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- Associated Press
Saudi Arabia's crown prince likely approved the killing of U.S.-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, according to a newly declassified U.S. intelligence report released Friday. The finding could escalate pressure on the Biden administration to hold the kingdom accountable for a murder that drew widespread outrage in the U.S. and abroad. The public blaming of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman amounted to an extraordinary rebuke and was likely to set the tone for the new administration’s relationship with a country President Joe Biden has criticized but which the White House also regards in some contexts as a strategic partner.
- Business Insider
Ted Cruz's colleagues mocked him by putting memes of his Cancun trip in the Senate gym locker room: 'Bienvenido de Nuevo, Ted!'
Those who turned up to the Senate gym Wednesday morning were welcomed by color printouts of Cruz's Cancun trip that read "Bienvenido de Nuevo, Ted!"
The USS San Diego which has the confirmed cases is at port in Bahrain. It sails with about 600 sailors and Marines aboard. The guided-missile cruiser USS Philippine Sea, which carries some 380 sailors, is expected to pull into port for further testing.
- Business Insider
While Biden visits storm-torn Texas, Sen. Ted Cruz will be giving a speech on 'cancel culture' in Florida
The president is set to tour the state with Gov. Greg Abbott.
At least two political rights groups advocating democracy have quietly quit Hong Kong and moved overseas, unnerved by a national security law that has fanned fears over the erosion of freedoms under China’s rule, sources told Reuters. In the past, China-focused rights groups had valued the wide-ranging autonomy, including freedom of speech and assembly, guaranteed for Hong Kong when control over the former British colony was returned to Beijing in 1997. But some non-government organisations (NGOs) say the new legislation means they face a choice of either having to leave Hong Kong or work with the same kind of fears and constraints they would encounter in mainland China.
- Reuters Videos
Israel has led the world in COVID-19 vaccination with health ministry figures on Friday (February 25) showing 50% of the population has received at least one shot.But now the country is facing another challenge that other countries will have to grapple with - how to balance public health and the rights of the unvaccinated. Despite the strong government numbers, some officials privately estimate that 10% of Israelis over 16 - that's around 650,000 - do not intend to get vaccinated.Some employers already plan to ban unvaccinated workers from the office, which rights groups fear could cost them their jobs, especially for those where remote working is not possible. And asking employees to share their vaccine status could violate medical privacy rights. Some employers and advocates are concerned parliament hasn't passed any laws on returning to offices or offering protections for the unvaccinated.The health ministry did not comment when asked if legislation was being drawn up.Early discussions on guidelines and legislation point to employers, authorities and courts putting public health concerns before individuals' demand. This is Sharon Abraham-Weiss, executive director of the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, or ACRI. "The question is how do we reopen the market, the economy, and life, without harming people that cannot or would not get vaccinated."Israel's largest labor union suggested that unvaccinated workers who can't work at home show negative tests to their employers every 72 hours as a potential workaround.The "Green Pass system" was launched in the country last Sunday (February 21).A government-validated certificate is granted for those who have had both doses of the vaccine or have recovered from COVID-19. In one of its first applications, only those who carry this pass were allowed to attend a small open-air concert in Tel Aviv this week.
- The Independent
US Capitol Police Chief Yogananda Pittman argued to maintain increased law enforcement presence at the Capitol ahead of Joe Biden’s first address to Congress, following warnings from militia groups that she says want to “blow up the Capitol and kill as many members as possible” in connection with the president’s upcoming State of the Union. “So based on that information, we think that it’s prudent that Capitol Police maintain its enhanced and robust security posture until we address those vulnerabilities going forward,” she said.
- USA TODAY
The conference, long the country's most influential gathering of conservatives, is often also a bellwether for things to come on the political right.
The case went cold after the man disappeared following a brutal 1999 gang rape in India.
- The Daily Beast
Prince Harry Tells Friend James Corden He Left the Royal Family Because It Was Destroying His Mental Health
KOEN VAN WEELPrince Harry has said that he stepped back from royal duties because the British press was “toxic” and “destroying” his mental health.In an extraordinary interview unparalleled in the annals of royal history, Harry gave a candid interview to his close friend James Corden on The Late Late Show while they toured Los Angeles on an open-air double-decker bus. Corden was a guest at Harry and Meghan’s wedding in 2018 and arrived at the evening reception dressed as Henry VIII. Another guest at the wedding, Oprah Winfrey, has taped an interview primarily with Meghan that will be screened next weekend.Oprah Winfrey’s Interview With Meghan Markle and Harry Will ‘Shine a Light on What They Have Been Through’The two men were served afternoon tea, which Corden said he had provided to remind Harry of home, however the tea service was abandoned after the bus braked sharply, depositing the contents of a tea trolley on top of the prince.“Clear it up, Harry,” Corden joked as the prince picked up tea cups and scones.While the 17-minute long package had a humorous tone and was packed with jokes and gags, it also provided the most candid insight yet into why Harry withdrew from royal duties.Asked about his decision to leave royal life, Harry said he was left with no choice because the British press “was destroying my mental health.”He said of the “toxic” situation: “I did what any husband and father would do—I need to get my family out of here.”In what will be perceived as a dig at the royal establishment that refused to accept Harry and Meghan’s proposal of a hybrid public-private role, Harry said: “We never walked away, and as far as I’m concerned, what decisions are made on that side, I will never walk away.”Royal Family ‘Wringing Their Hands’ at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s ActivismHarry said that his life now would continue to be about “public service” and added that he and Meghan were “trying to bring some compassion and try to make people happy and try to change the world in any small way we can.”When Harry said he and Meghan often watched Jeopardy! and Netflix (with whom the couple recently signed a $100 million production deal) in the evenings after putting Archie to bed, Corden asked him about The Crown and its controversial portrayal of his family’s history.Harry, who joked he would like to be played in the series by Damian Lewis, said he preferred it to the tabloid media coverage of the royals because it “does not pretend to be news.”He added: “It’s fictional. But it’s loosely based on the truth.“Of course it’s not strictly accurate, but it gives you a rough idea about what that lifestyle—the pressures of putting duty and service above family and everything else—what can come from that.”He continued: “I’m way more comfortable with The Crown than I am seeing the stories written about my family, or my wife or myself, because it’s the difference between fiction—take it how you will—and being reported on as fact because you’re supposedly news. I have a real issue with that.”Harry also opened up about meeting Meghan and how he knew she was the one on their second date.“We hit it off with each other, and we were just so comfortable in each other’s company,” he said.“Dating me or any member of the royal family is kind of flipped upside down. All the dates become dinners or watching the TV or chatting at home.“We went from zero to 60 in the first two months.”Meghan, who is pregnant with the couple’s second child, made a cameo in the interview via FaceTime when Harry and Corden paid a trip to the house from the ’90s TV show The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.When Corden suggested the couple should buy the house, Meghan said: “I think we’ve done enough moving.”During the visit to the house, Corden and Harry spoke to the owner and jokingly made an offer to buy it, before Harry asked if he could use the toilet.“I’m actually dying for a pee. Can I use your bathroom?” he asked.Showing that family relations are at least still somewhat functional, Harry said his grandmother, the queen, bought his son Archie a waffle maker for Christmas.He revealed Meghan now makes waffles with a “beautiful organic mix” and they eat them for breakfast with toppings including berries and syrup.He also said that both his grandparents know how to use Zoom, but joked that his grandfather slams the laptop shut physically to finish a call.Over to you, Oprah.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
President Joe Biden headed for Texas on Friday as the state works to recover from a severe winter storm that caused serious damage to homes and businesses, left millions without power or clean water for days, and killed at least two dozen. Biden and his wife, first lady Jill Biden, were traveling to Houston where he will meet with Republican Governor Greg Abbott, Senator John Cornyn and Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner to discuss the recovery from last week’s storm. Biden will bring empathy and pledges of financial help from Washington, but no lectures about the dangers of underregulation or calls for the federal government to monitor the state's power grid.
Episode eight finally introduces Wanda Maximoff's comic-book name that's been hinted at throughout the first season of "WandaVision."
Hungary may have to tighten lockdown curbs as coronavirus infections are expected to rise "drastically" in the next two weeks, Prime Minister Viktor Orban said on Friday, as the daily tally of new infections jumped to 4,668, the highest this year. Orban also said all the 2.5 million to 2.6 million Hungarians who have registered for COVID-19 vaccinations so far would receive at least one dose by Easter, in early April. Orban, speaking on state radio, said he hoped to get vaccinated with a shot developed by China's Sinopharm early next week.
- Associated Press
Three family members of an assassinated journalist in western Afghanistan have been killed by gunmen, local officials said Friday, amid a rising wave of attacks targeting journalists and civil society actors. Ghor provincial council member Hamidullah Mutahid said that at least five others were wounded in the attack late Thursday. The gunmen stormed the family home of Afghan journalist and activist Bismillah Adil Aimaq, who was shot dead in an unclaimed attack nearby Ghor on Jan. 1.
- Associated Press
JISR AL-ZARQA, Israel (AP) — After weathering a year of the coronavirus pandemic, the fishermen of an Arab village in central Israel have been dealt another blow by a mysterious oil spill in the Mediterranean. Grappling with its worst ecological disaster in years, the government this week ordered a precautionary ban on selling seafood. Despite the ban, Jisr al-Zarqa's fishermen went to sea Thursday to bring in their catch.
- Associated Press
A U.S. airstrike targeting facilities used by Iran-backed militias in Syria appears to be a message to Tehran delivered by a new American administration still figuring out its approach to the Middle East. The strike was seemingly a response to stepped-up rocket attacks by such militias that have targeted U.S. interests in Iraq, where the armed groups are based. It comes even as Washington and Tehran consider a return to the 2015 accord meant to rein in Iran’s nuclear program.
- Business Insider
After a chaotic year, Biden moves to reclaim the USPS, despite a defiant Postmaster General Louis DeJoy
Biden nominated three people to open positions on the agency's governing board, who, if confirmed by the Senate, would create a Democratic advantage.
- Business Insider
Donald Trump has fought hard to keep his personal tax returns, and the Trump Organization's a secret. The Supreme Court just let prosecutors get them.
- Reuters Videos
The UK’s top court has unanimously ruled that a British-born woman who went to Syria as a schoolgirl to join Islamic State should not be allowed to return.The Supreme Court said on Friday (February 26) Shamima Begum cannot come back to Britain to challenge the government taking away her citizenship because she poses a security risk.She left London in 2015 when she was 15 years old and went to Syria via Turkey with two school friends, where she married an IS fighter. Since that time she gave birth to three children, all of them died.Now aged 21, Begum is being held in a detention camp in Syria.President of the UK Supreme Court Robert Reed said on Friday "The right to a fair hearing does not trump all other considerations, such as the safety of the public".It was stated that Begum can still pursue her appeal against the revoking of her citizenship, but she cannot do that in Britain.This decision overturns a ruling made by the Court of Appeal last year saying she could only have a fair appeal if she were allowed back to the UK.The case has provoked heated debate in Britain, pitting those who say she gave up her right to citizenship by traveling to join IS against those, including Human Rights groups who argue she should not be left stateless but rather face trial in Britain.
Some on-screen love interest age gaps are surprising, and other times, actors are almost the same age as their on-screen children.