Xinhua world news summary at 0030 GMT, Jan. 23

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WASHINGTON -- The White House said on Friday that the United States would review its agreement with the Afghan Taliban, which was signed in last February.

National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan told this plan in his phone conversation with his Afghan counterpart Hamdullah Mohib earlier in the day, according to a White House statement. (U.S.-Afghanistan.-Taliban)

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BRUSSELS -- Belgium will start to ban non-essential travel from or to the country starting on Jan. 27, Prime Minister Alexander De Croo announced Friday.

"As of January 27, recreational and tourist travel is prohibited. This applies to travel from or to our country," the prime minister said at a press conference.

The ban will be valid until March 1. (COVID-19-Belgium)

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SOFIA -- The new variant of coronavirus first identified in Britain was confirmed in Bulgaria, an official said here on Friday evening.

The new strain was genetically proven in eight patients earlier on Friday, Todor Kantardjiev, director of the National Center of Infectious and Parasitic Diseases, said in an interview with the Bulgarian National Television. (Bulgaria-COVID-19)

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WASHINGTON -- U.S. President Joe Biden on Friday signed two executive orders, one to expand food assistance to low-income Americans, and the other to raise minimum wage to 15 U.S. dollars for federal employees.

"We need to tackle the growing hunger crisis in American," Biden said before signing the orders, noting that one in seven households in America - more than one in five Black and Latino households in America - report they do not have enough food to eat.

That includes 30 million adults and as many as 12 million children, the president continued. (U.S.-Biden-Food Stamps-Federal Pay) Enditem

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