Jack Ma says movies should be made with passionij

With Green Book won best picture at the 91st Academy Awards ceremo

ny, its co-producer Alibaba Pictures Group, the movie unit of the world’s largest e-com

merce company, claimed to be the first internet film company to co-produce an Oscars winning movie.

Jack Ma, chairman of Alibaba Group, said a good movie does not necessarily have to cost

a lot, nor tell an earth-shattering story, according to the Paper, which also said Ma watchedGreen Bo

ok with some of his friends, including Chinese computer giant Lenovo Founder Liu Chuanzhi and Chinese studio Bona P

resident Yu Dong in a Beijing cinema on Monday, though the film will not be officially screened in China until March 1.

He said a good movie is the one which is made with passion and can brin

g positive things to the society. Ma said he has seen the film, a road trip drama based on a tru

e story in segregation era, three times, and in his view, a Chinese movie is actually not far from an Oscars award.

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Alipay updates anti-fraud functionsscans a quick response

Alipay, the country’s top mobile payment platform, announced on Tuesday a major anti-fraud u

pgrade on its application by teaming up with 26 public security departments nationwide.

The new function, dubbed “Security Guard”, allows users to set up related accounts among f

amily members or close friends. Should any abnormalities on transactions occur, the system would send

out alerts to all related accounts in order to prevent the fraud from materializing and minimize loss of funds.

“Security is the lifeline of Alipay, and we hope to fight fraud in a manner as harsh as dru

nk driving,” said Rui Xiongwen, vice-president of Ant Financial, Alipay’s parent company.

Alipay users can choose to delay payment for two hours or 24 hours and raise an alert

on the platform if they deem such transactions potentially misdirected or fraudulent.

The system has been linked to local public security authorities to help freeze any transaction

s in doubt. The money will be credited back to the user’s account if authorities determine fraud has been committed.

A number of local anti-fraud centers in cities like Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhe

n also pledged to cooperate with Alipay on financial security education and anti-fraud alarming systems.

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In a major scandal last year, Changchun Changsheng Life

Sciences, a vaccine producer in Changchun, Jilin province, faked production records and used expired material for the production of rabies vaccines over the past four years.

The company was ordered to suspend production, and senior executives

were detained and face criminal charges. The company was ordered to pay fines of 9.1 bi

llion yuan ($1.3 billion) for violations, one of the heaviest fines imposed on a pharmaceutical company over the past few years.

Following the revelations, top officials vowed harsh penalties and reform of the vaccine super

vision system to eliminate loopholes. A new law on the management of vaccines was drafted for review.

Fang Laiying, former head of the Beijing Municipal Health Commission, said he has faith in the overall safety of drugs in Chi

na, but individual cases involving violations of the law can tarnish the image of the whole pharmaceutical sector.

“The government is intensifying its efforts in cases involving violations of drug safety laws, including severely puni

shing criminals and setting up strict accountability systems to improve supervision of the sector,” he said.

Gao, the CDC head, said major infectious diseases such as dengue fever and AIDS will continue to be the priority in disease prevention and control this year.

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Trade talks expected to finalize dealNG SHUIYU,ZHONG NA

China and the United States are expected to come to an agreement soon over trade frictions, analysts said, as the negotiating teams a

re reported to be discussing the wording of an accord and considering applying the brakes to their tariff standoff.

They made the prediction after Chinese and US officials said there had been concrete p

rogress on multiple issues in the latest round of trade talks in Washington.

During the latest talks, held from Thursday to Sunday in Washington, the seventh round since February of last year, th

e two sides focused on the text of an agreement, the Chinese delegation said, according to a Xinhua News Agency report.

The negotiators also had made substantial progress on such specific issues as technology transfers, protection of i

ntellectual property rights, nontariff barriers, the service industry, agriculture and exchange rates, the delegation said.

On the basis of the latest progress, the two sides are expected to continue their work

into the next stage, in accordance with the instructions of the two countries’ top leaders, according to Xinhua.

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Trump could try to sell North Korea a Vietnam model. But

The night before his historic summit with US President Donald Trump last June, North Kore

an leader Kim Jong Un took a surprise stroll in downtown Singapore to see the sights of the wealthy capitalist city.

The inference seemed clear. If cash-strapped Pyongyang chooses to engage the world — and ditch its nuclear weapons — this could be its future.

Trump and Kim will this month have an even more symbolic backdrop for their next mee

ting: Vietnam, a country which transformed itself from bitter US enemy to peaceful partner in less than 50 years.

Experts believe the Trump administration plans to sell North Korea on a model such as communist Vietnam, hig

hlighting its relationship with Washington as well as its economic boom since adopting market reforms. And all th

e North Koreans have to do, Washington is expected to say, is give up their nukes.

Yet analysts are wary such a sales pitch will produce any tangible outcome. North Korea

knows how capitalism and market economies work: it’s just chosen not to embrace them.

China has for years been prodding the North to embrace economic reform, dragging for

mer North Korean leader Kim Jong Il on tours of capitalist enterprises whenever he visited.

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Extended talks raise hopes there’s a deal in the offingChi

The extending of the talks between China and the United States to resolve their trade and econo

mic frictions will hopefully give substance to the optimism expressed by both sides that they can reach a deal.

US President Donald Trump, senior US officials, and Vice-Premier Liu He, the special envoy of President Xi Jinping, who is h

eading the Chinese delegation, all expressed the belief on Friday that the two sides have made significant progress to

ward reaching a comprehensive agreement that will put an end to the current trade standoff.

It is to be expected that the discussions at this stage will be the toughest test ye

t for the two teams of negotiators, and their task is not one to be envied. However, the un

scheduled two-day extension to their discussions indicates that tangible headway is being made in their joint effo

rts to find a mutually acceptable way to resolve their differences and put an end to their quarrel.

Given what was said on Friday, it seems the talks have gone more deeply and ext

ensively into the bilateral relationship than either side initially anticipated. As US P

resident Donald Trump observed, “we’re covering things that we didn’t even know we’d be covering.”

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denounced May’s “disastrous” handling of Brexit, conde

  mned the Conservative Party’s shift to the right and warned it was in danger of being taken over by extremists.

  Their announcement was timed for maximum impact, dropping just before the weekly s

ession of Prime Minister’s Questions. In a move freighted with symbolism, the three ex-Conservative MPs

joined the eight former Labour lawmakers on the opposition benches in Parliament on Wednesday.

  The move could mark the start of a reshaping of British politics as the clock continues to tick down to March 29, when the U

K is due to leave the European Union. With 37 days to go, Parliament has still not approved a Brexit deal.

  In a joint letter to May, Heidi Allen, Anna Soubry and Sarah Wollaston blamed their departure on the government’s “dismal failure to stand up to

the hard line ERG [European research Group],” whose members advocate a no-deal Brexit. The three lawmakers, who have

been vocal anti-Brexit campaigners, said that Britain’s exit from the EU had “re-defined the Conservative Party — undoing all the efforts to modernize it.”

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Venezuelan troops defect at the border with Colombia

  Three members of the Venezuelan National Guard defected Saturday at Venezuela’s border with Colombia, the Colombian immigration department said.

  The troops abandoned their posts at the Simon Bolivar International Bridge on the Colom

bia-Venezuela border and requested help from Colombia’s immigration officials.

  Also Saturday, soldiers with Venezuela’s National Guard

fired tear gas and rubber bullets at protesters who were demanding to cross the border at Ur

eña into Colombia to work, according to a CNN crew that witnessed the scene at the Tienditas Bridge.

  Workers faced off with the soldiers, chanting, “We want to work!” before being disperse

d by the tear gas. Men with shirts covering their faces started throwing rocks toward the guard.

  US argues momentum for change in Venezuela is growing despite border violence

  These tense scenes played out Saturday, a day after violence broke out at a Venezuelan town near the border wit

h Brazil over aid delivery, leaving two people dead and 17 others injured, local authorities said.

  Tensions are running high at Venezuela’s borders amid opposition plans to usher aid into the country this weekend

in defiance of President Nicolas Maduro’s wishes. Maduro called on Venezuelans to “mobilize” Saturday. “Let’s

all take to the streets to defend our independence with conscience and joy,” Maduro said on his official Twitter account.

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When contacted by CNN via telephone, Geovanis declin

  ed to comment on his relationship with the President or talk about the photograph said to be in th

e possession of the Senate Intelligence Committee. He would not disclose his location, although CNN w

as able to confirm he was in the Moscow area as recently as this month. Asked whether he had been approached by t

he committee and whether he was aware of its interest, Geovanis told CNN he had “no comment.”

  A spokeswoman for the Senate Intelligence Committee’s Republican chairman, North Ca

rolina Sen. Richard Burr, declined to comment on whether Geovanis was of interest to it. A spo

keswoman for the committee’s Democratic Vice Chair, Virginia Sen. Mark Warner, also declined to comment.

  It’s not known whether Geovanis is also of interest to the invest

igation into alleged Russian election meddling by special counsel Robert Mueller.

  The President’s legal team declined to comment on his relationship to Geovanis. A lawyer for the Trump Organization also declined to comment.

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He promised to address allegations of corruption reve

  ealed in a report in January in an effort to draw some of the energy out of the opposition campaign to unseat him and President Jovenel Moise.

  But his mention of Roberto was seen as nothing more than lip service in the Miron slum, where Roberto and his mother s

hared one room. She and her family now believe whoever killed her son may seek them out for revenge if they keep talking.

  ”Ever since his death they’ve been threatening us. They said that if we don’t shut up about this case we will get it, ‘We know where you work’. That’s what they said.”

  ”They’ve been threatening us by phone. They said that, ‘We know you work at the hosp

ital so if you don’t shut up about this case we will find you’. That’s what they said,” Pricil insisted.

  A surviving son, Jovency Journal, 24, showed CNN text messages in Creole.

  ”I see you have been active on the Roberto case. Be careful not to follow him,” said one.

  Another threatened: “We’ll do to you worse than what happened to Roberto – they might not even be able to find your body”.

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