January 16th, 2020.
The United States and China have signed the first stage of a commercial agreement, which is expected to put an end to the trade war that both countries have been escalating for the past months. The Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture has detected contamination in the water used by a Minas Gerais craft brewer responsible for producing a beer suspected of killing at least two people who drank it. The first space walk in 2020 has been made by a 100 percent female crew; two female astronauts conducted a mission in which they replaced the batteries on the International Space Station solar panels. Brazil’s research station in Antarctica, which had been destroyed by a fire in 2012, was reopened during a ceremony conducted by vice-president Hamilton Mourão. The station has 17 laboratories where scientists from several areas may conduct experiments in their specific areas. Finally, a North Korean woman who managed to save her two children from a fire which destroyed her home, is facing jail time for failing to rescue portraits from the father and grandfather of the country’s dictator, Kim Jong-Un.
Take a look at our highlights.
U.S. and China sign first stage of trade deal, easing tensions
United States president Donald Trump and Chinese vice premier Liu He signed on Wednesday in Washington, D.C., the first stage of an agreement which is expected to put an end to the trade war between both countries. Among the main items of the deal is China’s compromise of buying over US$ 200 billion worth of American products, including airplanes, cars, medical equipment, agricultural goods, and energy, while the U.S. has accepted to lower tariffs currently imposed on Chinese imports. With the agreement, the world’s two biggest economies seek to neutralize an 18-month ongoing economic conflict.
Ministry of Agriculture confirms water used by craft brewer was contaminated
The Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture confirmed on Wednesday that Minas Gerais craft brewer Bäcker used contaminated water in the production of their beers. The analysis made by the Ministry has detected that the contamination happened inside the brewery’s facilities, but is yet to determine precisely how it occurred. Among the possibilities being considered are the misuse or leakage of toxic substances, and even sabotage. According to authorities, several vats within the factory were found to be contaminated, as well as six batches of two types of beer produced by the brewery. Two people have already died of intoxication from the company’s beers, and another death is being investigated.
First space walk in 2020 has a 100 percent female crew
The first space walk in 2020 was made by a crew made up entirely of women. On Wednesday, NASA astronauts Jessica Meir and Christina Koch successfully replaced the batteries on the solar panels located outside the International Space Station. This was the second space walk in history to be entirely conducted by female astronauts. The first one happened in October 2019, by the same astronauts – seven months after it had been canceled due to the lack of proper space suits.
Brazil’s research station in Antarctica is reopened
The Brazilian research station in Antarctica, Comandante Ferraz, was officially reopened on Wednesday. After having been partially destroyed by a tragic fire incident which killed two members of Brazil’s military in February 2012, the station has been fully rebuilt with a R$ 100 million investment from the federal government. The ceremony, held outdoors, at a temperature of -17°C, was led by vice-president Hamilton Mourão, who spoke to an audience of around 100 people, among government officials, researchers, members of the military, and visitors. The 4,500 square meters of the station’s new facilities have 17 laboratories where studies in the areas of biology, oceanography, glaciology, meteorology, and anthropology will be conducted.
Woman facing jail for not saving Kim family portraits from house fire
A mother who managed to save her two children from a fire at her house in North Korea may be jailed for failing to rescue from the flames portraits of the Kim family, the dynasty which has ruled the Communist dictatorship with an iron hand since the 1950s. The woman, currently being investigated by the North Korean State Security Department for not salvaging the portraits, is in detention, unable to visit her children at the hospital, and has been denied access to antibiotics needed to treat their medical conditions. All North Korean homes must have pictures of Kim Jong-Il and Kim Il-Sung, which must be treated with the same reverence given personally to the national authorities.