The president plans to host a White House ceremony later this year for the unveiling of former President Barack Obama’s official portrait, according to sources.History of presidential portraits »
For the second time this week, Israeli airstrikes hit Hamas facilities in Gaza, with military compounds and a launch site targeted late Thursday night. In a statement, the Israel Defense Forces said the airstrikes were in response to incendiary balloons being launched from Gaza into Israel, where they started at least eight fires. On Wednesday, Israeli airstrikes hit Hamas compounds where militants met to plan attacks, the IDF said.
Joe Biden returned from his sojourn to the UK and Europe to face a growing list of domestic headaches as his big-spending policies stalled and were also blamed for rising inflation. While Mr Biden was meeting Vladimir Putin in Geneva a bipartisan group of 21 senators - 11 Republicans and 10 Democrats - came up with a compromise that would almost halve the amount to $1.2 trillion over eight years. The resulting gridlock explains why a Monmouth University poll this week made worrying reading for Mr Biden after Air Force One landed back in the US.
Alieu Kosiah has been found guilty of war crimes in a Swiss court, becoming the first Liberian to be convicted over the country's civil war. Around 250,000 people were killed in Liberia's two conflicts between 1989 and 2003, and many thousands more fled. The trial was the first under a 2011 Swiss law that allows prosecution for war crimes committed anywhere in the world.
A 16-year-old girl was attacked by a bear in the Great Smoky Mountains early Friday, prompting the National Park Service to close a back country section to visitors. The attack happened at 12:30 a.m., as the teen was sleeping in a hammock in the the Crosby section of the park, officials said. “The family was able to drive the bear off from the area immediately after the attack and quickly notified the park's emergency communications center,” the National Park Service said.
Kim Jong-un has declared that North Korea should be ready for negotiations with the United States, striking an unusually conciliatory note amid a growing economic crisis that has led to dire shortages of fuel and food. The dictator's comments come just days after the United States and others urged the totalitarian regime to abandon its nuclear program and return to talks. Speaking at a meeting on the ruling Workers' Party on Friday, the North Korean leader “stressed the need to get prepared for both dialogue and confrontation,” according to the state-run KCNA news agency.
Activists widely expected Joe Biden to take swift action against the death penalty as the first sitting president to oppose capital punishment, especially since an unprecedented spate of executions by his predecessor ended just days before Biden took office. That has not happened.
On Friday, as authorities held a press conference to highlight the growing problem of fraud against the elderly, prosecutors revealed they had charged three people suspected of swiping the property. Otis Lathen Powell, Shantel Vennissa Chang and Jason Webley Sr. were charged with a host of felonies, including money laundering, grand theft, organized scheme to defraud and theft from a person 65 years or older.
ByteDance, the Chinese company behind the smash-hit video app TikTok, saw its earnings double last year. The figures underscore TikTok's continued global popularity. It comes as ByteDance and several other Chinese technology giants have come under increasing pressure from governments around the world.
Mr Seely, MP for the Isle of Wight, now leads an army of up to 100 Conservative MPs in a "Planning Concern" WhatsApp which is gearing up for another battle over a loosening of rules governing building. The latest row is only the latest salvo in the ongoing battle between the Conservative party and many of its voters about how to build more homes that stretches back to the early years of David Cameron's government a decade ago. Then, Mr Cameron's government suggested watering down a 1,400-page planning rule book called the National Planning Policy Framework to just 52 pages, in a bid to clear away red tape gumming up the system.
Garner police are investigating the fatal shooting of a 17-year-old at a graduation party early Saturday morning. The Garner Police Department said that Messiah Pitt was shot and killed some time after midnight as a graduation party on Claymore Drive in Garner was ending. Pitt is the only known injury, according to Capt. Lorie Smith.
People in Hong Kong have queued up to buy copies of the pro-democracy newspaper Apple Daily a day after its newsroom was raided by police. The raid on the newspaper came as two of its executives were charged under Hong Kong's controversial new national security law. Editor-in-chief Ryan Law and chief executive officer Cheung Kim-hung were the two charged.
A state park in northwest Florida on the Gulf was on high alert Thursday after a swimmer was bitten by a shark. According to a Tweet from South Walton Fire District, an emergency crew was summoned to Grayton Beach State Park in Seaside sometime in the afternoon after calls came in about the attack. SWFD responded to a report of a shark attack off the coast of Grayton Beach State Park Thursday afternoon.
Abandoned by her father and bullied by other children for being chubby, life was not too rosy for Giorgia Meloni when she was growing up in a scruffy working-class district of Rome. The leader of the hard-Right Brothers of Italy party could, conceivably, become Italy's first ever woman prime minister, which would have been unthinkable just a few years ago. Brothers of Italy, which is the modern-day heir to Italy's fascist movement, was then a fringe party commanding less than four per cent of the national vote.
The prolonged dryness means low water levels are endangering fish species in Oregon and Colorado, 30% of California's population is in a drought emergency, and the nation's two biggest reservoirs on the Colorado River — Lake Powell and Lake Mead — are two-thirds empty. "What we see in our major reservoirs on the Colorado River really give us a good indication of water and drought in the West, and whether we're in a good or a tough spot," said John Berggren, a water policy analyst at Western Resource Advocates, a nonprofit organization. And right now, we're definitely in the latter category.
Australia will file a formal complaint with the World Trade Organization (WTO) after China imposed up to 218% tariffs on its wine last year. China says the tariffs were increased because of trading malpractice, which Australia denies. Australia says it remains open to engaging directly with China to resolve the issue.
Catholic Bishops advanced a document that could bar Biden from Communion over his support for abortion rights. Rep. Ted Lieu, a Catholic, called the Bishops "hypocrites" and "nakedly partisan" for the move. Democratic Rep. Ted Lieu of California lashed out at US Catholic Bishops on Friday after they voted in favor of advancing a document that could block President Joe Biden from receiving Communion due to his stance on abortion.
The political career of Tito Ortiz was short and flashy before fizzling like a meteor plunging into the Pacific. The former mayor pro tem of Huntington Beach fancied himself the Donald Trump of Orange County, gaining national attention for calling COVID-19 a "plandemic" and "political sham" and for his confrontational refusal to wear a mask in public. Brief though it was, Ortiz's stretch in small-time politics reflects something much bigger: a political culture that spurs conflict, rewards intransigence and empowers the loud and adversarial, even if polls show most voters would rather their lawmakers give in some if it means getting things done.
Research from Public Health England suggests that Delta is associated with a 60% increased risk of household coronavirus transmission compared to Alpha - the variant discovered in the UK. Alpha is already around 50% more transmissible than the original coronavirus strain, according to the CDC. Young people may be particularly susceptible to a Delta infection for two reasons: They're more likely to be socially active and less likely to be vaccinated than older adults.
While four tubers were rescued, three others were found dead and two remain missing. Emergency services said most tubers get out of the water and walk around the dam. Three people are dead and two are missing after a group of river tubers floated over a dam in Northern Carolina on Wednesday evening, authorities said.
Ebrahim Raisi, a hardline legal official sanctioned by the U.S. government, won Iran's presidential election after his main rivals conceded defeat Saturday, state media reported. Raisi is the chief of Iran's judiciary and was the runner-up in Iran's last presidential election in 2017. Incumbent Hassan Rouhani, a moderate, is stepping down because he has reached his term limit.
With the government-imposed attendance caps and physical distance requirements gone, the Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks are expected to relaunch several rides, musical acts and nighttime extravaganzas over the next few weeks and other attractions later this summer. In some ways, the parks will never return to pre-pandemic operations. Disney executives say the 15-month closure helped them rethink how best to manage one of the biggest headaches at the resort: the enormous throngs of Disney-loving visitors.
More than six decades after Marion Hood was rejected by Emory University School of Medicine, he received another letter from the school. “Your rejection letter serves as a somber reminder that generations of talented young men and women were denied educational opportunities because of their race, and our society was denied their full potential,” said the letter, which was sent in March and signed by Vikas Sukhatme, dean of Emory University School of Medicine. “This one individual and this one letter vividly shows the systematic injustice of that time and the legacy Emory is still reckoning with.”
Former US Vice-President Mike Pence has been branded a "traitor" by hecklers during a speech at a conference for religious conservatives. Mr Pence faced jeers as he addressed the Faith and Freedom Coalition in Orlando, Florida on Friday. In the speech, he criticised the policies of Democratic US President Joe Biden and defended those of his Republican predecessor, Donald Trump.
A federal judge has ruled that the CDC's cruise ship sailing orders can no longer be enforced. The CDC's conditional sailing orders will become "non-binding" guidelines from July 18. A federal judge has ruled that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) can't enforce its "authoritarian" pandemic-era sailing orders against Florida cruise ships from mid-July, The Washington Post reported.
Health authorities took Gosiame Sithole into custody this week, reportedly for a psychiatric examination, prompting her attorney to threaten legal action to get her released. Meanwhile, a South African media outlet is reporting an exam showed no signs that Sithole had been pregnant—as a top government minister is promising that the mystery will be solved by next week. Finally, the newspaper that broke the maybe-true-maybe-not story claims a private investigation it launched has verified Sithole's story and accuses the government of a “cover-up of mammoth proportions.”
“It may seem desperate at this point, but I can’t be mad at any and all efforts to get people vaccinated.”
“I won’t get rich, but I will get to live my life. That seems like reward enough.”
“Offering incentives may encourage people who are not actively opposed to vaccination but may have put it off.”
“At some point, the government is simply rewarding irresponsible behavior.”
“Sure, people should do it without needing an incentive. But what’s the alternative? Not enough people get vaccinated.”