- North Korea
- United States
From the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to the cancellation of Roseanne, here are some of the top news headlines from May 2018.
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While the world’s attention was focused on the meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, other important news was happening around the world. Here are some of the top stories from May that you might have missed.
North Korea and the US to hold talks
North Korea has announced that it will hold high-level talks with the United States on May 27th, just a week before the scheduled summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump. It is hoped that these talks will smooth the way for the summit and help to bring about an end to North Korea’s nuclear weapons program.
North Korea suspends nuclear and missile tests
North Korea has announced that it is suspending nuclear and missile tests, effective immediately.
The announcement comes just days before North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is set to meet with South Korean President Moon Jae-in, and ahead of a summit with US President Donald Trump.
In a statement released by the state-run Korean Central News Agency, North Korea said it had “completed” its development of nuclear weapons and missiles, and no longer needed to conduct tests.
The announcement was welcomed by both South Korea and the United States.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the move was “an important step forward in [North Korea’s] denuclearization”, while Moon described it as a “positive decision”.
Analysts say the move could be a sign that North Korea is serious about denuclearization, but warn that it is too early to tell for sure.
The Syrian government has been accused of using chemical weapons against its own people. The United Nations has called for an investigation.
Syria’s Eastern Ghouta region declared free of rebels
The Syrian government has announced that the last rebel fighters have left the eastern Ghouta region, near Damascus, after seven years of war.
The state news agency, SANA, quoted a military source as saying the “security situation is now stable” in the area.
It comes after Russia – Syria’s main ally – declared a “humanitarian pause” on Tuesday to allow civilians to leave.
More than 1,500 people are believed to have been killed in government air strikes and shelling since February 18.
Syria’s government accused of chemical weapons attack
The Syrian government has been accused of carrying out a chemical weapons attack in the rebel-held town of Douma, which left at least 70 people dead. The attack reportedly took place on Saturday, and was allegedly carried out by Syrian government forces using chlorine gas.
This is not the first time that the Syrian government has been accused of using chemical weapons against its own people. In 2013, a chemical weapons attack in the Syrian city of Ghouta killed hundreds of people, and the Syrian government was widely blamed for that attack.
The latest alleged chemical weapons attack comes just days after U.S. President Donald Trump said that he wanted to pull U.S. troops out of Syria, and it is likely to increase pressure on Trump to take military action against the Syrian government.
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu indicted
On Thursday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was indicted on charges of bribery, fraud, and breach of trust. The charges come after a lengthy investigation into Netanyahu’s alleged involvement in several corruption scandals.
This is a big deal because Netanyahu is only the second sitting Israeli prime minister to be indicted on criminal charges (the first being Ehud Olmert, who was convicted and served time in prison). It’s also a big deal because Netanyahu has been in power for almost 10 years, and is currently the longest-serving prime minister in Israeli history.
The indictment could potentially force Netanyahu to step down from his position as prime minister. However, he has vowed to stay in power and fight the charges, saying that he is the victim of a “witch hunt” by his political opponents. It remains to be seen how this will all play out, but one thing is for sure: this is a major political scandal that will have far-reaching consequences for Israel.
Israel attacks Iranian targets in Syria
In the early hours of May 10, Israel carried out a series of airstrikes against Iranian military targets in Syria. The strikes were in response to what Israel called an “Iranian rocket attack” on the Golan Heights, which is occupied by Israel.
The Israeli military said its attacks “destroyed nearly all of Iran’s military infrastructure” in Syria. They also said that this was a “decisive blow” to Iran’s ability to carry out further attacks.
Iran has not commented on the Israeli airstrikes. But Syria’s state news agency said that Syrian air defense systems had shot down most of the missiles. It also said that two civilians were killed and four others were wounded in the strikes.
The Israeli strikes come amid rising tensions between Iran and Israel. In April, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned that Iran was planning to attack Israel. And earlier this week, Israeli media reported that the country had carried out a series of airstrikes against Iranian targets in Syria.
From start to finish, the month of May was a whirlwind. From the Royal Wedding to the release of Solo: A Star Wars Story, there was something to capture everyone’s attention. However, in between all the major headlines, some important news stories may have fallen through the cracks.
US President Donald Trump to meet with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un
The meeting will be the first ever between a sitting US President and a North Korean leader, and is expected to take place in May or early June. It follows months of heightened tensions between the two countries, which came close to the brink of war last year.
The announcement was made by South Korean officials, who said Mr Trump had agreed to meet Mr Kim by May in response to an invitation from the North Korean leader.
US to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal
The United States is set to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal, President Donald Trump announced on Tuesday.
The deal, which was agreed to by the US, Iran, China, Russia, Britain, France and Germany in 2015, lifted sanctions on Iran in exchange for curbing its nuclear program.
Trump has been a critic of the deal since he took office, and has threatened to withdraw from it several times.
In a speech from the White House on Tuesday, Trump said the US would “withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal immediately.”
“This was a horrible one-sided deal that should have never been made,” he said. “It didn’t bring peace and it never will.”
Trump’s decision to withdraw from the deal is likely to further escalate tensions with Iran, which has already threatened to restart its nuclear program if the US reimposes sanctions.