• North Korea's Kim shuffles nuclear talks team after defections, spying allegations
    Reuters

    North Korea's Kim shuffles nuclear talks team after defections, spying allegations

    Kim has purged and replaced many top diplomats and officials who served his father and grandfather with new, younger advisors as he gears up to meet U.S. President Donald Trump in Vietnam next week. Among the most significant changes, Kim has appointed little-known Kim Hyok Chol to spearhead working-level

  • Islamic State nears defeat in last Syrian enclave
    Reuters

    Islamic State nears defeat in last Syrian enclave

    More than 2,000 civilians left the village of Baghouz in a convoy of dozens of trucks. Coalition warplanes could be seen overhead and the sounds of intermittent gunbattles could be heard from the area, which is completely surrounded by the SDF. "The terrorists are entrenched inside, still betting

  • French TV cuts Facebook live feed from Jewish cemetery after anti-Semitic abuse
    Reuters

    French TV cuts Facebook live feed from Jewish cemetery after anti-Semitic abuse

    France 3 television said it went live from the first cemetery in the village of Quatzenheim on Tuesday as President Emmanuel Macron was visiting to pay his respects after more than 90 graves were vandalized with swastikas and anti-Semitic abuse. "We are talking about explicit death threats, comments

  • Christian Science Monitor

    No smoking: How one city is cutting the hookah haze

    No government office or police station would be complete without a haze of smoke, or desks littered with cigarette-stuffed coffee cups. Jordan is home to the second-highest smoking prevalence in the world, with more than 60 percent of adult citizens and 70 percent of adult males smoking, according to

  • Christian Science Monitor

    Who’s a populist? Democrats taking on Trump look to reclaim the mantle

    “Stop calling Donald Trump a populist,” liberal New York Times columnist Paul Krugman ordered the media last August. It’s true, Mr. Krugman wrote, President Trump does occasionally “pose” as a champion of ordinary Americans against the elite. Mr. Trump, for his part, boasts that his policies have been

  • Christian Science Monitor

    Bearing witness: When hospital work becomes a test of faith

    When Tom Catena moved to Sudan in 2008 to work as a surgeon in a remote, rebel-held territory, he first needed to earn the community’s trust. A decade into the job, Dr. Catena, who is also a Catholic missionary, leads the Mother of Mercy Hospital in the Nuba Mountains of South Kordofan, Sudan. Catena

  • Christian Science Monitor

    Trump meets his Magna Carta

    Perhaps never before in the history of Presidents’ Day has the power of an American president been so openly challenged as it was during the holiday on Feb. 18. Thousands rallied nationwide to protest President Trump’s use of emergency powers to take money for a border wall. Many in Congress plotted

  • The Latest: Valero stops importing Venezuela crude oil
    Associated Press

    The Latest: Valero stops importing Venezuela crude oil

    CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — The latest on the political crisis in Venezuela (all times local):

  • Trump likely to visit Japan in May, G20 in June
    Reuters

    Trump likely to visit Japan in May, G20 in June

    Trump is expected to become the first foreign dignitary to meet with Crown Prince Naruhito after he succeeds his father, Akihito, as emperor of Japan on May 1, NHK said. Trump will also attend the Osaka meeting of the Group of 20 largest world economies in June, the White House official said. Trump

  • May heads back to Brussels but EU not budging on Brexit backstop
    AFP

    May heads back to Brussels but EU not budging on Brexit backstop

    Prime Minister Theresa May headed back to Brussels on Wednesday to renew her quest to reopen the terms of Britain's Brexit divorce, but appears headed for disappointment. With less than six weeks until Brexit day, May met European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker hoping for progress on the

  • Zimbabwe introduces inter-bank forex market to curb black market
    AFP

    Zimbabwe introduces inter-bank forex market to curb black market

    Zimbabwe's central bank on Wednesday said it was introducing a new interbank foreign exchange system, effectively devaluing its quasi-currency which had been officially pegged at par with the US dollar. "We have provided a formal way of trading in foreign currency," Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe

  • Associated Press

    Blood of Brazil rescue workers shows high levels of metals

    SAO PAULO (AP) — Officials in Brazil say that blood and urine tests conducted on firefighters searching through muddy mine waste for missing people after a dam collapse show high levels of potentially toxic metals.

  • Russia must build own internet in case of foreign disruption: Putin
    Reuters

    Russia must build own internet in case of foreign disruption: Putin

    Russia must prepare for possible Western attempts to deny it access to the global internet by creating its own self-sufficient 'segments' of the web, President Vladimir Putin was quoted as saying on Wednesday by Russian news agencies. "I think, they (foreign countries) will think through

  • Pope strives to fight cleric sex abuse with Vatican summit
    Associated Press

    Pope strives to fight cleric sex abuse with Vatican summit

    VATICAN CITY (AP) — If Pope Francis needed a concrete example to justify summoning church leaders from around the globe to Rome for a tutorial on clergy sex abuse, Sister Bernardine Pemii has it.

  • Abuse survivors demand Vatican transparency, accountability
    Associated Press

    Abuse survivors demand Vatican transparency, accountability

    VATICAN CITY (AP) — Survivors of clergy sexual abuse met with organizers of a Vatican prevention summit Wednesday and demanded transparency, zero tolerance for abuse and for religious superiors to be held accountable when they protect priests who rape and molest children.

  • Don't blame Theresa May, EU's Juncker jokes of face wound
    Reuters

    Don't blame Theresa May, EU's Juncker jokes of face wound

    Jean-Claude Juncker cut himself shaving on Wednesday -- hardly news, even in the hothouse Brussels' EU political bubble. "I'm telling you so that you don't think it was Mrs. May who gave me this injury," the European Commission President told reporters during a brief appearance

  • Reuters

    Venezuela closes maritime border with Dutch islands to stop aid

    Venezuela's government on Wednesday said it had closed the country's maritime border with the Dutch Caribbean islands due to the opposition's plan to bring in humanitarian aid this Saturday to alleviate an economic crisis it denies exists. Vice President Delcy Rodriguez said Venezuela'

  • Israel PM deal seeks to boost ultra-right in April vote
    AFP

    Israel PM deal seeks to boost ultra-right in April vote

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu brokered an agreement Wednesday aimed at uniting ultra-right parties ahead of April elections, prompting accusations he was pandering to extremists. Netanyahu pushed for the deal to try to boost the number of seats held by right-wing parties after the April

  • Vatican envoys meet sex abuse victims ahead of conference
    AFP

    Vatican envoys meet sex abuse victims ahead of conference

    Vatican representatives met Wednesday with victims of sex abuse by Catholic priests a day ahead of a landmark conference on the protection of minors, the Holy See said. "The credibility of the Church, the Vatican and the pope are at an apocalyptic stage," Francois Devaux, co-founder of the

  • Dua Lipa, Anne-Marie lead Brit Awards nominations
    Associated Press

    Dua Lipa, Anne-Marie lead Brit Awards nominations

    LONDON (AP) — Home-grown talents Dua Lipa, Anne-Marie and George Ezra lead the nominations for the U.K. music industry's Brit Awards , whose ceremony Wednesday night will feature performances by "The Greatest Showman" star Hugh Jackman and DJ Calvin Harris.

  • Switzerland says its president didn't speak to Guaido about freezing accounts
    Reuters

    Switzerland says its president didn't speak to Guaido about freezing accounts

    Swiss President Ueli Maurer did not speak to Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido about freezing Swiss bank accounts belonging to the South American nation, a foreign ministry spokesman said on Wednesday. There was no telephone contact between Mr. Gauido and President Maurer," the spokesman

  • Associated Press

    Top Asian News 5:49 p.m. GMT

    TOKYO (AP) — With their second summit fast approaching, speculation is growing that U.S. President Donald Trump may try to persuade North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to commit to denuclearization by giving him something he wants more than almost anything else: an announcement of peace and an end to the

  • India suspends key bus service to Pakistani part of Kashmir
    Associated Press

    India suspends key bus service to Pakistani part of Kashmir

    MUZAFFARABAD, Pakistan (AP) — India halted a key bus service with the Pakistani-controlled part of Kashmir, cutting the only land route linking the divided Himalayan region, Pakistani and Indian officials said Wednesday.

  • Abuse victims demand to see pope, call for bishops to be fired
    Reuters

    Abuse victims demand to see pope, call for bishops to be fired

    The 12 victims met with five Vatican officials a day before the start of an unprecedented conference on clerical abuse that aims to guide senior bishops on how best to tackle a problem that has decimated the Church's credibility. All the survivors of abuse who took part in the meeting, which lasted

  • Hamilton expects stronger challenge from Ferrari in 2019
    Associated Press

    Hamilton expects stronger challenge from Ferrari in 2019

    MONTMELO, Spain (AP) — Ferrari's early dominance in Formula One preseason testing has caught Lewis Hamilton's attention.