Mike Pence, the US vice president, has accused Britain, France and Germany of trying to sabotage American sanctions against Iran and called on the European states to withdraw from the 2015 nuclear deal. In an unusually blunt attack on America's traditional European allies, Mr Pence told a summit in Warsaw that the three countries were leading “an effort to break American sanctions against Iran's murderous revolutionary regime”. He focused his criticism on a financial mechanism created by the three states and the EU to allow European firms to continue trading with Iran in a way that skirts punishing US sanctions.
Venezuela's chief state prosecutor said on Thursday an investigation had been opened into directors of state-run oil firm PDVSA, and its U.S. refiner Citgo, that the opposition-controlled congress appointed on Wednesday. Prosecutor Tarek Saab, in comments broadcast on state television, announced "the opening of an investigation against people designated illegally as directors of PDVSA and Citgo." Saab also said they would investigate foreign ambassadors named by opposition leader Juan Guaido, who on Jan 23 invoked constitutional provisions to assume an interim presidency.
The family of a pregnant British teenager who ran away to join the Islamic State group urged the government Friday to help bring her home. Shamima Begum's family issued a statement appealing for government assistance "as a matter of urgency." Begum, now 19, resurfaced this week at a refugee camp in Syria where she gave an interview to the Times of London saying she didn't regret her decision, but wanted to come home. "Given Shamima's four-year ordeal, we are concerned that her mental health has been affected by everything that she has seen and endured," the family said in a statement to Britain's ITV, describing her words as those of child who had been groomed by IS recruiters.
Lucy McBath used to walk the halls of Congress as the grieving mother of a slain teenager, urging lawmakers to take steps to reduce gun violence. Wednesday, the freshman member of Congress presided over the House floor as lawmakers observed a moment of silence for the 17 students and staff killed at a mass shooting at Florida's Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last year.
European and US stock markets leapt on Friday as positive signs emerged from US-China trade talks aimed at averting an escalation of a tariff war between the world's top two economies. US President Donald Trump said the negotiations in Beijing were going "extremely well" and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping announced the talks would continue in Washington next week. Trump also said there was a "possibility" he would extend a March 1 deadline for a sharp rise in tariffs on $200 billion Chinese goods to go into effect.
Honda is recalling 437,000 Acura MDX SUVs, Acura TLX V6 cars, and Honda Accord V6 cars because the gasoline flow from fuel pumps could slow to the point that a vehicle stalls, increasing the risk of a crash. Honda, the parent company for Acura, says it is not aware of any crashes or injuries because of this issue. According to the automaker, the presence of sodium particles in some gasolines can cause the fuel pump to slow down, which can ultimately lead to stalling.
Jerome Corsi, a political gadfly and proponent of conspiracy theories, filed a defamation lawsuit against Roger Stone, the Republican political operative charged with obstruction last month by special counsel Robert Mueller. The suit follows Corsi's request this week for the judge overseeing Stone's case to issue an order barring Stone from talking to the news media. Corsi says in his complaint that Stone's campaign of defamation began in the weeks leading up to his arrest on Jan. 25, when the self-proclaimed political dirty trickster appeared on several videos produced by InfoWars, a website known for promoting conspiracy theories.
Although the worst of the storm had moved well inland Friday, forecasters said some leftover showers and snow was still likely to fall across the state on Friday and Saturday. The higher elevations of the Sierra could see an additional 3 to 6 feet of snow over the next few days, on top of the 3 feet that fell Thursday, the National Weather Service said. So much snow has fallen in the area that cities are running out of places to put the snow, according to Kevin Cooper of Lake Tahoe TV In Southern California, officials said rain-drenched hillsides could still loosen and collapse, bringing down mud, boulders and debris.
The Mars rover Opportunity has died, NASA announced yesterday (Feb. 13). A layer of dust likely coated its solar panels, preventing it from juicing itself up after a 2018 sky-blackening dust storm on the Red Planet. But why couldn't NASA launch a rescue mission to get it working again?
India's prime minister yesterday accused Pakistan of involvement in the suicide bombing that killed 44 paramilitary police in Kashmir on Thursday, and warned of a dire response. Narendra Modi said the neighbouring country had made a "huge mistake" for which it will pay a "huge price". Speaking after a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security, Mr Modi declared that India's security forces had been given "full freedom" to respond to the attack.
Donald Trump's envoy to Venezuela was left flustered and visibly angry following an interrogation by Democratic congresswoman Ilhan Omar over his controversial political past. Elliot Abrams was appointed special envoy to Venezuela last month to help lead the US response to the political crisis in the South American country, which is seeing widespread hunger and violence following the collapse of its economy. On Wednesday, Mr Abrams, who served in the Reagan administration, testified in front of the House foreign affairs select committee, where he was subjected to a fierce line of questioning by Ms Omar.
The U.S. archbishop helping to organize next week's summit of the world's bishops at the Vatican on sexual abuse by clergy said Thursday he expects to make "significant progress" in responding to the scandal that's riven the church, and that lay Catholics will help to hold the hierarchy accountable. Chicago Cardinal Blase Cupich told The Associated Press in a phone interview that the Feb. 21-24 prevention summit, convened by Pope Francis, is necessary for all global Catholic church leaders to understand they must act and be accountable to the victims for the abuse cases stretching back decades. "I think there is understandable frustration on that level," said Cupich, hand-picked by Francis to help organize the summit.
Is 400 horsepower not enough for your people- and cargo-hauler in 2019? How does 500, 600, or 700 horsepower sound? From Car and Driver
Amazon abandoned plans for a new headquarters in New York City on Thursday, blaming opposition from community leaders angry at the huge subsidies being offered to one of the world's most successful companies. The online retail giant had promised the sprawling complex in the borough of Queens would create 25,000 jobs in exchange for nearly $3 billion in state and city incentives -- which had riled some New Yorkers. "While polls show that 70 percent of New Yorkers support our plans and investment, a number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence and will not work with us to build the type of relationships that are required to go forward with the project," Amazon said in a statement.
President Trump will sign the bipartisan funding bill pending in Congress and then declare a national emergency to build the border wall, the White House announced Thursday afternoon. That was the course of action recommended by Fox anchor and informal Trump adviser Sean Hannity, who on Monday denounced the funding bill as a “garbage compromise” but later said it was acceptable if coupled with an emergency declaration. This is the time.
Paul Manafort's longtime business associate, whom Special Counsel Robert Mueller says has ties to Russian intelligence services, interacted with former U.S. State Department officials, according to a revised court transcript. Konstantin Kilimnik, who worked with Manafort for a decade on political campaigns in Ukraine, had “communications with former high-level State Department officials,” Manafort attorney Kevin Downing said at a Feb. 4 court hearing. The significance of those communications wasn't clear.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio had lobbied hard for Amazon headquarters; Laura Ingle reports.
American Airlines says it will need to move more than 700 Phoenix-based flight attendants to other hub airports now that it has integrated the systems used to manage flight-attendant scheduling after the airline's merger with US Airways. The airlines merged in 2013, but the flight-attendant management systems did not. The two systems could not intermingle, and flight attendants could only be assigned to planes associated with their respective legacy airlines.
The U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) will capture Islamic State's last tiny enclave in eastern Syria "in a very short time", the battle commander said on Saturday. Jiya Furat said the SDF had cornered the remaining Islamic State militants in one tiny neighborhood of Baghouz village, under its fire from all sides. With the help of U.S. air strikes and special forces, the SDF, led by the Kurdish YPG militia, has marched into the pocket east of the Euphrates river near the Iraqi border.
One year after gunfire began in the freshman building of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, the movement those bullets sparked has swept through the US and opened a new chapter on guns in America. Guns have come to dominate political debate this past year in way unseen previously in the US, with massive protests from March for Our Lives attracting headlines and major news coverage — and virtually all Democrat presidential candidates supporting stricter gun control. Meanwhile, dozens of states have moved to pass new gun control laws in an historic effort, as communities across America continue to be scarred by gun violence.
Thirteen gay couples filed Japan's first lawsuit challenging the country's rejection of same-sex marriage on Valentine's Day, arguing the denial violates their constitutional right to equality. Six couples holding banners saying "Marriage For All Japan" walked into Tokyo District Court to file their cases against the government, with similar cases filed by three couples in Osaka, one couple in Nagoya and three couples in Sapporo. Plaintiff Kenji Aiba, standing next to his partner Ken Kozumi, told reporters he would "fight this war together with sexual minorities all around Japan."
Californians are experiencing some unusually nasty winter weather this week as an "atmospheric river" passes through most of the state, bringing howling winds and heavy rain. The storm arrived on Tuesday night (Feb. 12) in Northern California and continued into Wednesday (Feb. 13), leading the National Weather Service (NWS) to issue warnings of flash flooding, mudslides and high winds in the region. Atmospheric rivers are huge "rivers in the sky" that cause moisture from the tropics to flow north, from California to Canada.
Defiant in the wake of a stinging budget defeat, President Donald Trump on Friday declared a national emergency at the U.S.-Mexico border, moving to secure more money for his long-promised wall by exercising a broad interpretation of his presidential powers that is certain to draw stiff legal challenges. In his emergency proclamation, Trump painted a dark picture of the border as "a major entry point for criminals, gang members, and illicit narcotics" and one that threatens "core national security interests." Overall, though, illegal border crossings are down from a high of 1.6 million in 2000. It triggered outrage from Democrats, unease among some Republicans and flew in the face of years of GOP complaints that President Barack Obama had over-reached in his use of executive authority.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has released more than a dozen drawings made by a prolific serial killer in hopes the public may be able to identify some of his victims. Samuel Little, 78, was arrested at a Kentucky homeless shelter in September 2012 and extradited to California, where he was wanted on a narcotics charge. In 2014, Little was convicted on all three counts and was sentenced to three consecutive life sentences without the possibility of parole.