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 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 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.
The White House continued on Thursday to promote the use of hydroxychloroquine, the antimalarial drug that President Trump and some of his supporters have held out as a treatment for the coronavirus, against the advice of the Food and Drug Administration and in the face of studies that have shown it can be harmful in some cases. Routinely touted by prominent conservative allies of the president, including primetime Fox News anchor Laura Ingraham, it has been denounced by members of the medical establishment as an unproven therapy that poses the risk of potentially fatal heart complications. The FDA recommends that COVID-19 patients, if they choose to use it, do so only in a hospital or under medical supervision in a clinical trial.
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.
Law enforcement officials around the country are publicly condemning the killing of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who was seen on video gasping for breath as a white officer held him down with a knee on his neck for close to eight minutes.
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.
China and United States should respect each other's core interests and manage their differences, Premier Li Keqiang said on Thursday, adding that a decoupling of their economies is not good for the world. "I believe both countries should respect each other and develop a relationship on the basis of equality, respect each other's core interests and major concerns and embrace cooperation," Li said in his annual news conference after the close of the annual meeting of parliament.
Unhinged as it may be for the president to accuse, without a scintilla of evidence, a morning television host of murder, that particular conspiracy theory was not the most disturbing accusation to issue from Trump's Twitter feed this week. There is NO WAY (ZERO!) that Mail-In Ballots will be anything less than substantially fraudulent. Mail boxes will be robbed, ballots will be forged & even illegally printed out & fraudulently signed … This will be a Rigged Election.
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.
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.
Several women named Amy Cooper have found themselves on the receiving end of online hate this week. People have mistaken those women for the Amy Cooper who called the police on a Central Park bird-watcher. Two women named Amy Cooper told Insider that when the messages started rolling in, they weren't yet familiar with the now-infamous incident.
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.
A Mississippi mayor is under fire for comments about the in-custody death of George Floyd, including his remark, “if you can talk, you can breathe.” Floyd, 46, who was black, died in Minneapolis police custody after a white officer pinned him to the ground and put his knee on his neck for about eight minutes. Marx, who could not immediately be reached by NBC News on Thursday morning, said he “didn't see anything unreasonable” in the video that led to the firing of four Minneapolis police officers on Tuesday, and that the cops involved are being “crucified.”
MINNEAPOLIS—Flames and black smoke poured into the sky here early Thursday as protests over the death of George Floyd took a violent turn, with multiple local businesses and residential buildings near police headquarters set ablaze and at least one person fatally shot in the area. Minneapolis Police spokesman John Elder confirmed the shooting shortly before midnight local time, but did not say if it was connected to the protests, according to the Star Tribune. Widespread looting included mobs—whose ties to organized protesters were vague at best—clearing out a Target across from the precinct house, and video emerged of heavily armed white men who said they were trying to keep people from damaging property.
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.
Senior Hong Kong government officials lashed out on Saturday at moves by U.S. President Donald Trump to strip the city of its special status in a bid to punish China for imposing national security laws on the global financial hub. Speaking hours after Trump said the city no longer warranted economic privileges and some officials could face sanctions, security minister John Lee told reporters that Hong Kong's government could not be threatened and would push ahead with the new laws. "I don't think they will succeed in using any means to threaten the (Hong Kong) government, because we believe what we are doing is right," Lee said.
The U.S. National Security Agency says the same Russian military hacking group that interfered in the 2016 presidential election and unleashed a devastating malware attack the following year has been exploiting a major email server program since last August or earlier. The timing of the agency's advisory Thursday was unusual considering that the critical vulnerability in the Exim Mail Transfer Agent — which mostly runs on Unix-type operating systems — was identified 11 months ago, when a patch was issued. Exim is so widely used — though far less known than such commercial alternatives as Microsoft's proprietary Exchange — that some companies and government agencies that run it may still not have patched the vulnerability, said Jake Williams, president of Rendition Infosec and a former U.S. government hacker.
Retired US Navy Adm. William McRaven, the commander who oversaw the military raid that killed al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, called on recent college graduates to "save the world." In a speech to the graduates of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he said he initially prepared a speech that included "cute little anecdotes." "But somehow that speech just didn't seem right in light of all that has happened in the past five months," McRaven said during an online commencement address.
The International Criminal Court on Thursday said former Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo can leave Belgium under certain conditions following his acquittal last year over post-electoral violence that killed 3,000 people. Gbagbo and his deputy Charles Ble Goude were both cleared of crimes against humanity a year ago, eight years after the former West African strongman's arrest and transfer to the Hague-based court. Belgium agreed to host Gbagbo, 73, after he was released in February last year under strict conditions including that he would return to court for a prosecution appeal against his acquittal.
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.
A band of marauding monkeys has attacked a laboratory technician and stolen three Covid-19 test samples, raising fears they will infect themselves and then spread the deadly disease to humans. The worker was attacked outside a medical college in Meerut, northern India, while transporting samples from patients suspected of having coronavirus. Others saw the funny side of the monkey attack, with the incident coming days after the Indian authorities detained a pigeon in Jammu & Kashmir on suspicion of spying for Pakistan.
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.
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.