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Paige Fusco

The Pacific rebellion scaring Washington

The US is scrambling to step up its diplomatic game with Pacific Island leaders following a breakdown of unity at a regional summit this week that analysts warn could weaken resistance to China’s plans for controversial security alliances.

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Ukraine's grain exports are being held hostage.
REUTERS/Dado Ruvic

What We’re Watching: Russia & Ukraine talk grain, US talks fish

Russia and Ukraine get granular, finally

The two countries at war on Wednesday agreed in principle to a UN-backed plan to resume exports of grain from Ukraine’s Black Sea ports. Before Russia’s invasion, Ukraine was one of the world’s largest exporters of wheat and cooking oils, but the war has crippled those shipments, inflaming food prices globally and undercutting food security in dozens of emerging market countries. Under the UN plan, Ukraine would clear mines from its ports, Russia would allow safe passage for grain boats, and Turkey would provide safe shipping corridors. But Kyiv is wary about Moscow using the de-mined sea lanes to launch a fresh naval offensive, and Moscow insists on the right to inspect any boats for weapons. The two sides and Turkey are set to ink an official deal next week. For complete coverage of the growing global food crisis, be sure to see our Hunger Pains project.

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China not seeking 'sphere of influence' in Pacific, Xi says

May 29, 2019 9:27 AM

BEIJING (REUTERS) - China is not seeking a sphere of influence in Pacific Ocean island states, President Xi Jinping told the visiting prime minister of Vanuatu amid fears in Western capitals of China's growing role in the region.

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