

IMF urges China to cut ballooning debt faster

Beijing has begun to take action but it needs to move faster, said David Lipton, the IMF’s chief deputy managing director. He has met with Chinese finance, economic planning and central bank officials in Beijing.

“Reform progress needs to accelerate to secure medium-term stability and address the risk that the current trajectory of the economy could eventually lead to sharp adjustment,” Lipton told a news conference.

Estimates of China’s total nongovernment debt have grown from 170 percent of gross domestic product in 2007 to 260 percent of GDP last year, unusually high for a developing country. China turned to fast lending to counter the 2008 financial crisis.

At the same time, China’s external debt is low by international standards, at around 12 percent of GDP, according to the IMF.

The organization expects China’s economy to grow by 6.7 percent this year and slow down to an average of 6.4 percent in 2018-2020, Lipton said.

At the end of May, Moody’s ratings agency cut China’s credit rating, citing the risks from rising debt loads. This was the first downgrade since 1989.

The Chinese Finance Ministry responded by saying that “Moody’s has overestimated the difficulties faced by China’s economy and underestimated the government’s ability to deepen reforms.”

Chinese regulators are seeking to reduce the amount of loans. For example, they allow banks to accept stock to repay debt.

Source Article from https://www.rt.com/business/392245-china-loan-debt-imf/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=RSS