Democratic lawmakers in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives are demanding answers after learning that one of their Republican colleagues tested positive for COVID-19, shared that information with GOP leadership, but never informed them. On May 20, Republican Rep. Andrew Lewis learned he had tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. Two other Republican House members who came in contact with Lewis were told to self-quarantine for 14 days, but Democratic lawmakers, some of whom also had contact with Lewis or with the two other Republicans before May 20, say they first learned of the positive test result on Wednesday.
While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says contaminated surfaces are not the main way the virus is transmitted, the agency hasn't ruled surfaces out as a possible mode of infection. “If you want a reliable way to prevent yourself from getting the coronavirus, worry less about the surfaces you touch, and worry more about how frequently you wash your hands,” says Dr. Dara Kass, a Yahoo News Medical Contributor and associate professor of emergency medicine at Columbia University Medical Center. Confusion over how the virus is transmitted was reignited last week when the CDC edited the “How COVID-19 Spreads” page on their COVID-19 website to mention contaminated surfaces and objects under a new heading entitled, “The virus does not spread easily in other ways.”
The four Minneapolis officers involved in the killing of George Floyd were swiftly fired after footage of his death went viral. Officers in the US are frequently rehired after their termination for misconduct, a problem that experts say increases the likelihood of abuse and killings by police. Despite the decision on Tuesday to fire the policeman who knelt on Floyd's neck for nine minutes, along with three other officers at the scene, it's uncertain if the officers will face long-term repercussions.
The killing of an Iranian teen by her father after she eloped with an older man sparked outrage on Wednesday, with local media denouncing "institutionalised violence" in "patriarchal" Iran. Iranian media covered the apparent "honour" crime extensively, with Ebtekar newspaper leading its front page with the headline "Unsafe father's house". According to local media, Romina Ashrafi was killed in her sleep on May 21 by her father, who decapitated her in the family home in Talesh in northern Gilan province.
A mayor in Mississippi is facing fierce backlash and calls to resign after saying that he “didn't see anything unreasonable” about the death of George Floyd. Mr Floyd, who was black, died while in police custody in Minneapolis after a white officer was filmed pinned him to the ground by his neck for a prolonged period of time. In the footage, Floyd can be heard saying “I can't breathe” to officers multiple times.
A woman whose skeletal remains were found along a suburban New York beach highway, in an area where body parts of 10 other people had been strewn, was identified as a Philadelphia escort who went missing two decades ago, police said Thursday. Suffolk County police said the woman previously known as “Jane Doe No. 6” was identified through genetic genealogy technology as Valerie Mack, who also went by Melissa Taylor and was last seen in 2000 near Atlantic City, New Jersey. Determining the victim's identity has brought clarity to a long-running Long Island mystery that attracted national headlines, was featured on true-crime TV shows and was the subject of a recent Netflix film, Police Commissioner Geraldine Hart said.
Greece said Friday it would reopen its airports in Athens and Thessaloniki to arrivals from 29 countries from June 15, the start of the tourist season. Visitors would be allowed to fly into Greece from 16 EU countries, including Germany, Austria, Denmark, Finland, the Czech Republic, Baltic countries, Cyprus and Malta, the tourism ministry said in a statement. Outside the European Union, holidaymakers from Switzerland, Norway, and neighbouring Balkan countries such as Albania, Serbia and North Macedonia will be allowed to land at Greece's main airports from June 15.
The ongoing riots in Minnesota hurt Senator Amy Klobuchar's prospects for Democratic nomination as vice president, House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D., S.C.) said on Friday. Klobuchar declined to bring charges against multiple Minneapolis police officers involved in shootings over the course of her seven-year tenure as attorney for Hennepin County. Minneapolis has seen four days of riots after resident George Floyd, an African-American man, died following his arrest at the hands of white officers.
Indian police have released a pigeon belonging to a Pakistani fisherman after a probe found that the bird, which had flown across the contentious border between the nuclear-armed nations, was not a spy, two officials said on Friday. "The pigeon was set free yesterday (May 28) after nothing suspicious was found," said Shailendra Mishra, a senior police official in Indian-administered Kashmir. The Pakistani owner of the pigeon had urged India to return his bird, which Indian villagers turned over to police after discovering it.
At a press briefing on Thursday, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany told reporters President Trump said he's feeling “absolutely great” after completing his treatment with the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine as a preventive measure against the coronavirus. In April, the FDA cautioned against using the drug to treat COVID-19 outside of a hospital setting or clinical trial.
Pentagon leaders expressed strong confidence Thursday that a coronavirus vaccine will be available by January, and perhaps as early as this fall — claims that were met with skepticism by scientific experts. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said that he and Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar “will be co-chairing Operation Warp Speed,” the effort by the administration of President Trump to produce 300 million vaccine doses by January. “I'm confident that we will be able to deliver a vaccine at scale in time” by partnering with other government agencies and the private sector, Esper said.
Security footage from a restaurant near where George Floyd was taken into custody by Minneapolis police officers on Monday shows him turning around to look at his handcuffed wrists and grimacing in pain. NBC News obtained nearly 60 minutes of surveillance video showing everything from Floyd being taken out of his car to being led across the street to a squad car, where he appears to fall down. A Minneapolis Fire Department incident report described an off-duty firefighter as saying they saw Floyd "go from struggling to unresponsive on the ground while handcuffed and subdued" by the officers.
Iran's Revolutionary Guards on Thursday warned the United States against its naval presence in the Gulf as they received 110 new combat vessels. The vessels included Ashura-class speedboats, Zolfaghar coastal patrol boats and Taregh submarines, state television reported. "We announce today that wherever the Americans are, we are right next to them, and they will feel our presence even more in the near future," the Guards' navy chief Rear Admiral Alireza Tangsiri said during a ceremony in southern Iran.
CNN Center, the cable network's Atlanta headquarters, came under attack Friday night during protests over police brutality sparked by the death of an unarmed black man in Minneapolis. A largely peaceful demonstration erupted first in vandalism, then in violence. Cops used pepper spray, and then some in the crowd were seen smashing windows and defacing the giant CNN sign with spray-paint.
A Polish prosecutor has charged an IKEA manager with religious discrimination for firing an employee who called homosexuality "an abomination" on the company's internal website. The employee at IKEA's Krakow store was fired last year after quoting passages from the Bible referring to homosexuality on the company's intranet and refusing to remove his comments, a spokesman for the Warsaw prosecutor's office said. "As an employer, we will provide all the help and support to our charged employee," said a spokeswoman from Ingka Group, which owns most IKEA stores including those in Poland.
With its cast iron replica of Budapest's Liberty Bridge and its pale-stoned version of Versailles, visitors to Huawei's research centre in Dongguan could be forgiven for thinking they were in Europe. The Telegraph can disclose today that the controversial Chinese telecoms giant backed 17 scientific papers with UK universities, about cutting-edge “dual use” technologies – which can have civilian applications but can also be used in military technology. At least 15 of the papers focused on technology that experts claim could be used to communicate with swarms of drones or on highly advanced image recognition software that experts claim could be used for extreme levels of surveillance.
Transcripts of phone calls that played a pivotal role in the Russia investigation were declassified and released Friday, showing that Michael Flynn, as an adviser to then-President-elect Donald Trump, urged Russia's ambassador to be “even-keeled” in response to punitive Obama administration measures, and assured him “we can have a better conversation” about relations between the two countries after Trump became president. Democrats said the transcripts showed that Flynn had lied to the FBI when he denied details of the conversation, and that he was undercutting a sitting president while ingratiating himself with a country that had just interfered in the 2016 presidential election.
Bulgaria's highest appeals court on Thursday dismissed a request by the former chief prosecutor to review the parole granted to an Australian convicted of murder in 2009, meaning he is a step closer to being able to leave the country. Jock Palfreeman, who served 11 years of a 20-year sentence for murder and attempted murder in the 2007 stabbing of two Bulgarians, one of whom died, during a street melee in Sofia, was granted parole by a panel of three judges in September. The parole meant he could be released on condition of good behaviour.
It looks like the executive order that President Donald Trump has threatened against social-media companies has leaked online. Kate Klonick, a law professor, published what she said was a draft of the order late on Wednesday. The document targets a section of US law under which big tech platforms such as Facebook and Twitter largely aren't liable for what their users post.
Coronavirus sparks a sanitary pad crisis in India Stripped for standing up to 'period-phobic' college Of course, period poverty does not only affect women in India. According to Plan International UK, an international development charity, one in 10 disadvantaged girls below the age of 21 cannot afford sanitary products and uses unhygienic substitutes such as newspaper, toilet paper and socks. From an early age, girls learn to live with the pain and fear and seldom do we see a girl seek help when in physical or mental discomfort due to periods.
As tensions between police and protesters in Minneapolis reached a boiling point following the death of George Floyd, the city's bus drivers have made it abundantly clear which side they're on. The driver's union, ATU Local 1005, issued a statement of solidarity on Thursday, with some of its drivers going as far as to refuse to use their buses to help law enforcement transport protesters to jail. "As a transit worker and union member, I refuse to transport my class and radical youth," one Minneapolis bus driver, Adam Burch, told the labor publication Payday.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Wednesday that Hong Kong was no longer sufficiently autonomous from mainland China — an assessment that could threaten the city's trading relationship with the U.S. and deal a blow to both American and Chinese companies operating there. The news comes following Beijing's decision late last week to draw up a national security law for Hong Kong. The move came after Hong Kong's Legislative Council failed in its obligations to enact such a law since the former British colony was handed back to China in 1997.
The governments of Denmark and Norway have cut Sweden out of a deal allowing each other's tourists to travel freely between the two countries — citing their Nordic neighbour's higher levels of coronavirus infection. The deal, announced at parallel press conferences in Oslo and Copenhagen on Friday afternoon, showed Sweden has failed in its diplomatic efforts to be included in the first stage of a Nordic travel bubble. Under the deal, people from Denmark will from June 15 be allowed to enter Norway without needing to quarantine, while tourists from Norway will be able to enter Denmark, so long as they have booked accommodation for at least six days.
Canadians are watching unrest and police violence in the United States in “shock and horror”, Justin Trudeau said on Friday – but the prime minister cautioned that his country also has entrenched problems with racism. The city of Minneapolis has been rocked by a third night of violent protests over the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, after a white police officer knelt on his neck as he lay on the ground following arrest. “Many Canadians of diverse backgrounds are watching, like all Canadians are, the news out of the United States with shock and with horror,” Trudeau told reporters at a daily briefing.
One of the coldest regions on Earth has been experiencing a record-breaking heat wave in recent weeks amid growing fears about devastating wildfires and melting permafrost. Khatanga, a town in Siberia's Arctic Circle, registered highs of over 80 degrees Fahrenheit this week, according to Accuweather, far above the 59 degrees F historical average, as the whole of western Siberia basked in unseasonable warmth. While locals flocked to popular spots to sunbathe, experts sounded alarms about the possible implications for the region's wildfire season this summer, with some blazes already breaking out in recent months.