During the pandemic, a new variant of capitalism has emerged | Larry Elliott

Spending is up. The world has been fighting a war against Covid, and in wartime the power of the state always increases Over the past 18 months, the world has been amazed at how slippery an enemy Covid-19 has proved to be. The virus first detected in China at the end of 2019 has mutated […]

China’s US ambassador pick shines light on debate over ‘wolf warrior’ diplomacy

Analysis: Xi Jinping wants his country to appear more lovable, but critics say Beijing’s efforts are too superficial China’s appointment of a new ambassador to the US has shone a light on the ongoing debate among analysts about how Beijing communicates with its biggest competitor, the future of its “wolf warrior” diplomacy and how Xi […]

China’s talks with Taliban could be a positive thing, US says

Delegation from militants meets Chinese foreign minister as Beijing seeks to extend influence in Afghanistan The US secretary of state, Antony Blinken, has said that Beijing’s interest in Afghanistan could be a “positive thing”, after China gave a warm and very public welcome to a senior Taliban delegation. Nine officials from the militant group, which […]

The Guardian view on women and the Olympics: the athletes caught up – now the IOC must

Female competitors come very close to equality at the games. But Tokyo still highlights ongoing sexism and discrimination Strength, resilience and determination make sportswomen champions in the field. The same qualities are ensuring that more of them get there. Banned from the first modern Olympics, in 1896, only 22 competed among almost 1,000 athletes at […]

Press groups raise alarm over threats to foreign media in China

Reporters from international outlets have suffered worsening intimidation while covering Henan floods Press groups have expressed alarm at the worsening intimidation of foreign media in China, often driven by government officials and organisations. As recovery and rescue efforts continue in Henan province after last week’s deadly floods, groups including Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and the […]

Jeremy Farrar: ‘A September 2020 lockdown would have saved a lot of lives’

The Wellcome Trust director and Sage member on what politicians and scientists got right and wrong on Covid and why we need an immediate public inquiry Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Jeremy Farrar is the director of the Wellcome Trust, a former professor of tropical medicine at the University of Oxford […]

Home Office agrees to look into fate of Chinese sailors deported in 1946

About 2,000 seamen were forcibly deported from Liverpool after serving Britain during the war The immigration minister has agreed to investigate what happened to some of the 2,000 Chinese sailors who were rounded up and forcibly deported from Liverpool in 1946. Kevin Foster MP expressed “deep regret” on behalf of the government for the families […]

China retaliates with sanctions on former commerce secretary Wilbur Ross

The ‘counter-sanctions’ are in response to Washington’s actions and are the first under China’s new anti-foreign sanction law Barely 48 hours before the arrival in China of one of Biden’s most-trusted diplomats, Beijing has announced its decision to impose counter-sanctions on seven American citizens and entities, including former commerce secretary Wilbur Ross, in retaliation against […]

Jean Hanff Korelitz: ‘I wanted to be a literary novelist. But I realised that I liked plot’

The author of the book behind TV smash The Undoing talks about her new novel The Plot, a thriller about plagiarism – and how she fell for Hugh Grant In January 2020, the American novelist Jean Hanff Korelitz was “all in all, not in a great place”, despite the runaway success of the HBO series […]

Unesco strips Liverpool of its world heritage status

UN body says years of development have caused ‘irreversible loss’ to historic value of Victorian docks Liverpool has been stripped of its coveted world heritage status after Unesco blamed years of development for an “irreversible loss” to the historic value of its Victorian docks. The UN’s heritage body concluded at a meeting in China on […]

Death toll rises and thousands flee homes as floods hit China

Torrential rainfall and burst rivers swamp Henan cities, with commuters trapped on subway trains Days of torrential rain and massive flooding have hit China’s Henan province, bursting the banks of rivers, overwhelming dams and the public transport system and forcing thousands of people to evacuate their homes. At least 25 people have been killed and […]

Syrian economy lies in ruins and China sniffs opportunity

Analysis: War may be winding down, but with Assad in charge for seven more seven years the country remains splintered Standing on a podium on Saturday to take an oath of office, Bashar al-Assad declared himself the only man who could rebuild Syria. His first foreign guest, China’s foreign minister, Wang Yi, seemed to enhance […]

Tensions remain high as hopes dashed for breakthrough in China and India stalemate

Military build-up continues ‘like never before’ on both sides of 2,100-mile border despite high-level talks It was described as a dialogue, the first high-level meeting in months between the Indian and Chinese foreign ministers to address the ongoing border aggressions that have pushed the two nuclear-armed countries to the brink of war. But those hoping […]

China and Russia spreading anti-US vaccine misinformation, White House says – live

‘Messages undermine western-origin programs,’ spokeswoman says Vaccination slowdown and Delta variant fueling case rise – experts US farm workers labor in deadly heat with few protections 10.40pm BST Gabrielle Canon here, signing on from the west coast to take you through the rest of the afternoon. First up— Just in: A federal judge in Texas […]

The space race is back on – but who will win?

Alliances are shifting as states led by China and Russia compete with the US and tech entrepreneurs Liu Boming took in the dizzy view. Around him lay the inky vastness of space. Below was the Earth. “Wow,” he said, laughing. “It’s too beautiful out here.” Over the next seven hours Liu and his colleague Tang […]

US Senate votes to ban products from China’s Xinjiang over Uyghur abuses

Latest effort in Washington to punish Beijing for what officials say is an ongoing genocide against Uyghurs and other Muslim groups The US Senate passed legislation on Wednesday to ban the import of products from China’s Xinjiang region, the latest effort in Washington to punish Beijing for what US officials say is an ongoing genocide […]

No cults, no politics, no ghouls: how China censors the video game world

China’s video game market is the world’s biggest. International developers want in on it – but its rules on what is acceptable are growing increasingly harsh. Is it worth the compromise? In the years after it was founded in 1999, the Swedish video game company Paradox Interactive quietly built a reputation for developing some of […]

Man in China reunited with son abducted 24 years ago

Guo Gangtang finally reunited with his son, Guo Xinzhen, who was snatched by human traffickers when he was two A Chinese father has been reunited with his son 24 years after he was abducted by human traffickers in front of their home in Shandong at the age of two in 1997. Guo Gangtang spent 24 […]

Pakistan detains five Chinese trawlers for alleged illegal fishing

Vessels laden with fish claim to have sheltered from storm, but Gwadar fishers want catch auctioned locally Pakistan has detained five Chinese trawlers on suspicion of illegal fishing near its strategic port city of Gwadar, as a wave of protests swept across the region led by fishers concerned about losing control of their fishing grounds […]

History offers little guide to how we should escape from Covid’s clutches | Mark Honigsbaum

Herd immunity is this pandemic’s exit route, but passing the moral buck over to citizens is a dangerous strategy• Coronavirus – latest updates• See all our coronavirus coverage When at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic China placed a cordon sanitaire around Wuhan and then quickly extended it to eight other Chinese cities, placing 45 […]

Vancouver judge’s decision over Huawei finance chief may deepen US-China row

Judge refuses to admit new evidence that might have helped Meng Wanzhou avoid extradition to US The prospect of a deepening diplomatic row between the US and China has grown after a Canadian judge refused to admit new evidence that might have helped the Huawei chief financial officer, Meng Wanzhou, avoid extradition to the US. […]

Giant pandas no longer endangered in the wild, China announces

Authorities reclassify animal as vulnerable with a population outside captivity of 1,800 Giant pandas are no longer endangered in the wild, but they are still vulnerable with a population outside captivity of 1,800, Chinese officials have said after years of conservation efforts. The head of the environment ministry’s department of nature and ecology conservation, Cui […]

Why declining birth rates are good news for life on Earth | Laura Spinney

In the midst of a climate crisis with 8 billion humans on the globe, it’s absurd to say that what’s lacking is babies Fertility rates are falling across the globe – even in places, such as sub-Saharan Africa, where they remain high. This is good for women, families, societies and the environment. So why do […]

‘Living with the virus’ makes no sense. Only half of the UK is fully vaccinated | Anthony Costello

We’re heading towards 100,000 Covid cases a day, yet ministers laud ‘freedom day’. It seems no one is accountable After receiving my second vaccination in April, I contracted Covid a week ago. I’m now “living with the virus”, a phrase emblematic of the failure of UK public health. Just look at the relative death rates […]

UK to review purchase of semiconductor producer by Chinese-owned firm

Boris Johnson raises national security concerns over sale of Newport Wafer Fab Boris Johnson has said the government will review the purchase of the UK’s largest producer of semiconductors by a Chinese-owned manufacturer, after it was criticised for apparently acquiescing to the takeover. Johnson said on Wednesday that he had asked his national security adviser […]

The Didi clampdown marks a sea change in the politics of global investment

For Beijing ‘data security’ now trumps the old desire to have its tech firms seen as global champions It’s tech, it’s Chinese and it looks a bit like Uber, so it must be hugely valuable. That, we must assume, was the analysis of those US investors who piled into Didi last week as the ride-sharing […]

Shares of Chinese ride-hailing app Didi crash after Beijing crackdown

Billions of dollars wiped off stock value after China orders stores to remove app days after its US listing Billions of dollars were wiped off the value of the Chinese ride-hailing app Didi on Tuesday, after a crackdown on the country’s tech sector by the Chinese authorities prompted a sell-off. Shares in the company were […]

The low-desire life: why people in China are rejecting high-pressure jobs in favour of ‘lying flat’

It’s been dubbed ‘tangping’ – shunning tough careers to chill out instead. But how is the Communist party taking the birth of this new counterculture? Name: Low-desire life. Age: People – young ones especially – have been rebelling, dropping out, rejecting the rat race for pretty much ever, since the rat race began. But in […]

Chinese-owned firm acquires UK’s largest semiconductor manufacturer

Tory MP Tom Tugendhat raises concerns about deal in light of global computer chip shortage The UK’s largest producer of semiconductors has been acquired by the Chinese-owned manufacturer Nexperia, prompting a senior Tory MP to call for the government to review the sale to a foreign owner during an increasingly severe global shortage of computer […]

Small majority believe there is still time to avert climate disaster – survey

Survey in 16 countries finds just over half of consumers believe their own behaviour can help A small majority of people believe there is still time to make a difference and slow global heating, a survey of consumer attitudes in 16 countries reveals. People aged 55 and over believe most strongly that their behaviour can […]