While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Feb 25

US President Donald Trump with Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He at the White House on Feb 22, 2019.
US President Donald Trump with Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He at the White House on Feb 22, 2019.PHOTO: EPA-EFE

Trump says trade talks with China 'very productive', Xi Jinping 'very helpful' with Trump-Kim summit

US President Donald Trump on Sunday (Feb 24) raised hopes that the United States and China would settle their trade dispute ahead of a March 1 deadline as negotiators met to wrap up the latest round of talks. 

The US president said in a tweet that the trade talks on Saturday were “very productive.” Talks were extended through the weekend in a bid to iron out differences on changes to China’s treatment of state-owned enterprises, subsidies, forced technology transfers and cyber theft. 

The two sides have had no agreement on an enforcement mechanism. Washington wanted a strong mechanism to ensure that Chinese reform commitments were followed through to completion, while Beijing insisted upon what it called a “fair and objective” process. 


Europe facing 'winds of xenophobia', Spain's Sanchez warns

Spain's Pedro Sanchez on Sunday (Feb 24) urged Europeans to resist the "winds of xenophobia" threatening the continent, as he marked 80 years since the flight of 475,000 Spaniards to France after Francisco Franco seized power after a brutal civil war.

"Across Europe, the winds of xenophobia are blowing," the Spanish premier said in Argeles-sur-Mer, a seaside town just across the border in southern France where he paid tribute to the exiles of the "Retirada" (Retreat).

He pointed to the recent desecration of Jewish graves in France and to the ongoing dispute over migrants arriving by sea from Africa, pointing to "the ports which refuse to let ships full of sick and hungry people dock". 


Train Your Dragon soars to top of North American box office

There must be a lot more dragons out there still in need of training: Universal's new film How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World soared on this Oscar weekend to No. 1 in North America, taking in US$55.5 million (S$75.2 million).

That three-day estimate from industry tracker Exhibitor Relations put the animated film ahead of the two earlier instalments in the Train Your Dragon trilogy - neither of which hit the US$50 million mark - making it the top domestic opener of the year so far, according to Variety.com.

The new movie, voiced by Jay Baruchel, America Ferrera, Cate Blanchett and F. Murray Abraham, tells the story of young Hiccup and his dragon Toothless as a surging dragon population forces them to seek a "Hidden World" supposed to be a utopia for the winged creatures.


Football: Man City win League Cup final marked by Chelsea keeper controversy

Manchester City retained the League Cup by edging Chelsea 4-3 on penalties on Sunday (Feb 24) after an incredible bust-up between Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri and goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga. 

The Italian tried to replace the world’s most expensive player towards the end of a cagey 120 minutes that ended 0-0. 

Kepa had received treatment for an injury in the final stages, but also has an inferior record of saving spot-kicks than Willy Caballero, who Sarri attempted to introduce. 


Football: Klopp rues missed opportunity as Liverpool settle for United draw 

Jurgen Klopp admitted Liverpool’s 0-0 draw at injury-hit Manchester United felt like a missed opportunity. 

Klopp’s side moved one point clear at the top of the Premier League after their stalemate at Old Trafford on Sunday (Feb 24).

But it was a frustrating afternoon for Liverpool, who wasted a chance to go three points above title rivals Manchester City.  The Reds managed only one shot on target and Klopp felt their erratic display was largely due to the number of injuries suffered by both teams.