Defense Department officials are planning to brief President Donald Trump on several options to withdraw all US troops from Afghanistan, according to multiple reports. One of the options includes a complete withdrawal before the 2020 US presidential election in November. Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, an ardent supporter of the Trump administration, cautioned that an abrupt withdrawal would be "horrendous."
Hundreds of riot police took up posts around Hong Kong's legislature overnight, as protests were expected on Wednesday over a bill criminalising disrespect of China's national anthem and against plans by Beijing to impose national security laws. The proposed new national security laws have triggered the first big street unrest in Hong Kong since last year, when violent protests posed Hong Kong's biggest crisis since the return of Chinese rule in 1997 from Britain. Activists say the security laws could bring an end to the autonomy of China's freest city, now guaranteed under a policy known as "one country, two systems".
A man exclaiming "I can't breathe" as a Minneapolis police officer pinned him to the ground and put his knee on the man's neck for about eight minutes died Monday night, prompting the FBI and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension to step in and investigate. Video of the incident shows that a white police officer had a black man pinned to the ground next to the back tire of his patrol car with his knee on the man's neck. Onlookers outside the Minneapolis deli urge the officer to get off the man.
A U.N. investigation into a recent exchange of gunfire between the two Koreas has determined that both countries violated the armistice that ended the 1950-53 Korean War, the American-led U.N. Command said Tuesday. The May 3 gunfire exchange was the first shooting inside the Korean Demilitarized Zone in about 2½ years. The DMZ, which was established as a buffer at the end of the Korean War, is a de facto border separating North and South Korea.
The woman who went viral for calling the cops on a black man who asked her to leash her dog has been fired from her job, her employer said Tuesday. The confrontation occurred in a section of New York City's Central Park known as the Ramble, where rules require that dogs be leashed. The sister of the man who filmed the confrontation, Melody Cooper, explained that he had asked the woman to put her dog on its leash.
The Justice Department is dropping its inquiry into Sen. Dianne Feinstein over stock trades made as the novel coronavirus struck the U.S. and roiled the economy, a person familiar with the matter said. Feinstein (D-Calif.) is among a handful of senators whose stock trades have been scrutinized by federal investigators to see if they violate a law preventing lawmakers from utilizing insider information gleaned from their work. A spokesman for Feinstein declined to comment.
The Michigan governor who implemented some of the toughest coronavirus lockdown rules in the United States came under heavy criticism Tuesday over allegations that her husband pressured a dock to prepare his boat for an outing. Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat who has defended her tough stay-at-home policies against armed protestors and attacks from President Donald Trump, announced last week the lifting of some restrictions ahead of the long Memorial Day weekend. According to a claim posted on Facebook by Northshore Docks owner Tad Dowker, Whitmer's husband Marc Mallory subsequently tried to use her position to get his boat moved ahead of others for launching before the holiday weekend.
Here are the latest developments in Asia related to the coronavirus pandemic: - South Korean quarantine breaker jailed - A South Korean man was jailed for four months on Tuesday for breaking coronavirus quarantine rules, authorities said, in the country's first such prison sentence. The man, 27, left home while under 14-day self-isolation and was then moved to a quarantine facility where he also left without permission. South Korea endured one of the worst early outbreaks of the virus, but appears to have largely brought the spread under control thanks to an extensive "trace, test and treat" programme.
Fifty billion years of evolutionary history is under threat from human activity, according to a new study which suggests some of the most threatened areas contain the most unique animals. Branches of the tree of life will be cut by the loss of animals such as the Mary River turtle, native to Queensland, Australia, recognisable by its punk-like algae 'hair', whose evolution stretches back 40 million years. The study was led by Imperial College and the Zoological Society of London, which works to protect species of high evolutionary importance through its EDGE of Existence programme.
Senior White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett told CNN's "State of the Union" on Sunday that America's "human capital stock" is ready to get back work as the country moves toward reopening its economy. Hassett's statements come as the number of Americans who have filed for unemployment benefits continues to grow. Senior White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett said on Sunday that America's "human capital stock" is ready to get back work as the country takes steps toward reopening.
Congressman James Clyburn, D-S.C., a longtime friend of Joe Biden, said Tuesday that he "cringed" at the former vice president's comments that “you ain't black” if you are not sure whether to vote for him or President Donald Trump. Clyburn, who gave Biden a his coveted endorsement three days before his state's crucial February primary, told "The View" Tuesday, "Joe did not do as well as I hoped in responding, but I will say this, I go about my business every day comparing Joe Biden, to the alternative, not the Almighty." Biden made the comments on Friday while an interview with African American radio host Charlamagne tha God's on The Breakfast Club radio show, where Biden emphasized his ties to the African American community, and touted his record on civil rights.
Brazilian federal police on Tuesday raided the residences of Rio de Janeiro's right-wing Governor Wilson Witzel as part of a COVID-19 corruption probe, targeting one of President Jair Bolsonaro's political foes as the pandemic sweeps the nation. Federal prosecutors alleged Witzel, a former-ally-turned-foe of Bolsonaro, and his wife Helena led a sprawling criminal operation in which her law firm was used to receive payment from a company that won state coronavirus contracts, according to federal court documents seen by Reuters. The spurious services undertaken by the company involved "tent assembly and disassembly services, installation of water tanks, energy generators and flooring for ...
An Israeli woman facing 74 child sex charges in Australia is mentally fit to face extradition, a court has ruled. Malka Leifer, the former principal of a Jewish girls' school in Melbourne, fled to Israel in 2008 after accusations were raised against her. Judge Chana Lomp set 20 July 2020 as the date for a renewal of the extradition process to take the suspect back from Israel to Australia.
At a House Oversight Committee briefing on the Trump administration's response to the coronavirus, Rep. Gerry Connolly asked Department of Health and Human Services Principal Deputy Inspector General Christi Grimm if she will be looking into a report that a former White House aide, Zach Fuentes, won a contract to provide respirator masks to the Navajo Nation only 11 days after his company was formed.
The family of a Connecticut man wanted in connection with two killings is pleading for him to peacefully surrender as the FBI joins the intensified search for their son. Peter Manfredonia, 23, was last seen on foot Sunday in East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, in the Poconos region. Connecticut State Police say that he was seen leaving the scene of one killing in Willington, Connecticut, on Friday, that he later held another person against his will in a home invasion in the same town and stole that person's guns and a truck.
Asian equities mostly fell Wednesday as profit-taking and worries about deteriorating China-US relations outweighed optimism over the gradual reopening of economies around the world. Hong Kong fell as investors kept tabs on planned protests in the city that many fear could erupt into the worst violence since last summer. The broad trend across global markets has been upward for weeks as virus deaths and infections ease in most countries and governments begin to reopen their battered economies, fanning hopes for a recovery in the second half of the year.
When the U.S. recognized Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó as the nation's rightful leader last year it did more than just trigger a bitter feud with socialist leader Nicolás Maduro. The latest came Tuesday, when the Guaidó-appointed board of Citgo, the U.S. subsidiary of Venezuela's state oil company, filed a lawsuit in federal court in Houston against a former contractor seeking to recover millions of dollars in damages. The lawsuit accuses José Manuel González and his Miami-based Petroleum Logistics Service Corp. of providing gifts including cash, jewelry, private artwork, chartered flights and even a handpicked Houston apartment to senior executives at Citgo.
An intrepid Pakistani 'spy' pigeon is facing a life behind bars in India. The allegation was made after Geeta Devi, a resident of the Kathua district of Indian-administered Kashmir, reported a bird - painted pink and carrying a coded ring tagged to its foot - flew into her home on Sunday night. The Indian Border Security Force passed the pigeon on to the police, who launched an investigation and logged the animal as a 'Pak Suspected Spy.'
Swedish officials praised the success of the country's controversial lockdown-free coronavirus strategy on Tuesday, saying that the relaxed policies have helped slow the transmission of COVID-19. At a press briefing in on Tuesday, Sweden's Foreign Minister Ann Linde said: "Transmission is slowing down, the treatment of COVID-19 patients in intensive care is decreasing significantly, and the rising death toll curve has been flattened." Swedish officials defended the country's lockdown-free coronavirus strategy on Tuesday, saying that the controversial method has slowed the spread of COVID-19.
Chinese President Xi Jinping said his country will strengthen its armed forces and improve its preparedness for military combat, state media said Tuesday, amid rising tensions between Washington and Beijing over the coronavirus outbreak and China's decision to propose legislation that would tighten control over Hong Kong. Xi spoke on the sidelines of China's National People's Congress, an annual political event where legislation approved by China's ruling Community Party is rubber-stamped.
Donald Trump spent the weekend ahead of Memorial Day playing golf and pushing conspiracy theories on Twitter, insulting his political enemies like Joe Biden, Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi and Stacey Abrams and insinuating that MSNBC host Joe Scarborough is guilty of murder. Although Mr Trump put on a solemn show during his speech at Fort McHenry, his words to honour soldiers got lost amid the number of disparaging tweets he released in an effort to attack rivals and push for the Republican National Convention to continue as scheduled with a full crowd.
Tony Giberson/Reuters Mark Lua, a former Florida teacher, pleaded guilty last year to charges related to the sexual abuse of students. Last week, during his sentencing hearing, Mark Lua asked for chemical castration instead of a prison sentence. The judge ignored his request and sentenced him to 12 years in prison, according to the Pensacola News Journal.
Samsung Group heir Jay Y. Lee was questioned on Tuesday by prosecutors about a controversial 2015 merger and alleged accounting fraud that they said may have helped him advance his succession-planning agenda at the country's top conglomerate. The questioning brings fresh legal trouble for Lee who is already facing court trial over a charge of bribery aimed at winning support to succeed ailing group patriarch Lee Kun-hee, and which involved former South Korean President Park Geun-hye. Prosecutors have been investigating suspected accounting fraud at drug company Samsung Biologics after the Korean financial watchdog complained the firm's value had been inflated by 4.5 trillion won ($3.64 billion) in 2015.
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Tuesday attempted to quell growing criticism after her husband dropped her name while trying to get his boat in the water for the Memorial Day Weekend. "My husband made a failed attempt at humor last week when checking in with the small business that helps with our boat and dock up north," Whitmer said. The controversy started when Tad Dowker, the owner of a northern Michigan dock company, was reported to have posted to Facebook that Whitmer's husband, Marc Mallory, tried to use his status as first husband to get his boat launched ahead of Memorial Day weekend — even as Whitmer was cautioning residents to resist flocking to popular vacation areas.
Huge swarms of desert locusts are destroying crops across western and central India, prompting authorities Tuesday to step up their response to the country's worst plague in nearly three decades. "Eight to 10 swarms, each measuring around a square kilometre are active in parts of Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh," the government's Locust Warning Organisation's deputy director K.L. Gurjar told AFP. The insects caused massive damage to seasonal crops in both states, devastating many farmers already struggling with the impact of a strict coronavirus lockdown.