AL-OMAR OIL FIELD BASE, Syria (AP) — The offensive on the last enclave held by the Islamic State group in eastern Syria has been blunted by the discovery of hundreds of civilians still living there, a commander with the Kurdish-led force fighting the extremists said Friday. The U.S.-backed force known as the Syrian Democratic Forces, or SDF, launched the offensive to liberate the IS-held village of Baghouz a week ago, after more than 20,000 civilians, many of them foreign wives of IS militants, were evacuated through a corridor from the area in the eastern province of Deir el-Zour. In Washington, President Donald Trump said the White House will make an announcement about Syria and the fight against IS by Saturday.
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.
The Day of the Shining Star dawned bitterly cold in Pyongyang. Kim, the son of the isolated North's founder Kim Il Sung and the father and predecessor of current leader Kim Jong Un, was born on February 16. According to Pyongyang's orthodoxy, he came into the world in 1942, in a snow-covered hut at a secret camp on the slopes of Mount Paektu, the spiritual birthplace of the Korean people, where his father was fighting occupying Japanese forces.
The justices, in a brief order, granted the administration's request to hear its appeal of Manhattan-based U.S. District Judge Jesse Furman's Jan. 15 ruling even before a lower appeals court has considered the matter. Furman's ruling came in lawsuits brought by 18 U.S. states, 15 cities and various civil rights groups challenging the Republican administration's decision to include the question. Furman ruled that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross had concealed the true motives for his "arbitrary and capricious" decision to add the citizenship question in violation of federal law.
Amazon's decision to cancel plans for a new headquarters in New York City reignited hope among cities that lost out on the massive economic development project. Amazon said it won't reopen the search process, choosing instead to continue with plans to add jobs at its other new headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, a major new operation in Nashville, Tennessee, and its 17 current offices and tech hubs. That probably won't stop mayors, governors, economic development officials and real estate developers from making a new pitch for the 25,000 jobs that had been promised to the borough of Queens.
Iran is planning a “new Holocaust” to destroy Israel, US vice president Mike Pence claimed at a summit on peace and security in the Middle East. “The Iranian regime openly advocates another Holocaust and seeks the means to achieve it,” he told delegates at the conference, which was co-hosted by the US and Poland in Warsaw. Mr Pence used his speech to encourage sceptical allies into joining an anti-Iran alliance, which includes Israel and Arabian Peninsula monarchies.
Students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High and other schools across the U.S. bowed their heads in a moment of silence and took part in volunteer projects Thursday to mark the anniversary of the shooting rampage that claimed 17 lives. Fewer than 300 of the 3,200 students at the high school showed up for what was only a half-day, with classes cut short so that the teenagers would not be there around 2:20 p.m., the traumatic moment last year when gunfire erupted. Senior Spencer Bloom skipped school to spend the day with students from the history class he was in during the shooting.
Happy Bae Day! Whether you're single or partnered up, Valentine's Day can have you craving a romantic getaway or just a getaway, period, so that you can make a quick escape from all the lovey-dovey energy in the air (that's us! While most couples will agree that 'two is better than one' when it comes to matters of the heart on Valentine's Day, those who aren't in a relationship would probably agree to disagree — except for this year, thanks Alaska Airlines.
To clean up the growing mess, scientists at the University of Surrey have previously tested a net to catch chunks of debris. Now, they've successfully tested out a harpoon. The video below, released Friday by the university's space center, shows a test of the experimental RemoveDEBRIS satellite as it unleashes a harpoon at a piece of solar panel, held out on a 1.5-meter boom.
Some parents are outraged a California school for kids with special needs is holding a "going away party" after one of its own students died after being restrained by staff.
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.
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.
A Pakistan-based militant group, Jaish-e-Mohammad, has taken responsibility for the deadliest attack on security forces in Indian Kashmir in 30 years of insurgency, ratcheting up tension between the nuclear-armed South Asian neighbors. India says the group and its leader, Masood Azhar, enjoy free rein in Pakistan, and demands that Pakistan acts to stop militant groups operating from its soil. Pakistan condemned the Thursday bomb attack that killed 44 paramilitary policemen but denied any complicity.
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
British Prime Minister Theresa May is preparing to compromise with the European Union over the future of Ireland's border, with just two weeks left to save her Brexit deal. Brexit Secretary Stephen Barclay privately told the EU's chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, on Monday the U.K. doesn't need to reopen the divorce agreement and would accept other ways to address British concerns, a person familiar with the talks said. On Thursday, members of the pro-Brexit European Research Group of Conservatives inflicted another embarrassing parliamentary defeat on the premier after they refused to endorse her approach to resolving the deadlock.
The attorney for a white police officer charged with fatally shooting an armed black man in Tennessee is calling for legal discovery documents to be sealed from members of the public. Meanwhile, a police union has launched a digital ad campaign seeking to defend the Nashville officer, Andrew Delke, and bolster his image in public. The officer shot 25-year-old Daniel Hambrick from behind during a foot chase last July and is charged with first-degree murder.
“U.S. airlines value a culture of diversity and inclusion, both in the workplace and for our passengers, and we work hard each day to accommodate the needs of all travelers, while delivering a safe, secure and enjoyable flight experience,” A4A said in a statement to USA TODAY. The nation's five biggest -- American, Delta, United, Southwest and Alaska airlines -- have all told USA TODAY that they plan to implement the trade groups' suggestion. “As part of Delta's ongoing efforts to accommodate the needs of diverse customers throughout our business, we are planning to offer a non-binary gender option during the booking process,” the carrier said in a statement.
Authorities have warned of the threat of mudslides after a damaging storm struck California, trapping people in floodwaters, triggering a debris flow which destroyed homes and forcing residents to flee communities scorched by wildfires last year. The powerful system swept in from the Pacific Ocean and unleashed rain, snow and wind across the US west coast into Wyoming and Colorado after walloping northern California and southern Oregon. The National Weather Service reported staggering rainfall amounts across California, including more than 24cm over 48 hours at one location in the San Bernardino Mountains east of Los Angeles.
Orca could help to fill a yawning gap in the American submarine fleet. The U.S. Navy has ordered from Boeing four huge robotic submarines, potentially signally an effort to deploy a large number of crewless undersea boats alongside traditional, manned submarines. The Navy's $43-million purchase of four Orca Extra Large Unmanned Undersea Vehicles, or XLUUVs, comes as the fleet struggles to build enough new manned submarines to replace older vessels that are decommissioning as their nuclear cores wear out.
Denver teachers ended a three-day walkout and returned to their classrooms Thursday, greeted by hugs and high-fives, after their union reached a tentative deal raising their pay, the latest win in a national movement by educators to raise their wages and advocate for changes in schools. In Colorado, most education funding is provided by the state and a report by the Education Law Center and the Rutgers Graduate School of Education last year ranked the state last in the nation in competitive wages for teachers.
A US investigation into privacy violations by Facebook could result in a record fine running to billions of dollars, media reports said Friday. The Federal Trade Commission is negotiating the terms of the penalty stemming from its investigation into whether Facebook violated a 2011 settlement with the regulator on protecting user data, the Washington Post and New York Times said, citing unnamed sources. The FTC reopened its investigation following revelations last year that personal data from tens of millions of Facebook users was hijacked by the political consultancy Cambridge Analytica as it worked on Donald Trump's presidential campaign.
Thailand and the US hosted the opening ceremony for the annual Cobra Gold military exercise, the biggest activity of its type in the Asia-Pacific region with participants learning jungle survival skills. Feb.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., declares her candidacy for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination in Minneapolis on Sunday. Reminder: There are 362 days until the Iowa caucuses, and 633 days until the 2020 presidential election. Former Massachusetts Gov. William Weld, who ran for vice president on the Libertarian Party ticket in 2016, has become the first Republican to announce a challenge to President Trump.
India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi warned Pakistan on Friday to expect a strong response to a suicide attack that killed 44 paramilitary policemen in Kashmir, ratcheting up tension between the nuclear-armed neighbors. The car bomb attack on a security convoy on Thursday was the worst in decades of insurgency in the disputed region. India said it had "incontrovertible evidence" of Pakistani involvement, a statement quickly rejected by Islamabad.
Just a few months ago, the deal seemed like an unalloyed coup for the world's richest man and New York's top political power players. Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio—two Democrats who rarely agree on anything—brokered a truce to put together a $3 billion tax break for Amazon.com Inc. that helped secure one half of a second headquarters.