US Senator Threatens Cambodian Officials With Travel Ban Unless Opposition Leader is Freed
Senator Ted Cruz has threatened to ban Cambodian officials from traveling to America if Cambodia’s government does not release opposition chief Kem Sokha from pre-trial detention ahead of a voter registration deadline for the country’s July 2018 general elections. “This attempt to undermine the Cambodia people’s faith in their democratic process must cease immediately,” said Cruz. “If your Prime Minister does not release Kem Sokha by November 9th, I will work with my colleagues in Congress and in the Trump administration to see that specified government officials responsible for these actions are prevented from traveling to the United States.”
China’s Entrepreneurs Squirm Under Xi Jinping’s Tightening Grip
Sui-Lee Wee, The New York Times
China’s relationship with entrepreneurs, already complicated, has become strained. The Communist Party, which suppressed private enterprise after taking power in 1949, officially welcomed them to join its ranks early last decade, recognizing that the country needed private business to power growth and innovation. But the state is now asserting its authority over private business in new ways. President Xi Jinping has pushed for strengthening state-owned enterprises and has called on businesspeople to maintain loyalty to the party.
Xi Jinping Opens “New Era” For Country And The World
Carrie Gracie, BBC
China’s new leadership line-up was the last scene to play in the carefully scripted drama of the Communist Party Congress. Yet again Xi Jinping defied convention. Halfway through one Party chief’s decade in power, a leader-in-waiting would normally appear in a red carpet ceremony at the Great Hall of the People. In his three-and-a-half hour speech to the Congress, he set out a vision not just for the five years ahead but for 30, and talked of a socialist model which provides, “a new option for other countries and nations who want to speed up their development while preserving their independence.”
Cuban-American Faces Long Sentence In Havana Under Alleged Espionage Charges
Nora Gámez Torres, The Miami Herald
The parents of Alina López Miyares left Cuba in 1969 to escape Fidel Castro’s revolution. But that did not keep her from falling in love and marrying a former Cuban diplomat years later, and then traveling frequently to the island to be with him. Now López Miyares seems likely to stay on the island for a while, serving a 13-year prison sentence allegedly on charges of spying after an October 2nd trial. Her husband, the Cuban ex-diplomat Félix Martín Milanés Fajardo, was reportedly sentenced to 17 years in prison.
Cuban Investigators Say US Sonic Attack Allegations “Science Fiction”
Cuban officials investigating US complaints of attacks on diplomats in Havana said talk of acoustic strikes was “science fiction” and accused Washington of “slander” while it refused to cooperate fully with Cuba’s enquiry. President Donald Trump said last week he believed Havana was responsible for 24 diplomats being harmed. Washington expelled 15 Cuban diplomats and recalled more than half the US diplomatic personnel from Havana earlier in October.
House Passes North Korea Sanctions
Cristina Marcos, The Hill
The House passed legislation on Tuesday that seeks to cut off North Korea’s access to financial institutions around the world amid its nuclear provocations. The measure, passed 415-2, would direct the Treasury Department to ban US financial institutions from engaging in transactions that benefit people or entities associated with the North Korean government. It would also authorize cutting off financial assistance to foreign governments that knowingly fail to prevent transactions that benefit the North Korean regime. The legislation is named after Otto Warmbier, a University of Virginia student who was arrested and imprisoned while visiting North Korea in 2016.
North Korean Defector Describes “Life Of Hell” For Christians
Perry Chiaramonte, Fox News
North Korean Choi Kwanghyuk is one of the lucky ones. The 55-year-old managed to escape from the work camp where he was sent after being targeted and persecuted by the government for his Christian faith. “We couldn’t raise our voice during a service, we couldn’t sing out loud during a worship … that was hard,” Choi told Fox News through a translator. “Also, we had to hide so that other people could not see us.”
Trump To Press China On North Korea, Trade On Beijing Visit
President Donald Trump will urge President Xi Jinping to make good on his commitments to pressure North Korea when he visits China next month, a senior White House official said on Monday, stepping up a strategy to have Beijing help rein in Pyongyang. Isolating North Korea further over its nuclear and ballistic missile tests is a key goal for Trump on what will be his longest foreign trip to date. Trump will call on Xi to fully implement UN Security Council resolutions against Pyongyang and take other steps to pressure North Korea.
Rubio Warns That Venezuela’s Tipping Point Is Coming
Michelle Caruso-Cabrera, CNBC
Senator Marco Rubio told CNBC on Tuesday that Venezuela’s government is incompetent, dictatorial and tyrannical. In an interview ahead of a crucial debt payment due Friday, Rubio was asked if the US is prepared for any fallout that may occur if Venezuela misses the payment. “The world markets are going to react to that. Certainly, their creditors are. And look, this is where they’re headed anyway,” he said. “They do not have an economy, they’ve made terrible economic decisions.”
Vietnam Student Activist Jailed For Six Years
A Vietnamese student was sentenced Wednesday to six years in prison for anti-state propaganda, as the government tightens its grip on critics before an Asia-Pacific summit in the country next month. Scores of dissidents are already behind bars in the communist state, and rights groups say 2017 has been a particularly harsh year for activists with a spate of arrests and heavy jail sentences.
ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
October 25th, 1962: US Ambassador to the UN Adlai Stevenson presents to the UN Security Council photographs of Soviet Missiles in Cuba.