Trump Aide Sells China an Entree to Wall Street Hedge Funds
Rick Carew and Lisa Beilfuss and Kane Wu, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
An adviser to President-elect Donald Trump is giving China an entree into the elite world of US hedge funds. Anthony Scaramucci, a loyal Trump surrogate known as “The Mooch,” is selling his controlling stake in SkyBridge Capital—which manages roughly $12 billion—to Chinese conglomerate HNA Group and investment partner RON Transatlantic EG in a deal that values SkyBridge at around $200 million, according to people familiar with the situation.
No Longer Welcome? American Companies Fear China’s Turning Its Back on Them
Simon Denyer, THE WASHINGTON POST
American companies don’t feel welcome in China any more. And while Chinese Communist Party Leader Xi Jinping defended globalization at the World Economic Forum in Davos, US companies say his government is not practicing what he preached. An annual survey of business conditions by the American Chamber of Commerce, or AmCham, in China found that 4 out 5 companies feel less welcome in China than before. While American companies definitely do not want Trump to start a trade war with China, they are increasingly unhappy with the way Beijing is treating them. They argue that Xi’s government is turning more toward protectionism as its economic growth slows.
Artist Jailed in Cuba Since November for Anti-Fidel Castro Graffiti May Be Released Jan. 28
Elizabeth Llorente, FOX NEWS
A prominent graffiti artist in Cuba who was jailed the day after Fidel Castro died for actions that appeared to celebrate the late Cuban leader’s passing, reportedly will be released on Jan. 28, his girlfriend told FoxNews.com. Danilo Maldonado, known as “El Sexto,” has been transported to various jails since his arrest on Nov. 26. The 33-year-old dissident has not been charged with any crimes, those close to him say.
US and Cuba Sign Torrent of Agreements under the Inauguration Wire
Karen DeYoung, THE WASHINGTON POST
The United States and Cuba on Wednesday signed a treaty delineating their maritime boundary in the eastern Gulf of Mexico amid a torrent of last-minute negotiations between the two governments in the outgoing days of the Obama administration. In the past two weeks, Washington and Havana also inked agreements on joint responses to potential oil spills and other pollution in the gulf and the Florida Straits; cooperation on law enforcement and information sharing; and maritime and aeronautical search and rescue.
Russia’s Middle East Ambitions Grow with Syria Battlefield Success
Kathrine Hille and Erika Solomon, FINANCIAL TIMES
When the Syrian government and rebels meet in Kazakhstan next week, the chances of the warring parties agreeing on a political solution to end their near six-year conflict will be slim. But for Moscow, the main sponsor of the peace talks, one crucial thing has already been accomplished: sending out the message that Russia is back as a key player in the Middle East.
Six Agencies—Including FBI, CIA, Treasury—Probing Possible Russian Aid to Trump’s Campaign: Sources
Peter Stone and Greg Gordon, CHICAGO TRIBUNE
The FBI and five other law enforcement and intelligence agencies have collaborated for months in an investigation into Russian attempts to influence the November election, including whether money from the Kremlin covertly aided President-elect Donald Trump, two people familiar with the matter said. The agencies involved in the inquiry are the FBI, the CIA, the National Security Agency, the Justice Department, the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network and representatives of the director of national intelligence, the sources said.
Nikki Haley Opposes Trump’s Views on Russia at Confirmation Hearing
Julian Borger, THE GUARDIAN
Nikki Haley, Donald Trump’s nominee to be US ambassador to the United Nations, disagreed clearly with the president-elect’s views on Russia, Syria, and other foreign policy issues during her Senate confirmation hearing on Wednesday, but said she and her new colleagues hoped to change his mind. She made it clear that the US should not accept Russia’s annexation of Crimea nor its covert military intervention in eastern Ukraine, and insisted that US sanctions should be maintained until Moscow changed its behavior there.
Vietnam Police Halt Anti-China Protest over Islands
Police in Vietnam’s capital stopped an anti-China protest within minutes on Thursday at a ceremony to commemorate a clash between the two countries in the South China Sea more than four decades ago. Vietnam and China have a longstanding dispute over the South China Sea, nearly all of which is claimed by China. Four other countries have claims in the sea, through which an estimated $5 trillion in trade passes each year. The protest in Hanoi started after a peaceful commemoration for soldiers of what was then South Vietnam who were killed in 1974, when China seized the Paracel islands, which it still holds.