A look at recent developments in the South China Sea, where China is pitted against smaller neighbors in multiple disputes over islands, coral reefs and lagoons in waters crucial for global commerce and rich in fish and potential oil and gas reserves: EDITOR'S NOTE: This is a weekly look at the latest developments in the South China Sea, the location of several territorial conflicts that have raised tensions in the region. TOP U.S. NAVY OFFICER URGES CHINA TO RESPECT RIGHT OF PASSAGE The U.S. Navy's top officer says he urged China to follow international rules at sea to avoid confrontations and insisted that ships should be able to pass safely though the South China Sea and Taiwan Strait.
The mother of a high school student among the group filmed in confrontation with a Native American man after a rally in Washington DC has blamed “black Muslims” for the encounter. The woman's son was reportedly alongside several wearing Make America Great Again (Maga) hats who were criticised for apparently taunting Nathan Phillips, surrounding him and chanting “build the wall, build the wall”. But she claimed “black Muslims” had been harassing the group from the private, all-male Covington Catholic High School in Kentucky who were said to be in the capital to attend the anti-abortion March for Life.
Women from various political and ideological backgrounds challenged the 2019 Women's March by marching in protest and organizing alternative rallies near the Washington, D.C. event on Saturday. The third annual Women's March took place in Freedom Plaza, a more confined space than in years past, suggesting that organizers anticipated smaller crowds after facing allegations of anti-Semitism and defending Nation of Islam's anti-Semitic leader Louis Farrakhan. Following the development of those controversies, conservative group Independent Women's Forum (IWF) organized a rally across the street in the name of “all women” at the same time as the Women's March.
U.S. President Donald Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani backtracked on Monday from earlier comments that Trump pursued a business deal to erect a tower bearing his name in Moscow throughout 2016, saying his statements "were hypothetical and not based on conversations I had with the President." Giuliani told NBC's "Meet the Press" on Sunday that Trump may have continued to pursue the project and had discussions about it with his former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, until as late as October or November 2016, when Trump was closing in on his election victory over Democrat Hillary Clinton.
Mexico has opened an investigation into what caused a deadly pipeline explosion, including possible negligence by authorities, the attorney general said Monday, as the death toll rose to 91 people. It is still unclear exactly how events unfolded leading up to the Friday blast, which occurred as hundreds of people rushed to collect fuel in buckets and jerrycans from a geyser of gasoline that was spouting from an illegal pipeline tap near the town of Tlahuelilpan, in the central state of Hidalgo. The death toll from the blast and ensuing fire has now risen to 91 people, after two more victims died in hospital, Governor Omar Fayad told Mexican radio network Formula.
Google has kicked off 2019 by getting hit with yet another multimillion-dollar fine from a European regulator. Stemming from an investigation that began in May — the day after Europe's strict new data privacy rules known as GDPR went into effect — France's data protection authority has announced a $57 million fine against Google in the first such GDPR penalty levied against a US technology company. In a statement explaining the action, the French agency known as the CNIL noted that the fine is a result of deficiencies that include Google not being clear enough about the way user data is handled to present personalized ads.
PREVIOUS UPDATE (Saturday, 8:25 p.m.): Flight headaches were on the rise Saturday as a potent winter storm moved from the Midwest into the Northeast. Airline cancellations mounted, with some flights on Monday already off the books. For Saturday, more than 2,125 flights had been canceled nationwide and another 2,570 delayed as of 8:25 p.m. ET, according to flight-tracking service FlightAware.
Zimbabwe's Ministry of Information said on Monday that a Twitter account using the presidential spokesman's name is fake. Bloomberg erroneously reported earlier that President Emmerson Mnangagwa's spokesman, George Charamba, dismissed rumors of a palace coup, citing a tweet from the account. Charamba does not have a Twitter account, Regis Chikowore, principal director at the information ministry, said by phone.
Women's March co-chair Tamika Mallory claimed during a recent interview that The View's Meghan McCain aggressively questioned her about her ties to infamous anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan because McCain is racist. Mallory, who labeled Farrakhan the GOAT on social media after attending a speech in which he labeled Jews “satanic,” said she intended to praise the Nation of Islam leader's past advocacy on behalf of the black community, not his virulent and frequently displayed anti-Semitism. Asked by McCain to explicitly condemn Farrakhan, Mallory refused — a decision she now attributes to McCain's aggressive rhetorical style, which she claims was racially motivated.
China's population growth rate continued to slow in 2018, spelling possible trouble ahead as a swelling number of retirees pushes up against a shrinking labor pool. Numbers released Monday by the National Bureau of Statistics put the population at 1.395 billion in 2018. China for decades sought to slow its population growth, seeing a massive population as a drag on development, and it now joins Japan, South Korea and other East Asian nations in seeing a radical drop in its birthrate.
A police officer in Florida ran over two people lying on a dark road to watch the lunar eclipse, leading them requring hospital treatment. The West Palm Beach Police Department has confirmed the officer ran over the two people, who were taken to the hospital and treated for non-life-threatening injuries after the incident on Sunday night. Police said that the individuals, who have not been identified, were hit around 11.30pm, just at the height of the eclipse.
The route from Los Angeles to our desert testing grounds climbs over the San Gabriel Mountains through 40 miles of corners and clouds that test handling, braking, and power. Of our dozens of commutes over these mountains this year, there are a few memorable standouts: the traffic-free run in a Mustang GT, the 911 GT3's 9000-rpm shriek bouncing off the rock walls, a paradigm-busting drive in an Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio, and this most recent assault in the redesigned Porsche Cayenne. Porsche did spec this one with the optional air springs and adaptive dampers ($4160) and 21-inch wheels wrapped in wide summer tires ($5510).
Mexico's new government knew a pipeline was leaking but did not act for hours before a blast killed at least 85 people, a minister said on Sunday, increasing scrutiny of a push to stop fuel theft seen as the president's first crackdown on crime. State oil firm Pemex did not close the gasoline pipe when first notified by the military, about four hours before Friday's blast, because it considered the leak "minimal," Security Minister Alfonso Durazo told a news conference. In the hours that followed, the leak grew and as many as 800 people brought plastic containers to the gushing duct, filling up with free fuel in what witnesses described as an almost festive atmosphere.
New videos reveal a fuller picture of what led up the clash and seems to show the students being verbally attacked first, by a different group of demonstrators at the Lincoln Memorial.
Leading US Senator Lindsey Graham vowed Sunday to urge President Donald Trump to meet Imran Khan to boost Washington's Afghanistan peace efforts, calling the Pakistani prime minister an "agent of change". The Republican -- an influential ally of Trump -- made the comments in Islamabad after meeting with the Pakistani leader, saying Khan was a "new partner" who could potentially help with a peace deal in Afghanistan. "I'm going to urge him (Trump) to meet with the prime minister as soon as practical," Graham told reporters, saying he believed Khan and Trump would "hit if off" because they have "similar personalities".
A polar plunge of brutally cold air is following this weekend's blockbuster winter storm, which can threaten lives and complicate travel and cleanup efforts. Between lingering effects of the storm and the cold, there can be further disruptions to daily routines during this Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday weekend. The brutal cold that dropped temperatures down to around 40 below zero in International Falls, Minnesota, will continue to plunge on the backside of the storm from the Plains to the East through Sunday.
Four aid workers were convicted Friday on charges connected to their efforts to leave food and water for migrants in an Arizona wildlife refuge along the U.S.-Mexico border. The volunteers, who are members of the faith-based humanitarian aid group No More Deaths, were caught on Aug. 13, 2017, by a Federal Wildlife officer as they left water jugs, beans and other supplies for migrants in Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge, which shares a 50-mile border with Mexico. The judge, United States Magistrate Bernardo P. Velasco, ruled that three of the volunteers – Oona Holcomb, Madeline Huse and Zaachila Orozco-McCormick – were convicted of entering a national wildlife refuge without a permit and abandoning personal property or possessions.
Theresa May is preparing to set out where Brexit goes next after the overwhelming rejection of her deal a week ago. She's due to present a plan to Parliament on Monday, where members are already working on plans to take control of the process. Key Developments Liam Fox: No-Deal Brexit 'A Real Possibility' (11 a.m.
China's population grew at a slower rate last year despite the abolition of the one-child policy, official data showed Monday, raising fears an ageing society will pile further pressure on an already slowing economy. China's government raised the limit to two children in 2016 to rejuvenate the world's most populous country, which has nearly 1.4 billion people, and experts say it may remove the cap next year. "Decades-long social and economic transformations have prepared an entirely new generation in China, for whom marriage and childbearing no longer have the importance as they once did for their parents generation," said Wang Feng, a sociology professor at University of California, Irving.
US federal workers who are not getting paid during the longest government shutdown in the country's history are increasingly turning to pawnbrokers for short-term loans, according to shop owners. The turnout is small – a few people per day – pawnbrokers said, but many expect the numbers to increase amid the stalemate. About 800,000 federal workers have missed a paycheck during the nearly month-long shutdown.
The world's oldest man has died at his home — a hot springs inn — in northern Japan at the age of 113. Masazo Nonaka died in the early hours of Sunday while sleeping at home in Ashoro on Japan's northern main island of Hokkaido, his family said. The supercentenarian, whose family has run a hot springs inn for four generations, was certified by Guinness World Records in April 2018 as the world's oldest living man at 112 years and 259 days.
BEIRUT/MOSCOW (Reuters) - Syrian military air defenses thwarted an Israeli attack on Sunday, shooting down seven missiles targeting an airport in southeastern Damascus, Russia's National Defense Control Center was cited by RIA news agency as saying. "Our air defense systems thwarted ... an Israeli air aggression ... and prevented it from achieving any of its goals," a military source told state news agency SANA. An Israeli military spokeswoman declined to comment.
British Airways will paint one of its Boeing 747-400s in a retro livery that dates to the 1960s – part of an effort to commemorate its 100th birthday. The company also revealed plans to paint other planes in vintage schemes, but – for now – would say only that “more details of further designs (would) be revealed in due course. The 747 due to get the first makeover will be painted in the “much-admired design” of British Airways' predecessor company, British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC).
Rudy Giuliani, the former New York mayor who is now President Trump's personal attorney, said Sunday that plans to build a Trump Tower in Moscow may have continued until at least the 2016 presidential election — months later than previously acknowledged. Giuliani said on NBC's “Meet the Press” that Trump recalls discussing the project with his former lawyer Michael Cohen until late 2016. He said Trump doesn't remember the exact dates or sequence of these conversations but that they didn't go anywhere.
A magnitude- 6.7 earthquake hit the coast of north Chile, causing buildings to shake and fears of a possible tsunami. It reportedly caused homes to rattle, as well as minor damage to old buildings and power outages in the nearby coastal city of La Serena – a popular beach town about 250 miles north of Santiago. Chilean mining group Antofagasta Plc said operations were continuing as normal at its Los Pelambres copper mine following the nearby earthquake.