Japan’s ambition is to become a global political power.

and diplomatic means alone cannot support Japan’s global ambitions. A military presence at the global level is needed if Japan is to expand its political clout.

Compared with old European powers like the UK and France, Japan’s military influence in Europe is jerkwater. But it is different after Japan signed military pac

ts with these countries – Japan’s political influence is increasing because of the support of military powers.

With the influence of the UK and France declining in the Asia-Pacific region, their military activities can get the support from Japan via the A

CSA, which will immensely boost Japan’s military clout. These European countries will not look at J

apan through the military lens, which will effectively strengthen Japan’s political might.

Meanwhile, exchange of military provisions will help enhance pe

ople-to-people exchanges between Japan and these countries, exerting Japan’s cultural influe

nce in these countries and beyond. Even if Japan fails to become a permanent member of the UN Security Council, it can still play a major role in th

e world. This has been part of the global strategies of the Abe administration.

We can see that Japan signing ACSAs with six countries is not just for d

efense and military purposes, it’s part of an overall plan to influence economics, pol

itics, military and culture, which is a long-term strategic mind-set of the Japanese government.

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ccording to Jha, domestic issues, and not international

dominated Indian elections. “As such, China is not a threat to internal peace and security though a lingering border dispute has made people skeptical of China

,” Jha explains. Moreover, the way both nations dealt with the Doklam standoff indicates their maturity in handling such issues.

Pakistan, however, has been dominating every election since both nations have fought several wars and the w

ay Pakistan has been in the eye of the storm over allegations of supporting cross-border terrorism.

Pakistan also dominated the last general elections in 2014. During the mon

ths-long campaign, a top BJP leader Giriraj Singh said those opposing Modi should go to P

akistan. The remarks, many say, led to a strong polarization of Hindu votes in the surrounding areas as the BJP ma

de a clean sweep in Jharkhand and neighboring Bihar. Singh is currently a federal minister.

But why is the BJP desperate to play the China card this time? As per reports, the BJP has become apprehensive of not put

ting up a good show in the elections. Modi dropped enough hints about it when he urged people to elect a stable g

overnment so it could take “tough and strong decisions”. Various poll surveys too are making similar predictions.

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llegedly maltreated boy appears before court in Guangdong

teenager rescued from seven years of alleged maltreatment at the hands of his aunt and uncle

has appeared before the court in Pingyuan county, Meizhou city, Guangdong province.

The news came from a statement released by Guangdong High People’s Procuratorate on Friday.

Xiao Ming‘s aunt was suspected to have maltreated him for more than seven years, starting

when he was seven years old, resulting in severe physical and psychological damage, the statement said.

Xiao, born in 2004, lived with his father after his parents divorced in May 2008. After his father

died in a mining accident in October the same year however, Xiao was sent to live with his grandparents.

It was in May 2011 when his uncle (his father’s older brother) an

d aunt forced Xiao to live with them that the alleged maltreatment began.

It is claimed that the family treated him so poorly that he had insuf

ficient food and clothes, and that he dropped out of school to do farm work for his aunt.

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nside the workshop of Jilin province’s ‘last blacks

Tian Hongming, 67, has been dubbed the “last blacksmith by the fire” by the people of Changchun, capital of northeast China’s Jilin province.

Having picked up the skill of forging iron at the age of seven from his grandfather, Tian has made a living from the skill for more than half a century.

In the 1990s his business reached its peak, selling more than 80,000 iron products a year, Tian said.

With increaed industsrialization and the cheaper and more intricate iron products it brought however, Tian and his workshop went into decline.

Although fewer customers now choose handmade iron products, Tian sticks to the traditional craft and takes every order seriously.

In 2015 his skill was listed among the city’s intangible cultural heritages.

“Sometimes, the flow-line productions can’t meet the special needs of custo

mers, so the craft will never be replaced,” he said. “And I will continue my business as long as the market and customers need me.”

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Another post by the same blogger claimed Zhai’s doctoral gra

aduation dissertation could not be found in the CNKI database, while all graduation dissertations written by his classmates were there.

Zhai’s studio said on Friday he obtained a Ph.D. from the Beijing Film Academy in June, and all h

is academic papers and his dissertation were written by him under the guidance of supervisors.

He has met all graduation requirements from the academy and is willing to be held responsible for any academic misconduct, the studio said.

Netizens later found Zhai’s supervisor Chen Yi, former director of the performance institute of the Beijing Film Academy, on

ly has a bachelor’s degree and has not published any academic papers. However, doctoral supervisors at the university are supposed to have a do

ctoral degree and publish at least eight academic papers and two academic monographs within five years.

Zhai posted an apology letter on his Sina Weibo page Thursday.

“After I have starred in a few films and TV series, I have become full of myself and forgotten honesty is the most important principle,” he said.

“Vanity has misguided me and I brought this attitude into writing academic papers. I will

withdraw from postdoctoral research at Peking University and I am deeply sorry to my school, teachers, fans and the public.”

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Tiantongyuan redevelopment set to improve livesnd cultural park

younger generation of residents-80 percent of them tenants and many of them migrant workers-now occupies Tiantongyuan.

At weekends, a number of community centers on one street in Huilongguan are filled with people. One of the most popular cente

rs is a children’s library called “Happy Book Kid”, whose owner, Wang Yanping, has lived in the community for more than 10 years.

As a migrant worker for more than 20 years, the 40-year-old said she always wanted a sett

led place of her own so she could get to know more people and gain a sense of belonging.

She established the library at the end of 2013 with the aim of providing a range of books that children could read and study after school.

At weekends, the library is packed as parents bring their children to participate in

a range of activities, including drama performances, poetry recitals and handicraft classes.

“If just one kid becomes interested in reading, I will have made a contribution to their life,” Wang said.

“A rising number of families treat the library as a place to gather, and they love being here.”

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Meanwhile, mobile payment is no longer confined to res

 of major Chinese cities such as Beijing and Shanghai. Smaller cities and even townships are capturing the fastest growth, findings from both payment providers showed.

According to Alipay, the quickest expansion rate in per capita overseas spending was logged in

Zhoushan, a port city in East China’s Zhejiang province, which surged 55 percent year-on-year. It wa

s followed by 50 percent in Weifang, Shandong province, and 44 percent in Lianyungang, Jiangsu province.

In contrast, the growth rate in relatively affluent Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou r

eached 27 percent, 30 percent and 24 percent respectively, although they accounted for the greatest outbound spending by volume.

These trends “really highlight how mobile payment is taking root in China’s outbound t

ourism market”, said Chen Jiayi, Alipay’s head of business operation on cross-border business.

WeChat also saw a notable surge in the use of mobile payment in lower-tier cities, with over 40 percent transactions ma

de by residents who work in bigger cities but returned to hometowns for the weeklong annual gathering.

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High-end Chinese restaurants in London celebrates Year of the Pig

In celebration of Chinese New Year, from 28th January to 24th February Hakkasan Hanway Place and Hakkasan Mayfair will reinvent the

classic fortune cookie, commissioning renowned author Will Self to pen the fortunes.

The fortunes will be written on a ribbon and placed around the Hakkasan m

acarons, to create the fortune macaron. Instead of housing a traditional fortune, each macaro

n will feature one of Will Self’s 88 witty, satirical and sometimes dark musings on the topics most relevant to m

odern day life in London. The fortune macarons will be available as part of the Chinese New Year set menu and also a la carte.

Will Self is an English novelist and journalist, was a food critic for The Observer, and h

as written for titles including The Guardian, Harper’s and The London Review. Self writes to as

tonish people with his fantastical style, and wrote ‘The Unbearable Lightness of Being a Prawn Cracker’, a collection of no

n-traditional restaurant reviews for the New Statesmen. His 2002 novel ‘Dorian, an Imitation’ was long listed for th

e Booker Prize and his novel ‘Umbrella’ shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. He is known for his unique style and tone of voi

ce, which will be a defining feature of the Hakkasan fortune macarons. Speaking about the partnership he said。

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WTO should play bigger role in global governancetate Coun

reign Minister Wang Yi has called for the World Trade Organization to play bigger role in global governance.

Wang made the statement at the 18th session of the consultations of the coordinators for the China-France Stra

tegic Dialogue with Philippe Etienne, foreign policy advisor to the president of France, in Paris on Thursday.

Wang highlighted China’s position in upholding multilateralism and the rules-based multilateral trading system with the WTO at the core.

Noting China supports for the reform of the WTO to increase its authority and efficiency, Wang said the core value and b

asic principles of the WTO as well as the direction of trade liberalization should remain unchanged.

The WTO reform should follow the practice of decision-making by consensus, and c

annot be dictated by a few, nor decided by an exclusive small group of Members, he noted.

Wang called for safeguarding the special and differential treatment for developing members in the

WTO reform, saying France should objectively treat China as a developing country.

Priority should be given to the resolution of the issue of Appellate Body member appointment blockage, he said.

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Beijing embraces first snow during lunar new year holiday

BEIJING — The wait is finally over after snow fell in Beijing Wednesday amid celebrations marking the Spring Festival, or Chinese New Year.

At about 9 am, light snow started to fall in suburban districts of Beijing, such as Yanqing

and Huairou. As of 10 am, more than 10 weather stations in the city had observed snow, a c

riterion for the municipal observatory to declare the arrival of the first snow.

This winter’s snow arrived particularly late, only fi

ve days away from becoming the latest snow on record, which happened in the winter of 1983-84.

Beijing has never had a winter without snow since the capital city started keeping weather data in 1951, according to Beijing News.

A mother and her daughter are excited to see Beijing embra

cing first snow at Terminal 3 of Beijing Capital International Airport, Feb

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