Jazwares Announces Partnership with Kellytoy for Russ Berrie™ Worldwide

Sunrise, FL, Feb. 14, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Jazwares LLC, a global leader in toys and licensing, announced today that its affiliate Zag Toys, LLC (“Zag Toys”) formed a strategic partnership for their wholly owned brand Russ Berrie™, with Kellytoy, an influential manufacturer and distributor of plush toys and pet products. This relationship will carry on the 50+ year legacy of the Russ Berrie™ brand, positioning it globally as the premier plush brand on retail shelves in Fall 2019.

Kellytoy will market the Russ Berrie™ brand through its global distribution channels, which include almost every market segment.

“Working together with Kellytoy will maximize the Russ Berrie™ legacy,” says Judd Zebersky, Jazwares CEO and President. “By leveraging Russ Berrie™ and its reputation for quality and commitment to “Make Someone Happy™” with Kellytoy’s global footprint we’ll secure placement in retailers all around the world, putting Russ Berrie™ at the forefront of today’s plush presence at retail.”

The companies will work closely on branding and product strategy to focus on both innovation and fan favorites. The Fall 2019 Russ Berrie™ line will feature, but not be limited to:

  • Li’l Peepers: a beloved plush line for more than 20 years
  • Yomiko Classics: a realistic plush line that’s a breed apart from all others
  • Petooties Pets*: an innovative new mini plush line of adorable collectible baby animals
  • MeBears: unique and irresistibly cute bears with something for everyone
  • Russ Baby: the classic line that’s been synonymous with quality and safety for decades
  • Russ Trends: whimsical, colorful plush lines featuring fun characters
  • Russ Pet: an adorable plush line of pet toys for furry friends
  • Plus seasonal offerings: adorable plush lines for every holiday

“This partnership with Jazwares couldn’t be a better fit,” says Kellytoy CEO Jonathan Kelly. “It’s a win-win for both companies, as our customers are one and the same. Russ Berrie™ products are a leading brand with a great history and will complement our own plush toy lines; while our global distribution strength will enable the Russ Berrie™ brand to penetrate new markets.”

For more information on Jazwares, please visit www.Jazwares.com.

Note to Media: Samples & high-res images available upon request.
*UK will continue to be managed by Jazwares, as it pertains to Petooties Pets.

About Jazwares LLC
Jazwares, a subsidiary of Alleghany Capital Corporation, is a global leader in consumer products including toys, plush, collectibles, musical instruments, and consumer electronics. With over 20 years of design, development, and manufacturing expertise, Jazwares is an award-winning company with a progressive focus on identifying new trends and transforming them into . high-quality products for consumers of all ages. Jazwares, which is headquartered in Sunrise, FL, has offices around the world and sells in over 100 countries. Jazwares’ mission is to entertain through the creation of innovative product. The company’s portfolio features a variety of dynamic, wholly-owned brands along with leading global licenses, and includes acquisitions First Act™, Russ Berrie™, Applause™, and Zag Toys™. Alleghany Capital Corporation is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Alleghany Corporation (NYSE: Y). For more information on Alleghany Capital Corporation, please visit www.alleghanycc.com

About Kellytoy
Kellytoy manufacturers a portfolio of award winning everyday and seasonal plush products that includes its best-selling Squishmallows™, Kellybaby™ as well as a pet products line called Wags & Purrs™. Over the past three decades, Kellytoy has positioned itself to meet the needs of its customers in mass market, gift/specialty/toy retailers, party and pet stores, supermarkets, discount stores, drug stores, amusement parks and even crane machines in arcades the world over. Kellytoy also makes products in collaboration with leading classic characters, including major licenses, as well as blockbuster theatrical franchises. www.kellytoy.com

Media Enquiries
For Jazwares:
Ashley Ferguson | Public Relations | +1 305-985-8306 |  Aferguson@Jazwares.com |

For Kellytoy:
Dan Grody | Tellem Grody PR | 310-313-3444 | dan@tellemgrodypr.com

This release contains disclosures which are forward-looking statements as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  Forward-looking statements include all statements that do not relate solely to historical or current facts, and can be identified by the use of words such as “may,” “will,” “expect,” “project,” “estimate,” “anticipate,” “plan,” “believe,” “potential,” “should,” “continue” or the negative versions of those words or other comparable words.  These forward-looking statements are based upon Jazwares’ current plans or expectations and are subject to a number of uncertainties and risks.  These statements are not guarantees of future performance, and Jazwares has no specific intention to update these statements.  As a consequence, current plans, and anticipated actions may differ from those expressed in any forward-looking statements made by Jazwares or on Jazwares’ behalf.

Attachment

Ashley Ferguson
Jazwares
+ 1 305 985 8306
Aferguson@jazwares.com

Greenland Resources Announces Appointment of Advisor

TORONTO, Feb. 14, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Greenland Resources Inc. (“Greenland Resources” or the “Company”) is pleased to announce that Mr. William S. (Steve) Vaughan, a 2017 Mining Hall of Fame inductee, has joined the Company in an advisory role, with the objective of providing strategic and technical input to corporate decision-making.

Steve is a leading expert on mining and natural resources law with over four decades of legal and mining experience. Mr. Vaughan has advised and represented Canadian and international companies, served on many governmental advisory committees and has been involved in natural resource transactions in more than 70 countries. Steve has been an advisor and director of a number of professional and trade associations, including the Toronto Branch of the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum, the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) where he has been a director for more than 35 years, and the joint Toronto Stock Exchange / Ontario Securities Commission Mining Standards Task Force (the “Brex Task Force”). Among others, in 2002 Steve was the recipient of PDAC’s Distinguished Service Award, and in 2017 he was inducted into the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame. Steve earned a B.Sc. degree in geology from the University of New Brunswick (UNB) in 1959, followed by a M.Sc. degree from McGill University in 1962 and an LLD (honoris causa) from UNB in 2015.

Dr. Ruben Shiffman, Executive Chairman, commented: “We are thrilled to have an advisor of the calibre of Steve, his experience and network will be instrumental in the development of our strategic direction. To that end, our Malmbjerg molybdenum project is now more attractive than the one presented in the 2008 feasibility study, mainly due the melting of the glacier that has exposed significantly more contained molybdenum, as well as our Capex reductions by building infrastructure in shipyards in low cost jurisdictions and setting up on tidewater, instead of building on site.”

Mr. Vaughan commented: “I am excited to have the opportunity to participate in the development of a unique Molybdenum mineral deposit located in a politically stable jurisdiction where the financial, legal and infrastructure challenges are capable of being readily overcome and, at the same time, working with a talented group of mining and capital markets industry professionals with proven track records.”

The Company further announces that it has engaged Haywood Securities Inc. as a financial advisor, to assist in reviewing strategic partners to enhance shareholder value.

Mr. James Steel, P.Geo., M.B.A., a director of the Company and a Qualified Person under National Instrument 43-101, has reviewed and approved the technical information in this press release.

About Greenland Resources Inc.

Greenland Resources is a Canadian reporting issuer regulated by the Ontario Securities Commission, focused on the acquisition, exploration and development of mineral properties in Greenland. The flagship project is the Malmbjerg Molybdenum deposit, a world class Climax-type molybdenum deposit located in east-central Greenland. With offices in Toronto, the Company is led by a management team with an extensive track record in the mining industry and capital markets. For further details, please refer to our web site (www.greenlandresources.ca) as well as our Canadian regulatory filings on Greenland Resources’ profile at www.sedar.com.

For further information please contact:
Ruben Shiffman Executive Chairman
Jesper Kofoed President & CEO
Gary Anstey Investor Relations / Business Development
Corporate office Suite 612, 390 Bay St. Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5H 2A4
Telephone +1 647 273 9913
Web www.greenlandresources.ca

CAUTIONARY STATEMENT: No stock exchange, securities commission or other regulatory authority has approved or disapproved the information contained herein. This news release contains forward-looking information which is not comprised of historical facts. Forward-looking information involves risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events, results, performance, prospects and opportunities to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking information. Forward looking information in this news release includes, but is not limited to, the Company’s objectives, goals or future plans, statements regarding the estimation of mineral resources, exploration results, potential mineralization, exploration and mine development plans, the availability of financing, the timing of the commencement of operations and estimates of market conditions. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from such forward-looking information include, but are not limited to, failure to convert estimated mineral resources to reserves, capital and operating costs varying significantly from estimates including the costs of operations in remote mountainous environments, delays in obtaining or failures to obtain required governmental, environmental or other project approvals, political risks, uncertainties relating to the availability and costs of financing needed in the future, changes in equity markets, inflation, changes in exchange rates, fluctuations in commodity prices, delays in the development of projects and the other risks involved in the mineral exploration and development industry. Although the Company believes that the assumptions and factors used in preparing the forward-looking information in this news release are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on such information, which only applies as of the date of this news release, and no assurance can be given that such events will occur in the disclosed time frames or at all. The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, other than as required by law.

Vietnam-Japan partnership aims to contribute to regional peace, prosperity

Tokyo The defining aim of the Vietnam-Japan partnership is to contribute to regional peace and prosperity, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said in an exclusive interview granted to General Director of the Vietnam News Agency (VNA) Nguyen Duc Loi, who is paying a working visit to Japan.

The two countries have been enjoying dynamic economic cooperation and people-to-people economic exchanges, the PM said, adding that Japan is keen to partner with Vietnam to address defence and security matters, regional issues, and economic development.

PM Abe said he has been a congressman for 25 years and that when he was first elected as a congressman, he and other parliamentarians visited Vietnam and received a warm welcome from the Vietnamese Government. Vietnam’s economy at that time was developing in leaps and bounds thanks to the implementation of reform policies, he said.

The PM continued that he also visited Vietnam in his first term as the Prime Minister in 2006. So far, he has visited Vietnam four times in his capacity as the Japanese Prime Minister, Abe said, adding that he was glad to witness the vibrant development of the Southeast Asian country.

He recalled his visit to Vietnam in November 2017, during which he was invited to Hoi An by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc. The two PMs walked around the Vietnamese ancient city and visited the Japanese bridge, as well as a number of shops where Japanese people used to trade in ancient times, through which he better understood the history of exchange between the two countries.

While sharing his expectations on the potential to develop the friendly and cooperative ties between Vietnam and Japan, PM Abe said the bilateral relations must also be mutually supportive and collaborative.

In the eyes of Japanese people, Vietnam is an industrious, smart, and patient nation with warm-hearted people, PM Abe said, noting that the number of people travelling between the two countries has amounted to 1.2 million while there are some 300,000 Vietnamese residing in Japan.

He highly appreciated those Vietnamese people who have become familiar with Japanese language and culture.

The PM hoped more Vietnamese skilled workers would come to work in Japan as its new policy to receive foreign workers takes effect from April 1, 2019.

As Japan is scheduled to host the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo, PM Abe said he hopes many Vietnamese sports teams will join the competitions and a large number of Vietnamese will visit Japan to watch the sporting event.

PM Abe said he had invited Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc to attend the G20 Summit in Japan. As Vietnam will hold the ASEAN Chairmanship in 2020, the two countries should cooperate to address regional and global issues, he said.

Regarding the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), PM Abe said the birth of the deal was an important and meaningful result to promote free trade, especially as there is increasing global concern over trade protection policies.

This was also the outcome of the close connectivity between Japan and Vietnam, he said, adding that the agreement was very important and progressive for the 21st century because it covers numerous issues such as intellectual property protection, labour mechanisms, the environment, and competition regulations for state-owned enterprises.

Thanks to that, a new economic region will be built based on fairness and freedom, he said, adding that the Asia-Pacific region will become a place to create that economic model.

He hoped that Vietnam would be able to optimise benefits from the deal to further develop its economy and improve the living conditions of its people.

The PM also expressed his belief that the CPTPP will help promote trade and economic exchanges between Vietnam and Japan.

The stable and peaceful Asia-Pacific region will lay a foundation to develop peace and prosperity in Japan and Vietnam, he said. Japan wants to cooperate with all nations, including Vietnam, to jointly create a free and expansive Asia-Pacific region, he said.

The PM also recommended popularising and reinforcing the spirit of respecting law and freedom of navigation and trade, as well as looking toward to the goal of economic development through increasing multinational connectivity in the region, ensuring peace and stability via law enforcement on the seas, and building humanitarian aid and research alongside rescue capacity.�VNA

Source: Vietnam News Agency

100 Days After Paradise Burned, the Stories of the Victims

On that frantic morning, TK Huff was calm. The 71-year-old amputee sat in his wheelchair, pointing a garden hose at what quickly became the deadliest wildfire in California history.

Nobody knew at the time, early on Nov. 8, how bad it would be. When his family called at 7:15 a.m., Huff said he would leave. But he never made it out.

All around, fires were breaking out, and men and women � most of them elderly, many of them disabled � were doomed: Flames soon overtook 74-year-old Richard Brown’s beloved log cabin in the Sierra Nevada foothills. On the edge of neighboring Paradise, a blaze prompted the Feather Canyon Retirement Community to evacuate its residents � all except 88-year-old Julian Binstock, overlooked in the chaos.

It was just the start of a day that was almost unfathomable. An entire town was burned off the map of California. Nearly 14,000 homes were incinerated.

All told, 85 people would perish. The oldest was 99; of the 73 bodies that have been identified, 59 were 65 or older. One hundred days later � with the aid of public records showing the locations of victims’ deaths, CalFire mapping of the fire’s progression and dozens of interviews � their stories can be told. How they lived, how they died.

And how a fire that started at 6:30 a.m. in the tiny town of Pulga would become the nation’s deadliest and most destructive wildfire in more than century.

The flames spread through the back of Concow, where Huff lived. This was no ordinary fire, with fronts marching steadily forward. Wind gusts of at least 50 mph blew hot embers a mile or more, creating multiple fires at once and igniting areas the size of football fields every few seconds, said CalFire spokesman Scott McLean.

Huff and his wife, Margaret, who died in August, knew the risk of wildfires. Their house, high on a wooded ridge, burned down in 2008. But this was the house where three generations gathered for Easter egg hunts, for Christmas and Thanksgiving dinners, and pretty much every weekend of the year. With no internet or cell reception, the focus was always on family.

So they rebuilt.

Huff was stoic and strong, a farm laborer who worked in the fields his whole life; he lost a leg in a potato harvesting accident in 2001 but didn’t let his disability hold him back, said his daughter-in-law Pearl Lankford, whose own house in Paradise burned down along with the homes of eight family members.

When the fire arrived, just after sunrise, Huff’s instinct was to save his house.

We told him, ‘You need to evacuate now,’ said his granddaughter Jordan Huff, 22, who lived in Paradise.

He was putting out the flames in his backyard in his wheelchair, she said. There was no distress in his voice.

Soon after the family’s call at 7:15 that morning, the house phone went dead. A CalFire simulation shows that by 9 a.m., flames had overtaken Green Forest Lane, where Huff lived.

His remains were found in the ashes of his house. The only thing still standing was his wheelchair, near the back fence with the garden hose.

By then a separate fire about a mile away had destroyed the log cabin built by Richard Brown, the unofficial mayor of Concow, a Vietnam veteran whose mom and stepdad had a winery in Paradise � which is how he came to name his daughter, Chardonnay Telly. She recalled her dad as relentlessly upbeat, a man who loved to tinker with old cars that inevitably broke down in the middle of nowhere.

His remains would later be found under one of those vehicles, on his beloved patch of land.

About the same time, more than two miles to the west, on the eastern edge of Paradise, the Feather Canyon Retirement Community was hastily evacuating its more than 100 residents. In the chaos, they somehow overlooked Julian Binstock, 88 � something that rarely happened in a life that took him from Brooklyn to Harvard University to the entertainment business, where he would become a vice president of Warner Communications.

At the retirement community, where he had moved with his wife Elisabetta a decade ago, he was known for his sense of humor. Each year, he won the award for Funniest Resident; he kept up his reputation by asking his children for jokes to try out on his neighbors, said his daughter, Christina Lamb, of Southborough, Massachusetts.

By 9 a.m., the community was gone, and so was Binstock.

Lamb, her two siblings and children would spend a frantic week looking for him in evacuation centers and hospitals, but he had died in his residence.

She doesn’t fault the retirement center. It’s the fire’s fault, she said.

By 10 a.m., the fire surged across a canyon and into the town of Paradise, population 27,000. It had torched 20 square miles and sparked a separate fire miles away on the other side of town.

On the eastern edge of Paradise, 93-year-old Dorothy Lee Herrera had already left a frantic voicemail for her son, Arthur Lee: There’s a fire, we’ve got to get out!

But by the time he called back, there was no answer. She and her husband, Lou Herrera, 86, died in the house where they’d lived for a quarter century, amid the ashes of trees that provided fruit for Dorothy’s delicious pies.

North of the Herrera home, the fire roared through the Ridgewood Mobile Home Park, a tidy community for people 55 and older near the Ponderosa Elementary School, killing Teresa Ammons, 82, Helen Pace, 84, and Dorothy Mack, an 87-year-old retired clerk for the California Department of Corrections who loved Paradise. To her it was a more affordable Grass Valley, the Northern California town where she’s grown up.

Ernie Foss, a 63-year-old musician, also left the expensive San Francisco Bay Area for the cheaper Paradise. His body and that of his dog, Bernice, were found outside his home, near his wheelchair and minivan, according to his children.

The body of his caretaker and stepson, Andrew Burt, was found a quarter-mile away on Edgewood Lane, outside a vehicle at an intersection where four others died in their cars, trying to flee.

Burt was 36 and among the younger victims of the fire. He moved to Paradise with his mother, Linda, and her husband, Foss, about a decade ago and stayed on as a caregiver after his mother died in 2012. His brother, James Burt, said he can’t imagine how dire the situation must have been for Andrew to leave Ernie Foss behind.

The general consensus was that Andy would not have abandoned Ernie, he said, but if Ernie had passed or told Andy to save himself, he would have.

By the time the fire reached Burt and Foss, it was 10:45 a.m.

Minutes later, the inferno consumed David Marbury, 66. A private man who loved horses, Marbury grew up in Vallejo, California, and headed for the Navy after high school. He eventually retired from the commuter rail Bay Area Rapid Transit and moved to Paradise � just a good person all around, said his niece, Sadia Quint.

___

By 11 a.m., the center of Paradise was being overtaken by flames.

More than a half-dozen fires to the east of town had merged to form a 32 square-mile inferno, a wall of fire and smoke roughly the size of Manhattan.

As the blaze raced west, it reached the homes of John Digby and Victoria Taft � 2.5 miles apart � almost simultaneously.

Both had spoken to their adult children that morning for the last time.

Victoria Taft’s parting words with her 22-year-old daughter, Christina, were tense. A neighbor had come knocking around 8:30 a.m. A fire was coming � they should evacuate. Mother and daughter argued about what to do.

Taft refused to leave. If the threat was real, authorities would order an evacuation, she told her daughter. By 10 a.m. Christina could see the morning sky blackening from smoke. She packed the car and left, joining what had become a bumper-to-bumper exodus.

Victoria Taft’s remains were recovered from the ruins of her living room.

In the aftermath, Christina set out to memorialize her mother and in the process discovered a woman she hardly knew existed � a free spirited, fun-loving Southern California beauty who acted in television, movies and commercials, partied with rock stars in the ’70s and ’80s and traveled the world before motherhood became her focus.

Taft, 66, was losing her eyesight from glaucoma and suffered from memory loss. When Christina asked about her youth, Taft didn’t remember the details. But among the items Christina frantically grabbed that morning were boxes of documents from a closet, only later discovering the contents: her mom’s old resumes, head shots, casting lists.

The decision to leave her mother behind will forever haunt her. I didn’t do enough to get my mom out, she said. I feel like I accidentally killed her by not helping her.

Across town, John Digby talked by phone with his son Roman in Owatonna, Minnesota. The son wanted his father to see a doctor about his sore throat. Digby � a 78-year-old Air Force veteran and retired postal carrier � didn’t mention anything about a fire.

Two hours later, the fire reached Digby at his home in Space 3 at the Pine Springs Mobile Home Park. A neighbor later told Roman Digby that he tried to get his father to leave, but his father said no.

A quarter-hour after the fire reached Digby and Taft, it came for Andrew Downer � who also had a chance to leave, but chose not to.

Downer, 54, had lost his right leg to diabetes and infection from surgery, and he used a wheelchair. His caregiver Cindy MacDonald was thinking about running over to fix him breakfast, but then she got a call warning of fire. She offered to pick Downer up, but he declined. The dogs didn’t want to go. He didn’t want to leave the place to looters.

Downer, described by friends as loud and fun and generous, died in the house he had filled with collections of marbles, crystals and antiques � and condiments.

___

Nearly three weeks later, 80-year-old Larry R. Smith was taken off life support at a Northern California medical center � the 85th and final victim of the Camp Fire.

Uncle Ronnie � born to a Dust Bowl family of eight children that had come to California to pick crops � loved to host gatherings of the clan on the rambling property he purchased in Paradise about three decades ago. Recently, he had started showing signs of dementia but he was independent and reluctant to leave the first house he ever purchased.

Smith had tried to save his treasured truck, a 1993 Dodge Ram that he rarely drove but plastered with contradictory political bumper stickers. Rescuers found Smith barefoot and badly burned.

He died on Nov. 25.

Source: Voice of America

Hanoi Summit Sparks Optimism, But Called Moment of Truth

SEOUL The second summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in roughly two weeks is being seen by some as cause for optimism, but also as a moment of truth.

Park In-hook, the president of the Chey Institute for Advanced Studies, said during the organization’s inaugural trilateral conference on China, U.S., and South Korean issues, there’s a lot of emphasis on the February 27-28 talks in Hanoi because there is some phobia that this might be the last chance.

Real results expected in Hanoi

Former U.S. Special Representative for North Korea Joseph Yun said the international community had the right to expect results from the Hanoi summit.

The first meeting (Singapore summit) succeeded in breaking a barrier, [the] second meeting must show results [there] are two underlying issues. One is denuclearization and a second is building a peace process, said Yun.

He added there is a fear in the United States that getting into a peace track might lead to the acceptance of nuclear weapons in North Korea.

Many people in Washington are worried about this concept of denuclearization through peace, because that seems to most Americans… backwards. It should be denuclearization first, then peace, said Yun.

Recently, U.S. Special Representative for North Korea Stephen Biegun spent nearly three days engaged in talks with his North Korean counterpart, Kim Hyok Chol, in Pyongyang. While Biegun called the discussions productive, he also noted that much work still needed to be done.

“President Trump has made clear, both to North Korea as well as to our team, that he expects significant and verifiable progress on denuclearization — actions that are bold, and real to emerge from that next summit, said Biegun.

Robert Einhorn, Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, said the Trump administration is getting a lot more realistic about what’s needed for serious negotiations to take place in Hanoi.

We are unlikely to learn whether Kim Jong Un is really willing to give up his nuclear weapons, Einhorn said. He added that he strongly doubts the Trump administration can secure a commitment from North Korea to completely denuclearize.

But he added there is an alternative course of action than returning to a strategy of squeezing the North Koreans economically, deterring North Korea’s aggressive behavior, and eventually bring about its fundamental transformation or collapse.

Negotiate an interim agreement that would cap, and perhaps reduce, North Korea’s nuclear and missile capabilities, he said.

It’s something Einhorn believes would allow North Korea and the United States to continue negotiations toward the goal of complete denuclearization, but without a deadline.

Such a deal would have some disadvantages, he said, but it could also limit Pyongyang’s weapons development progress and open channels of communication that could be used to pursue confidence-building measures to reduce tensions and avoid dangerous miscalculations.

Can the process move forward?

Despite a general sense of optimism surrounding the upcoming summit, there is still the possibility of continued stagnation, or the status quo, said Zhang Fangming, chairman of the Academic Committee of the Center for Foreign Policy Studies at the China Foundation for International Strategic Studies.

He said this may happen if [North Korea] refuses to make a nuclear declaration in any form at the current stage or does not accept verification of its declaration.

Another scenario that may perpetuate the status quo revolves around the U.S. Congress’ response to the summit and if they refuse to gradually lift sanctions against Pyongyang without it first comprehensively abandoning its nuclear program or making a comprehensive declaration.

Zhang said the only correct choice is to jointly make [a] long term and worthy effort for the full denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.

But Kim Sung-han, South Korea’s former Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said President Trump may agree to something attractive to the U.S. for the easing of sanctions on North Korea.

President Trump could choose a part of the North Korean nuclear problem like ICMBs (intercontinental ballistic missiles) because they are the most threatening to the safety of U.S. citizens, said Kim.

But the problem, according to Kim Sung-han, is that if, after two summits, Trump and Kim do not come to an agreement where Pyongyang declares its nuclear capability, then the United States would be acquiescing to North Korea’s tactics.

Handong Global University professor Kim Joonhyung said both Kim Jong Un and President Trump are aware of the criticisms.

He said the Hanoi meeting is very much a moment of truth.

If this [summit] fails, he said, he doesn’t think there will be future meetings between the two leaders.

He added that the big question for the upcoming summit is, How much sanctions relief Trump is willing to offer in exchange for [partial denuclearization.]

Source: Voice of America

Pompeo: US aims to ‘get as far down the road as we can’ with North Korea

The United States aims to get as far down the road as we can ahead of a summit with North Korea in Vietnam this month, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Thursday, Trend reports with reference to Reuters.

Pompeo said he was sending his team back to Asia in the coming days for further discussions around all issues discussed at a groundbreaking Singapore summit last June between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Trump announced last week he would hold a second summit with Kim in Hanoi on Feb. 27 and 28.

Pompeo told a news conference in Warsaw that Trump and Kim would be looking at the denuclearization pillar they agreed to at their first summit as well as other matters.

We’ll certainly talk about how we … reduce tension, reduce military risks, take down that risk so we can get peace and security on the peninsula as well, he said after a conference on the Middle East.

We are aiming to get this as far down the road as we can in what is now a couple of weeks, Pompeo said.

Asked later in a Fox News interview how important the formal end of the Korean War was in the discussions, Pompeo said: It’s something we’ve had a lot of talks about. In fact, my team will redeploy to Asia here in a day or two to continue conversations around all elements that were discussed back in Singapore.

The United States has been demanding that North Korea give up a nuclear weapons program that threatens the United States, and Trump has been eager for a second summit even though the Singapore meeting produced only vague commitments from Kim and little concrete progress since.

North Korea has been seeking a lifting of punishing US-led sanctions, a formal end to the 1950-53 Korean War and security guarantees.

In an interview with CBS News on Wednesday, Pompeo said of Kim that now it’s time for him to deliver.

US Special Representative for North Korea Stephen Biegun is expected to hold further talks with his North Korean counterpart next week to prepare for the Hanoi summit.

Biegun held three days of talks in Pyongyang last week, which he said would be aimed at mapping out a set of concrete deliverables for Hanoi. The State Department has offered no indications of any progress in these.

South Korean media said Biegun told a South Korean parliamentary delegation that in Pyongyang the two sides agreed not to negotiate, but to make clear their respective positions, and they would seek to narrow their differences in the next round of talks.

Source: TREND News Agency

Exciting Wrestling Festival in Sinh village

On February 14th (the 10th day of the first lunar month), Sinh village Wrestling Festival was launched at Phu Mau commune, Phu Vang district. The event attracted thousands of local as well as far and near visitor.

Sinh Village Wrestling Festival has existed for hundreds of year. As recorded, the village was home to shipyards, naval infantry training schools to fight against the invaders and protect the country. Therefore, Sinh village selected country-wide kinds of martial arts. The wrestling festival aimed to maintain, promote traditional cultural values; honor martial art-loving youth; emphasize the chivalry of Vietnamese.

After the solemn ceremony held by the elders at village hall and drum-beating ceremony of provincial leaders, the wrestling festival officially launched. Junior and senior wrestlers matches started.

Sinh Village Wrestling Festival was held in direct elimination format. To attend the semi-final and final round, wrestlers must knock down 2 opponents consecutively.

Hundreds of wrestler coming from localities in province competed enthusiastically while the audiences clapped and cheered (photo below).

Source: PORTAL OF THUA THIEN HUE PROVINCE