World News at a Glance
Posted December 4, 2018 9:39 p.m. EST
Trump to Meet With Kim Jong Un, Despite North Korea’s Lapses, Bolton Says
President Donald Trump plans to hold a second meeting early next year with Kim Jong Un, even though North Korea has failed to follow through with promises to start dismantling its nuclear weapons program, John Bolton, the national security adviser, said Tuesday. “They have not lived up to the commitments so far,” Bolton said. “That’s why I think the president thinks another summit is likely to be productive.” Bolton was referring to a pledge Kim made in June at his first face-to-face meeting with Trump in Singapore. At the time, Kim said North Korea would work toward “complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.”
U.S. Gives Russia a Deadline on Nuclear Treaty
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Tuesday that the Trump administration would begin the formal process to scrap the landmark Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty within 60 days unless Russia returns to compliance with the treaty’s terms. “The burden falls on Russia to make the necessary changes,” Pompeo said. “Only they can save this treaty.” If Russia does not come back into compliance by the deadline, the administration will begin a formal, six-month process to end the treaty, Pompeo said. During those months, the United States will still not test or deploy missiles that would abrogate the treaty, he said.
Pompeo Questions the Value of International Groups Like U.N. and EU
In a major speech Tuesday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tried to explain one of the abiding conundrums of the Trump administration: How does a nationalist lead on the international stage? The answer, he said, is to revamp or jettison some treaties and institutions while bolstering others. Among the institutions that Pompeo criticized were the United Nations, the European Union, the Organization of American States and the African Union. But he embraced NATO, which President Donald Trump has criticized, as an “indispensable institution.” "Even our European friends sometimes say we’re not acting in the free world’s interest. This is just plain wrong,” Pompeo said.
France Suspends Fuel Tax Increase That Spurred Violent Protests
Trying to quell its most serious political crisis, the government of President Emmanuel Macron announced Tuesday that it would suspend the gasoline tax increase that had set off three weeks of increasingly violence protests in Paris and around France by the Yellow Vest movement. The step was an extraordinary concession by a president who has refused to bend to previous protests and plummeting poll numbers as he pushes through changes he believes necessary to make France’s economy more competitive. Whether it was enough to appease the Yellow Vests’ varied complaints about the declining living standards of the French working class was far from clear.
U.N.: Nearly 132 Million People Will Need Help in 2019
Nearly 132 million people will need aid and protection in 2019, the United Nations said Tuesday, opening an appeal for about $25 billion as more people are displaced by conflicts and protracted conflicts absorb most of the assistance. Mark Lowcock, U.N. aid coordinator, said 1 out of every 70 people on Earth will need assistance next year in seeking an increase in donations of about 10 percent. "We need to make it a bigger priority in 2019 to address the underlying causes of crises — insecurity, conflict, poverty, development failures, inadequate adaptation and resilience to climate change,” he said.
May Suffers Defeats in Parliament as Hopes Fade for Brexit Deal
Prime Minister Theresa May of Britain on Tuesday suffered a series of humiliating defeats in Parliament, the strongest sign yet that lawmakers are poised to reject her plan for exiting the European Union. The setbacks in Britain’s Parliament came as May opened five days of debate before the critical Dec. 11 vote that will decide the fate of her proposal. In a significant move, lawmakers voted to give Parliament more control of the exit process should her plan be voted down. This could allow them to avoid the “no-deal” Brexit, a disorderly and economically damaging departure from the European Union without any agreement.