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SNG Daily: Kim Jong Un Takes Tank Ride; Possible US-Iran Talks Held To Resolve Houthi Attacks

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Kim Jong Un Drives A Battle Tank As South Korea-US Wind Up Freedom Shield Drills

The state media has reported that North Korea’s Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un not only sat in the tank but also drove it. He directed the military demonstration that saw the use of a new battle tank. As per KCNA, Kim showed ‘great satisfaction’ with the firepower capability of the tank. Last week, Kim asked North Korea’s army to be ‘ready for war’. His tank expedition comes as South Korea and the US wind up their joint drills called Freedom Shield drills. North Korea has referred to such drills as ‘rehearsals of war’. This was the first time after North Korea junked the inter-Korean military pact in 2018 that was in place to de-escalate tensions between the neighbours.

Geert Wilders: I Can Only Become PM If…

Dutch leader Geert Wilders, known for his anti-Islam rhetoric, has said he doesn’t have the support of all coalition partners to be the next Prime Minister. Wilders’-led Freedom Party won the highest number of seats in the November elections, but not enough to form the government on its own. Now more than 100 days later, he’s still struggling to cobble together a coalition. Besides his party, 3 other parties have been involved in these talks. Wilders wants a right-wing cabinet with less immigration and asylum but finding common ground with other parties has not been easy. Wilders, though, isn’t one to give up, if this post is any indication

Did US-Iran Officials Hold Secret Talks To Resolve Houthi Attacks In Red Sea?

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The US and Iran reportedly held secret negotiations to curb Houthi attacks in the Red Sea. According to Financial Times, Oman officially mediated these talks and there were no direct meetings between US and Iran envoys. Houthis, backed by Iran, have been attacking commercial ships in the Red Sea, forcing rerouting through Africa. At least 3 seafarers have died in these attacks that started in December 2023 and cost significant disruptions in global value chains.

Honduran Ex-First Lady Seeks Presidency After Husband’s Drug Conviction

Days after her husband and ex-President of Honduras, Juan Orlando Hernández was convicted by a Manhattan court of drug trafficking conspiracy charges, the former First Lady, Ana García de Hernández wants to secure the National Party’s nomination for presidential polls next year. The ex-President was held guilty on three counts related to cocaine importation and weapons offences, including conspiring with drug traffickers to bring in tons of cocaine into the US. She said she wants to fight to prove her husband is innocent. Hernández was arrested from his home in Honduras in 2022, months after he left office and was extradited to the US to stand trial. The ex-President’s sentencing is scheduled to take place in June and faces a life term in jail.

Ban On Same-Sex Marriage ‘Unconstitutional’: High Court In Japan

A high court in Japan has said that banning same-sex marriages is unconstitutional. The issue of same-sex marriages has been a contentious one in Japan’s lower courts. As per BBC, high courts in Tokyo and Sapporo Japan have said the ban violates the rights of citizens. Japan is the only country among the G7 nations where same-sex unions have no legal backing. Opinion polls in 2023 showed that a majority of Japanese, about 70%, were in favour of same-sex marriages though PM Kishida’s conservative party opposes it.