New Delhi, Mar 20 (PTI) Following are the top foreign stories at 2000 hours


Modi, Xi discuss efforts to deepen ties over phone after re-election of Chinese President Beijing: Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulates Chinese President Xi Jinping over phone on his re-election for another five years and discussed efforts by both the countries to enhance high-level exchanges and deepen bilateral cooperation. By K J M Varma FGN33 IRAQ-INDIANS-ENVOY

India backs Iraq in combating terrorism: envoy Baghdad: India voices its support to Iraq in its fight against terrorism after New Delhi said that 38 Indians, abducted by the ISIS terror group from the war-torn country’s second largest city Mosul, have been killed.


Shooting at Maryland high school, injuries reported Washington: A shooting took place at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland today, officials said, reportedly leaving several people injured just days before a nationwide student-organised march against school violence. (AFP) FGN16 IRAQ-INDIANS-OFFICIAL

Iraq says bodies of 38 Indians have been recovered Baghdad: Iraqi authorities have found the bodies of 38 Indian construction workers abducted when Islamic State militants overran the northern city of Mosul more than three years ago, officials say. (AP) FGN30 SEYCHELLES-INDIA

Seychelles opposition to block India military deal Victoria: Seychelles’ opposition coalition, which holds a majority in parliament, says it would not ratify a deal signed with India to build a military base on one of the archipelago’s outlying islands. (AFP) FGN28 UK-FACEBOOK-3RDLD PROBE

UK MPs ask Facebook’s Zuckerberg to testify on data row London: A British parliamentary committee today asked Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg to appear before it to explain in person claims that millions of users’ data was harvested for political campaigns. (AFP) FGN18 CHINA-2NDLD XI

China not to cede a ‘single inch’ of land, ready for ‘bloody battle’ for due place in the world: Xi Beijing: China will not cede a “single inch” of its territory to others and is ready to wage a “bloody battle” to assume its due place in the world, a belligerent President Xi Jinping, now enjoying a life-long tenure, asserts. By K J M Varma FGN10 CHINA-LI-LD ECONOMY

Chinese Premier promises level playing field for domestic and foreign investors Beijing: China will open up its economy further to the outside world, Premier Li Keqiang vows, promising a level playing field for domestic and foreign investors in the world’s second largest economy. By K J M Varma FGN8 CHINA-LI-US

US should not act emotionally on trade: Chinese Premier Beijing: The US should not act “emotionally” and avert a trade war, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang says, hoping to reach an agreement with Washington over the mounting USD 375 billion trade deficit, a core concern of President Donald Trump. By K J M Varma FGN17 CHINA-LD CPC

Communist Party supreme in China: Xi Jinping Beijing: President Xi Jinping underlines the overall supremacy of the ruling Communist Party in China and demanded that the two-million strong military and government institutions work under its leadership. By K J M Varma FGN5 CHINA-XI-CPC

Strictly follow CPC leadership: Xi to military, govt institutions Beijing: Chinese President Xi Jinping demands that the two million strong military and government institutions work under the leadership of the ruling Communist Party of China. By K J M Varma FGN11 US-PAK-PENTAGON

US won’t resume security aid to Pak till it allays concerns on terror safe havens Washington: The US will not resume security aid to Pakistan until it addresses America’s concerns on terrorist safe havens, the Pentagon says, underlining that Islamabad’s action against militants would not only help Afghanistan but also protect India and the entire region. By Lalit K Jha FGN13 FRANCE-LD SARKOZY

French ex-president Sarkozy held in Libya financing probe Paris: Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy was taken into police custody for questioning over suspected Libyan financing of his 2007 election campaign, according to a source close to the inquiry. (AFP) FGN4 MALDIVES-ENVOY-EMERGENCY

Envoy says Maldives will not extend state of emergency Colombo: An envoy says Maldives will not extend the state of emergency that is due to expire tomorrow amid criticism of the government over the recent political turmoil. (AP) FGN31 NORWAY-CANADIAN-ABELPRIZE

Canadian mathematician Langlands wins Abel Prize Oslo: Canadian mathematician Robert Langlands wins the prestigious Abel Prize for developing a programme connecting representation theory to number theory, Norway’s Academy of Sciences and Letters said. (AFP) CPS 03202038

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