今日英语, 时事新闻一览(2016.12.07)

【今日大雪丨雪纷飞,仲冬始】The traditional Chinese lunar calendar saw the start of the solar term Da Xue, or "Heavy Snow" at 0:41 on Wednesday. Da Xue is the 21st of the 24 solar terms, and signals lower temperatures and a higher possibility of snow. Chinese people see it as the best time of the year to eat nourishing foods to help the body deal with the colder weather, typically eating lamb, dates and tangerines among others.

【马里一监狱遭袭 全部93名囚犯逃脱】93 prisoners have escaped from a prison in central Mali, after unidentified militants attacked it early on Tuesday. The incident happened at Niono prison, located 240 kilometers north of the country's capital Bamako. Xinhua cited a "security source" as saying the Macina Liberation Front of Amadou Kouffa is behind the attack, during which two guards were injured. A similar event happened last month in southwestern Mali's Banamba, in which 21 prisoners escaped.

【2016两岸新经济论坛在北京举行】Xinhuanet.com, the website of Xinhua News Agency, and Taiwan-based Commercial Times jointly organized a cross-Strait forum on the "new economy" on Tuesday.

The forum, supported by Xinhua News Agency and Taiwan-based Want Want China Times Group, focused on the mainland's 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020) and opportunities for cross-Strait cooperation in economy and trade.

More than 100 entrepreneurs, representatives of small- and medium-sized companies and experts attended the event, discussing subjects including ways to upgrade industrial cooperation and seize opportunities brought by the "new economy" to strengthen financial cooperation and exchanges.

【默克尔以89.5%支持率再次当选基督教民主联盟主席】German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Tuesday was reelected chairman of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) at the annual convention of the party with a support rate of 89.5 percent, paving the way for her to seek a new term of chancellorship.

Merkel announced her decision to stand in next year's elections for a fourth term in Berlin on Dec. 20, saying that her motivation was based on serving Germany.

"I told the CDU that I was ready to stand again," she said to the media when announcing her candidacy. "This election will be even more difficult than those we have had before as we are facing a strong polarisation" in the community, she added.

【支付宝进军北极圈 圣诞老人村全面接入支付宝】Get ready for a shopping frenzy in Santa Claus' hometown at the Arctic Circle.

On Tuesday Alipay, the payment service of China's e-commerce powerhouse Alibaba, announced that it has extended its service to the northernmost part of the world: the Santa Claus Village in Lapland, Finland.

The launch is part of its "Double 12" shopping bonanza on December 12, when more than 1 million stores around the world will offer discounts in partnership with Alipay.

Chinese e-commerce firms in recent years have tagged December12, or "Double 12," as a shopping event, similar to November 11, or "Singles' Day," China's busiest day for online shopping.

【李克强会见哈萨克斯坦议会上院议长托卡耶夫 】China and Kazakhstan on Tuesday pledged to further enhance parliamentary cooperation.

The pledge was made during the talks between China's top legislator Zhang Dejiang and Chairman of the Senate of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev at the Great Hall of the People.

Speaking highly of the close exchanges between the legislatures of the two countries, Zhang, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), said the two sides should further strengthen political support to each other and promote bilateral cooperation and cultural exchanges between the two countries.

【当选总统特朗普推特隔空喊话 中美政府双双“不适”】Shortly after his controversial phone call with Taiwan leader Tsai Ing-wen, US President-elect Donald Trump criticized China on Twitter, prompting reactions from Washington and Beijing.

【西安至莫斯科中欧班列开行】The China–Europe Freight Train from Xi’an to Moscow started on Tuesday its first trip from the capital city of northwest China’s Shaanxi Province to the Russian capital. The train, which is loaded with 41 containers, took off at 10:50 a.m. BJT and will take 11 days before reaching its destination – 30  days faster than via sea. This is the third China-Europe Freight Train from Xi'an, following those reaching Warsaw in Poland and Hamburg in Germany.

【四大网络巨头合力打造“数字指纹”数据库 现实上演“疑犯追踪”】Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and YouTube are joining hands to combat online terrorist expansion. The tech giants are creating a database of flagged content, which will be shared among them as well as other interested firms, and used to track the “digital fingerprints” of accounts that post “extreme and egregious” photos and videos used for online terrorism recruitment making it easier for the platforms to identify and remove the content. “There is no place for content that promotes terrorism on our hosted consumer services,” the companies said in a joint statement.

【巴黎遭遇雾霾天气 紧急实行车辆单双号限行】Authorities in Paris have imposed a 24-hour odd-even number car restriction after air pollution once again reached high levels in the French capital, local media have reported. Only cars with an even number registration plate, electric or hybrid vehicles or vehicles with more than three people on board are allowed to drive on Tuesday. The rule does not affect vehicles used for public service.

【中兴通讯计划收购土耳其通信设备公司Netas近半数股权】China's ZTE group agreed to buy 48.04 percent of Turkish systems integration provider Netas for 358 million Turkish lira (101.3 million U.S. dollars), Netas announced on its website Tuesday.

【湖北巴东煤矿瓦斯突出事故已造成5名矿工遇难 煤矿法人已被公安机关控制】Five of the 11 trapped miners in a coal mine accident in central China’s Hubei Province have been confirmed dead, with the fate of the six others still unknown, local officials have said. The men were trapped underground following a gas explosion that occurred at around 11:20 p.m. on Monday (BJT) at Xinjia Coal Mine in Badong. Arrests have been made and rescue work is still underway.

【我国到2020年初步建成现代国际道路运输体系】China will build an open, modern and efficient international road system by 2020 to facilitate international transport and strengthen connectivity among countries along the Belt and Road.

China will advance transport infrastructure construction along the Belt and Road, improve customs clearance efficiency and strengthen emergency rescue capabilities to facilitate international transport, according to a circular jointly released by eight central departments.

【法国总理辞职 原内政部长继任总理】French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve is replacing Manuel Valls as prime minister, the Elysee Palace said on Tuesday. Meanwhile, senior socialist lawmaker Bruno Le Roux has been named as the successor of Czeneuve and will become the country’s new interior minister. Valls announced on Monday he is stepping down to prepare to run in primary contests to be the Socialist Party candidate in next year’s presidential elections. President Francois Hollande, who is also a member of the same party, has said he will not seek reelection.

【旅美大熊猫“美轮”、“美奂”回国后在成都初次亮相】The first surviving panda twins born in the US, Mei Lun and Mei Huan, made their debut in Chengdu, southwest China’s Sichuan Province on Tuesday. The pandas, which arrived in China from the US last month, have now grown accustomed to their new habitat and can even respond to a few basic Chinese commands.

【高校一宿舍楼现数百条裂纹 校方称正常现象】The outer walls of a college dormitory building in southwest China's Yunnan Province have attracted quite a bit of attention recently.

A number of photos posted on Sina Weibo on December 5, 2016 showed that some black bandages were plastered all over the facade of a dormitory at the Yunnan Forestry Technological College.

The posts, as expected, have raised safety concerns over the building.

The school's administrators have said anti-seismic material was used in the building's construction and that certain temperature and moisture combinations could cause cracks in the material.

【特朗普推特上向中国“开炮” 妄谈中国南海和汇率政策】Chinese netizens have berated US President-elect Donald Trump for his scant knowledge of diplomacy for tweeting on Monday that the US disagrees with China's construction activities in the South China Sea.

Since accepting a telephone call from Taiwan leader Tsai Ing-wen, Trump has continued to write posts about Taiwan and the South China Sea. "Did China ask us if it was OK to devalue their currency (making it hard for our companies to compete), heavily tax our products going into their country (the US doesn't tax them), or to build a massive military complex in the middle of the South China Sea? I don't think so!" Trump said across two tweets on Monday.

The tweets received 73,000 likes and 23,000 shares within 10 hours, and also triggered uproar among Sina Weibo users, most upbraiding Trump for having the temerity to suggest that China needs to ask him permission for its activities.

"No, we didn't ask you (about our construction activity in the South China Sea), do you have any problem with that?" a Net user responded. Another Chinese netizen said, "Did you ask us before you picked up Tsai Ing-wen's phone call?"

【日出东方 北京迎来今年最美的朝霞】Wherever you are in the world, nature always has its special way of stunning you, bringing your morning commute to an open-mouthed, awestruck halt. Several days ago, Beijing was blanketed with heavy smog, forcing people to wear masks before venturing outside. But what a difference a few days can make - Tuesday morning saw a beautiful crisp dawn over the city, providing the ideal skyscape for locals to wake up to. These photos show the pink and golden hues that greeted Beijing this morning.

【纽约市市长寻求拨款3500万美元 以负担与特朗普相关的安全费用】New York City has formally asked the federal government to reimburse the cost of providing security for US President-elect Donald Trump at his New York home and offices, a figure that officials estimate could reach 35 million US dollars by January 20, Trump’s inauguration day. NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio said he made the request in a letter to President Barack Obama and members of Congress, as police officers work around the clock to secure Trump Tower, where the Trump transition team and his family are based.

【南美足协正式宣布:沙佩科恩斯获南美杯冠军】The South American Football Confederation officially awarded the 2016 Copa Sudamericana to Chapecoense on Monday as a “posthumous homage to the victims of the fatal crash,” according to a statement. Almost the entire Chapecoense squad died in an air crash in which a total of 71 people were killed on November 28. The team was on route to Colombia where it was due to play in its first continental final against Colombia’s club Atletico Nacional. Atletico requested that Chapecoense be awarded the title after the crash.

【中共中央举行纪念万里同志诞辰100周年座谈会】The Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) on Monday held a seminar to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the birth of late Chinese leader Wan Li.

At the seminar, Chinese President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, called for passing on and promoting the revolutionary spirit and noble demeanor of veteran revolutionaries including Wan.

【军委副主席范长龙、军委委员房峰辉会见吉布提军队总参谋长】A senior Chinese military official on Monday said that the Chinese army is willing to strengthen dialogue and coordination with Djiboutian troops.

Fan Changlong, vice chairman of the Central Military Commission, made the remarks while meeting with Zakaria Cheikh Ibrahim, Chief of General Staff of the Djibouti Armed Forces.

Fan spoke about the sound cooperation between the two armies in international peacekeeping, staff training, medical and health care and equipment maintenance.

【台侦破最大宗毒品案 查获古柯碱逾200公斤】Taiwan investigators said Monday that they had solved the island's biggest-ever drug-trafficking case and seized more than 200 kilograms of cocaine.

The market value of the seized cocaine is estimated to exceed 2 billion new Taiwan dollars (around 62.4 million U.S. dollars), investigators said, adding they had also seized more than 50 kilograms of methamphetamine.

Investigators received tip-offs that a Taipei company had, on multiple occasions, exported "large vehicle batteries" by sea or air to Australia at unreasonably high freight costs.

On Dec. 1, they found around 51 kilograms of methamphetamine transported along with the company's 11 exported vehicle batteries.

Later they seized about 218 kilograms of cocaine transported with 30 similar batteries that the company imported from Brazil.

【法国总理瓦尔斯将宣布参加2017年总统选举】French Prime Minister Manuel Valls is to announce his bid for the 2017 presidential election on Monday, according to local reports.

A statement released by his office said Valls would make an address at 6:30 p.m. local time (1730 GMT) at Evry town hall in south Paris.

Local media said the prime minister would unveil his decision to join the competition of left-wing primary next month to book a ticket for the Elysee Palace.

Speaking to Radio France Info, government spokesperson Stephane Le Foll said Valls' likely candidacy was "not a surprise."

【乌兹别克斯坦自由民主党候选人米尔济约耶夫赢得总统选举】Uzbek Prime Minister and acting President Shavkat Mirziyoyev was elected the country's president in Sunday's presidential election with an overwhelming vote, according to the Central Election Commission of Uzbekistan.

Mirziyoyev won 88.61 percent of the votes, well above the required over 50 percent of valid ballots to become a president, the commission said at a press briefing held at 4:00 p.m. local time (1100 GMT).

The other three presidential candidates shared the rest of the votes, with Sarwar Otamuratov of the National Revival Democratic Party scoring 2.35 percent, Hotamzhon Ketmonov of the People's Democratic Party 3.73 percent and Narimon Umarov of the "Adolat" (Justice) Social Democratic Party 3.46 percent.