The White House continued on Thursday to promote the use of hydroxychloroquine, the antimalarial drug that President Trump and some of his supporters have held out as a treatment for the coronavirus, against the advice of the Food and Drug Administration and in the face of studies that have shown it can be harmful in some cases. Routinely touted by prominent conservative allies of the president, including primetime Fox News anchor Laura Ingraham, it has been denounced by members of the medical establishment as an unproven therapy that poses the risk of potentially fatal heart complications. The FDA recommends that COVID-19 patients, if they choose to use it, do so only in a hospital or under medical supervision in a clinical trial.
Pentagon leaders expressed strong confidence Thursday that a coronavirus vaccine will be available by January, and perhaps as early as this fall — claims that were met with skepticism by scientific experts. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said that he and Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar “will be co-chairing Operation Warp Speed,” the effort by the administration of President Trump to produce 300 million vaccine doses by January. “I'm confident that we will be able to deliver a vaccine at scale in time” by partnering with other government agencies and the private sector, Esper said.
A mayor in Mississippi is facing fierce backlash and calls to resign after saying that he “didn't see anything unreasonable” about the death of George Floyd. Mr Floyd, who was black, died while in police custody in Minneapolis after a white officer was filmed pinned him to the ground by his neck for a prolonged period of time. In the footage, Floyd can be heard saying “I can't breathe” to officers multiple times.
Law enforcement officials around the country are publicly condemning the killing of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who was seen on video gasping for breath as a white officer held him down with a knee on his neck for close to eight minutes.
The killing of an Iranian teen by her father after she eloped with an older man sparked outrage on Wednesday, with local media denouncing "institutionalised violence" in "patriarchal" Iran. Iranian media covered the apparent "honour" crime extensively, with Ebtekar newspaper leading its front page with the headline "Unsafe father's house". According to local media, Romina Ashrafi was killed in her sleep on May 21 by her father, who decapitated her in the family home in Talesh in northern Gilan province.
While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says contaminated surfaces are not the main way the virus is transmitted, the agency hasn't ruled surfaces out as a possible mode of infection. “If you want a reliable way to prevent yourself from getting the coronavirus, worry less about the surfaces you touch, and worry more about how frequently you wash your hands,” says Dr. Dara Kass, a Yahoo News Medical Contributor and associate professor of emergency medicine at Columbia University Medical Center. Confusion over how the virus is transmitted was reignited last week when the CDC edited the “How COVID-19 Spreads” page on their COVID-19 website to mention contaminated surfaces and objects under a new heading entitled, “The virus does not spread easily in other ways.”
Reuters A Financial Times analysis of the excess death rates of 13 countries compared to when they imposed a lockdown has shown a close correlation between the two factors. The data suggests that the less widespread the virus was when a country locked down, the lower the excess death rates. For example, the UK waited until later in the severity of its outbreak before locking down, and now shows a high excess death rate.
Greece said Friday it would reopen its airports in Athens and Thessaloniki to arrivals from 29 countries from June 15, the start of the tourist season. Visitors would be allowed to fly into Greece from 16 EU countries, including Germany, Austria, Denmark, Finland, the Czech Republic, Baltic countries, Cyprus and Malta, the tourism ministry said in a statement. Outside the European Union, holidaymakers from Switzerland, Norway, and neighbouring Balkan countries such as Albania, Serbia and North Macedonia will be allowed to land at Greece's main airports from June 15.
He also filed a report to the Congress, in accordance with the Act, grounding from the fact that Beijing assert its right to interpret all laws in Hong Kong in November 2019; the Liaison Office's claims that it was exempted from Article 22 of the Basic Law in April 2020; and the national security law announced last week. He further added that the deployment of tear gas and the mass arrests and the dispatching of the People's Armed Police into Hong Kong, all constituted a violation of the Basic Law and the Sino-British Joint Declaration.
Democratic lawmakers in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives are demanding answers after learning that one of their Republican colleagues tested positive for COVID-19, shared that information with GOP leadership, but never informed them. On May 20, Republican Rep. Andrew Lewis learned he had tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. Two other Republican House members who came in contact with Lewis were told to self-quarantine for 14 days, but Democratic lawmakers, some of whom also had contact with Lewis or with the two other Republicans before May 20, say they first learned of the positive test result on Wednesday.
Chinese civil aviation authorities plan to extend until June 30 their curbs on international flights to contain the spread of the coronavirus, the U.S. embassy in Beijing said in a travel advisory on Friday. China has drastically cut such flights since March to allay concerns over infections brought by arriving passengers. A so-called "Five One" policy allows mainland carriers to fly just one flight a week on one route to any country and foreign airlines to operate just one flight a week to China.
The Minneapolis police officer who was filmed kneeling on George Floyd's neck for several minutes even as he said “I can't breathe” has previously been the subject of multiple complaints filed to the Minneapolis Police Department's Internal Affairs Division, it has emerged. Mr Chauvin, who has been fired along with the other three police officers who apprehended Mr Floyd, was reported to the division 18 times. According to a police summary, only two of the complaints were “closed with discipline”.
A woman whose skeletal remains were found along a suburban New York beach highway, in an area where body parts of 10 other people had been strewn, was identified as a Philadelphia escort who went missing two decades ago, police said Thursday. Suffolk County police said the woman previously known as “Jane Doe No. 6” was identified through genetic genealogy technology as Valerie Mack, who also went by Melissa Taylor and was last seen in 2000 near Atlantic City, New Jersey. Determining the victim's identity has brought clarity to a long-running Long Island mystery that attracted national headlines, was featured on true-crime TV shows and was the subject of a recent Netflix film, Police Commissioner Geraldine Hart said.
Iran's Revolutionary Guards on Thursday warned the United States against its naval presence in the Gulf as they received 110 new combat vessels. The vessels included Ashura-class speedboats, Zolfaghar coastal patrol boats and Taregh submarines, state television reported. "We announce today that wherever the Americans are, we are right next to them, and they will feel our presence even more in the near future," the Guards' navy chief Rear Admiral Alireza Tangsiri said during a ceremony in southern Iran.
Hal Marx, the mayor of Petal, Mississippi, tweeted that George Floyd wasn't choking when a Minneapolis police officer stood on his neck because he could still speak. Seth Stoughton, co-author of "Evaluating Police Uses of Force," told Insider the position Floyd was placed in easily could have led to his death. A mayor in Mississippi is defending the officers involved in the arrest of George Floyd, who died while being subdued by police in Minneapolis.
Retired US Navy Adm. William McRaven, the commander who oversaw the military raid that killed al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, called on recent college graduates to "save the world." In a speech to the graduates of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he said he initially prepared a speech that included "cute little anecdotes." "But somehow that speech just didn't seem right in light of all that has happened in the past five months," McRaven said during an online commencement address.
In an extraordinary disclosure of U.S. intelligence materials, Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe released newly declassified records on Friday of intercepted calls between former national security adviser Michael Flynn and former Russian Ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Kislyak. The detailed call summaries from December 2016, in the weeks before President Donald Trump took office, offer the clearest public evidence to date that Flynn indeed discussed sanctions specifically during their calls, despite Flynn telling both the FBI and Vice President Mike Pence that they did not.
Five British mercenaries involved in an operation to fly assault helicopters for Libya's renegade General Khalifa Haftar were offered bounties of up to $150,000 each for their role in the daring plot which went awry. The men, comprised of former Royal Marines and RAF personnel, were among 20 foreign mercenaries who traveled to Libya last June in an operation to pilot assault helicopters and speed boats to intercept Turkish ships ferrying weapons to Haftar's opponents – the UN-backed government in Tripoli. The Telegraph can reveal that the UN investigation concluded that the operation was led by Steven Lodge, a former South African Air Force officer who also served in the British military.
A white woman who called the police after a black man asked her to put her dog on a leash in New York City's Central Park has been fired from her job with an investment firm. Franklin Templeton announced on Twitter on Tuesday it had sacked an employee, "effective immediately". "We do not tolerate racism of any kind at Franklin Templeton," the tweet said.
China and United States should respect each other's core interests and manage their differences, Premier Li Keqiang said on Thursday, adding that a decoupling of their economies is not good for the world. "I believe both countries should respect each other and develop a relationship on the basis of equality, respect each other's core interests and major concerns and embrace cooperation," Li said in his annual news conference after the close of the annual meeting of parliament.
A video circulating on social media appears to show a driver intentionally running over protesters at a rally for George Floyd in Denver. The incident, according to video footage recorded by Anabel Escobar, took place in the city's Golden Triangle district. Escobar told USA TODAY that the woman tried to cut traffic by entering a street that was closed.
Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell acknowledged Friday that the Fed faces a major challenge with the launch in the coming days of a program that will lend to companies other than banks for the first time since the Great Depression. The Fed's Main Street Lending is geared toward medium-sized companies that are too large for the government's small business lending program and too small to sell bonds or stock to the public. The individual loans, which could reach $600 billion, will technically be made by banks.
Burundi's first lady was in hospital in Nairobi on Friday, after being flown in on a late-night medical flight, according to sources at the airport and in the presidency. First lady Denise Bucumi was flown out of Burundi on a Pilatus plane by the AMREF air ambulance service, according to a source at the Melchior Airport in Bujumbura. A high-ranking government official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told AFP that Bucumi had gone to Nairobi "for treatment as she caught the coronavirus".
Angry Minneapolis residents protesting the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis Police Officer scrawled the phrase "A murderer lives here" on the road outside the officer's house Wednesday night. Mr Floyd was killed when Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck for eight minutes, despite Mr Floyd crying out that he couldn't breathe. Officers claimed Mr Floyd was resisting arrest, but security footage from a nearby restaurant that captured the arrest shows Mr Floyd cooperating with the police before his death.
A Missouri resident who attended a crowded pool party at the Lake of the Ozarks has tested positive for the coronavirus, local outlet KMBC reported. A Missouri citizen who attended a crowded pool party at the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri over Memorial Day weekend has tested positive for the coronavirus, local outlet KMBC reported.