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.
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.
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.
A former Minneapolis police officer has been arrested and charged with murder following the death of an unarmed black man in custody. Derek Chauvin, who is white, was shown in footage kneeling on 46-year-old George Floyd's neck on Monday. Hennepin County Prosecutor Mike Freeman said Mr Chauvin was charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.
A CNN crew was arrested by police Friday morning while giving a live television report in Minneapolis, where the crew was covering ongoing protests over the death of George Floyd.
The coronavirus began quietly spreading in the U.S. as early as late January, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Friday — before President Donald Trump blocked air travel from China and a full month before community spread was first detected in the country. It was also the first media briefing from the CDC in more than two months. "As America begins to reopen, looking back at how COVID-19 made its way to the United States will contribute to a better understanding to prepare for the future," Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the CDC, said Friday during a call with reporters.
The European Union's cautious response to China's clampdown on Hong Kong on Friday will not much trouble Beijing and underscores Brussels' dilemma when dealing with the increasingly confident great power. After a video conference with 27 foreign ministers, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell expressed "grave concern" but he could threaten no sanctions and said planning for an EU-China summit would continue. In fact, Borrell said, only one of the European countries even raised the possibly of sanctions -- a diplomatic source told AFP this was Sweden -- and he said European investment in China was not in question.
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.”
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.
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.
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.
Geraldo Rivera delivered one of the harshest condemnations of Donald Trump ever aired on Fox News Friday afternoon when he appeared on The Five and took the president to task for threatening Minneapolis protesters with violence. After first criticizing Democrats for “studiously avoiding” the looting and vandalism by “anarchists” in that city following the police killing of George Floyd, Rivera pivoted to attack Trump directly. “But the other thing is, the president, in these tweets, 'when the looting starts, the shooting starts,' c'mon!” Rivera said, referring to the tweet that Twitter hid from Trump's timeline because it broke its rules on “glorifying violence.”
prototype, SN4, erupted in a ball of flames at the company's testing facility in Boca Chica, Texas. The test vehicle had just completed its fifth static fire test. On Thursday, SpaceX received FAA clearance to conduct a 150 m hop with the vehicle.
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.
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.
Experts think the new coronavirus originated in bats, then jumped to humans via an intermediary animal species. Initially, authorities in Wuhan, China — where the first cases were reported— thought that jump happened at a local wet market. Now, the Chinese CDC has ruled out the market as a possible origin site for the outbreak.
Burundi's first lady was in hospital in Nairobi on Friday, after being flown in on a late-night medical flight, according to sources at the airport and in the presidency. First lady Denise Bucumi was flown out of Burundi on a Pilatus plane by the AMREF air ambulance service, according to a source at the Melchior Airport in Bujumbura. A high-ranking government official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told AFP that Bucumi had gone to Nairobi "for treatment as she caught the coronavirus".
Chinese civil aviation authorities plan to extend until June 30 their curbs on international flights to contain the spread of the coronavirus, the U.S. embassy in Beijing said in a travel advisory on Friday. China has drastically cut such flights since March to allay concerns over infections brought by arriving passengers. A so-called "Five One" policy allows mainland carriers to fly just one flight a week on one route to any country and foreign airlines to operate just one flight a week to China.
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.
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.
With the May 18 announcement of a new power-sharing deal between President Ashraf Ghani of Afghanistan and former Chief Executive Officer Abdullah Abdullah, at least the Afghan government is no longer disintegrating right before our very eyes. Now Abdullah will concede, or at least accept defeat — a noble decision he made as well in 2014, under equally opaque electoral circumstances — but will take on the enormous responsibility of leading the Afghan government/civil society team in negotiations with the Taliban that have as their goal peace and a new power-sharing arrangement for the country. The Ghani-Abdullah accord is a huge relief, and should allow the United States to restore the $1 billion reduction in aid funding that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had held up after his late March trip to Kabul failed to resolve the political impasse.
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.
Drug lord Rafael Caro Quintero, a notorious underworld figure who is on the FBI's most wanted list for the murder of a federal agent over three decades ago, said in a legal appeal that he has no money, is too old to work and has no pension. The odd plea was filed Tuesday by Caro Quintero's lawyer seeking an injunction against his arrest or extradition to the United States for the kidnapping and murder of DEA Special Agent Enrique Camarena in Mexico in 1985. The court papers state: “The plaintiff argues insolvency, because he says he is more than 60 years old, is neither retired nor has a pension, and given the fact that he is a fugitive from the law, cannot work or perform any activity to ea...
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.
The University of Washington's Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, which also forecasts the US death toll and has been used by the White House, has estimated that if no changes are enacted, 125,833 people in Brazil could die from the coronavirus by August 4. As of Wednesday, the country had 25,598 reported deaths. The same model projects that the US will reach 131,967 deaths by August 4.