Imran Khan claims US threatened him and wants him ousted as Pakistan PM

Khan makes claims in live televised address as no-confidence vote debate begins in parliament

Pakistan’s embattled prime minister, Imran Khan, has claimed that the US “threatened” him and is seeking his removal from office as he faces a no-confidence vote in the coming days that could mean the end of his premiership.

Khan, who opposition parties accuse of bad governance and economic incompetence, had claimed at a rally on Sunday he had a letter that showed a foreign country was conspiring against him and his political opponents working at its behest.

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EU leaders urged to be tough on China if it backs Russia in Ukraine

Bloc pressed to threaten sanctions at bilateral summit amid concerns about global authoritarian alliance

EU leaders are being urged to tell China it will face sanctions if it offers military aid to Russia for the war in Ukraine, amid concerns about a deepening authoritarian alliance that threatens the rules-based international order.

Senior EU and Chinese leaders are expected to hold discussions on Friday at a video summit that is likely to be dominated by the war.

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Revealed: migrant workers in Qatar forced to pay billions in recruitment fees

Guardian investigation finds labourers – including those on World Cup-related projects – were left with huge debts

Low-wage migrant workers have been forced to pay billions of dollars in recruitment fees to secure their jobs in World Cup host nation Qatar over the past decade, a Guardian investigation has found.

Bangladeshi men migrating to Qatar are likely to have paid about $1.5bn (£1.14bn) in fees, and possibly as high as $2bn, between 2011 and 2020. Nepali men are estimated to have paid around $320m, and possibly more than $400m, in the four years between mid-2015 to mid-2019.

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Close ties allow Russian propaganda to spread swiftly through China, report claims

A cyber monitoring group says Chinese sources are amplifying disinformation about Ukrainian ‘nazism’

Close ties between Russian and Chinese state media along with strict government control of information have allowed Russian propaganda to spread swiftly throughout China, “nazifying” Ukraine in the eyes of some Chinese citizens and fostering pro-Russian sentiment, a new report has claimed.

Taiwan-based cyber monitoring group, Doublethink Labs, tracked state and social media from mid-February until late March. It said Chinese sources were amplifying Russian disinformation about Ukraine and linking Ukrainian nazism to the Hong Kong protests to encourage solidarity between Russian and Chinese people against “foreign forces interfering with internal affairs”.

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Security agreement with China ‘initialled’ by both countries, Solomon Islands says

Pacific nation has batted away concerns from Australia, New Zealand and the US, saying its policy is ‘friends to all and enemies to none’

Solomon Islands has announced it is pushing ahead with a security agreement with China hours after a senior Australian defence force officer said the deal may force Canberra to change the way it conducts air and sea operations in the Pacific.

The Solomon Islands government said officials from both countries had on Thursday “initialled” elements of the proposed security agreement with China which would be signed at a later date.

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Britain hands billions to projects linked to labour abuse and climate damage

UK Export Finance used £5.24bn of taxpayer money to fund overseas energy and infrastructure ventures – despite its own review raising concerns

The British government has provided more than £5bn in the past three years to overseas energy and infrastructure projects linked to labour abuses and environmental damage, according to documents and interviews with workers.

The funding – a combination of loans and guarantees – comes from the government’s export credit agency, UK Export Finance (UKEF), a government department to help UK companies access business contracts overseas.

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Testing times: why North Korea’s missile launches should worry the west

The recent test of an ICBM is a show of strength by Kim Jong-un and a reminder that he will have to be treated as an equal by the US in future talks

When it comes to North Korean missile launches – and much else about the secretive country – all may not be as it seems. Days after the regime claimed it had successfully tested its biggest intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), South Korea said it believed the launch had been faked.

The “monster missile”, the South’s military said, was in fact a Hwasong-15 – a smaller projectile previously tested in 2017, the last time Pyongyang fired missiles potentially capable of striking anywhere on the US mainland.

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