The FBI recently sought to question the CIA whistleblower who filed a complaint over President Trump's July 25 Ukraine call — a move that came after a vigorous internal debate within the bureau over how to respond to some of the issues raised by the complaint's allegations and whether they needed to be more thoroughly investigated, according to sources familiar with the matter. An FBI agent in the Washington field office in October reached out to one of the lawyers representing the whistleblower and asked to question the CIA analyst who triggered the congressional inquiry into the president's conduct, one of the sources said. It is unclear what the intended scope of the interview would be or whether the whistleblower's lawyers will agree to it.
Alumni of the Obama administration reacted with disbelief and outrage to a claim from White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham that incoming Trump administration officials found insulting notes left behind for them in their offices. “We came into the White House, I'll tell you something,” said Grisham during a local radio interview Tuesday morning, as reported by CNN's Abby Phillip. In the nearly three years since the presidential transition, no Trump administration officials have mentioned the notes or produced any photos that would support Grisham's charge.
Two gay Saudi journalists who sought asylum in Australia after being threatened at home over their relationship have been held for weeks at an immigration detention centre, their lawyer said Wednesday. The couple arrived in Australia in mid-October on tourist visas but was singled out by airport customs officials -- then taken into detention -- when they admitted plans to seek asylum, lawyer Alison Battisson told AFP. "Australia being very well known for being... a safe place for LGBTI people, they were incredibly surprised and distressed," she said.
Andrew Yang didn't get much speaking time at Wednesday night's Democratic presidential debate in Atlanta, but he made memorable use of the time he got. Near the end of the debate, Yang was asked what he would say, if elected, in his first call with Russian President Vladimir Putin. "Well, first I'd say I'm sorry I beat your guy," he said.
The United States announced on Wednesday it will provide Vietnam with another coast guard cutter for its growing fleet of ships, boosting Hanoi's ability to patrol the South China Sea amid tensions with China. U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper disclosed the decision during an address in Vietnam, which has emerged as the most vocal opponent in Asia of China's territorial claims in the South China Sea. In his speech, Esper took aim at China, which he accused of "bullying" neighbours, like Vietnam.
A white 16-year-old girl is accused of plotting to attack a mostly black church in a north Georgia city, where police say she planned to kill worshippers because of their race. Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church has a predominantly black congregation, Gainesville Police Chief Jay Parrish said in a statement Tuesday. “Our investigation indicated the church was targeted by the juvenile based on the racial demographic of the church members,” he said.
Designed by world-renowned architects such as Zaha Hadid and Santiago Calatrava, these bridges are travel destinations in their own right Originally Appeared on Architectural Digest
A 16-year-old boy allegedly tried to smuggle methamphetamine across the U.S.-Mexico border with a remote-controlled car. Border Patrol agents arrested the teen Sunday, according to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection news release Tuesday. This attempt comes two years after drug traffickers flew a remote-controlled drone to drop a 13-pound package of methamphetamine across the border, also resulting in an arrest.
The Indian Army plans to buy just 1,800 state-of-the-art sniper rifles and 2.7 million rounds of ammunition -- less than a third of its total requirement -- driven by budgetary constraints and the need to speed up deliveries, people with knowledge of the matter said. The military pruned its original requirement of 5,720 sniper rifles and 10 million rounds of ammunition, which would have cost $140 million, to prioritize spending and advance the purchase of more modern equipment, they said, asking not to be identified as the information isn't public. Indian Army spokesman Aman Anand said he had no comment to offer on the change in procurement plans.
The impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump has officially moved into its public phase, and witnesses in the inquiry are beginning to testify in an open session before Congress. This week's impeachment hearings will kick off on Tuesday with four officials, including Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, top Ukraine expert on National Security Council, and Jennifer Williams, foreign service aide detailed to Vice President Mike Pence, scheduled to testify. Here's the full schedule of which witnesses are publicly testifying in the coming days.
The eight submarines, including six nuclear-powered ships, sailed from their bases in northern Russia into the cold waters of the Barents and Norwegian Seas. At the same time, an additional two boats -- the nuclear-powered Sierra-class attack submarines Pskov and Nizhny Novgorod -- sailed into roughly the same waters for tests and training. The 10 vessels represent around 20 percent of the Russian submarine force.
As wildfires have scorched Australia and left thousands of koalas feared dead, Bear is looking for survivors. An "obsessive" rescue dog with "tireless energy," Bear the dog has been aiding wildlife rescuers as they search for koalas threatened by the bushfires in New South Wales and Queensland, a wildlife rescuer group says. Dubbed the "koala detection dog" by International Fund for Animal Welfare, Bear has been searching for koalas and other small animals that may have survived the flames.
Greece announced a plan Wednesday to massively overhaul its overcrowded migrant camps on islands facing Turkey and make borders "air-tight" against a feared new surge of asylum-seekers. "Decongesting the islands is a priority at this stage," the government's special coordinator for migration Alkiviadis Stefanis, a former army general and chief of staff, told a news conference. "These actions are designed to show our determination in dealing with the migrant-refugee crisis," said Stefanis, who is also deputy defence minister.
Russian investigators said on Thursday they had opened two criminal cases into the management of a company involved in building the Vostochny Cosmodrome, a space center in the country's Far East. The announcement came less than two weeks after President Vladimir Putin complained to government officials about corruption at the facility and called for further investigations. Construction of the Vostochny Cosmodrome began in January 2011, part of a plan for Russia to reduce its dependency on the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, which Russia leases from the former Soviet Republic for space operations.
The Latest on Pope Francis's visit to Thailand and Japan (all times local): 7 p.m. Pope Francis has denounced the “humiliation” endured by women and children forced into prostitution and migrants enslaved as fishermen and beggars. Francis told an estimated 60,000 people at his first public Mass in Thailand on Thursday that as missionaries they are all part of the same family and cannot ignore those members considered to be “unclean.
Jussie Smollett filed a countersuit on Tuesday in response to a lawsuit brought by the city of Chicago, alleging the city engaged in “malicious prosecution” that caused the actor “humiliation, mental anguish and extreme emotional distress,” the Chicago Sun Times reported Monday. Smollett was alleged to have staged a racist, homophobic crime against himself in January with the help of two friends, who themselves are brothers of Nigerian origin. A grand jury indicted Smollett in March, but Cook County State Attorney Kim Foxx dropped the charges against the actor, citing the technically victimless nature of the hoax and his record of service to the community.
After nearly 12 hours of testimony, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff concluded Day 3 of public impeachment inquiry hearings with impassioned remarks.
Former U.S. Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson said calls to oust Chinese companies from American stock indexes was contrary to the foundations of capitalism, as he warned against the dangers of decoupling the world's two largest economies. Paulson, who's now chairman of the Paulson Institute, told Bloomberg's New Economy Forum in Beijing that moves to reduce ties between the U.S. and China would weaken American leadership and New York's leading role in finance. “When the next crisis comes -- and a crisis will come, because financial crises are inevitable -- we will regret it if we lack mechanisms for the world's first and second-largest economies to coordinate,” Paulson told the forum on Thursday, according to a prepared version of his remarks.
Ambassador Gordon Sondland's explosive testimony Wednesday that “everyone was in the loop” on President Trump's efforts to secure an investigation of a political rival prompted rank-and-file Democrats to discuss whether it was time to expand their probe. Sondland testified in minute detail — down to the names of staffers and code words used internally to identify officials like Secretary of State Mike Pompeo — how Vice President Mike Pence, White House budget director Mick Mulvaney, former national security advisor John Bolton and others knew the intimate details of Trump's plans. “Was there a quid pro quo?” Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, testified.
Washington D.C.) The Navy has laid the keel for its first new, Flight III DDG 51 surface warfare destroyer armed with improved weapons, advanced sensors and new radar 35-times more sensitive than most current systems, changing attack and defensive options for the surface fleet. Navy Flight III Destroyers have a host of defining new technologies not included in current ships such as more on-board power to accommodate laser weapons, new engines, improved electronics, fast-upgradeable software and a much more powerful radar. The Flight III Destroyers will be able to see and destroy a much wider range of enemy targets at farther distances.
The US aircraft carrier strike group Abraham Lincoln sailed through the key Strait of Hormuz on Tuesday to show Washington's "commitment" to freedom of navigation, the Pentagon said, amid tensions with Tehran. The group's move through the strategic waterway separating Iran and the United Arab Emirates towards the Gulf was scheduled, and unfolded without incident, the US Navy said in a statement. It was the first time a US aircraft carrier group went through the strait since Iran downed a US drone in June in the same area.
Fewer than 100 protesters remained holed up in a Hong Kong university on Thursday as riot police encircled the campus, with some activists still desperately searching for ways to escape while others hid. Some protesters told Reuters they where holding out not for a showdown with police, but because they were innocent and looking for an escape route. Many protesters have abandoned their belongings, including gas masks and umbrellas.
Six conservationists working to save the critically endangered Asiatic cheetah have been sentenced to prison on internationally criticized espionage charges in Iran, activists said Thursday, even as protests and unrest continue in parts of the country amid a government-imposed internet shutdown. The case against members of the nonprofit Persian Wildlife Heritage Foundation show how spying charges and convictions can be levied against dual nationals and those with Western ties in Iran in closed-door trials before its Revolutionary Court. News of the cases comes after demonstrations against government-set gasoline prices rising turned violent in Iran, killing at least 106 people, according to Amnesty International.
A sketch of the young girl whose remains were found at a softball field in Delaware in September was released this week by authorities to help solve the mystery of her death. Smyrna Police Department investigators said they hope the facial reconstruction sketches prompt tipsters to come forward with either the girl's identity or possible suspect information. The department is working with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and the Delaware Division of Forensic Science on the case.