Saudi Arabia's minister of state for foreign affairs on Sunday condemned Iran's seizure of a British flagged tanker in the Strait of Hormuz and urged the international community to take action to deter such "unacceptable" behaviour. "Any attack on the freedom of navigation is a violation of international law," Adel Aljubeir said in a Twitter post. "Iran must realise its acts of intercepting ships, including most recently the British ship, are completely unacceptable.
Chuck Ross Politics, Problems ahead? The Democratic National Committee raised $8.5 million in June and has $9.3 million in the bank, according to campaign finance records released Friday. Both figures are far behind what the Republican National Committee said it has raised.
Private investigator Michael Fisten first started digging into financier Jeffrey Epstein's alleged sex trafficking crimes more than a decade ago when attorney Brad Edwards hired him. After Epstein signed a non-prosecution deal with federal prosecutors in 2008, Edwards had sued Epstein in civil court on behalf of a number of alleged victims who had been blindsided by the plea deal (which a judge later ruled to have violated the Crime Victims' Rights Act). Fisten was tasked with finding as much incriminating information on the financier as he could.
A genetics expert retained by the family of a girl who went missing in 1983 said Saturday that a cavernous underground space near a Vatican cemetery holds thousands of bones that appear to be from dozens of individuals, both "adult and non-adult." The expert, Giorgio Portera, said the "enormous" size of the collection under the Teutonic College was revealed when Vatican-appointed experts began cataloguing the remains, which were discovered last week . "We didn't expect such an enormous number" of bones and other remains which "had been thrown into a cavity," Portera said.
Bill de Blasio blasted Beto O'Rourke on Saturday over the former Texas lawmaker's opposition to “Medicare for All,” accusing his fellow Democratic presidential candidate of engaging in "lazy fear mongering tactics" as the health care policy debate ratchets up. Let's leave the lazy fear mongering tactics to Trump," the mayor of New York tweeted after O'Rourke said getting rid of private health care would force a majority of Americans off their existing insurance. O'Rourke opposes the single-payer health care plan — which would eliminate private insurance — and instead advocates for a plan that preserves employment-based insurance while giving individuals the option to switch to a new Medicare-based program.
Universal Orlando went under lockdown Saturday night after police received a report of a gunman spotted in a parking garage. Police arrived shortly after 8:30 p.m. local time and, along with Universal security staff, temporarily shut down both of Universal's parking garages to guests while they assessed the area. It was later deemed safe and park activity returned to normal.
Hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses in Michigan are without power as much of the nation grapples with a severe heat wave. After two storms swept through the state on Friday and Saturday, Detroit-based energy company DTE announced 390,000 of its energy customers had lost electricity as of Sunday afternoon. Overall, we expect to restore 150,000 customers today and another 150,000 tomorrow, which means we will have 80% of our customers restored by the end of the day on Monday,” the company said in an emergency outage section of its website.
Iraqi Kurdish authorities announced Saturday they had arrested two suspects involved in the murder of three people, including a Turkish diplomat, in the regional capital Arbil this week. The autonomous region's security council first said its counterterrorism unit had arrested "the main perpetrator" Mazloum Dag, a 27-year-old from Turkey's Diyarbakir region. The council had put out a wanted notice for Dag a day earlier in connection to Wednesday's killing of Turkish Vice Consul Osman Kose and two Iraqi nationals.
President Donald Trump pledged to re-establish U.S. dominance in space, a day after he welcomed the surviving Apollo 11 astronauts to the White House to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing. Sustained exploration that extends from our Earth to the Moon and on to the Martian surface will usher in a new era of American ingenuity,” Trump said in a message on Saturday, which he declared Space Exploration Day. Trump on Friday invited retired astronauts Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins, and the family of Neil Armstrong -- the first man to walk on the moon -- to the White House to mark the space milestone.
Bernie Sanders pushes for a $15 minimum wage during his campaign; reaction from 2016 Sanders campaign staffer Tezlyn Figaro.
The U.S. military on Sunday accused a Venezuelan fighter aircraft of "aggressively" shadowing a U.S. Navy EP-3 Aries II plane over international airspace, a fresh sign of growing hostility between the two countries. The encounter between the two planes occurred on Friday, the same day that the Trump administration announced it was imposing sanctions on four top officials in Venezuela's military counterintelligence agency. In a statement issued Sunday, the U.S. military said that it had determined the "Russian-made fighter aggressively shadowed the EP-3 at an unsafe distance in international airspace for a prolonged period of time, endangering the safety of the crew and jeopardizing the EP-3 ...
An American citizen who allegedly served as a sniper for ISIS and became a leader for the terrorist group is expected to appear in federal court on Friday after being returned to the United States by the Defense Department, officials said. Ruslan Maratovich Asainov, who was born in Kazakhstan and became a naturalized U.S. citizen, is charged with providing and attempting to provide material support to ISIS, the Justice Department announced on Friday. A U.S. official confirmed to Task & Purpose that the Defense Department had transported Asainov from Syria to the United States.
There are plenty of conspiracy theories, recent discoveries, and just plain old misconceptions about the moon. From Popular Mechanics
A Maryland man visiting Alaska with his family was killed and one of his three children was critically injured Friday after their floatplane's takeoff was aborted. Alaska State Troopers identified the deceased man as Joseph Patenella, 57. The critically hurt child was flown to Anchorage for treatment, along with two other family members.
Residents across a wide swath of the Northeast and Midwest braced Sunday for more screaming heat as officials issued dire warnings, hawked ice cream – and even urged criminals to stay home and binge-watch Netflix. Temperatures at or near 100 degrees were forecast for Washington, Baltimore, Philadelphia, New York City, Boston and hundreds of cities and towns in between. Since it did not cool down much Saturday night, the temperatures rose quickly, AccuWeather warned.
The Mexican president has described Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman's life sentence as “inhumane” after the notorious drug lord was sent to live out his remaining years in a supermax prison in Colorado. Guzman was sentenced to life behind bars in the US plus 30 years after being found guilty of running a murderous criminal enterprise, having already escaped Mexican prisons twice. In his home country, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador referred to sentences like the one handed to Guzman to be served in a “hostile jail” as "hard” and “inhumane", adding that it made life no longer worth living.
Two Ukrainian soldiers and one civilian were killed in incidents involving Kremlin-backed separatists, Kiev said Saturday, a day before the country votes in a parliamentary election. The Ukrainian army's press secretary, Dmytro Gutsulyak, said the two soldiers were killed by sniper fire, and added that four other servicemen were injured. In a separate incident, a 60-year-old civilian was killed just outside the separatist stronghold of Donetsk, he added.
Booker, a New Jersey senator, said it would be “fair” to bring up the 1994 crime bill, which Biden supported in the Senate and has called the “Biden crime bill.” Booker said the measure put “mass incarceration on steroids” for African Americans. “Yeah, it is fair,” Booker said on CBS News's “Face the Nation,” when asked by host Margaret Brennan whether he would be more aggressive on race at the forums in Detroit on July 30-31.
The man suspected of killing 34 people in an arson attack in Japan lived alone, hundreds of kilometres from the torched Kyoto Animation studio, where he played video games non-stop and had "terrified" his neighbour just days earlier. Police late on Saturday issued an arrest warrant for 41-year-old Shinji Aoba, suspected of causing Japan's worst mass killing in two decades on Thursday when he went to the studio in western Japan, poured fuel around the entrance and shouted "Die" as he set the building ablaze, according to public broadcaster NHK. They plan to arrest Aoba, who suffered serious burns and on Saturday was airlifted to a university hospital for treatment, once he recovers, NHK said.
A man is in custody after handing his young neighbor a firework that blew up, causing the boy to lose his arm on his 10th birthday.
The San Francisco Board of Education unanimously voted last month in favor of painting over a George Washington mural series on a school wall depicting Washington standing over a Native American's corpse and another in the company of slaves on his Mount Vernon estate. “This is reparations,” Education Board Commissioner Mark Sanchez said in a KQED report when asked about the estimated $600,000 price tag for its removal. The 1,600-square-foot mural series titled “Life of Washington” was painted on San Francisco's George Washington High School in 1936 by a Russian-American artist and Stanford University art professor Victor Arnautoff.
If you subscribe to the Mark Twain aphorism that “history doesn't repeat itself but it often rhymes,” it's worth noting that Twain didn't write it and that the Donald Trump presidency doesn't rhyme with much of anything. Richard Nixon was corrupt and did get elected president, but the country turned its back on Nixon when he incriminated himself on his own tape recordings. The election of Donald Trump—a reality TV host with no previous political experience, who was caught on tape saying when you're a celebrity you get to grab women by the you-know-what, and won 2.8 million fewer votes than Hillary Clinton—should remove all doubt about the rhyming thing.
Papua New Guinea's prime minister said on Monday his country's relationship with China is not open to discussion during his current visit to Australia. Prime Minister James Marape is making his first visit to Australia since he became leader of its nearest neighbor and former colony in May. His visit comes as Australia attempts to counter China's growing influence in the South Pacific by teaming with the United States and Japan to finance infrastructure in Pacific island states that the Chinese have aggressively wooed with loans and aid.
WASHINGTON – Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, has joined a growing chorus of lawmakers including Sen. Rick Scott, R-Fla., and Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., in calling for the resignation of Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló over a corruption scandal involving leaked text messages between the governor and top aides. In a Twitter video sent from San Juan, Puerto Rico, on Friday, Gabbard called "on all Democrats running for President to come here to Puerto Rico and show support for our fellow Americans" against corruption, and called for Rosselló's resignation.
But since Greg Abbott signed the measure into law in June, county prosecutors around Texas have been dropping some marijuana possession charges and declining to file new ones, saying they do not have the time or the laboratory equipment needed to distinguish between legal hemp and illegal marijuana. Collectively, the prosecutors' jurisdictions cover more than 9 million people — about a third of Texas' population — including in Houston, Austin and San Antonio. The accidental leniency represents one of the unintended consequences states may face as they race to cash in on the popularity of products made with or from hemp.