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World in brief - April 14, 2021

NEW ZEALAND: The export of live cows and other livestock was banned today.
Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor said the country wanted to be the “most ethical producers of food.”
China is New Zealand’s biggest trading partner and purchaser of agricultural produce, but Mr O’Connor said he did not expect a row. “It’s not about China. It’s about animal welfare. We have a mature relationship with them,” he said.

MYANMAR: The coup government has charged 19 doctors for taking part in protests, a state-run newspaper said today.
The junta has already issued arrest warrants for 100 people active in the fields of literature, film, arts, music and journalism on charges of spreading information that undermines the stability of the country and the rule of law, while its crackdowns on protests have seen hundreds killed and thousands detained.

AFGHANISTAN: At least three people were killed in a suicide car bombing on Tuesday, officials say.
The move comes as the United States said it would not withdraw troops from the country, which it invaded in 2001, until September 11, breaking an earlier commitment to leave by May 1, on grounds that the level of violence is still too high.

EUROPE: The EU announced a huge contract extension with Pfizer for vaccine delivery into 2023 today.
EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen said Pfizer “has proven to be a reliable partner,” a perceived dig at AstraZeneca, whose failure to deliver as many doses as originally agreed prompted a legal and diplomatic tussle between Brussels and London. Denmark said today it would not be reviving AstraZeneca inoculations, citing fears over contested evidence that it causes blood clots in rare cases.

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