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Huawei Could Use Russian Tech to Replace Android in Smartphones: Source

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Chinese telecom company Huawei is seeking alternatives to keep its smartphones working after U.S. tech giant Google cut the company off its Android operating system. A source close to negotiations between Huawei and the Russian government told TASS news agency.  

Last month, the Trump administration banned Google and a number of U.S. tech companies from dealing with China’s telecommunication major Huawei and other Chinese corporations. The direct order by U.S. President Donald Trump bans American firms from supplying Huawei with spare parts or technology solutions. The step was reportedly implemented amid security concerns after Washington accused Chinese tech companies of spying on behalf of Beijing.

The Chinese corporation is negotiating a replacement for Android with the Aurora operating system, currently being developed by Moscow-based firm Russian Mobile Platform, Russian news outlet the Bell reports, citing an official familiar with the issue.

“Aurora was not the only item for discussion. An ecosystem of Russian software was offered to Huawei at large: social media, search engine, antiviruses, and so on,” the source said.

The Russian Telecom Ministry neither confirmed nor denied this information. The Ministry noted at the same time that it is working on promotion of Russian producers on international markets on a going basis. Huawei were not available for comment.

Huawei Chairman Guo Ping reportedly discussed the possible deal with the Russian minister of digital development and communications, Konstantin Noskov, ahead of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF).

“China is already testing devices with the Aurora pre-installed,” the official said.

Moreover, the subject was addressed during an official meeting of Russian President Vladimir Putin with Chinese leader Xi Jinping the day before the business event. The two presidents reportedly discussed both an opportunity of installing the Aurora operating system on Huawei smartphones and localization of some of Huawei’s production facilities in Russia.

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Moscow Shrugs Off Calls of US Nominee for UN Ambassador to up Pressure on Russia

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Moscow is not paying attention to statements made by Kelly Craft, a candidate for the post of the US ambassador to the United Nations, that the pressure on Russia must be increased, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said on Thursday.

“This is not surprising,” Ryabkov said. “Perhaps present-day Washington is not picking up other candidates for this post. But we are used to such signals and are not paying any attention to them.”

Speaking earlier in the week at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s session, Craft announced that Russia was not a friend for the United States and Washington would continue building up its pressure on Moscow.

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Kyrgyz Parliament Votes to Strip Former President of Immunity

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Kyrgyzstan’s parliament has upheld a parliamentary commission’s regulation stripping the country’s former President Almazbek Atambayev of immunity, a parliamentary source told TASS.

“The lawmakers have supported the special commission’s decision that ex-President Atambayev be stripped of immunity,” the source said, adding that 95 out of the 100 legislators present at the parliament meeting had voted in favor of the move, while five had voted against it.

However, according to the source, the president won’t be immediately stripped of immunity. “Under the law, the process will be completed only after the Prosecutor General’s Office issues a positive assessment on the matter and the lawmakers approve it, so there will be another vote,” the source pointed out.

The commission on stripping the former president of immunity, established on June 13, includes members of all six parliamentary factions. Parliament members are supposed to complete the process within three months, otherwise the accusations will be considered abandoned.

The former president is particularly suspected of being involved in corruption schemes related to the reconstruction of Bishkek’s thermal power plant and Historical Museum, the unlawful release of crime boss Aziz Batukayev and illegal deliveries of coal to Bishkek’s thermal power plants, as well as in reassigning plots of land in the country’s Issyk-Kul Region and illegally obtaining a plot of land to build a residential house in the Koi-Tash settlement, Chuy Region.

Atambayev served as Kyrgyz president in 2011-2017.

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Russia Welcomes Idea for Persian Gulf Countries to Sign Non-Aggression Pact

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Russia considers as interesting and productive Iran’s proposal for Persian Gulf countries to sign a non-aggression pact, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said on Thursday.

“We have perceived with interest the recent proposal by Iranian Foreign Minister Mr. [Javad] Zarif that Persian Gulf countries should sign a non-aggression pact. This is also a productive idea,” the senior Russian diplomat said.

Zarif earlier stated that Tehran was seeking to establish balanced relations with Persian Gulf countries and was ready to sign a non-aggression pact with them.

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