Russia scored a victory for its ally Syria on Saturday by forcing the Security Council to limit humanitarian aid deliveries to the country's mainly rebel-held northwest to just one crossing point from Turkey, a move that Western nations say will cut a lifeline for 1.3 million people. Russia argues that aid should be delivered from within the country across conflict lines, and says only one crossing point is needed. U.N. officials and humanitarian groups argued unsuccessfully — along with the vast majority of the U.N. Security Council — that the two crossing points in operation until their mandate expired Friday were essential for getting help to millions of needy people in Syria's northwest, especially with the first case of COVID-19 recently reported in the region.
A Florida man was arrested on Saturday after crashing his car into a Catholic church and then setting the building on fire with parishioners still inside, officials said. The Marion County Sheriff's office said that Steven Shields deliberately drove his vehicle through the doors of the Queen of Peace Catholic Church in Ocala at 7.30am as the congregation prepared for Mass. Deputy Josue Gonzalez spotted Mr Shields' vehicle and gave chase, ramming it with his patrol car, according to a statement by the sheriff's office.
Japanese authorities say they are "shocked" after a significant coronavirus outbreak at two US Marine bases in the country. 61 Marines have been infected with the virus in recent days, spread across two bases in Okinawa prefecture, home to about 26,000 US service personnel. "We now have strong doubts that the US military has taken adequate disease prevention measures," Okinawa governor Denny Tamaki said at a press conference.
However, professors were initially required to return to campus to teach in person and there wasn't an option to work remotely. The university later put in place a policy where faculty could file a request to work remotely, but there wasn't a guarantee that the request would be accommodated. Boston University philosophy professors Daniel Star and Russell Powell wrote an open letter to the university urging it to allow professors to make their own decisions about returning to campus.
Kimberley Chavez Lopez Byrd loved teaching so much that the 61-year-old Arizona woman returned to work after retiring, according to The Arizona Republic. “She was a wonderful teacher, respected by everyone that she worked with,” said Jeff Gregorich, superintendent of the Hayden-Winkelman Unified School District, KSAZ reported. With kids stuck at home, Byrd shared a classroom with two other teachers for a virtual summer school program, CNN reported.
On Saturday morning, Utah Sen. Mitt Romney became the first Congressional Republican so far to speak out against President Donald Trump's Friday night decision to commute the sentence of his longtime associate Roger Stone. Stone had been sentenced to 40 months in prison for multiple felonies including lying to Congress and attempting to obstruct the Congressional investigation into Russia's interference in the 2016 election. “Unprecedented, historic corruption: an American president commutes the sentence of a person convicted by a jury of lying to shield that very president,” Romney tweeted Saturday morning. The President's announcement that he would commute Stone's sentence came just a few days before the Republican political operative was set to enter prison.
St. Louis couple Mark and Patricia McCloskey drew national attention in June when they flashed guns at Black Lives Matter protesters walking down their street.
Former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb predicted Sunday the South will experience an "extended plateau" of coronavirus cases as states there, many of which were among the earliest to ease restrictions on activities, work to mitigate a spike in new infections. States across the Sun Belt and the West are reporting surges in coronavirus cases, and seven set single-day death records. Florida on Sunday reported 15,299 cases in 24 hours, setting the record for new cases in a single state since the start of the pandemic.
earlier in July. South Africa's government had also banned the sale of alcohol but has since eased that restriction, which according to an AP report, has led to an increase in "drunken brawls and traffic accidents, putting added strain on hospitals as they deal with the virus." Reuters FITA is also arguing that by banning the legal sale of cigarettes, the South African government is encouraging a black market trade, and putting thousands of jobs at risk.
At least 10,000 protesters marched through the eastern Russian city of Khabarovsk Saturday in support of a popular local governor arrested this week for allegedly ordering several murders. A court in Moscow on Friday ruled to hold 50-year-old Sergei Furgal for two months pending trial for the murders of several businessmen 15 years ago. Furgal's nationalist Liberal-Democratic Party has thrown its weight behind the governor, and on Saturday said "35,000 people came out to the streets" in Khabarovsk to protest his arrest.
The gunman behind New Zealand's Christchurch mosque shootings sacked his lawyers on Monday and opted to represent himself, raising fears he would use a sentencing hearing next month to promote his white-supremacist views. Australian national Brenton Tarrant will be sentenced on August 24 on 51 murder convictions, 40 of attempted murder and one of terrorism arising from last year's massacre, the worst mass shooting in New Zealand's modern history. At a pre-sentencing hearing on Monday, High Court judge Cameron Mander allowed Tarrant's lawyers, Shane Tait and Jonathan Hudson, to withdraw from proceedings at the request of their client.
Florida has registered a state record of 15,299 new coronavirus cases in 24 hours - around a quarter of all of the United States' daily infections. The state, with just 7% of the US population, surpassed the previous daily record held by California. Florida, which began lifting coronavirus restrictions in May, has proved vulnerable due to tourism and an elderly population.
Boom Supersonic Aircraft start-up Boom Supersonic is one step closer to bringing back supersonic passenger travel with its flagship Overture jet. The Overture's prototype and demonstrator, the XB-1, will be unveiled in October and plans to take to the skies in 2021. If the XB-1 has a successful test flight program, the Overture could fly within the next 10 years, bringing back supersonic travel to the public.
Masked mourners gave speeches and laid flowers before the coffin of Seoul's mayor during his funeral Monday, while a live broadcast online drew a mixture of condolence messages and insults. Since Park Won-soon was found dead Friday in a wooded area in northern Seoul, the South Korean public has been sharply split over how to commemorate his death due to media reports that one of his secretaries had lodged a complaint with police alleging sexual harassment. Police have confirmed that a complaint against Park was filed but not given any details.
The U.S. State Department warned American citizens on Saturday to "exercise increased caution" in China due to heightened risk of arbitrary law enforcement including detention and a ban from exiting the country. "U.S. citizens may be detained without access to U.S. consular services or information about their alleged crime," the State Department said in a security alert issued to its citizens in China, adding that U.S. citizens may face "prolonged interrogations and extended detention" for reasons related to state security. "Security personnel may detain and/or deport U.S. citizens for sending private electronic messages critical of the Chinese government," it added, without citing specific examples.
Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos said Sunday there was no danger in sending children back to school amid the coronavirus pandemic and stood by a threat to withhold federal funds from schools that do not resume in-person classes. "There's nothing in the data that suggests that kids being in school is in any way dangerous," DeVos told "Fox News Sunday" host Chris Wallace. "We know that children contract and have the virus at far lower incidence than any other part of the population, and we know that other countries around the world have reopened their schools and have done so successfully and safely."
After Baltimore police officers shot a man who pulled a firearm while undergoing a behavioral health crisis last week, the organization that oversees the city's behavioral health services called the current system “a total failure” that needs better integration of mental health professionals with the police. There is no indication that police dispatchers attempted to connect available behavioral health resources with officers on the scene before they shot Ricky Walker Jr. on July 1, said Adrienne Breidenstine, vice president of policy and communications for Behavioral Health System Baltimore. The city has two so-called crisis response teams that handle mental health issues, one inside the police department and another at the nonprofit Baltimore Crisis Response Inc. Breidenstine said the incident highlights how the city has created an unnecessarily complex system to deal with people in crisis.
Kamala Harris was mad as hell. The nation was still struggling to regain its economic footing after the Great Recession, and Harris was under intense pressure from the banking industry, the Department of Justice, and most of her fellow state attorneys general to accept a billion-dollar settlement from the mortgage-financing industry that would immunize them from investigations into other potential crimes committed in advance of the the subprime mortgage crisis. “This was insane,” Harris wrote in her pre-presidential memoir The Truths We Hold: An American Journey.
Daniel Gold, who led the team that invented Israel's Iron Dome missile defence system, has a history of safeguarding the country against what he identifies as existential threats. With the nation facing surging coronavirus cases amid a pandemic that has triggered unprecedented economic hardship, Gold is trying to replicate his Iron Dome breakthrough in protecting Israel against the virus. Gold, who heads Israel's Defence Research and Development Directorate and holds PhDs in electronic engineering and business management, has become a celebrated figure in the Jewish state.
Russia's intelligence services have 'stepped up' their war on free media, carrying out a series of operations designed to intimidate journalists in the wake of Vladimir Putin's controversial referendum victory last week. In an unprecedented case for post-Soviet Russia, prominent defence reporter Ivan Safronov was seized outside his home on Tuesday morning by secret service agents and arrested on suspicion of treason. Last week's overwhelming approval of constitutional amendments allowing Vladimir Putin to stay in office at least until 2036 was hailed by the Kremlin as a “triumph.”
Five people have been killed after attackers stormed a South African church, reportedly amid an argument over its leadership. Police had previously been called to the church following a shoot out between members in 2018, South Africa's IOL reports. According to national police spokesperson Brigadier Vish Naidoo, a group of attackers indicated to those inside "that they were coming to take over the premises".
Dov Charney, the disgraced founder of American Apparel, was ordered to cease production at this new company, Los Angeles Apparel. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health said there were "flagrant" health violations at the company's factory. The department accused Los Angeles Apparel of replacing sick workers with new employees, in violation of its shutdown order.
As coronavirus rages out of control in other parts of the U.S., New York is offering an example after taming the nation's deadliest outbreak this spring — while also trying to prepare in case another surge comes. New York's early experience is a ready-made blueprint for states now finding themselves swamped by the disease. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has offered advice, ventilators, masks, gowns and medicine to states dealing with spikes in cases and hospitalizations and, in some places, rising deaths.
Yemeni Houthi forces hit a large oil facility in the southern Saudi Arabian city of Jizan in drone and missile attacks overnight, a Houthi military spokesman said on Monday. The Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthis said earlier it had intercepted and destroyed four missiles and six explosive drones fired by the Houthis over the border towards Saudi Arabia. Oil company Saudi Aramco operates a 400,000-barrel-per-day refinery in the Red Sea city of Jizan, which lies around 60 km (40 miles) from the Yemen border.
President Donald Trump sparred with his former Attorney General Jeff Sessions over Twitter on Saturday, days before Sessions competes in a bitter Tuesday election for his old Alabama Senate seat. Trump has held a grudge against Sessions ever since he recused himself in the investigation into Russian election interference that marred the first two years of Trump's presidency. Trump has explicitly tied his endorsement of Tuberville to Sessions' recusal.