World Briefs: More than 160 dead after Cyclone Idai

More than 160 dead after Cyclone Idai

BEIRA (Mozambique) • A cyclone that ripped across Mozambique and Zimbabwe has killed at least 162 people, with scores more missing, and caused "massive and horrifying" destruction in the Mozambican city of Beira, the authorities and Red Cross said yesterday.

Cyclone Idai tore into the centre of Mozambique last Thursday night before barrelling on to neighbouring Zimbabwe, bringing flash floods and ferocious winds, and washing away roads and houses.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE


Italy set to join China's Silk Road

BEIJING • Chinese President Xi Jinping will travel to Italy, Monaco and France this week, the Foreign Ministry said yesterday, with Rome expected to join his global trade infrastructure programme despite reservations in other European capitals.

Beijing has financed infrastructure, maritime, rail and road projects in Asia, Africa and Europe, but critics say these projects mainly benefit Chinese firms while setting up a "debt trap" in financially vulnerable countries.

Rome is expected to sign a non-binding memorandum of understanding with Beijing to officially support Mr Xi's massive Belt and Road Initiative, also known as the new Silk Road.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE


Presidential hopeful raises $8m

WASHINGTON • Democrat Beto O'Rourke raised more than US$6.1 million (S$8.2 million) in the first day after declaring his candidacy for his party's 2020 presidential nomination last week, his campaign said yesterday, highlighting his fundraising prowess in a crowded field.

His fund raising puts him at the top of a pack of more than a dozen Democratic candidates, including Mr Bernie Sanders, the independent senator who unsuccessfully sought the party's nomination in 2016. Mr Sanders raised US$5.9 million in the first 24 hours of his 2020 campaign.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 19, 2019, with the headline 'World Briefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe