The former head of the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division told Yahoo News she feels “absolute and total disgust” over President Trump's tweet Friday morning that seemed to imply protesters demonstrating against police brutality in Minneapolis should be shot. “Here we have a situation where we should have the Justice Department on the ground in Minneapolis, working with community leaders, activists, [and] local officials showing real leadership in this moment, the president should be showing leadership, and instead he's basically calling for the shooting of protesters,” said Vanita Gupta, who served as acting assistant attorney general and head of the Civil Rights Division in the Obama administration.
In Japan, seven people have died for every 1 million residents — a death rate about 45 times lower than America's. The number of daily new cases peaked at 743 on April 12, but has varied between 90 and 14 for the past week, according to the World Health Organization; the number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients has dropped from 10,000 about a month ago to 2,000 today. On Monday, the Japanese government lifted the state of emergency over greater Tokyo, effectively ending the country's version of a lockdown.
China's legislature on Thursday approved a controversial national security law that gives the mainland government new powers to police subversion and foreign intervention in Hong Kong. Critics of the new law say it's a violation of the “one country, two systems” agreement that has granted Hong Kong certain levels of autonomy — like its own police force and judicial system — since the island became part of China in 1997 after more than a century of British rule. Similar laws have been pursued by pro-Beijing members of Hong Kong's legislature several times in recent years, but none were passed.
Israeli police in annexed east Jerusalem on Saturday shot dead a disabled Palestinian they mistakenly thought was armed with a pistol, prompting furious condemnation from the Palestinians. The incident happened in the alleys of the walled Old City near Lions' Gate, an access point mainly used by Palestinians. "Police units on patrol there spotted a suspect with a suspicious object that looked like a pistol," an Israeli police statement said.
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.”
The governments of Denmark and Norway have cut Sweden out of a deal allowing each other's tourists to travel freely between the two countries — citing their Nordic neighbour's higher levels of coronavirus infection. The deal, announced at parallel press conferences in Oslo and Copenhagen on Friday afternoon, showed Sweden has failed in its diplomatic efforts to be included in the first stage of a Nordic travel bubble. Under the deal, people from Denmark will from June 15 be allowed to enter Norway without needing to quarantine, while tourists from Norway will be able to enter Denmark, so long as they have booked accommodation for at least six days.
Canadians are watching unrest and police violence in the United States in “shock and horror”, Justin Trudeau said on Friday – but the prime minister cautioned that his country also has entrenched problems with racism. The city of Minneapolis has been rocked by a third night of violent protests over the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, after a white police officer knelt on his neck as he lay on the ground following arrest. “Many Canadians of diverse backgrounds are watching, like all Canadians are, the news out of the United States with shock and with horror,” Trudeau told reporters at a daily briefing.
Kentucky's governor on Saturday called in the National Guard to “help keep the peace” in Louisville after a second night of protests sparked by the police shooting of a black woman led to widespread damage. Gov. Andy Beshear said he didn't want to silence protesters but decided to activate the Guard to quell the actions of “outside groups” that are “trying to create violence. His action came after the unrest Friday night spread through parts of downtown Louisville, resulting in windows being shattered and small fires being set.
China announced on Sunday two new confirmed cases of coronavirus and four new asymptomatic cases, including one person without symptoms of COVID-19 on a chartered flight from Germany. The two confirmed cases in Shandong province on Saturday compared with four cases the day before, data from the country's health authority showed. The National Health Commission (NHC) confirmed three new asymptomatic cases on Saturday.
Protests have erupted in more than two dozen cities across the US, as unrest continues to explode in the wake of the police killing of George Floyd, an African American man who died after being pinned to the ground by Minneapolis police officers and choked with a knee pressed against his throat. After the National Guard stepped in to try to seize control of the situation in Minneapolis, Donald Trump praised his own Secret Service agents for protecting him when activists picketed the White House, threatening them with his "most vicious dogs, and most ominous weapons” if they breached fencing. The president suggested his supporters would stage a counter-protest, calling for “MAGA NIGHT” at the White House, though he appeared to dismiss accusations that he was provoking violence and told reporters that “MAGA loves the black people”.
The coronavirus began quietly spreading in the U.S. as early as late January, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Friday — before President Donald Trump blocked air travel from China and a full month before community spread was first detected in the country. It was also the first media briefing from the CDC in more than two months. "As America begins to reopen, looking back at how COVID-19 made its way to the United States will contribute to a better understanding to prepare for the future," Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the CDC, said Friday during a call with reporters.
Transcripts of phone calls that played a pivotal role in the Russia investigation were declassified and released Friday, showing that Michael Flynn, as an adviser to then-President-elect Donald Trump, urged Russia's ambassador to be “even-keeled” in response to punitive Obama administration measures, and assured him “we can have a better conversation” about relations between the two countries after Trump became president. Democrats said the transcripts showed that Flynn had lied to the FBI when he denied details of the conversation, and that he was undercutting a sitting president while ingratiating himself with a country that had just interfered in the 2016 presidential election.
SpaceX is about to launch its highest-stakes mission since Elon Musk founded the company in 2002: Its first launch of people. NASA is working with the company to launch the mission, called Demo-2, which will fly the astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley inside a Crew Dragon spaceship. Liftoff is scheduled for 3:22 p.m.
India has announced plans to further ease a strict national lockdown even as the country reported a record daily rise in new coronavirus cases. From 8 June, restaurants, hotels, shopping centres and places of worship will be allowed to re-open in many areas in the first stage of a three-phase plan. The plan comes after India registered a new record single-day rise in confirmed infections, with nearly 8,000 cases reported on Saturday.
The death rate after elective surgery soars if a patient has Covid-19, a new study has revealed, as doctors say non urgent procedures should be postponed. The study, published in The Lancet, revealed that among patients with Covid-19 who underwent elective surgery the death rate was 18.9 per cent. Researchers conducted an observational study of 1,128 patients across 24 countries between January 1 and March 31 this year.
The ongoing riots in Minnesota hurt Senator Amy Klobuchar's prospects for Democratic nomination as vice president, House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D., S.C.) said on Friday. Klobuchar declined to bring charges against multiple Minneapolis police officers involved in shootings over the course of her seven-year tenure as attorney for Hennepin County. Minneapolis has seen four days of riots after resident George Floyd, an African-American man, died following his arrest at the hands of white officers.
Footage from Wave 3 local news in Louisville, Ky. appears to show police shooting pepper rounds directly at news crew.
Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa mosque compound reopened to Muslim worshippers and visitors on Sunday after a two-and-a-half month coronavirus closure, but authorities imposed some precautions as health officials warned of an uptick in local infections. The resumption of prayers at Islam's third-holiest site capped a sombre period for Jerusalem's Muslims, who this year marked the holy fasting month of Ramadan and the Eid al-Fitr holiday without their usual daily visits to Al-Aqsa and the adjoining Dome of the Rock. The Council of Islamic Waqf cited the slowed local spread of COVID-19 in lifting entry restrictions and reopening the compound's iconic shrines, which shut on March 15.
A former top Justice Department official told Yahoo News she is deeply worried that President Trump could “delegitimize a lawful election” this November “and not cede power.” Vanita Gupta ran the civil rights division at the Department of Justice from 2014 to 2017 and is now part of an informal, bipartisan group that has spent the past year preparing for Trump to potentially contest the results of the election. “He's already talking about how this will be a rigged election and saying if more and more people are voting using these so called mail-in ballots, that the election will be rigged,” Gupta told Yahoo News' “Skullduggery” podcast.
Police across America drew outrage amid protests and riots on Saturday, the fifth night in a row of unrest in the wake of George Floyd's death. In a number of different cities, police officers were seen on cellphone videos mowing down protesters with their cruisers, shoving people, pepper spraying protesters who were not resisting, and arresting or using force against journalists. One incident in New York City was filmed from various angles, when two police cruisers surrounded by protesters hurling water bottles and pylons suddenly lurched into the crowd, mowing down a metal barricade and sending bodies flying.
Israel's defense minister apologized on Sunday for the Israeli police's deadly shooting of an unarmed Palestinian man who was autistic. The shooting of Iyad Halak, 32, in Jerusalem's Old City on Saturday, drew broad condemnations and revived complaints alleging excessive force by Israeli security forces. Benny Gantz, who is also Israel's “alternate” prime minister under a power-sharing deal, made the remarks at the weekly meeting of the Israeli Cabinet.
One of the coldest regions on Earth has been experiencing a record-breaking heat wave in recent weeks amid growing fears about devastating wildfires and melting permafrost. Khatanga, a town in Siberia's Arctic Circle, registered highs of over 80 degrees Fahrenheit this week, according to Accuweather, far above the 59 degrees F historical average, as the whole of western Siberia basked in unseasonable warmth. While locals flocked to popular spots to sunbathe, experts sounded alarms about the possible implications for the region's wildfire season this summer, with some blazes already breaking out in recent months.
India said Saturday it would begin a major relaxation of the world's biggest coronavirus lockdown from early June, even as the country saw another record rise in confirmed infections. Prime Minister Narenda Modi conceded that much of the country had since "undergone tremendous suffering" in an open letter to the public on Saturday. The end of the lockdown will be staged and for now will not include some "containment zones" where high infection rates have been detected, according to the home ministry.
Since the beginning of this year, Florida has experienced an uptick in the number of pneumonia and influenza deaths, according to data from the Centers for Disease and Control. Experts and Trump administration officials responsible for keeping tabs on mortality rates across the country believe that many of those individuals had likely contracted and died from COVID-19. According to the data from the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics, since the beginning of the year there has been a total of 1,519 deaths in Florida where pneumonia and influenza were listed as the underlying cause.
Embraer Brazilian aircraft manufacturer Embraer's Praeterra design concept for its Praetor 600 business jet merges high-tech with sustainability. The aircraft interior features computer circuit board-like designs complemented by fiber-optic ceiling lighting and sidewalls lined with informational screens. Cabin materials are also sourced sustainably and developed in a way that allows them to have a second life once they're no longer required inside the aircraft.