TRIPOLI (Reuters) - Lawmakers from Libya's two rival parliaments have signed a declaration of principles aimed at ending the North African country's civil conflict. The proposal was signed late on Saturday by two groups from the Libyan parliament and the rival General National Congress. The initiative is separate from United Nations-sponsored talks between the country's two competing governments and parliaments to form a united administration. Four years after the fall of Muammar Gaddafi, Libya is in turmoil. Tripoli has been controlled since last year by an armed faction called Libya Dawn, forcing the internationally recognised government and elected parliament to work in the east. Lawmakers said the declaration calls for forming a 10-person committee - five members from each parliament - that would be charged with naming an interim prime minister and two deputies. Legislative elections would be held within two years. Delegates from the elected House of Representatives and the General National Congress said it was too early to decide on the proposal, which would have to be put to both houses for a vote. Western governments are pushing for the U.N.-backed agreement to form a government of national unity as the only way to end the chaos in Libya, where Islamic State militants have gained ground. Moderates have supported the U.N. proposal after a year of talks, but hardliners in both camps have been demanding more concessions from the other side. The U.N. proposal calls for an executive six-member presidential council that would try to represent Libya's traditional regional power bases, along with the House of Representatives congress and a second advisory chamber State Council. (Reporting by Ahmed Tolba in Cairo and Ahmed Elumami in Tripoli; Editing by Patrick Markey and Digby Lidstone)
- The Independent
FBI investigators have identified a single suspect in the death of a US Capitol police officer during the pro-Trump riot last month, reports say. Officer Brian Sicknick collapsed and died after being sprayed in the face with a chemical substance, believed to be bear spray, while defending the Capitol Building on 6 January. Now investigators have pinpointed a suspect in a video who attacked several officers, including Mr Sicknick, with bear spray, officials told the New York Times.
From the United States to Germany and Australia, government borrowing costs on Friday were set to end February with their biggest monthly rises in years as expectations for a post-pandemic ignition of inflation gained a life of their own. Australia's 10-year bond yield and Britain's 30-year yields were set for their biggest monthly jump since the 2009 global financial crisis. Even after a Friday respite from this week's brutal drubbing, Australia's 10-year yield is up 70 basis points in February and New Zealand's 10-year yield is up almost 77 bps.
- WCVB - Boston
A Beverly public schools bus driver has become an unsung hero.
At least nine asylum-seekers and two unaccompanied children were among a group of Myanmar nationals deported by Malaysia this week, despite a court order halting the plan, rights groups said on Friday. Malaysia on Tuesday sent 1,086 Myanmar nationals back on three navy ships sent by Myanmar, a move the groups said could endanger the deportees' lives. The Asia Pacific Refugee Rights Network (APRRN) said in a statement it had confirmed that two children were separated from their families and deported back to Myanmar alone on the ships.
- The Independent
Golfer cut from car after vehicle collided with tree before toppling over several times
- The Independent
Republican gathering began in 1974 and sees American conservatives debate social worries but has struggled with position on 'alt-right' in recent years
- Reuters Videos
The militaries of India and Pakistan issued a rare joint statement Thursday (February 25), saying that they had agreed to observe a ceasefire along the disputed border in Kashmir.The nuclear-armed neighbors signed a ceasefire agreement along the Line of Control in the Kashmir region in 2003, but the truce has frayed in recent years, and there have been mounting casualties among villagers living close to the de facto border.The joint statement said: "Both sides agreed for strict observance of all agreements, understandings and cease firing along the Line of Control and all other sectors with effect from midnight 24/25 Feb 2021."The return to a truce was settled by the two armies director-generals of military operations.There has been a significant increase in ceasefire violations since 2014, leading to nearly 300 civilian fatalities, according to a source in Pakistan's military.Since the start of the year, India had counted 591 violations by Pakistan.Kashmir has long been a flashpoint between the neighbors, which claim the region in full but rule only parts.But tensions were renewed after New Delhi withdrew the autonomy of Jammu and Kashmir state in August 2019 and split it into two federally administered territories.Politicians in Indian Kashmir said they welcomed the commitment to return to a ceasefire, one of the few signs of cooperation in recent years between the neighbors who have fought three full-scale wars since gaining independence in 1947.
- Business Insider
Decades ago, 9 Russian hikers mysteriously fled their tent and froze to death. A new study sheds light on the cold case.
In 1959, nine hikers fled their tent in Russia's snowy Dyatlov Pass and froze. A new study suggests a slab avalanche crushed their tent in the night.
- Business Insider
Trump begins settling scores with Republican opponents by endorsing a former aide's primary challenge to an Ohio congressman who backed impeachment
Trump weighed in for the first time after he indicated he would play an active role on the campaign trail during the 2022 midterm elections.
It's been 40 years since Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer announced their engagement with a televised interview.
A plastic surgeon attended his virtual traffic trial while performing surgery on a patient in California
Dr. Scott Green from Sacramento, California, was wearing scrubs and appeared to be in an operating room during the Zoom court appearance.
- Business Insider
Students from Rep. Madison Cawthorn's college said he used 'fun drives' to corner women with sexual advances, report says
Two former resident assistants told BuzzFeed News they warned women in their dorms not to go on drives with Cawthorn because "bad things happened."
- Business Insider
The White House is beginning to look past recreational marijuana use to fill key Biden administration roles
Previous users who secure a position must agree to not use pot during their tenure in office and undergo random drug tests, NBC News reported.
- Business Insider
Federal investigators zeroed in on the assailant after video footage showed the suspect attacking officers with bear spray, The Times reported.
- The State
“Her daddy got to heaven just before she did.”
- Business Insider
QAnon's most devout followers believe bizarrely that former President Donald Trump will be sworn in as the 19th President on March 4, 2021.
U.S. President Joe Biden on Thursday told Saudi King Salman he would work for bilateral ties "as strong and transparent as possible," the White House said, ahead of the expected release of a sensitive U.S. intelligence report on the 2018 murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The report is a declassified version of a top-secret assessment that sources say singles out the 85-year-old king's son Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for approving the murder of Khashoggi in the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul. Saudi Arabia denies that the 35-year-old crown prince, the de facto ruler of the kingdom, approved the killing.
- National Review
After only a month in power, President Biden has used lethal military force in reaction to Iranian-sponsored attacks on Americans in Iraq. The strike, said to be by F-15 jets, apparently attacked buildings owned by Iraqi Shiite militia groups along the Iraqi-Syrian border. It’s worth pausing to note that those Iranian-backed Iraqi Shiite groups and not the government of Iraq control that part of the border. In other words, Iran and its proxies control a route from Iraq through Syria to Lebanon, where the largest Iranian proxy, Hezbollah, is situated. The borders have been erased. The Biden strike is a message to Iran, a warning shot against continuing attacks by the militias Tehran backs. According to press reports, Biden was presented with a range of options and chose one of the softest — a limited strike inside Syria rather than Iraq. There is a logic to this choice. First, U.S. attacks inside Iraq would likely complicate life for Prime Minister Kadhimi, whom we are generally supporting, and spur the forces hostile to any U.S. presence — not least the Iranian-allied militias — to demand that all U.S. forces be expelled. Second, should further Iranian-sponsored attacks require Biden to hit Iranian-backed forces again, this limited strike allows him to say he tried patience and restraint and they failed. But the strike inside Syria and at Iranian proxies may also send messages Biden does not intend: that the United States will never hit Tehran’s proxies inside Iraq and that it will never hit Iran. If that’s what the Iranian regime infers, they will have the militias strike again and again; they will not be deterred because they will see the attacks as nearly cost-free. The law of averages suggests that sooner or later these continued attacks will kill Americans. That’s when the president will face the need to punish Iran and truly establish deterrence; merely attacking its proxies will be inadequate. One of the key functions of the Shiite militias in Iraq is to allow Iran to attack U.S. forces while, by absorbing any penalty, keeping Iran safe. If there are a series of attacks, harming Americans and eventually killing one or more, the kind of limited response from the United States that we saw this past week will not be enough. That does not mean World War III and it does not mean American bombers over Tehran, but it does mean that Biden must contemplate striking Iranian assets rather than expendable proxy groups. Meanwhile, there was zero progress on the nuclear-negotiations front this past week. On the contrary, Iran did not agree to attend the EU-sponsored talks that the United States has agreed to attend, it limited International Atomic Energy Agency inspectors’ access to Iran, and it threatened to enrich uranium to 60 percent. Nuclear power requires enrichment to no more than 5 percent; the only use for uranium enriched to 60 percent is in preparing a nuclear weapon. The very least that can be said about President Biden’s second month in power is that we are seeing any dreams of a quick return to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, also known as the JCPOA, and a quick resolution to U.S.-Iranian confrontations dissolve before our eyes. The president’s refusal, thus far, to lift any sanctions and his willingness to use force against Iranian proxies suggest a more realistic assessment of Iran than many feared. No doubt there will be many deep discussions, even debates, within the administration over what the next move should be. The administration’s willingness to return to the JCPOA if Iran went back into compliance with it has not moved the Islamic Republic an inch. Similarly, the administration’s reversal of the designation of the Houthis in Yemen as a terrorist group, and its decision to halt the sale of “offensive” weapons to Saudi Arabia for use in Yemen, were met with zero flexibility by the Houthis — who have carried out additional terrorist attacks since the policy changes. Down the road the administration faces an even greater challenge than what to do about attacks on Americans in Iraq. President Biden has already decided that they will be met with force, and one must assume that if the attacks continue and escalate, the counter-attacks will as well. But what about Iran’s expulsion of nuclear inspectors, which violates the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and the “Additional Protocol” to the JCPOA (that allowed snap inspections)? What about enrichment to 60 percent, if that indeed occurs? How far down the road toward building a nuclear weapon will the administration be willing to let Iran go? That’s a hypothetical question today, but if Iran keeps going it will soon be keeping U.S. officials up at night. Biden is the fifth American president in a row, by my count, to say Iran would never be permitted to build a nuclear weapon. Unless Iran changes course he could be the first to have to prove it.
- Charlotte Observer
This is the shocking story of the alleged sexual abuses that led to the January arrest of Sandra Hiler — aka Charlotte piano teacher Keiko Aloe — as told by her 21-year-old daughter.
- USA TODAY
Sen. Ted Cruz caught heat for his ill-timed trip to Cancun. But he didn't lose his Marriott points as a result. A story saying as much is satirical.