President Donald Trump launched his first formal attack on the House's effort to remove him from office on Saturday, calling the Democrats' impeachment case against him fatally flawed and “constitutionally invalid” while blasting the effort as a political hit job by his adversaries. “This is a brazen and unlawful attempt to overturn the results of the 2016 election and interfere with the 2020 election — now just months away,” Trump's lawyers argued in a six-page response filed with the Senate just days before the president's trial begins in earnest. The allegations raised by Trump's attorneys — a soft swing at the substance of the impeachment articles and a more direct rebuke of the process Democrats used to get there — mirror the House's charges against him.
The Iranian official leading the investigation into the Ukrainian jetliner that was accidentally shot down by the Revolutionary Guard appeared to backtrack Sunday on plans to send the flight recorders abroad for analysis, a day after saying they would be sent to Kyiv. Hassan Rezaeifar was quoted by the state-run IRNA news agency as saying “the flight recorders from the Ukrainian Boeing are in Iranian hands and we have no plans to send them out. He said Iran is working to recover the data and cabin recordings, and that it may send the flight recorders — commonly known as black boxes — to Ukraine or France.
The eruption, which began on Jan. 12, 2020, has forced more than 125,000 people to evacuate the Philippine province of Batangas, where the volcano is located. During the height of the eruption, a large plume of searing hot volcanic ash blossomed approximately 50,000 feet, about 9.5 miles, into the atmosphere, with some materials making it into the stratosphere, according to observations from NASA. The eruption was accompanied by incredible displays of volcanic lightning, which made for breathtaking video footage, fountains of scalding lava and more than 400 earthquakes.
Angola's former president Jose Eduardo dos Santos has denied links to alleged public company embezzlement during his rule, in his first response to corruption investigators last month freezing his daughter's assets. Isabel dos Santos, the ex-president's billionaire first-born, has been the target of an anti-corruption campaign led by her father's successor President Joao Lourenco. The investigation is looking at alleged irregularities involving diamond marketing firm Sodiam and Sonangol -- Angola's national oil company, which was handed over to Isabel dos Santos by her father in 2016.
Vanessa Smallwood, who was 46 at the time of her disappearance, was identified in a statement from New Jersey State Police. Smallwood was a Maple Shade resident, according to the statement. Smallwood was last seen at a dry cleaner's store in Cherry Hill on Jan. 27, 2014, according to the FBI's missing-persons notice.
Swedish activist Greta Thunberg marched with 10,000 protesters in the Swiss city of Lausanne on Friday and said "you have not seen anything yet" before some head to Davos next week to challenge the global financial elite to fight climate change. "So, we are now in a new year and we have entered a new decade and so far, during this decade, we have seen no sign whatsoever that real climate action is coming and that has to change,” Thunberg said in a speech in Lausanne. Hundreds will take trains over the weekend and then march to Klosters near Davos, the annual gathering of world political and business leaders that Thunberg is attending for the second year in a row and will take part in two panel events.
Spain's Balearic Islands passed a bill Friday aimed at clamping down on alcohol-fuelled holidays in the Mediterranean archipelago which bans happy hours when drinks are offered a discount and open bars. "This is the first law adopted in Europe which restricts the sale and promotion of alcohol in certain touristic areas," the regional government of the Balearic Islands which have long been a magnet for young German and British tourists, who often drink heavily and enjoy rowdy late-night clubbing. The restrictions will apply to three areas with a reputation for excess: San Antoni on the island of Ibiza and El Arenal and Magaluf -- which has been nicknamed "Shagaluf" because of its reputation for drunken casual sex -- on Mallorca, the largest of the Balearic's four islands.
The head of Puerto Rico's emergency agency has been sacked following the discovery of a warehouse filled with supplies dating back to Hurricane Maria. Governor Wanda Vazquez said the goods had sat unused since the September 2017 disaster, which killed an estimated 3,000 people. She ordered an investigation and described the inaction of Carlos Acevedo, the director of the office of emergency management (NMEAD), as “unacceptable”.
Thought experiment No. 1: Suppose Bob Mueller's probe actually proves that Donald Trump is under Vladimir Putin's thumb. Fill in the rest of the blanks with your favorite corruption fantasy: The Kremlin has video of the mogul-turned-president debauching himself in a Moscow hotel; the Kremlin has a bulging file of real-estate transfers through which Trump laundered racketeering proceeds for Putin's favored mobsters and oligarchs; or Trump is recorded cutting a deal to drop Obama-era sanctions against Putin's regime if Russian spies hack Democratic accounts. Thought experiment No. 2: Adam Schiff is not a demagogue.
Federal authorities are turning to a new tactic in the escalating conflict over New York City's so-called sanctuary policies, issuing four “immigration subpoenas” to the city for information about inmates wanted for deportation. This is not a request — it's a demand,” Henry Lucero, a senior U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement official, told The Associated Press. This is a last resort for us.
Key point: The need for stealth grew only more urgent in 2019 when an Iranian missile knocked an MQ-4C out of the sky. U.S. forces on deployment to the Middle East include F-15E fighter-bombers, F-22 and F-35 stealth fighters and B-52 bombers, among others. But as tensions escalate between the United States and its allies including Saudi Arabia on one hand, and Iran and Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi rebels on the other hand, it's worth considering what other American aircraft might be in the region.
Nam Y. Huh/AP Winter storms wreaked havoc on airports and roads throughout the Midwest into the weekend. Chicago's O'Hare International Airport saw nearly 700 canceled arriving and departing flights Friday night before around 200 flights were canceled Saturday morning. Authorities issued alerts for areas across the Northeast as blizzard conditions were forecasted to move across the Great Lakes to New York and New England over the weekend.
A California teen who had been drugged and kidnapped was rescued by police this week after using Snapchat to alert her friends to her abduction. Police said the 14-year-old victim on Tuesday notified friends she had been kidnapped via the popular app and they were able to determine her location and alert authorities. One man was arrested as he left the motel in San Jose, in northern California, where the girl was being held and two other suspects were taken into custody on Wednesday, police said in a statement.
Molly Riley/Reuters Native American woman Tara Houska says a TSA agent grabbed her braids, whipped them like reins and said "giddyup" while she was going through security at the Minneapolis airport on Monday. A TSA official apologized to Houska for the incident, and released a statement saying "improper behavior is taken seriously" by the agency. The Transportation Security Administration was forced to issue an apology on Tuesday after a Native American woman described on Twitter a humiliating experience going through security at the Minneapolis-St.
The Trump administration warned European officials in three countries that if they didn't put Iran on notice about nuclear deal violations, the US government would slap a 25% tariff on all European cars.
The Philippine military on Sunday said it has launched search and rescue operations for five Indonesian fishermen kidnapped by militants belonging to the Islamic State-linked Abu Sayyaf group in Malaysian waters last week. Eight Indonesians were abducted in Sabah on Thursday. Three were released, while the remaining five were probably brought by their captors to the southern Philippine province of Sulu, said Lieutenant General Cirilito Sobejana, chief of the military's Western Mindanao Command.
The U.S. government says it will deport a Honduran mother and her two sick children, both of whom are currently hospitalized, to Guatemala as soon as it can get them medically cleared to travel, according to court documents and the family's advocates. The family's advocates accuse the U.S. of disregarding the health of the children, ages 1 and 6, to push forward a plan currently being challenged in court to send planeloads of families to different countries so that they can seek asylum elsewhere. Both children have been hospitalized in recent days in South Texas' Rio Grande Valley.
WASHINGTON – Before the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump begins in earnest Tuesday, House Democrats and White House lawyers file written arguments in the case during the holiday weekend. As the trial resumes, Trump is scheduled to travel to an annual economic conference in Davos, Switzerland, on Tuesday and Wednesday. "I'm going to be going to Davos," Trump said Thursday at the White House.
Israel's Ministry of Defense announced Jan. 8 a “breakthrough” in its development of laser technology to intercept aerial threats. This technological milestone promises to strengthen Israel's lower-tier missile defense and provides another opportunity for U.S.-Israel research and development cooperation. In 2006, the same Israeli committee that recommended the development of Iron Dome for short-range missile defense also recommended that Israel continue R&D to develop a solid-state laser for the same purpose.
Key point: Certain technical questions notwithstanding, the inauguration of the Fateh class suggests that Iran is moving ahead with its Naval modernization program... In yet another milestone on Tehran's path to becoming a self-sustaining regional power, Iranian state news announced the Iranian Navy has commissioned its first homemade submarine. The new Fateh-class vessel was unveiled by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani last week, at a ceremony held at the Bandar Abbas naval base.
U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Zachary Pearson/ReleasedShortly after the deployment began, the powerful armada sailed through the Atlantic and into the Mediterranean, at one point sending a message to Russia in joint operations with the USS John C. Stennis. US Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jeremiah Bartelt On May 5, plans unexpectedly changed. The Trump administration ordered the Lincoln to the Middle East to send an "unmistakable message" to Iran.
An off-duty Hong Kong police officer was arrested along with seven other people on Friday as they tried to put pro-democracy posters on a footbridge, police said. It's the first known case of a police officer being apprehended for supporting the massive demonstrations that have led to more than 6,500 arrests in the past seven months. The officer, 31, and the seven other people aged 14 to 61, were arrested at 3:00 am on Friday in Tuen Mun, a district in northwest Hong Kong.
Heavy rains in fire-ravaged eastern Australia have brought welcome relief for firefighters and farmers, but sparked flash floods that have led to fresh scrambles to save native animals. As the rain hit on Thursday the New South Wales State Emergency Services department warned that the sudden heavy downpours in some areas would bring flash flooding, falling trees and landslides where the fires have wiped out vegetation. On Friday, the warnings were realised when flash floods hit the Australia Reptile Park on the NSW east coast, and the state's koalas - having lost thousands of their number and huge swathes of their habitat - needed to be rescued again as floods thundered down fire-blasted hills empty of vegetation.
Voyagerix / Shutterstock Americans who drink heavily are now consuming more alcoholic drinks during each binge, according to a new study. Researchers found that binge-drinkers consumed 12% more alcohol per episode in 2017 than in 2011 — from an average of 479 drinks a year per person to 529. Heavy drinking, defined as 5 or more drinks for men and 4 or more for women in a single sitting, can increase the risk of stroke, heart disease, and liver damage.