February 9, 2018 / 2:37 PM / 13 days ago

Friday Morning Briefing

A Reuters Special Report reveals the first account of anti-Rohingya killings that uses testimony from the perpetrators as well as the victims; and awkward diplomacy on show as ‘peace’ Games begin.

Highlights

“When they were being buried, some were still making noises. Others were already dead,” said Soe Chay, 55, a retired soldier from Inn Din’s Rakhine Buddhist community who said he helped dig a mass grave and witnessed the killings of ten Rohingya men. This is the investigation Reuters was reporting when two of its Myanmar correspondents were arrested in December.

A Reuters investigation into the killing of Rohingya in Myanmar prompted demands from the U.S. State Department for a credible investigation into the bloodshed there and calls for the release of two journalists who were arrested while working on the report.

The U.S. Congress ended a brief government shutdown by reaching a wide-ranging deal that is expected to push budget deficits into the $1 trillion-a-year zone.

Reeling world stock markets took another blow when Chinese shares sank 4 percent, as concern about rising borrowing costs and soaring volatility put them on course for their worst week since the height of the euro zone crisis.

2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics

Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics – Opening ceremony – Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium - Pyeongchang, South Korea – February 9, 2018 - A general view shows the opening ceremony. REUTERS/Pawel Kopczynski

The Winter Olympics sparked to life in a vivid, colorful ceremony of fire and ice in South Korea, though the diplomacy was tougher to choreograph in the stadium where leaders from nations that are sworn enemies sat close together.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport dismissed 47 appeals from Russian athletes and coaches to take part in the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, putting an end to a months-long saga over their Olympic fate.

Canada led after the first round of figure skating’s team competition in the Pyeongchang Olympics, with a dazzling performance by pair Megan Duhamel and Eric Radford overcoming stumbles by Patrick Chan in the men’s singles.

Business

European shares posted limited losses after a fresh sell-off on Wall Street, which has now entered a correction with the benchmark S&P 500 and Dow industrials falling more than 10 percent from their Jan. 26 record highs.

First, sharp drops in U.S. imports of crude oil eroded the biggest market that producers like OPEC had relied on for many years. Now, surging U.S. exports – largely banned by Washington until just two years ago - challenge the last region OPEC dominates: Asia.

Last July, U.S. President Donald Trump stood beside his Polish counterpart, Andrzej Duda, in Warsaw and promised to help wean the nation off Russian energy imports. He offered U.S. fuel as an alternative, “so that you can never be held hostage to a single supplier.”

U.S. semiconductor company Qualcomm rejected Broadcom revised $121 billion buyout offer, but proposed meeting its peer to see whether they can address what it called the bid’s “serious deficiencies in value and certainty.”

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