U.N.: Banned exports pass through Iran

UNITED NATIONS • Banned charcoal exports from Somalia are thriving, generating millions of dollars a year for al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab extremists — and often passing through Iran to have their origins obscured, according to U.N. sanctions monitors.

Six years after the U.N. Security Council prohibited exports of prized Somali charcoal to try to choke off a money stream to al-Shabab, an estimated 3 million bags of the commodity are making their way out of the country each year, the monitors say in excerpts of a yet-unpublished report.

The main destinations are ports in Iran, where the charcoal — already falsely labeled as coming from Comoros, Ghana or Ivory Coast — is transferred from blue-green bags into white bags labeled “product of Iran,” the report says.

Trump to name new White House counsel

WASHINGTON • President Donald Trump is expected to name conservative Catholic activist and longtime Washington lawyer Pat Cipollone as his next White House counsel to replace Donald McGahn.

Cipollone, who practices commercial litigation at Stein Mitchell Cipollone Beato & Missner, is well-liked and respected among Trump’s personal lawyers and had been informally advising them on the special counsel probe into Russian interference in the 2016 elections. Cipollone is expected to take over the premier legal office in the next week, pending a security clearance review.

IMF-World Bank: Brace for risks

NUSA DUA, Indonesia • Global financial leaders wrapped up an annual meeting of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank on Saturday by urging countries to brace for potential risks from trade disputes and other tensions.

The meetings in Bali, Indonesia, this past week were overshadowed by a spate of financial market turmoil and by the threat to global growth from the trade clash between the U.S. and China over Beijing’s technology policies.

The International Monetary and Financial Committee, which advises the IMF’s board of governors, issued a communique Saturday urging countries to keep debt under control, engineer policies to ensure credit is available in line with their levels of inflation and ensure sustained economic growth “for the benefit of all.”

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