Trump to host Egypt's El-Sisi on April 9: White House

In this file photo taken on September 24, 2018, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (L), shakes hands with US President Donald Trump (R) at the start of a bilateral meeting in New York. (AFP)
Updated 29 March 2019

Trump to host Egypt's El-Sisi on April 9: White House

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump will host Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi at the White House on April 9 for talks on strengthening their strategic partnership and working on shared priorities in the Middle East, the White House said on Friday.
The White House said in a statement the two leaders would discuss "building on our robust military, economic and counterterrorism cooperation" as well as regional economic integration and "Egypt’s longstanding role as a lynchpin of regional stability."
The visit by El-Sisi comes at a time of renewed tensions between Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza after a rocket fired from the coastal enclave wounded seven Israelis near Tel Aviv.
Israel responded with air strikes and warnings from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that Israel was prepared to wage a broad military campaign in Gaza if needed.
Trump on Monday signed a decree recognizing Israel's annexation of the Golan Heights, captured from Syria in the 1967 war. The decision, which was criticized by Arab states, came as Israel gears up for elections on April 9.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the Golan decision would help resolve the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians by removing uncertainty. White House advisers Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt have been working to put together a peace proposal to address the conflict.


Singapore confirms first case of Wuhan virus

Updated 23 January 2020

Singapore confirms first case of Wuhan virus

Singapore Thursday confirmed its first case of the new SARS-like virus which has killed 17 people in China and spread to multiple countries including the United States.
The Ministry of Health (MOH) said the patient was a 66-year-old man from Wuhan who arrived in Singapore with his family on Monday.
He was immediately isolated after arriving at a hospital with a fever and cough, and test results later confirmed he was infected with the coronavirus.
One of his traveling companions, a 37-year-old man from Wuhan, has also been admitted to hospital as a suspect case.
Prior to admission, they had stayed at a hotel on the resort island of Sentosa, the ministry said.
It added that Singapore was expecting more cases and alarms “given the high volume of international travel.”
Moreover, tourists leaving Bangkok for China said on Thursday they were worried about the spread of the Wuhan virus, ahead of more air and train travel in the lead-up to the Lunar New Year holidays.
China has placed Wuhan, a city of 11 million, on lockdown, as it is considered the epicenter of a new coronavirus outbreak that has killed 17 and infected nearly 600.
Thailand has so far confirmed four cases of coronavirus, the largest number outside China. Two of the cases were Chinese women who have since been allowed to return home. Chinese tourists make up the largest group of visitors to Thailand.
At Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi airport, masked visitors lined up as usual to check in for Southern China Airlines flights back to China.
AirAsia said on Thursday it has canceled direct flights between Wuhan and cities in Thailand and Malaysia until Jan 28.
Matt Thomas, who lives in the Chinese city of Xian, said he was worried about the new Chinese virus, especially because he once contracted swine flu which he described as “awful.”
“I’m a bit worried that it will repeat. I have just got to be safe. In these sorts of situations, you know, take everything seriously, don’t take any risks,” Thomas said.
Chinese health officials fear the transmission rate will accelerate, as hundreds of millions of Chinese travel at home and abroad during week-long holidays for the Lunar New Year.