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Saudi Football Chiefs Apologize over Team’s Refusal to Pay Tribute

The Saudi football chiefs have apologised over their team's refusal to pay tributes to the London Attack victims.

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Football
Saudi Football Players (White) getting into playing positions while Australia (Yellow) pays tribute. Twitter.
  • Saudi Arabia and Australia played a World Cup qualifying game in Australia on Thursday, 8th of June
  • Before the game, Australian players linked arms in tribute to the victims of the London Attack
  • The players from the Saudi team did not take part in the tribute, inviting criticism from all over the world

June 06, 2017: The Football Federation Australia (FFA) organized a minute’s silence to pay their tributes to the victims of the London Attack minutes before the start of the World Cup qualifying game between Australia and Saudi Arabia and both the teams were briefed in advance.

While the Australian stars linked arms and stood in support of condemning the terror attack, the Saudi players were seen taking up their respective playing positions on the field for the kick-off despite having agreed to the tradition in the pre-game briefing.

ALSO READ: Police Identify 3rd London attacker

The Saudi Arabian team has invited a lot of criticism and anger from the world over. Social media was quick to react and bring up the issue, prompting an apology from the Saudi Football officials. An Australian MP called it “a disgraceful act”.

The Saudi Arabian Football Federation has made an “unreserved apology”. They continue that the “players did not intend any disrespect to the victims or their families”. They also condemned all acts of terror.

ALSO READ: Theresa May’s Response to London Attack

Two Australians were among the eight victims who died in the London terror attack. Australia went on to win the game 3-2 and joined Saudi Arabia and Japan at the top of the group stage.

– by Saksham Narula of NewsGram. Twitter: @Saksham2394

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US to Work with Australia, Canada to Cut Reliance on Chinese Minerals

Over 80 percent of the global supply chain of rare earth elements is controlled by one country

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US, Australia, Canada
FILE - Samples of rare earth minerals (L-R): Cerium oxide, Bastnasite, Neodymium oxide and Lanthanum carbonate are on display during a tour of Molycorp's Mountain Pass Rare Earth facility in Mountain Pass, California. VOA

The United States will team up with Canada and Australia to help countries around the world develop their reserves of minerals like lithium, copper and cobalt, the State Department said on Tuesday, part of a multi-pronged strategy to reduce global reliance on China for materials crucial to high-tech industries.

Washington grew more concerned recently about its dependence on mineral imports after Beijing suggested using them as leverage in the trade war between the world’s largest economic powers.

This would interrupt the manufacture of a wide range of consumer, industrial and military goods, including mobile phones, electric vehicles, batteries, and fighter jets.

“Over 80 percent of the global supply chain of rare earth elements — is controlled by one country,” the State Department said in a fact sheet outlining the effort, which it has dubbed the Energy Resource Governance Initiative. “Reliance on any one source increases the risk of supply disruptions.”

US, Australia, Canada
The United States will team up with Canada and Australia to help countries around the world. VOA

Under the plan, the United States will share mining expertise with other countries to help them discover and develop their resources, and advise on management and governance frameworks to help ensure their industries are attractive to international investors.

Doing so will help to ensure global supply for the minerals can meet world demand, which is projected to surge alongside the growing take-up in high-technology goods. “Demand for critical energy minerals could increase almost 1,000% by 2050,” according to the fact sheet.

Frank Fannon, the U.S. assistant secretary of state for energy resources, said in an interview that tensions with China show the United States should be producing more rare earth minerals and help others ensure a secure supply. “We need to do more and we are not alone in this,” Fannon said.

Canada and Australia, two major mining countries, were partnering in the effort and other allies could join later, a U.S. official said.

Also Read- In Hot Water? Warming Oceans may Reduce Sea Life by 17%,Says Study

Canada’s Ambassador to the United States, David MacNaughton, said Canadian officials have met with the State Department several times to discuss critical minerals and environmental issues around global mining and he looks forward to advancing the initiative.

Representatives of Australia did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The plan was first reported on Tuesday morning by the Financial Times.

The plan comes a week after the U.S. Commerce Department recommended urgent steps to boost U.S. domestic production of “critical minerals,” including by providing low-interest loans to mining companies and requiring defense companies to “buy American.”

US, Australia, Canada
Washington grew more concerned recently about its dependence on mineral imports. Pixabay

The Commerce report also recommended that U.S. agencies review areas that are currently protected from development and assess whether those restrictions should be lifted or reduced to allow for critical minerals development. (VOA)