Weeks before President Trump is due to leave office, workers are racing to build the fence along the U.S.-Mexico border that was a centerpiece of his presidency.Biden expected to halt project »
While Kyle Rittenhouse awaits trial for killing two people at a Kenosha, Wisconsin, Black Lives Matter protest this summer, his lawyers are in prosecutors' crosshairs. From the start of the high-profile case, Rittenhouse's lawyers have attracted nearly as much attention as he has. Now, the 17-year-old's main lawyer, John Pierce, is off the case, after prosecutors argued that fundraisers for Rittenhouse could act as a “slush fund” for the embattled attorney.
Philippine police on Friday threatened to cane people who violate social distancing protocols as the Southeast Asian nation fights the spread of the coronavirus during the festive season. The Philippines celebrates one of the world's longest Christmas seasons, starting as early as September, and crowds have started to flock to sprawling malls and shopping centres despite the pandemic. Police general Cesar Binag, commander of the coronavirus task force, told a news conference that police and soldiers would patrol in public areas in the capital Manila, the hotspot of COVID-19 cases, carrying 1 meter rattan sticks to measure distancing.
President Trump's Pentagon purge isn't over yet. Since losing the 2020 election, Trump has systematically ousted top Defense Department officials and replaced them with people more favorable to him. That removal operation even extended to the typically nonpartisan Pentagon Defense Business Board on Friday, where the White House fired nine members and installed Trump allies in their place.
Labour will be putting "two fingers up to voters" if it refuses to back a Brexit trade deal, Sir Keir Starmer has been warned, as a prominent Remainer MP said they would vote for it. Amid splits at the top of the party on whether to withhold support for an agreement, shadow business minister Lucy Powell suggested Labour would struggle to win back voters in “Red Wall” seats if it attempted to abstain. Arguing that a “skinny deal” could be “built on” in future, Ms Powell added that it was better than no deal - which she said would be a “catastrophe” - and was therefore “quite hard for us to oppose”.
Zhou Xiaoxuan, 27, more widely known by her nickname Xianzi, became a pioneer of China's #MeToo movement in 2018, when she accused Zhu Jun of groping and kissing her in a dressing room in 2014. Despite police warnings, pressure on her family, online censorship and harassment, Zhou has persisted — one of the few to make it into court on claims of sexual misconduct, which China did not recognize as grounds for legal recourse until last year. A young woman pulled out her lipstick to write #MeToo on another woman's mask.
A Chinese spacecraft lifted off from the moon Thursday night with a load of lunar rocks, the first stage of its return to Earth, the government space agency reported. Chang'e 5, the third Chinese spacecraft to land on the moon and the first to take off from it again, is the latest in a series of increasingly ambitious missions for Beijing's space program, which also has a orbiter and rover headed to Mars. Its mission: collect about 2 kilograms (4 pounds) of lunar rocks and bring them back to Earth, the first return of samples since Soviet spacecraft did so in the 1970s.
Disavowed Trump lawyer Sidney Powell is back with another confusing allegation of voter fraud that makes even less sense than usual. Powell has spent the past few weeks claiming, with no proof, that fraud in the 2020 election stole votes from President Trump and gave Biden the win. In a filing as part of her voter fraud lawsuit in Georgia, Powell writes that "machine-controlled algorithms deliberately run by Dominion Voting Systems ... took more than 2.5 percent of the votes from Mr. Biden and flipped them to Mr. Trump, for a more than 5 percent fraudulent vote increase for Mr. Biden."
Romanians vote in a parliamentary election on Sunday with rural voters' anger over coronavirus restrictions set to complicate efforts by its centrist prime minister to restore judicial independence and the country's reputation among investors. Limits put in place to slow the spread of the coronavirus have angered many farmers, a key constituency in the largely-agricultural eastern European state, swelling support for the leftist PSD party that now controls parliament. In power for a year despite his opponents' parliamentary strength, Prime Minister Ludovic Orban has pledged to overturn years of efforts by leftist-led cabinets to take control of courts amid allegations of corruption and misuse of funds.
China has used strict measures to succeed in controlling COVID-19 It's true that China appears to have succeeded in its efforts to control the spread of COVID-19 within its borders, per statistics from the World Health Organization. Though it has a population of 1.4 billion, China has reported fewer than 100,000 coronavirus cases and fewer than 5,000 deaths. In contrast, the United States — which has a population of 330 million — has had over 13.5 million cases and 271,000 deaths.
Much of California is on the brink of sweeping new restrictions on businesses and activities, a desperate attempt to slow the frighteningly rapid escalation of coronavirus cases that threatens to overwhelm hospitals. Five San Francisco Bay Area counties imposed a new stay-at-home order for their residents that will take effect Sunday. Southern California and a large swath of the central portion of the state could join this weekend.
After six months spent pushing for a more-than $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is fine with something smaller. It's smaller than the $1.5 trillion deal the House's bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus drew up in September, and yet this time around, President-elect Joe Biden's win and forthcoming coronavirus vaccines have Pelosi ready to accept it. Pelosi went on to explain that she had held out for a bigger bill with longer-lasting provisions before she knew who would be the next president — essentially, she thought she wouldn't get a second chance at a stimulus package if President Trump was re-elected.
Israeli police on Friday arrested a man for trying to set fire to an east Jerusalem church by the Garden of Gethsemane, the site revered by Christians as the place where Jesus prayed before he was crucified. The 49-year-old Israeli suspect poured flammable liquid inside the Church of All Nations, police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said. The man then set it alight, a separate police statement said, before the church guard detained him.
Republican lawyers Sidney Powell and Lin Wood cited a Facebook comment thread in their latest legal effort to prove unsubstantiated claims that the 2020 race was plagued with widespread voter fraud and election-rigging. One affidavit in Powell and Wood's Georgia filing featured a self-described "Patriot" and their associate staking out a loading dock in Atlanta, Georgia, and suggesting Georgia's secretary of state used it to tamper with absentee ballots. Other affidavits described how people in Georgia who were convinced the election was rigged began tailing unspecified trucks on highways looking to uncover a fraud scheme.
Turkish fishermen have been called upon to rid the country's waters of poisonous toadfish, with a bounty on offer for each tail they bring ashore. The silver-cheeked toadfish, which can be fatal if eaten by humans, are an “invasive species” that poses a major threat to other fish in the Mediterranean and Aegean sea, according to Turkish officials. It marks a reversal in fortunes for Turkey's fishermen, who would usually toss away toadfish in disgust but can now cut off the tail and hand it to the authorities for a five lira (50p) bounty.
The governing board in Newtown, Connecticut — where the country's deadliest grade school shooting took place — has blocked proposed bans on carrying firearms around town from further consideration. The decision came after the board heard from gun control activists who said they were intimidated at protests by armed Second Amendment supporters. The debate showed how the gun control discussion remains active in Newtown long after the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre, which killed 20 first-graders and six educators.
As a pair of critical Senate runoff races approach on Jan. 5, Georgia Republican leaders find themselves in a conundrum, trying to balance indulging President Trump's baseless claims of voter fraud with supporting state GOP election officials. Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan, a Republican, is frustrated with the misinformation about the election process in his state. I'm actually embarrassed at the amount of misinformation that continues to show up on Twitter feeds and Facebook posts and blogs that takes literally 10 seconds to debunk,” Duncan told Yahoo News.
In a rebuke to President Donald Trump's administration, a judge on Friday ordered the U.S. government to reopen to first-time applicants a program that protects from deportation and grants work permits to hundreds of thousands of immigrants who live in the United States unlawfully after arriving as children. The action by U.S. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis in Brooklyn centered on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program created by Trump's Democratic predecessor Barack Obama in 2012. The Supreme Court in June blocked Trump's 2017 bid to end DACA.
This year's winter solstice will bring a rare sight to our night skies — just in time for the holidays. For Earth viewers, Jupiter and Saturn will appear closer to one another on Dec. 21 than they have been since the Middle Ages. If you can gaze into the southwestern horizon at the right time, the two gas giants will look like neighboring points of light.
China is conducting "human testing" to create "biologically enhanced soldiers," the head of US intelligence has claimed as he warned that Beijing poses the biggest threat to America's national security. In an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal, John Ratcliffe, the director of national intelligence, warned that the US must be prepared for an "open-ended" confrontation with China which he likened to the Cold War. Mr Ratcliffe, who oversees America's intelligence agencies, said he believed China's intention was to "dominate" the planet in every sense: economically, militarily and technologically.
Japan's Hayabusa2 spacecraft successfully released a small capsule on Saturday and sent it toward Earth to deliver samples from a distant asteroid that could provide clues to the origin of the solar system and life on our planet, the country's space agency said. The capsule successfully detached from 220,000 kilometers (136,700 miles) away in a challenging operation that required precision control, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency said. The capsule — just 40 centimeters (15 inches) in diameter — is now descending and is expected to land Sunday in a remote, sparsely populated area of Woomera, Australia.
Snakes have found a safe space in Myanmar - a global hub for the illegal wildlife trade. For five years, this Buddhist temple in the city of Yangon has been taking in pythons and cobras and vipers otherwise destined for the black market. The sanctuary is run by Wilatha, a monk at the temple.
The president on Friday blamed the “Democrat stronghold” US Postal Service for his election loss, even though he appointed a GOP mega-donor to lead it and spent months undermining the agency ahead of the election. Whistleblowers reveal that the USPS is responsible for tampering with hundreds of thousands of ballots,” Mr Trump tweeted on Friday morning, referencing a report to that effect from the far-right One America News Network. This long time Democrat stronghold got rid of massive numbers, especially in swing states, during and before delivery of the ballots.
The last jobs report to be released this year has arrived, and it's a major disappointment. The Labor Department on Friday said the U.S. economy added 245,000 jobs in November, which was down from the 440,000 jobs economists were expecting, CNBC reports. It was also "by far the lowest monthly total since the economy started its halting recovery," NBC News reports.
Scots who are not at a high risk of dying from Covid-19 have been urged to be patient in waiting to be vaccinated, after they were warned they may not be offered inoculations until the second half of 2021. In an attempt to clear up confusion around when all 4.4 million adult Scots will receive a vaccination, John Swinney, the Deputy First Minister, confirmed on Friday that a spring target date applied only to priority groups, such as the elderly and frontline healthcare workers. Jeane Freeman, the health secretary, had told parliament last month that the entire vaccination programme could be finished by the spring while Nicola Sturgeon said on Thursday that she “very much hoped” all eligible people would have received it within the timeframe.
Canada could see the end of a nasty diplomatic dispute with China if the United States reaches a deal to release a Huawei executive from house arrest in Vancouver, but the affair shows that without the heft of its southern neighbor, Canada has no bargaining power with Beijing. Shortly after Meng was picked up on a U.S. arrest warrant in December 2018, China detained two Canadian men - Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor - who now face spying charges.Having failed to secure their immediate release, Canadian Foreign Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne has talked for months about a formal "reset" of relations with China.
“This metastasizing debt crisis has had tremendous social costs. An entire generation has been set back.”
“It is not the government’s job to step in and rescue those who took on more debt than their future incomes would support.”
“Many student-borrowers need relief, but well-off borrowers who are thriving — thanks to their college degrees — do not.”
“It will stimulate the lagging economy. And though not everyone will directly benefit, the country as a whole will improve.”
“Canceling student debt would cost billions of dollars each year and would exacerbate, not lessen, economic inequalities.”