Despite being exposed, fake news thrives on social media ahead of India polls

MUMBAI/NEW DELHI (Reuters) – Two weeks after a suicide bombing in Kashmir in February killed 40 Indian policemen, a Facebook user called Avi Dandiya posted a live video in which he played a recording of a call purportedly involving India’s home minister, the president of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and an unidentified woman.

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New Zealand PM Ardern says to discuss Huawei decision in China visit

BEIJING/WELLINGTON (Reuters) – Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Monday she hoped to have a dialogue with Beijing about New Zealand’s intelligence agency’s decision to reject a bid by Chinese telecom giant Huawei to build a 5G mobile network.
Ardern is on a one-day visit to China and is expected to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping and the Premier Li Keqiang later on Monday.

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Australia government to boost rural spending in pre-election budget

CANBERRA (Reuters) – Australia’s conservative government said on Monday it will increase spending on rural infrastructure by nearly 30 percent in its last budget before an election next month.
Speaking a day before the presentation of the annual budget for the year beginning on July 1, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said spending on rural roads will increase to A$4.5 billion (2.45 billion pounds) from the A$3.5 billion it promised last year.

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Protests at Chinese copper mine in Peru continue after local leader freed

CHALLHUAHUACHO, Peru/LIMA (Reuters) – Peruvian police on Friday freed the leader of an indigenous community that has blocked roads to a major copper mine, but hours later arrested his second-in-command, accusing him of running over police officers while driving drunk.
The release of Gregorio Rojas, the president of the Quechua-speaking community Fuerabamba, had been a key demand of Fuerabamba villagers who have cut off access to Chinese miner MMG Ltd’s copper mine Las Bambas, halting its exports.

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Japan’s business mood hits two-year low as trade war stings

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese business confidence worsened to a two-year low in the March quarter, a central bank survey showed, underscoring concerns that Sino-U.S. trade tensions and softening global demand were taking a toll on the export-reliant economy.
The damage was most pronounced among big manufacturers, where sentiment soured at the fastest pace in more than six years, stoking fears that uncertainty over the global outlook could discourage companies from spending on wages and expenditure.

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Conversion is not your mission, Pope tells Catholics in Morocco

RABAT (Reuters) – Pope Francis told the tiny Catholic community in predominantly Muslim Morocco on Sunday that their mission was not to covert their neighbours but to live in brotherhood with other faiths.
Francis has used his two-day trip to stress inter-faith dialogue. He has also backed Moroccan King Mohammed VI’s efforts to spread a form of Islam that promotes inter-religious dialogue and rejects violence in God’s name.

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