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NEW ZEALAND: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announces resignation

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On Thursday, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced publicly that she will be resigning in three weeks time and will not be seeking to run for re-election. Ardern made this announcement at her labor party’s annual caucus meeting according to Fox News.

Ardern who has been the center of much controversy for her questionable decisions as Prime Minister said she “no longer had enough in the tank” to continue executing the job. Her official resignation date will be February 7th.

Her resignation comes after she was caught on a hot mic in Parliament on December 13th, 2022, calling David Seymour the minor opposition party leader a “arrogant pr***.” Ardern explained to the caucus that she “knows what it takes to get the job done” but she now feels as if she doesn’t have enough drive to continue to do it.

Ardern and the Labour Party’s approval rating has sunk to its lowest since the party came to power in 2017 according to a Kantar One News Poll. Ardern is only the third women to be in the position of Prime Minister un New Zealand and the youngest of them to assume that role.

“I hope I leave New Zealanders with a belief that you can be kind, but strong, empathetic but decisive, optimistic but focused. And that you can be your own kind of leader – one who knows when it’s time to go,” she said, according to the Guardian.

Ardern rose to power in 2017 and has had to lead through various hardships such as Covid-19 and the deaths of 51 New Zealanders that came from a devastating attack on two mosques. New Zealand had some of the strongest restrictions during the pandemic and that has led to many upset citizens and has played an impact on her approval ratings.

New Zealand’s Labour party will vote on Sunday, January 22nd, 2023 to fill the position of Prime Minister until the next general election is held on October 14th, 2023.

For more on this story go to Fox News. 

 

 

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China

Chinese Spy Balloon: Tensions rise between the U.S. and China

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A strange object was spotted Wednesday over Billings Montana. The Pentagon confirmed Thursday that the strange object was, in fact, a Chinese spy balloon. According to a report from KPAX, a western Montana news outlet, the balloon had been on the governments radar for days.

On Friday, the Chinese government released a statement saying that the balloon spotted in Billings is a “civilian airship” that’s sole purpose is used to collect research on weather and that it had just blown off course. The balloon was not shot down by orders of the Pentagon due to the risk of falling debris injuring people on the ground.

Sara Carter, who has spoken frequently on the Chinese government’s threat and expansion to the West, stated on Twitter that the United States has failed to stop China from purchasing land near military installations, vital agricultural land, as well as, allowing Chinese linked companies, such as Huawei, to install technology in cellular towers. Those cellular towers are located in Montana, along side more than 150 ICBM nuclear silos.

China said, “The Chinese side regrets the unintended entry of the airship into U.S. airspace due to force majeure.” Majeure meaning that it was out of there control. It blew off course due to limited “self-steering” capabilities according the Ministry. The ministry also stated that the balloon, “deviated far from its planned course.”

This incident is adding fuel to the fire of what is already a tense relationship between the worlds two largest economies. China already lays claim to approximately 80% of the South China Sea, and is seeking full control over Taiwan after assuming full control of Hong Kong. China’s belt and road initiative has invested copious amounts of money into building infrastructure in other countries and uses it as economic blackmail. China’s transportation of fentanyl into Mexico is yet again another example of how they are seeking to damage the US.

Is this just a weather ballon that blew off course? US officials at the White House seem to be unconvinced and will continue to monitor the balloon, as reported.

UPDATED: Statement from the Pentagon was jaw dropping when a reporter asked if the public has a right to know about Beijing’s balloon.

“The public certainly has the ability to look up in the sky and see where the balloon is,” a DOD official responded.

 

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