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With Green Book won best picture at the 91st Academy Awards ceremo
ny, its co-producer Alibaba Pictures Group, the movie unit of the world’s largest e-com
merce company, claimed to be the first internet film company to co-produce an Oscars winning movie.
Jack Ma, chairman of Alibaba Group, said a good movie does not necessarily have to cost
a lot, nor tell an earth-shattering story, according to the Paper, which also said Ma watchedGreen Bo
ok with some of his friends, including Chinese computer giant Lenovo Founder Liu Chuanzhi and Chinese studio Bona P
resident Yu Dong in a Beijing cinema on Monday, though the film will not be officially screened in China until March 1.
He said a good movie is the one which is made with passion and can brin
g positive things to the society. Ma said he has seen the film, a road trip drama based on a tru
e story in segregation era, three times, and in his view, a Chinese movie is actually not far from an Oscars award.
United States is particularly appealing to North Korea, who believes a good relationship with the United States can h
elp create the right environment and necessary conditions for achieving North Korea’s new strategic drive toward ec
onomic development,” said Tong Zhao, a fellow at the Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy in Beijing.
The concept isn’t new, of course. During his time as an Asia expert at the State Department in the Clinton administration, Evans Revere said negoti
ators working with North Korea were even then trying to point them to Vietnam, which was beginning to reap t
he benefits of market reforms and becoming a member of good international standing.
”We thought, somewhat naively back then, that this would appeal to the North Koreans gre
atly and that our commitments to work with them on bringing about a modernized economy w
ould be so attractive … that they would stand down from their nuclear weapons program. We were wrong,” Revere said.
”If all of these incentives or this incentive-based approach to coaxing North Korea do
wn a new path did not work when they didn’t have nuclear weapons, and it didn’t work to prevent th
em from developing nuclear weapons, why will it work now that they are in effect a nuclear weapons state?”
need money.”Lankov is one of the few foreigners ever to study at Kim Il Sung University, the country’s most pr
estigious institution of higher learning. Today he runs the Korea Risk Group consultancy, teaches at Kookmin Uni
versity in Seoul and is considered one of the world’s experts on the inner workings of North Korea.
He says Kim and his top advisers are cold, realistic and brutally rational. They believe that nuclear weapons are the key to their survival given the fate of Moa
mmar Gaddafi, Saddam Hussein and Ukraine as well as Trump’s decision to ditch the Iran nuclear deal.
”For the North Koreans, security comes first. And they believe that their security is imperfect if they don’t have some
nuclear weapons. A reduction of nuclear weapons can be negotiated, but denuclearization is a pipe dream,” Lankov said.
Jackson, the former Defense Department official, is also unconvinced that Kim Jong Un is the reformer many hoped he would be.
Though Kim is a millennial leader educated in the West, he has n
ow been in power for seven years — during which time he’s overseen more missile and nu
clear tests than his father and grandfather combined, without “meaningful signs” of economic change.
”What is different now than the previous 30 years that makes that control-versus-opening tradeoff worthwhile?” Jackson said.
”Green Book” won best picture at the Oscars, marking the final twist on a night of historic firsts, filled with suspense until the final prize.
Despite controversies surrounding the film, and many outspoken critics, the per
iod drama about race relations in the 1960s felt like a more conventional best-picture choi
ce than its two top rivals, both of which had to overcome key hurdles: “Black Panther” represented the fi
rst superhero movie to earn such recognition, while “Roma” not only would have been the first foreign-lan
guage winner, but was likely hobbled by those who still see its distributor, Netflix, as an upstart in the movie world.
The Oscars compensated for a host-free ceremony with a nigh
t of breakthroughs, moving briskly through the categories in a concerted effort to sh
orten the run time, amid a night marked by greater inclusiveness and that spread the wealth among the nominees.
Award voters extended honors to a number of blockbusters, including “Black Panther,” which
earned several technical awards; and “Bohemian Rhapsody,” the biography of Queen and the band’s fron
tman, Freddie Mercury, earned four Oscars — the most of any film — including Rami Malek’s first for the central role.
snapping a selfie of the group as they took their seats in the House of
Commons. But non
e of the group asked a question of the Prime Minister, as she appeared before MPs for her weekly grill
ing, and the defections were barely addressed. The mood in the House of
Commons seemed more subdued than usual.
The closest May came to acknowledging the issue was when she attacked Corbyn over anti-Semitism in
his party, cited as a reason for some of the defectors leaving his party.
May said she never thought she would see the day when “a once proud
Labour party was accused of institutional Semiti
sm by a member of that party,” or,
equally, when Jewish people in the UK “were concerned about their future.”
Responding to those accusations, Corbyn said that “anti-Semitism ha
s no place whatsoever in any of our political parties, in our lives, in our society,” be
fore laying into the Prime Minister for “pretending to negotiate” a Brexit deal with just 37 days to go.
May, who will travel to Brussels later in the day, maintained that she was still working on alternative arrangements on the
Irish backstop — an insurance policy designed to avoid a hard border between
Northern Ireland and the Republic of Irel
and. She also reiterated her position that a no-deal exit from the EU could only be taken off the table by agreeing a deal.
Speaking at a press conference later, Allen, Wollaston and Soubry said the Prim
e Minister had been bullied by hard-line Brexiteers onto the brink of a no-deal Brexit.
voters have spent in line to cast their ballots in the crucial election.
The incumbent, Muhammadu Buhari, 76, is running against 71 other ca
ndidates, but his main challenger is Atiku Abubakar, a 72-year-old business tycoo
n and former vice president. They are both Muslim candidates from the north of the country.
When Buhari, a former military ruler, was elected in 2015, it wa
s the first peaceful transition of power in Nigeria. He promised to offer a clean sweep of the old
routine, but many have been left disillusioned and angry at the rising levels of inequality and extreme poverty.
More than 84 million people registered for the vote in Africa’s largest economic p
ower, according to data from the Independent National Electoral Commission.
Videos have surfaced on social media reportedly showing the burni
ng of ballot papers and disruption of the electoral process in various parts of the country.
But dreams of a new reality for Iran screeched to a halt in May 2018 when President Donald Tr
ump pulled the United States out of the nuclear deal. Despite repeated certifications that Iran was
sticking to its end of the bargain, Trump unleashed several rounds of stinging sanctions on the country.
The US president said the penalties aimed to force Iran to end its military adventurism in the region, a demand that Iranian officials have repeatedly brushed off.
Officially, the sanctions exempt humanitarian goods, such as food, medicine and medicin
al instruments. But in reality, shortages in essential goods have affected households across the country.
Ali now gets the medicines to treat his daughter’s rare genetic disease, from friends living abr
oad. Her medical bill has more than doubled, forcing him to sell his car, work two jobs, and accu
mulate loans. He says that his entire salary from his day job as a waiter goes toward Dory’s treatment.
”I am a wedding singer at night. I try to stay cheery and
keep a smile on my face, but on the inside all I can think about is my daughter,” says Ali.
Cristiano Ronaldo was supposed to be the final piece in the Juventus Champions League winning jigsaw.
For so long, Juventus has dominated in Italy, winning seven successive league titles with an eighth almost inevitable.
But it is the Champions League crown that it craves. Ronaldo was s
upposed to be the man to deliver for a club that has lost out twice in the final in the past four years.
When Juventus turned to Ronaldo, a five-time winner, chasing a record-equ
aling sixth Champions League title, it was to inspire the team on nights like Wednesday.
Only Sevilla (27) and Getafe (23) have conceded more goals to Ronaldo than Atletico Madrid.
Yet, on a Wednesday night in Madrid, the city where he enjoyed such success with Re
al, he was unable to add to his career tally of 22 against the former neighbor.
For Atletico Madrid, a team that has felt the full force of Ronaldo’s irrepressible scor
ing record during his time at Real, this 2-0 victory in the first leg of the last 16 tie was particularly sweet.
Two second-half goals from Uruguayan defensive duo Jose Gimenez and Diego Godin secured the advantage for Diego Simeone’s side.