Top foreign stories at 1700 hrs

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FGN24 ISRAEL-PALESTINE-3RDLD CEASEFIRE Israel, Hamas agree to ceasefire to end days of deadly fighting Jerusalem: Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas have agreed to a ceasefire, bringing to an end 11 days of bombardment, the heaviest flare-up since the 2014 Gaza War, that has left over 240 people dead and threatened to destabilise the volatile region. PTI FGN22 CHINA-TIBET-WHITEPAPER Dalai Lama's successor has to be approved by Chinese govt: China's white paper on Tibet Beijing: China on Friday said that any successor to the present Dalai Lama should be approved by it, ruling out recognition to any heir nominated by him or by his followers. By K J M Varma FGN38 NEPAL-LD POLITICS Nepal's Opposition alliance to stake claim to form govt under Deuba's leadership Kathmandu: Nepal’s Opposition parties reached the official residence of President Bidya Devi Bhandari on Friday to stake a claim for the formation of a new government after embattled Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli expressed unwillingness to undergo another floor test to prove his government's majority in the House of Representatives. PTI FGN34 VIRUS-UK-LD ASTRAZENECA 2 Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine doses 85-90 per cent effective, real-world study finds London: Two doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine have shown to prevent around 85 to 90 per cent of symptomatic COVID-19 infections, the first real-world data from Public Health England (PHE) has found. By Aditi Khanna FGN32 VIRUS-SINGAPORE-SOCIAL MEDIA-KEJRIWAL-CORRECTION Social media outlets in Singapore complies with order to issue correction notice on COVID-19 variant following Kejriwal's comments Singapore: Facebook and Twitter along with Singapore's largest media house have complied with the government's directive to issue a correction to the users of social media platforms in the city-state after Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal tweeted about a new COVID-19 'Singapore variant'. By Gurdip Singh FGN13 VIRUS-IMF-INDIA Ready to strengthen dialogue, scale up technical collaboration with India during pandemic: IMF Washington: The International Monetary Fund stands ready to strengthen its dialogue and scale-up its technical collaboration with India, spokesperson Gerry Rice has said, observing that the human tragedy is a stark reminder that the pandemic continues to be a grave threat globally. By Lalit K Jha FGN27 VIRUS-UK-VARIANT UK in bolstered vaccine drive to tackle ‘clusters’ of B1.617.2 variant London: The UK government says it has bolstered its COVID-19 vaccine drive as part of a series of enhanced measures to tackle “clusters” of the B1.617.2 variant of concern (VOC) first identified in India, as the latest data confirmed its numbers had risen by 2,111 over the past week to hit 3,424 cases across the country. By Aditi Khanna FGN25 UK-BBC-DIANA-SONS Princes William, Harry condemn BBC ‘deceit’ over Diana interview London: Princes William and Harry have both condemned the “deceit” that lay behind their late mother Princess Diana’s famous BBC interview over 25 years ago in which she first spoke about her troubled marriage to their father, Prince Charles. By Aditi Khanna FGN30 PAK-RAJ-DILIP-HAVELIS Pak's KPK govt releases Rs 2.30 cr for purchasing Dilip Kumar and Raj Kapoor's ancestral homes Peshawar: Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provincial government has handed over Rs 2.30 crore to Peshawar's Deputy Commissioner for purchasing the ancestral houses of legendary Bollywood actors Dilip Kumar and Raj Kapoor located in the heart of this city to convert them into museums.

FGN36 PAK-NUCLEAR PLANT Pak PM inaugurates Chinese-assisted 1,100MW nuclear power plant in Karachi Islamabad: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday inaugurated the country's first Chinese-assisted 1,100MW nuclear power plant in Karachi that coincided with the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the all-weather allies. By Sajjad Hussain FGN16 US-BIDEN-ASIANS-LD BILL US President Joe Biden signs bill to address hate crimes against Asian-Americans Washington: US President Joe Biden has signed a legislation to address the sudden increase in hate crime against Asian-Americans in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic and expressed hope that such crimes would now be more accurately counted and reported so that it can be ended. By Lalit K Jha FGN17 VIRUS-US-TRIPS-REPUBLICANS Over 100 Republican lawmakers write to Biden against waiving COVID-19 vaccine IP protections Washington: Expressing concern over the US government's support for waiving some intellectual property (IP) protections related to the COVID-19 vaccines, more than 100 Republican lawmakers have urged President Joe Biden to rescind the move that they say would 'serve as a massive giveaway' to countries like China, Russia and India. By Lalit K Jha IND IND

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