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.
At the Democratic debate in Atlanta on Wednesday, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii and Sen. Kamala Harris of California clashed over their differing visions for the party, particularly when it comes to foreign policy. Gabbard had criticized Hillary Clinton as the “personification of the left that has sickened the Democratic Party” after the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee suggested in an interview last month that she believed Republicans were “grooming” Gabbard to be a spoiler as a third-party candidate. Clinton, who did not mention Gabbard by name, further suggested that the Hawaii Democrat is “the favorite of the Russians.
Three Ukrainian navy boats seized by Russia a year ago were vandalised before being handed back to Ukraine, the country's navy said. The fast gunboats Nikopol and Berdyansk and the tugboat Tany Kapu were welcomed by Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskiy and onlookers waving national flags arrived in Ochakiv, a Ukrainian naval port on the Black Sea on Wednesday evening. But Ukraine's navy said the vessels had been stripped bare and left so badly damaged that they had to be towed home by tug.
A U.S. judge on Thursday rebuked Jeffrey Epstein's estate for keeping the late financier's alleged victims in the dark about a fund that would compensate them for claims of sexual abuse. Epstein, 66, hanged himself in a Manhattan jail in August while awaiting trial on federal sex trafficking charges. Bennet Moskowitz, a lawyer for the estate, told Magistrate Judge Debra Freeman on Thursday that the fund was an "extraordinary opportunity" for the alleged victims, though he could not say how much money would be available.
The son of former German president Richard von Weizsaecker was stabbed to death while he was giving a lecture at a hospital in Berlin where he worked as a head physician, police said Wednesday. A 57-year-old German man is in custody after he jumped up from the audience at the Schlosspark-Klinik and attacked Fritz von Weizsaecker with a knife on Tuesday evening. Von Weizsaecker died at the scene from a knife wound to the neck despite immediate attention from colleagues, said Martin Steltner, a spokesman for Berlin prosecutors.
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
American Airlines admitted Tuesday the powerful fumes that knocked two flight attendants unconscious and forced a flight to make an emergency landing were not caused by spilled soap, as the airline had previously claimed.
South Africa's government ruled out an intervention in the ongoing battle between the struggling state airline and unions leading a strike, with Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan refusing to step in to fund wage demands. The state has already given South African Airways more than 20.5 billion rand ($1.4 billion) over the past three years, Gordhan said in an emailed statement on Tuesday. Two labor unions representing more than 3,000 staff at SAA walked out Friday in protest at the airline's plan to cut jobs and refusal to meet demands for an 8% wage increase.
Nearly three-fourths of transgender and gender non-conforming Americans slain in the last three years were killed with a firearm, according to data published this month by the gun violence prevention advocacy group Everytown for Gun Safety. The data sheds grim new light on the role of guns in what's been called an epidemic of violence against transgender Americans, as advocates honor the victims with nationwide vigils Wednesday during the Transgender Day of Remembrance. The data is available for the first time publicly via EveryStat for Gun Safety, the group's database detailing gun deaths in America.
Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., who is among the Democrats most associated with impeachment, said Tuesday she's happy to see that the House hearings looking into President Trump's attempts to procure a Ukrainian investigation of former Vice President Joe Biden have finally gone public. Tlaib, a member of the House Oversight Committee, recalled to Yahoo News how she had previously witnessed some of the closed-door depositions of the impeachment witnesses, including that of Bill Taylor, the acting U.S. ambassador to Ukraine. It's a bit of an understatement to say that Tlaib has been on the forefront of the push to impeach Trump.
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.
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday rubbished European calls to reduce reliance on fossil fuels, saying that such ideas could lead to humans living in caves again. Speaking at an investment forum in Moscow, Putin also slammed shale gas production through fracking as dirty and environmentally damaging, saying Russia -- one of the world's top gas producers -- would never use this technology. Asked what he thought of Europe's moves to reduce use of gas, for which it is heavily dependent on Russia, Putin said that "in my view, disdaining such a clean hydrocarbon as gas is absolutely strange".
Member of Italy's anti-establishment 5-Star Movement on Thursday rejected a call from party chief Luigi Di Maio to pull out of upcoming regional elections, in a surprise move that underlines Di Maio's difficulties as leader. 5-Star has lost a stream of local elections and slumped in opinion polls since it stormed to power at parliamentary elections in March last year when it won 33% of the vote, doubling its nearest rival. Di Maio has announced a major party overhaul and he suggested the upcoming votes in northern Emilia Romagna and southern Calabria would take up too much of its energies at a time when it needs to take stock.
An American woman could be forced to register as a sex offender after appearing topless in front of her step-children in her own home. Tilli Buchanan, from Utah, was charged with three counts of misdemeanour lewdness involving a child after appearing topless along with the children's father in their home last year. Ms Buchanan's lawyers are contesting the charge, arguing it is unfair to treat men and women differently for baring her chest.
Malaysia's Immigration Department said Thursday it has broken up a China-based online investment scam syndicate with the arrest of 680 suspected Chinese citizens after storming a building where they were operating, but another 100 managed to flee. Immigration Director-General Khairul Dzaimee Daud said officers raided the building used as the syndicate's call center in Cyberjaya town in central Selangor state on Wednesday after a month of surveillance and caught the scammers in action. Local media said online video showed some people jumping from a building ledge onto a tree and sliding down while dozens ran across a road.
Flickr/Oliver Holzbauer American Airlines admitted Tuesday that whatever knocked out two flight attendants and forced an emergency landing in October was not spilled soap, as the airline had previously claimed. On October 21, American Airlines flight 729 was flying from London Heathrow to Philadelphia, but was forced to land in Dublin, Ireland, when two staff members passed out. American Airlines said at the time that the incident was caused by "an odor caused by a spilled cleaning solution in the galley."
Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn defied his negative ratings to draw level with Prime Minister Boris Johnson in a crucial television debate ahead of the U.K.'s general election. The YouGov/Sky News poll of 1,600 people gave Johnson a narrow victory, with 51% saying he won the ITV debate, against 49% saying Corbyn performed best. While Corbyn fared better than expected this time, his party remains stuck behind the Conservatives in the polls.
A speech by conservative commentator Ann Coulter at University of California, Berkeley drew hundreds of protesters Wednesday night. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, police in riot gear guarded the building's entrances and barricades were erected in anticipation of the protests. Coulter was invited to speak by the Berkeley College Republicans for a speech about immigration called “Adios, America,” the Chronicle reported.
The first impeachment hearings of the week brought more bad news for the White House, as two officials who listened directly to a call between President Trump and the president of Ukraine testified they found it unusual, while a witness called by Republicans defended the honor of former Vice President Joe Biden and said calling for an investigation into him was “unacceptable.” But there were elements in Tuesday's testimony that offered some support to the narrative favored by House Republicans. Jennifer Williams was a staffer for the 2004 George W. Bush campaign before moving into a nonpolitical foreign service position and now serves as a national security aide to Vice President Mike Pence.
China's new DF-17 hypersonic missile could penetrate U.S. missile-defense and destroy ports and air-defense systems, a Hong Kong newspaper warned. The new boost-glide missile, which reportedly can travel faster than five times the speed of sound, could “transform” Beijing's strategy for dealing with Taiwan, South China Morning Post reported. The DF-17 first appeared in public in Beijing during a military parade celebrating the 70th anniversary of the founding of Communist China.
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.
Billionaire Michael Bloomberg filed paperwork on Thursday with the Federal Election Commission to run for U.S. president as a Democrat, the latest sign that the former New York City Mayor is joining the crowded nominating contest. The filing allows Bloomberg to raise money in a bid for the White House, but an aide said on Thursday that no final decision on whether he will run has been made. Bloomberg, 77, has signaled that he plans a late-entry in the Democratic primary, suggesting he feels the field of nearly 20 candidates is vulnerable.
A decade after 58 people were killed in the Philippines' worst political massacre, none of the alleged masterminds have been convicted yet, leaving families fearful that justice may never come. Though a verdict is now due next month over the bloodshed that drew international outrage, there is no guarantee of a conviction and the painfully slow-moving trial could still be derailed by corruption or even violence. "We are afraid for the life of the prosecutor or even our judge," said Mary Grace Morales, whose sister and husband were among 32 journalists killed in the attack, making it one of world's deadliest on media workers.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has reportedly told three prominent Republicans that he is planning to resign from the White House to run for a Senate seat.