IRAN/NUKES – Iran’s President Rouhani has said Iran’s atomic agency was ready with “expected and unexpected” reactions if the United States pulls out of a multinational nuclear deal next month. (See Coming Up)

US/CHINA – US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says a trip to China is ‘under consideration’. If so it could help ease tensions about a potential trade war.

ISRAEL/ROMANIA – Romania will follow the USA and Guatemala and transfer its embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

SYRIA/CHEMICALS – Next month Syria will chair the 65 nation UN disarmament forum that produced the treaty banning chemical weapons.

COMING UP

The big set piece event is the meeting between the two Korean leaders which itself is part of the process leading to the summit between President Trump and Kim Jong Un.

Chancellor Merkel’s meeting with Trump on Friday is an opportunity for her to make the case of why the American should stick with the Iran nuclear deal.  That issue is related to the Korean issue; Does Trump scrap the Iran deal to scare Kim? Or stick with it to show he’s a reliable partner?  No-one yet knows, possibly not even Trump.

Elsewhere, various nations will be seeking clarification on the status of Libya’s General Khalifa Hifter.  Is he in a Paris hospital? Is he dead? Depending on the answers the militias will make a variety of moves.

DIARY

Mon –  French President Emmanuel Macron in the USA.

Mon –  US and S Korea begin 2-week computer-simulated military exercise.

Mon –  Myanmar government and some rebel groups meet for peace talks.

Tues –  Shanghai Cooperation Organization meeting in Beijing.

Thurs –  Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit in Singapore.

Fri –  S Korean President Moon Jae In meets N Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Fri –   German Chancellor Angela Merkel meet President Trump in Washington.

Sun –  Imran Khan, leader of the Pakistani opposition party Tahrik-e-Insaf, holds rally in Lahore.

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