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Apr 16, 2018

Reuters News Now | Monday Morning Briefing: Diplomatic tensions over Syria strikes heighten - April 16, 2018.

Reuters News Now


Russian President Vladimir Putin warned that further Western attacks on Syria would bring chaos to world affairs, as Washington prepared to increase pressure on Russia with new economic sanctions. In a telephone conversation with his Iranian counterpart, Hassan Rouhani, Putin and Rouhani agreed that the Western strikes had damaged the chances of achieving a political resolution in the seven-year Syria conflict, according to a Kremlin statement.
Russia may have tampered with the site of an alleged chemical weapons attack in Syria’s Douma, the U.S. envoy to the global watchdog said, urging the body to condemn the continuing use of banned chemical weapons.
Commentary: Putin's “simple but ruthless plotting” has made the latest Syria crisis all about Russia, writes columnist Peter Apps. In recent weeks, the Russian military has menaced U.S. and allied vessels from the air, and interfered with the GPS signals that guide U.S. drones. Kremlin officials have openly threatened “shooting down U.S. missiles and perhaps even targeting the aircraft and ships that fired them.”
Jack Stubbs  @jc_stubbs
It is a glorious sunny day in Moscow. Meanwhile, Russian stocks and the rouble are down, new U.S. sanctions are due this afternoon, and Telegram is about to be forced offline.
12:49 AM - Apr 16, 2018

United States

U.S. President Donald Trump said last week he would reconsider joining the landmark Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement, if it were a “substantially better” deal than the one offered to President Barack Obama. Here is a look at the state of play in the negotiations and the conditions needed to be in place for the United States to join an agreement Trump scrapped as soon as he took office.
Former FBI director James Comey said in an ABC News interview on Sunday that Trump is a dangerous, “morally unfit” leader doing “tremendous damage” to institutional and cultural norms.
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A new national security aide to U.S. Vice President Mike Pence stepped down on Sunday, only two days after being officially named to the job, after a behind-the-scenes White House argument hit the headlines, a White House official said.


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Emily Wither  @ewither
The world's largest oil exporter Saudi Arabia now claims it's going to build the world's largest solar power plant. @ReutersTV visited the government lab just outside Riyadh that's leading the kingdoms efforts in these ambitious plans.
April 16, 2018

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