Why is the West colluding in the erasure of Taiwan?

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After hottest June ever, U.S. braces for new heatwave in West

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July 9 (Reuters) - Western states are bracing for more scorching weather this weekend after the hottest month of June on record in the United States killed scores of people, strained electric grids and depleted reservoirs.

The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat warning for much of the West through Monday evening, predicting “dangerously hot conditions” including temperatures up to 130 degrees Fahrenheit (54 degrees Celsius) in Death Valley, California.

Temperatures are expected to soar above 100 degrees F (40 degrees C) in multiple states.

“Long standing record high temperature values are likely to be rivaled or broken,” the weather service said, warning of the elevated risk of heat-related illnesses.

The extended heatwave, which coincides with a record-setting drought, has already killed at least 116 people in Oregon alone, the state medical examiner said.

The extremes in the Pacific Northwest would have been “virtually impossible” without human-caused climate change, according to a study by World Weather Attribution, a collaboration of climate scientists around the world.

The National Weather Service’s color-coded map shows most of California and large swathes of Oregon, Idaho, Nevada, Utah and Arizona shaded pink for an excessive heat warning, meaning temperatures are expected to reach or exceed 105 degrees.

Further patches of those same states plus Washington, New Mexico and Colorado are colored in orange for a heat advisory, when temperatures are expected between 100 and 104 degrees.

This comes after the hottest June in 127 years of record-keeping, according to the National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration.

The average June temperature in the contiguous United States was 72.6, or 4.2 degrees above average, surpassing the record set in June 2016 by 0.9 of a degree, the NOAA said.

Eight states recorded their hottest June on record and another six states logged their second hottest June, the NOAA said.

China mulls moves in Afghanistan following retreat of West

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TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Although 210 of its nationals were evacuated from Afghanistan on Friday (July 11), China is beefing up its influence in the Central Asian nation following the withdrawal of the U.S. and its allies.

As Western forces retreat from Afghanistan, the Taliban is gaining control of the country’s northern region, which borders China and Tajikistan. With its massive investment in Afghanistan and the risk of the country becoming a potential hub for groups that will pose a challenge to its occupied Xinjiang Autonomous Region, China has many reasons to be concerned about its neighbor’s uncertain future.

In opening remarks at a conference celebrating diplomatic ties between China and Pakistan, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (王毅) called for support from its ally to maintain stability in the region. “We should join hands in safeguarding regional peace, support the parties in Afghanistan in seeking a political solution through dialogue, [and] effectively contain spillover of Afghanistan’s security risks,” he stated.

The remarks followed an eight-point consensus made during a triliteral talk between China, Pakistan, and Afghanistan in June in which the three countries agreed to strengthen cooperation on the Belt and Road Initiative and on efforts to fight the East Turkestan Islamic Movement, which, according to China, is responsible for several terrorist acts in its western territory.

China’s move was met with a warm response from the Taliban, whose spokesperson Suhail Shaheen said in an interview that the military group sees China as a friend to Afghanistan and welcomes Beijing’s aid to reconstruct the country. “We have been to China many times, and we have good relations with them,” Shaheen said.

The spokesman also promised a clampdown on terrorist groups, as the Taliban claimed it will not allow anyone who wants to use Afghanistan as a site to fight against other countries, a commitment made in the Doha Agreement in 2020.

The stability of Afghanistan is crucial to China’s economic plans for the region, as the East Asian nation has been extracting oil on its neighbor’s land since 2012 and has proposed to extend its US$57 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor into Afghanistan. China believes the extension would alleviate tensions between the two Islamic nations.