ltural appeal of the countryside so as to attract people back, Jia says. The organizers are als

o working to promote communication between the authors and the villagers, and encourage more reading activities.

Rural resident Ren Chunhua, 63, who now works as a narrator at a local history gallery, was list

ening to Ge Fei’s lecture in her gallery neighboring the festival venue and wanted to buy his work and got the write

r’s signature. She thought Ma’s work inspired by village life in the 1950s was well-written and accurately reflected the reality there.

Literature aficionado Cao Liang drove for two hours from Taigu county to attend the lectures. Having coll

ected all of Su’s books and being familiar with many of the guest authors’ works, he is currently writing his own novel.

Villagers took turns to attend the festival, a move which Ren believes will in

vigorate the local cultural environment and raise Jiajiazhuang’s profile.

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aterials to the US, Gao Feng, the ministry’s spokesman, said China

has been the world’s largest supplier of rare earth materials and has always been keen to m

eet the demand of its trade partners on this material to promote the rare earth industry.

The ministry made the remarks after the Trump administration starting May 10 raised tariffs on Chinese goods and rest

ricted Huawei’s business operations, which has harmed the interests of companies and financial markets on both sides.

“While satisfying domestic demand, China is always willing to fulfill other coun

tries’ rightful needs for rare earth materials,” he said. “But if any country plans to use the rare earth materials that Ch

ina exports to make products that will suppress China’s development, it is not acceptable.”

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ter Games was unveiled in February. Plans aim to optimize the

venues’ designs and operations to be beneficial to the hosting regions after 2022.

“Here, you have the venues from 2008 that are going to be used in 2022 for a complete set of winter sports. This is a wonde

rful legacy story,” said Juan Antonio Samaranch, vice-president of the International Olympic Committee.

Powering all the 2022 venues using green energy while minimizing environmental impacts, while

planning for their post-Games operations, are key in venue preparation this year, Liu said.

To support the preparations financially, Beijing 2022 has signed nine domestic market

ing partners and four second-tier sponsors, while the Games’ licensing program, whic

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After a disappointing performance in 2018, China’s economy appears to be stabiliz

ing. In the first quarter of 2019, GDP growth, at 6.4 percent year-on-year, matched that of the previous quarter. But grow

th in industrial production exceeded expectations, expanding by 6.5 percent year-on-year (and by 8.5 percent in Mar

ch). Even exports growth was positive, albeit weak, despite the ongoing trade frictions with the United States.

Moreover, fixed-asset investment (FAI) grew by 6.3 percent-0.2 percentage points higher than in the previous quar

ter. Investment in real estate grew the fastest (11.8 percent), followed by manufacturing (4.6 percent) and in

frastructure (4.4 percent). The growth of investment both in real estate and infrastru

cture was stronger not only sequentially, but also year-on-year. As usual, consumption growth was stable.

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It was reported that the fire could be caused by lightening strike.

Moscow’s transport prosecution office is investigating into the incident and it will check i

f there were violations of the flight safety legislation, according to Sputnik news agency.

Sarah Daley, a student at the University of Virginia, has deep connectio

ns with China. She spent the summer of 2018 teach

ing English in Hebei province and has a younger sister who was adopted from China in 2009. Both experiences left

her with positive impressions of Chinese people and long-lasting friendships.

Those connections led to Daley being honored by the Chinese embassy

in the United States during an award ceremony in Washington on Saturday, after she sha

red her stories with the world through an event hosted by the embassy and China Daily.

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income population, Xi said that China would open up its market continuously and welcome quality products from around the world.

China does not pursue a trade surplus intentionally, and it would like to import more com

petitive farm products, finished products and services to promote the balance of trade, Xi said.

China will promote greater openness in modern services, manufacturin

g and agriculture, allow foreign capital to hold the controlling share in more areas and buil

d some new free trade pilot zones to further ease market access for foreign capital, he said.

China will speed up making relevant rules and regulat

ions and ensure the implementation of the Foreign Investment Law, Xi said, adding that the cou

ntry will push forward supply-side structural reform through fair competition and international cooperation.

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than 150 countries, including 37 heads of state or government, for the thre

e-day event starting on Thursday, Wang said, adding the forum, themed “Belt and Road Coop

eration: Shaping a Brighter Shared Future”, aims to bring about high-quality cooperation under the initiative.

President Xi Jinping will deliver a keynote speech at the op

ening ceremony of the forum, and chair the leaders’ round-table summit, Wang said.

Saying the BRI has delivered real benefits to participating countries, Wang stated the hats like “debt traps” cannot be put onto t

he head of the Belt and Road, and this is not something any participating country would recognize.

He added that international communities should base their understandings and comments about the BRI on the facts.

Trade volume between China and the countries participating in the B

RI has exceeded $6 trillion, the number of investment is over $80 billion and arou

nd 300,000 jobs have been created for the people from the countries involved in the initiative, Wang said.

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their bilateral relations to continue to play a pioneering role in China’s relations with the West, he added.

Xi also called on both sides to step up mutual understanding, trust

and respect each other’s core interests and major concerns with an open, inclusive spirit.

Xi added that China welcomes New Zealand to take part in building the Belt and Road.

He also urged greater bilateral cooperation in international affairs, jointly pro

moting the development of an open world economy and safeguarding multilateralism and the multilateral trading regime.

China has prioritized coping with the challenges of the climate change and is willing to wo

rk with New Zealand to jointly promote the sustainable development of Pacific island countries, he said.

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extended her condolences to the victims and their families and people who are affected by the attacks.

“Our thoughts go to the victims and their families and everyone that being affect,” Dalziel said

. She also acknowledged the extraordinary response from the police and first responders.

“An attack on the Muslin community is an attack on us, on Christchurch and on New Zealand,” Dalziel said.

She believed that Christchurch people will go thro

ugh this together by “looking after each other … in many diverse communities in our city.”

Calling the event “an unspeakable tragedy,” the mayor told Xinhua, “We need to make

sure that everyone feels safe, everyone feels welcome and everyone feels a part of the city.”

Major public events during the weekend have all been cancelled across New Zealand a

fter the attacks. Flags were flown at half-mast in government buildings to mourn the victims.

The Chinese Consulate General in Christchurch has confirmed there was no casualty of Chinese citizen in the mosque attacks.

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  of national political angst and with a heavy duty policy debate already under way. But Trump is an expert at trivializing and belittling opponents, to de

tract from the gravity of their arguments and to feed the conservative media machine.

  His diagnosis of Jeb Bush’s “low energy” four years ago established a narrative about the former Florida gove

rnor’s campaign that hinted at a grain of truth. The one-time GOP front-runner could never recover.

  Trump vs. Brexit — and Obama

  At one point in the meeting Tump, said he wasn’t going to “comment on Bre

xit,” but characteristically unable to constrain himself, could barely leave the topic alone.

  At the start of his meeting, Trump welcomed Varadkar, and poin

ting out that his visitor was in a difficult position over Britain’s tortured attempts to comp

lete its withdrawal from the European Union, which could harm Ireland’s peace and prosperity.

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