Juan Ordoñez, 40, of North Arlington, N.J., is among the more than 500,000 Americans who have lost their lives to COVID-19 since the onset of the pandemic.This is his story »
Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) didn't exactly pull punches in an interview with Politico, going after congressional Republicans, Democrats, former President Donald Trump, and the Biden administration all in one go. Sasse, who is facing imminent censure from the Nebraska GOP for voting to convict Trump in his second impeachment trial, stands by that vote and says he's not bothered by the action his home state's Republican Party is taking against him, though he did say he thinks it's not "healthy." At one point, when asked about Trump loyalist Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), Sasse simply said "that guy is not an adult," and described Congress, generally, as "a bunch of yokels screaming."
As many as 10 death row inmates in Oklahoma, more than one-fifth of the state's prisoners condemned to die, could escape execution because of a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling concerning criminal jurisdiction in Indian Country. The inmates have challenged their convictions in state court following the high court's ruling last year, dubbed the McGirt decision, that determined a large swath of eastern Oklahoma remains an American Indian reservation. The decision means that Oklahoma prosecutors lack the authority to pursue criminal charges in cases in which the defendants, or the victims, are tribal citizens.
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has extended partial coronavirus curbs in the capital until the end of March, as the country awaits the arrival of vaccines, the presidential spokesman said on Saturday. With southeast Asia's second-highest tally of infections and deaths, the Philippines has suffered lengthy, strict lockdowns in Manila and provinces, hitting an economy that was among Asia's fastest growing before the pandemic. Curbs will stay for another month in Manila, which accounts for 40% of national economic output, the spokesman, Harry Roque, said in a statement.
President Joe Biden's administration is in “no rush” to lift U.S. sanctions on Venezuela but would consider easing them if President Nicolas Maduro takes confidence-building steps showing he is ready to negotiate seriously with the opposition, a White House official told Reuters. Signaling that the new U.S. president may be unlikely to loosen the screws on Venezuela anytime soon, the official emphasized that existing sanctions have enough special provisions to allow for humanitarian aid shipments to help Venezuelans cope with economic hardships and the COVID-19 pandemic. This suggests that for now Biden is prepared to stick with the specific sanctions, including crippling oil-sector penalties, imposed by former President Donald Trump on the OPEC nation, despite the failure to force Maduro from power.
A man was killed by a rooster with a blade tied to its leg during an illegal cockfight in southern India, police said, bringing focus on a practice that continues in some Indian states despite a decades-old ban. The rooster, with a 3-inch knife tied to its leg, fluttered in panic and slashed its owner, 45-year-old Thangulla Satish, in his groin last week, police inspector B. Jeevan said Sunday. Jeevan said police filed a case and were looking for over a dozen people involved in organizing the cockfight.
Republican congressman Matt Gaetz attacked the way Ted Cruz's short-lived trip to Cancun, Mexico – amid a record-breaking winter storm – was reported by the media last week. The Florida congressman, who was speaking at the four-day Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Orlando on Friday, accused the media of being 'biased' towards Mr Cruz, who was forced to return to Texas amid calls to resign last Thursday. It followed reports Mr Cruz flew to Cancun with his family on Wednesday evening as hundreds of thousands of Texans remained without water or electricity for a fourth day running.
Israel on Sunday announced plans to vaccinate tens of thousands of Palestinians who work inside Israel and its West Bank settlements, at a time of vast disparities in access to vaccines between the Israeli and Palestinian populations. Israel has launched one of the world's most successful vaccination programs, inoculating over half of its population in just two months. But it has come under international criticism for not sharing its vaccine stockpile with the Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip, even as it plans to share surplus vaccines with far-flung allies in Africa, Europe and Latin America.
A Russian military helicopter made an emergency landing for technical reasons in northeast Syria on Sunday, Russia's Defense Ministry said. Syria's state media said there were casualties among the crew. Russia joined Syria's war in September 2015 and has since helped tip the balance of power in favor of President Bashar Assad's forces.
Minneapolis city council approved funding to hire social media influencers for Derek Chauvin's trial, WCCO-TV reported. The influencers will be paid to provide the local community with information about the trial. Chauvin was charged in Floyd's death, and his trial is set to begin on March 8.
Now, the hotel is open again as a symbol of an impending economic recovery and tourism boom in a country that has suffered the worst economic crisis in modern Latin American history. But the so-called Socialist president's touting of the luxurious, $300 per night hotel in a country where most live in poverty represents something else to others - an abandonment of a political project promising a socialist utopia in favor of an 'anything goes', capitalist kleptocracy. Since the dark days of mid-2019, when inflation hit 10 million per cent and Venezuela's weaved baskets out of useless Bolivar notes, the economy has shown signs of recovery.
The Philippines received its initial batch of COVID-19 vaccine doses on Sunday in a shipment donated by China, a day before its inoculation drive is due to begin, but President Rodrigo Duterte will not be among the first to be vaccinated. Duterte attended a ceremony to mark the arrival of the initial 600,000 doses of Sinovac Biotech's CoronaVac, which were delivered by a Chinese military aircraft ahead of a further 25 million CoronaVac doses due to be delivered in batches this year. But Duterte, who turns 77 next month, told a news briefing that, though he wants to be vaccinated, his doctor wants a different Chinese brand of vaccine for him.
Saudi Arabia said Saturday it intercepted a missile attack over its capital and bomb-laden drones targeting a southern province, the latest in a series of airborne assaults it has blamed on Yemen's rebel Houthis. The Saudi-led military coalition fighting in Yemen's yearslong war announced the Iran-allied Houthis had launched a ballistic missile toward Riyadh and three booby-trapped drones toward the province of Jizan, with a fourth toward another southwestern city and other drones being monitored. No casualties or damage were initially reported.
High in the Indian Himalayas, a remote lake nestled in a snowy valley is strewn with hundreds of human skeletons. Roopkund Lake is located 5,029 metres (16,500ft) above sea level at the bottom of a steep slope on Trisul, one of India's highest mountains, in the state of Uttarakhand. The remains are strewn around and beneath the ice at the "lake of skeletons", discovered by a patrolling British forest ranger in 1942.
At least 15 Africans drowned when their boat capsized Sunday off Libya, a U.N. spokeswoman said, the second shipwreck involving migrants seeking a better life in Europe in just over a week. Safa Msehli, a spokesman for the International Organization for Migration, said the dead were on a rubber boat carrying at least 110 migrants, who embarked from the Libyan coastal town of Zawiya on Friday. The boat started to sink early Sunday and the Libyan coast guard managed to rescue at least 95 migrants, including six women and two children, she said.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top U.S. infectious disease official, said on Sunday he would take the newly approved Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, as he encouraged Americans to accept any of the three approved shots. The U.S. government authorized Johnson & Johnson's single-dose COVID-19 vaccine on Saturday, making it the third to be available in the country following ones from Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna. Both of those vaccines require two doses and need to be shipped frozen.
An Israeli-owned cargo ship that suffered a mysterious explosion in the Gulf of Oman came to Dubai's port for repairs Sunday, days after the blast that revived security concerns in Mideast waterways amid heightened tensions with Iran. Associated Press journalists saw the hulking Israeli-owned MV Helios Ray sitting at dry dock facilities at Dubai's Port Rashid. Although the crew was unharmed in the blast, the vessel sustained two holes on its port side and two on its starboard side just above the waterline, according to American defense officials.
Myanmar is being described as a battlefield. In the bloodiest day of weeks of demonstrations against a military coup the police brutally cracked down on protesters across the country. Witnesses say they're using all means possible - stun grenades, tear gas and bullets.
Proud Boys leader Enrique Tarrio has condemned the rioters who besieged the US Capitol, but will not “cry” about lawmakers who came under attack on the day. Mr Tarrio, who was arrested two days before some members of the Proud Boys – and other Trump supporters – rioted at the US Capitol, told CNN that lawmakers did not need sympathy after the attack. The remarks come despite concerns among members of Congress that they were targets of those who broke into the complex on 6 January, citing baseless claims the 2020 election was “stolen”.
Norway's capital Oslo will tighten lockdown measures to combat a sharp rise in coronavirus infections linked to a more contagious variant, the city's governing mayor said on Sunday. The variant, which was first identified in Britain, started spreading in Oslo in January and now accounts for 50-70% of infections, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (FHI) said on Saturday. On Friday, Oslo registered a daily record of 245 new coronavirus infections.
Militant attacks are on the rise in Pakistan amid a growing religiosity that has brought greater intolerance, prompting one expert to voice concern the country could be overwhelmed by religious extremism. Pakistani authorities are embracing strengthening religious belief among the population to bring the country closer together. But it's doing just the opposite, creating intolerance and opening up space for a creeping resurgence in militancy, said Mohammad Amir Rana, executive director of the independent Pakistan Institute for Peace Studies.
An Ohio woman ordered held in jail pending trial on charges in the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol told a federal judge late Friday that she has disbanded her armed group in Ohio and plans to cancel her membership in the Oath Keepers. Jessica Watkins, 38, of Champaign County, told U.S. District Judge Amit P. Mehta in the District of Columbus that she was appalled and humiliated by the events of Jan. 6. "As soon as I'm out, whether acquittal or release, I'm canceling my Oath Keepers membership," she said.
Eight years after carving the heart out of a landmark voting rights law, the Supreme Court is looking at putting new limits on efforts to combat racial discrimination in voting. The justices are taking up a case about Arizona restrictions on ballot collection and another policy that penalizes voters who cast ballots in the wrong precinct. The high court's consideration comes as Republican officials in the state and around the country have proposed more than 150 measures, following last year's elections, to restrict voting access that civil rights groups say would disproportionately affect Black and Hispanic voters.
— A $1.9 trillion package aimed at helping the country rebuild from the coronavirus pandemic seems headed toward House passage. — Tennessee has asked federal law enforcement to investigate the alleged theft of coronavirus vaccine doses in the state's most populous county. The details come after the state previously announced that roughly 2,400 COVID-19 vaccine doses had been wasted in Shelby County over the past month due to miscommunication and insufficient record-keeping inside the local health department.
CNN's Jim Acosta was heckled by Trump supporters and right-wing reporters during CPAC on Friday. Videos of the event show Acosta being taunted on multiple occasions. CNN correspondent Jim Acosta was filmed being heckled by Trump supporters and right-wing reporters while he was trying to cover the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Orlando, Florida on Friday.
In their own comments or by inviting skeptics to testify at legislative hearings, some GOP state lawmakers are using their platform to promote false information about the virus, the steps needed to limit its spread and the vaccines that will pull the nation out of the pandemic. In some cases, the misstatements have faced swift backlash, even getting censored online. That's raised tough questions about how aggressively to combat potentially dangerous misinformation from elected officials or during legislative hearings while protecting free speech and people's access to government.
“How about we skip ‘he won’t win’ cycle and not do 2016 all over again. Trump can absolutely win another presidential election.”
“With independents deserting him, there is simply no path for Trump to get back into the White House — except as a tourist.”
“They might as well cancel the 2024 primaries...because there is no way he can lose.”
“The next Republican presidential primary will be heavily shaped by Trump — whether or not he decides to run again.”
“Donald Trump will not be running for president again. He will, however, continue to tease the possibility of a 2024 run.”