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Huawei struggles to move past growing skepticism, Britain’s Parliament tries to wrest control of Brexit and an island mourns the loss of a lonely duck. Here’s the latest:
What’s next for Huawei?
U.S. officials are poised to formally request that Canada extradite Meng Wanzhou a day after the Justice Department laid out its case against her and Huawei, the Chinese telecommunications company she helps lead. Ms. Meng was arrested nearly two months ago at the behest of the U.S. and is under house arrest in Vancouver.
Huawei denied the charges, and China’s Foreign Ministry called for the release of Ms. Meng.
But the developments could further damage relations between the U.S. and China, leaving Huawei — and Beijing — with very few options for responding or retaliating.
The allegations: The indictments say Ms. Meng and Huawei defrauded four large banks — possibly including HSBC — into clearing transactions with Iran in violation of international sanctions. Prosecutors also claim that the company destroyed evidence, moved potential witnesses back to China and tried to steal a T-Mobile robot named Tappy that is used to test smartphones.
What now? Any retaliation by Beijing could scuttle crucial negotiations set to begin today, aimed at warding off a major escalation in the U.S.-China trade war. Huawei has shuffled its leadership in Washington to shift its focus from sales to repairing relations with the U.S. government.
Impact: Growing skepticism of Huawei is cutting into its business. TPG Telecom, a wireless provider in Australia, halted the construction of a new mobile network that would have used Huawei equipment. And last week, the London-based Vodafone network said it would stop buying Huawei equipment in Europe.
Brexit votes get underway
The British Parliament is voting on a series of amendments to Prime Minister Theresa May’s plan to leave the E.U. bloc.
Surprise move: Hours before the voting session, Mrs. May raised the stakes by promising to reopen negotiations on the agreement — a 585-page text that was painstakingly crafted over more than two years — with the E.U. It was, in effect, a gamble that she could save her plan by asking the bloc for something it has always portrayed as impossible.
What to watch for: The fate of the Cooper-Boles amendment, which could delay Brexit for a few months or even until the end of the year in order to avoid a chaotic no-deal departure. A strong vote in its favor would be a game-changer, undermining Mrs. May’s brinkmanship.
Support for Venezuelan opposition leader grows
The U.S. State Department said it gave Juan Guaidó, who last week declared himself the interim president of the country, the right to control Venezuelan assets and property in U.S. banks.
Why it matters: The move is part of the U.S. campaign to oust President Nicolás Maduro, whose re-election has been widely contested. Last week, the U.S. recognized Mr. Guaidó’s leadership and urged other allies to follow suit. Earlier this week, American officials imposed tough sanctions against Venezuela’s state-owned oil company to cut off Mr. Maduro’s cash flow.
Impasse: Mr. Maduro still has the backing of the country’s generals and has so far refused to heed calls for fresh elections.
China hasn’t cut methane emissions, as promised
The country failed to meet its own government regulations requiring coal mines to cut back on methane emissions in the five years after 2010, a new study found.
Details: The study examined satellite data and found that the country’s state-run coal sector actually increased methane emissions by 1.2 million tons per year between 2010, when the initiative was passed, and 2015.
Why it matters: Coal is the world’s dirtiest fossil fuel, and China, the world’s largest coal producer, is under growing pressure to change its ways. Scientists agree that the world will have to quit coal to have any hope of averting catastrophic climate change.
Here’s what else is happening
Polar vortex: A cold wave is sweeping through parts of the U.S. this week with temperatures expected to reach record lows of minus 30 degrees Celsius. How can it get so cold if the earth is warming? Because climate and weather are not the same thing.
FaceTime: Apple disabled group chats after reports that its video and audio calling app could eavesdrop on people, even if recipients don’t answer calls. The company said it is working on a fix and will release it in a software update later this week. But in the meantime, here’s how to disable the the feature.
Surf camp 2.0: A new resort in Costa Rica is leveraging video and technology to help coach people to ride the waves.
Pakistan: Asia Bibi, a Christian woman who has been in hiding because of violent protests and death threats from hard-line Islamists after the country’s Supreme Court overturned her blasphemy conviction last year, is now apparently free to leave the country.
The United Arab Emirates: The country handed out four awards for individuals and institutions that have promoted gender equality. All the recipients were men, a fact that didn’t go down well on social media.
In memoriam: Kim Bok-dong, 92, a former sex slave for the Japanese military during World War II who helped bring global attention to the plight of women like her.
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Blake Wilson and Jennifer Krauss helped with today’s Back Story.
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