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Meanwhile, Japan continued signing agreements with

one with the UK in 2017 and another with India the following year. By exploiting the power of these regional countries, Japan aims to secure military provisions for

its SDF in the Indo-Pacific region from the US, Canada, Australia and India and in the North Atlantic region from the US, the UK, France and Canada.

This has laid the foundation for Japan to broaden its SDF activities and ensure military provision with its partners. It is a sm

all-scale bilateral military alliance system centered on Japan. This shows Japan’s long-term strategic plan.

Since the 21st century, Japan has clearly labeled China as its biggest real and potential rival. Esp

ecially since Shinzo Abe took office, he spared no efforts at containing China. During Abe’s first te

rm, the Japanese government raised the idea of the “arc of freedom and prosperity.” When he became prime mini

ster for a second time, the policies advocated by his cabinet, including the values-based alliance, the alliance of m

aritime democracies, the democratic security diamond and the freedom corridor, have all kept China in focus.

Because of the ACSAs with Australia and India, Japan can militarily c

onstrain China’s Belt and Road Initiative in the Pacific and Indian Ocean regions. In the At

lantic, it can also exert forceful intervention in China’s policy in Europe, North Africa and West Africa.

In some areas where China’s military strength has not reached, Japan has crafted its military plan in advance by ut

ilizing its bilateral alliance system, trap-falling China’s military strategy into a passive position.

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Can playing China card boost BJP’s chances in India’s

The upcoming general elections are posing quite a challenge to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the situation is looking so tough that the ruling B

haratiya Janata Party (BJP) is raising just every possible issue which it thinks could work in its favor as the vote is about 60 days away.

As a last resort, the BJP is now trying hard to make an election issue of Congress chief Rahul Gandhi’s reported meeting with

some Chinese ministers and officials during his religious trip to Kailash Mansarovar. Addressing a rally in the eastern Indi

an state of Odisha, Gandhi had cited his recent meeting with some Chinese leaders saying India s

hould learn from the experience of China in creating jobs for youths. He mentioned China as an example to

emulate for fighting unemployment but the ruling BJP has added a new twist to his remark.

According to a government survey reported by an Indian business daily, India’s unemployment

rate stood at 6.1 percent in 2017-18 which was the highest in the past 45 years. Gandhi quickly t

urned to Twitter to hit out at the BJP dispensation, describing it as “National Disaster” but the ruling party termed it “fake news.”

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hina has become the biggest owner of AI patents, follo

wed closely by the US and Japan, the report revealed. The three countries own 74 percent of all issued AI patents globally.

The CISTP report noted that while China has the world’s secondlargest AI talent pool, it has a lower percentage of top talents.

By the end of 2017, China had amassed more than 18,000 AI specialists, behind only the US. But, Ch

ina had only 977 top-tier AI specialists, just one-fifth of the number in the US, ranking sixth globally.

“China’s strengths are mainly shown in AI applications and it is still weak on the front of core techn

ologies of AI, such as hardware and algorithm development,” the report noted. “China’s AI de

IJING – China’s new yuan-denominated loans stood at 3.23 trillion yuan ($477 billion) in

January 2019, up 328.4 billion yuan year-on-year, central bank data showed Friday.

velopment lacks top-tier talent and has a significant gap with developed countries, especially the US, in this regard.”

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henzhen to strengthen smoking policylayed at a shopping ma

Shenzhen is to strengthen its regulations on smoking in public places, making it the strictest smoking policy in history, Nanfang Daily has reported.

The strenghtening is to focus on five areas of the policy.

Since the implementation of the smoking policy in Shenzhen on March 1, 2014, smoking in public places has been banned, carrying a total fine of 3.745 millio

n yuan, comprising a 3.325 million yuan fine for illegal smokers and 420,000 yuan for public places that failed to control smoking.

In implementing the policy however, problems arose with excessive fines, difficulties

with law enforcement and evidence collection, and complicated punishment procedures.

Deputies of Shenzhen People’s Congress on Jan 18 jointly proposed that Shenzhen should revise the policy to make the regulations more practical and operable.

The revised draft of The Regulation on Smoking Control explicitly expands the de

finition of smoking to include the use of e-cigarettes and other lit tobacco products.

It also expands the scope of smoke-free areas, which now include outdoor p

latforms and areas featuring wait lines for public transport, such as buses, coa

ches, taxis, subways, ships, civil aircraft and other public transport vehicles.

Smoking is also prohibited within five meters of subway entrances and exits.

The draft enhances protection for minors. It stipulates that no tobacco produ

cts are to be sold within 100 meters of kindergartens, primary and secondary schools, and children’s activity centers.

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education authorities monitor Zhai Tianlin probeorities in B

Education authorities in Beijing have launched an investigation into actor Zhai Tianlin, who has received high-profile plagiarism allegations.

The Education Work Committee of the CPC Beijing Municipal Committee and Beijing Education Commission have sent an investigative team to the Beijing Film Acad

emy, where Zhai obtained a Ph.D., to look into the case, the university said in a statement on Thursday.

Zhai, 32, is also a postdoctoral candidate at Peking University. He found himself in hot water on social media after a Sina Weibo blogger accused him of plagiarism last week.

The university launched its own investigation on Monday. It has finished prelim

inary evidence collection and notified Zhai about the investigation, the statement said.

The university has zero tolerance for academic misconduct and will look into other matters uncovered by netizens.

Zhai raised a flurry of chatter online in August when he said in a live video appearance he did not know what the China National Knowledge Infrastructure w

as. CNKI is the largest and most widely used online academic library in China for university students writing theses and dissertations.

The post by the Sina Weibo blogger claimed one of Zhai’s papers published in an acade

mic journal was uploaded to CNKI and the similarity score for the 2,783-word article was 40.4 percent.

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Valentine’s Day: Yes, men can be romanticong the trees at H

As Valentine’s Day approaches, I felt compelled to write an article to share my thoughts about the misconception that men in

general are unromantic. I hope that I can motivate members of the male gender to rise to the challenge of cor

recting that misconstrued assumption about their romantic notions or inclinations being nonexistent.

During research for my first book, I received a consensus from most of the women I talked to that the majority of m

en are unromantic by nature. As a man who considers himself to be more romantic, I went on a continuous journey to d

iscover the truth behind that misconception in an attempt to understand and rectify it.

I realized from my discussion with members of both genders that men and women tend to deal with romance in slightly different ways. Many women perm

it their hearts to control their perspectives when it comes to romance, while many men use their minds to deal with

the issue of romance. For many women, romantic gestures must touch their hearts deeply enough to awe them. M

any men, meanwhile, tend to evaluate those gestures based upon the impact that they have on their brains.

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This year, I am issuing a challenge to men everywhere to enth

husiastically rise to the occasion to correct the misconception that they are not romantic. Take the t

ime to figure out what kind of gift would touch the heart of your woman, and buy it for her if you can af

ford it. Fight the temptation to purchase gifts that are perhaps useful but not so romantic.

Most women love it when men give them more personal gifts. A man should a

llocate enough time to create a gift that a woman may truly appreciate, such as w

riting a poem expressing his love for her, cooking a delicious meal for two, or arranging a spa treatment for her.

For some people, Valentine’s Day is the loneliest day of the year. For tho

se who have no significant other, go out to spend the evening with your peers in a bar or a ni

ghtclub, as many such entertainment establishments in cities host special events for the evening. You may be lucky eno

ugh to meet the person of your dreams. But even if you don’t, chances are you could still have a wonderful time.

Finally, I wish women and men everywhere a very happy Valentine’s Day.Sava Hassan is a Canadian-Egyptian educator.

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Trump dislikes border security deal but Republicans urge support

WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump said on Tuesday he was not happy with a deal struck

by congressional negotiators on border security that denied him funds for his promised US-M

exican border wall, but did not reject it outright as fellow Republicans urged his support.

Trump’s demand in December for $5.7 billion from Congress to help build a wall on the southern border triggered a 35-day

closure of about a quarter of the federal government. But he remains undecided about whether he will support the

agreement reached on Monday night that includes $1.37 billion for border fencing.

Nevertheless, Trump said he did not expect another shutdown, while con

tinuing to insist he could find a way to bypass Congress and build a wall without lawmakers.

Funding for the Department of Homeland Security, the Justice Department and a host of other agencies is due to expire when the calendar turns to

Saturday after the expiration of a stopgap measure that ended the longest federal shutdown in US history. Mo

nday’s tentative funding agreement would keep the government open until Sept. 30, the end of the federal fiscal year.

“I have to study it. I’m not happy about it,” Trump told reporters at the White House about the deal, which would need to

be passed by the Democratic-led House of Representatives and Republican-controlled Senate and signed by him.

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Yueyang Huagu Opera originated more than 200 years ago. It is

 mainly popular in a dozen counties and cities in not just Hunan, but also in the adjacent Hubei province and the eastern Jiangxi province.

In its long development process, the opera has widely absorbed features of Yueyang folk tunes and artistic factors of other opera types to f

orm its own style. Traditionally, Huagu Opera had no full-time performing troupes, and was only pe

rformed by amateur artists, most of whom were local farmers, during slack farming seasons on temporary stages.

In 2007, Yueyang Huagu Opera was recognized by the State Council, China’s Cabinet, as a n

ational intangible cultural heritage for its cultural, historical and artistic significance.

In recent years, measures have been taken by the local government to promote the art form.

The One Yuan Theater, which aims to cultivate more audience, has been a successful att

empt, says Yi Wen, an expert of Huagu Opera, who works at a local cultural center in Yueyang.

“Traditional culture still means a lot to the local people. Even some younger residents have shown their interest in the opera,” Yi says.

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Environment protection campaign revitalizes China’s Hong

WUHAN – Chen Yuxiang lived on Honghu Lake in Central China’s Hubei province f

or 40 years since his birth. He now works as a machine operator at a shoe factory.

“I used to live on Honghu Lake and made a living as a fisherman, but the water became heavily pollut

ed and we had to find another way to earn money since there were hardly any fish in the lake,” Said Chen, 41.

Now, after a string of environment protection campaigns, all the fishermen have left the waters and now live and w

ork onshore with the help of government, restoring Honghu Lake’s charm and beauty.

Honghu Lake, the seventh biggest freshwater lake in China, was “a place b

etter than paradise,” as a popular song goes, with abundant fish, lotus and ducks.

In the 1980s, a crowd of fishermen from the east of China rushed in and settled down on Honghu Lake due to its rich natural resources.

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