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China closes its borders to the world's trash

A woman sits with her baby in a sea of plastic bottles
A woman sits with her baby in a sea of plastic in Laizhou, China, where she works on ripping the labels off the bottles. Photo: Peter Ford/The Christian Science Monitor via Getty Images

The world is reeling as China — which once imported 9 million metric tons of foreign plastic waste per year — implements new regulations that ban 24 different types of garbage from its shores, reports CNBC.

Why it matters: The measure, implemented in January, is forcing the United States, the U.K., Japan and the EU to find a new destination for their trash. Chinese customs data for the first quarter of 2018 showed that the country's solid waste imports dropped 54%.

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Pompeo plans to visit Jerusalem next week

Photo: Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Mike Pompeo, who looks set to be confirmed as Secretary of State today, is expected to arrive in Jerusalem next week as part of his first trip abroad in his new post, Israeli officials told me.

Why it matters: Pompeo's decision to include Israel in his first trip abroad as Secretary of State is important because his predecessor Rex Tillerson visited Israel only once when he accompanied President Trump in his May 2017 visit. Tillerson never came to Israel on his own and had a very minor role in the U.S.-Israel relations during his year in office.

Shannon Vavra 5 hours ago
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It’s not just nukes: What the key players want from North Korea

Kim and Xi meet in Beijing. Photo: Xinhua/Ju Peng via Getty Images

With North Korea’s Kim Jong-un and South Korea’s Moon Jae-in sitting down for talks, and a summit between Kim and President Trump looming, denuclearization is at the top of mind in Washington — but it's not the only issue on the table.

Why it matters: Trump and Kim will have to balance a number of competing interests if they want to reach any sort of lasting accord.