LIBERAL LOGIC: Ocasio-Cortez’ Top Staffer Says Trump ‘Stole’ 2016 Election Using ‘Electoral College’

LIBERAL LOGIC: Ocasio-Cortez’ Top Staffer Says Trump ‘Stole’ 2016 Election Using ‘Electoral College’

LIBERAL LOGIC: Ocasio-Cortez’ Top Staffer Says Trump ‘Stole’ 2016 Election Using ‘Electoral College’

Embattled Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’ Chief of Staff bizarrely accused President Trump this week of “stealing” the 2016 election by defeating Hillary Clinton in the Electoral College. “I used to like the idea of the popular vote until I lost it but managed to steal the election anyway because of the electoral college,” posted Saikat Chakrabarti […]

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PROMISE KEPT: Mike Pompeo Unveils NEW SANCTIONS on Iran, Cites ‘Nuclear and Missile’ Programs

PROMISE KEPT: Mike Pompeo Unveils NEW SANCTIONS on Iran, Cites ‘Nuclear and Missile’ Programs

PROMISE KEPT: Mike Pompeo Unveils NEW SANCTIONS on Iran, Cites ‘Nuclear and Missile’ Programs

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo unveiled a series of crippling new sanctions on Iran Friday; citing the country’s ongoing “nuclear and missile” programs and blasting the regime’s “growing influence” in the region. “The Trump administration announced Friday that it is slapping new sanctions on more than two dozen Iranian individuals involved in the country’s nuclear […]

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COMEY RETURNS: Disgraced FBI Boss Pens Scathing Op-Ed, Says Trump ‘UNFIT’ to be President

COMEY RETURNS: Disgraced FBI Boss Pens Scathing Op-Ed, Says Trump ‘UNFIT’ to be President

COMEY RETURNS: Disgraced FBI Boss Pens Scathing Op-Ed, Says Trump ‘UNFIT’ to be President

Former FBI Director James Comey penned a scathing op-ed for the New York Times this week; saying he “believes” Donald Trump is “unfit to be the President of the United States” ahead of Robert Mueller’s impending report. “The country is eagerly awaiting the special counsel Robert Mueller’s report. Many people know what they want it […]

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Vic salmonella egg scare linked to NSW

An outbreak of a rare salmonella strain in NSW may be the source of the infection at a Victorian poultry farm, prompting an egg recall across four states.

N.S. hiring 8 new specialists to work with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

The specialists will be divided into two teams. One will be based in Cape Breton and the other will stay in Halifax.

Jury awards woman $29 million in Johnson & Johnson baby powder lawsuit

The company has 11,000 lawsuits pending related to asbestos-tinged baby powder.

Asia Breaking News

Bali police shoot dead Russian after violent robbery

Bali police have shot dead a Russian man after a violent robbery at a money exchange office, officials said Friday, with two more accomplices arrested and several others on the run.

Thai princess who stood for PM attends Shinawatra Hong Kong wedding

The princess whose shock candidacy in Thailand’s general election sent jitters through the country attended a glitzy wedding for ex-premier Thaksin Shinawatra’s daughter in Hong Kong on Friday, just two days before polling day.

Trump says he is withdrawing earlier North Korea-related sanctions

U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday said he was ordering the withdrawal of recently announced North Korea-related sanctions imposed by the U.S. Treasury Department.

Europe Breaking News

Arrests shut down illegal TV streaming gang

The gang behind the net TV services offered access to hundreds of channels in 30 countries.

Brexit: MoD prepares for no-deal in Whitehall bunker

Defence officials say the preparations at their Whitehall HQ are part of wider cross government action.

Italy bus attack thwarted by ‘hero’ teenager who contacted police

He hid his phone and called for help after the driver allegedly threatened to kill 51 children.

Africa Breaking News

Rescue, Relief Efforts Underway in Cyclone-Hit Southern Africa

The Red Cross says it its deploying two major emergency response units to the port city of Beira in Mozambique to provide services for thousands of people affected by last week’s Cyclone Idai, one of the most destructive storms to hit southern Africa in decades. One unit is expected to provide basic sanitation facilities for up to 20,000 people, and the other is expected to produce as much as 225,000 liters of clean water each day, enough to help 15,000 people struggling to survive the massive flooding that has followed the storm. Jamie LeSueur, head of Red Cross operations in Mozambique, said in a statement that aid workers are most concerned about preventing the spread of waterborne disease. She said the emergency response deliveries will help protect against that. “More help is needed, and we are continuing to do all we can to bring in more resources and reach more people,” she said. Helicopters are conducting food drops over villages that were destroyed and cut off from the outside world after the cyclone hit Beira, then swept inland to neighboring Zimbabwe and Malawi. Aid officials say an untold number of survivors are clinging to treetops or are trapped on rooftops of houses that remain submerged by floodwaters. Death toll expected to increase The combined death toll in Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi has risen to at least 437 people, a number that is expected to climb as the floodwaters recede and search crews enter the damaged areas. The U.N. says the official death tolls from the governments are: Mozambique, 242; Zimbabwe, 39; and Malawi, 56. President Filipe Nyusi of Mozambique has said he expects the death toll to exceed 1,000 in his nation alone. Mozambique began three days of official mourning Wednesday. Aid agencies said they were prepared for the cyclone but not the massive floods that followed. Mozambique was hardest hit as a result of rivers flowing downstream from its neighbors. In Beira, Manuel Jeque Francisco said he hopes to rebuild the private Young Leaders School that he directs. It serves 150 students from preschool through third grade. “Since my school was all destroyed,” the 30-year-old told VOA in a phone interview, he has begun a fundraising campaign on his Facebook page. “Just help us bring back the smiles of our students,” he asked. Aid donations The U.N. World Food Program said it was transporting enough aid for 600,000 people across the three nations. The U.N. said it has allocated $20 million from its central emergency response fund and urged other donors to contribute. “Now that the flood waters are coming down, we are shifting to a different stage in the response,” said Gemma Connell, the head of office of the U.N.’s humanitarian regional office for Southern and Eastern Africa. “This stage is that we have to get the response that we can to everyone in need through a combination of air and on ground, but we have to do that cognizant of the restraints we face.” She said aid workers need fuel and other essentials to keep the response operation running smoothly. The African Union has contributed $350,000 to the three storm-stricken countries. The European Union announced an initial aid package valued at nearly $4 million. Britain and the United Arab Emirates have also promised aid. The Indian Defense Forces have sent a medical team and South Africa’s Air Force has been assisting with search and rescue operations. The U.S. State Department said the United States is supporting relief efforts “in coordination with our partners.” The U.S. Agency for International Development said in a statement Wednesday that it “has mobilized $700,000 in total assistance to support emergency water, sanitation, hygiene and shelter needs in Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi.” Eye-witness accounts In Zimbabwe’s hard-hit eastern province of Manicaland, a teacher in the city and district of Chimanimani said the cyclone has left him “totally traumatized at the moment.” The man, who declined to give his name in his voicemail account for VOA’s Zimbabwe Service, said he was sleeping when the rain began during the night. Then came strong winds, he said.  “That wind is what brought the heavy volume of water. … I don’t know how we managed to escape, but we managed to survive with the kids, but it was tough. There were other people who were with us at the school. It hurt, I don’t want to lie to you!” The cyclone also has uprooted Mai Manzu, whose home was in Buhera, another district in Manicaland. “My house was taken by Cyclone Idai,” she said in a voicemail, adding that her uncle also lost his home. Both had been staying in Gutu to help ailing relatives. While they were gone, “Everything has been washed away, including the food.” While Zimbabwe’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa and his administration have faced criticism over an alleged lack of preparedness for and slow response to the crisis, a caller in Bulawayo expressed only gratitude. “Really, they are trying and the guys are on the ground, trying to do everything,” a man named Mokem said in a WhatsApp voicemail to VOA’s Zimbabwe Service. “… But of course there are some people who will always find wrong things out of everything you’ve done. I want to thank the government of Zimbabwe, I want to thank Mnangagwa for the effort. I mean, it’s evident that he’s trying, left, right and center, to help the situation.” Contributors include the VOA Africa Division’s Ndimyake Mwakalyelye (Zimbabwe Service), Amancio Vilanculos (Portuguese Service), Margaret Besheer at the United Nations and Carol Guensburg.

Germany Questions ex-Stasi Agents on Lockerbie Plane Bombing

Prosecutors in Berlin and the neighboring German state of Brandenburg are interviewing former members of East Germany’s secret police about the 1988 Lockerbie plane bombing, according to officials and media reports. All 259 people on board and 11 people on the ground were killed when Pan Am Flight 103 ?blew up over the Scottish town of Lockerbie on its way to New York and Detroit on Dec. 21, 1988. Berlin prosecutors said Thursday on Twitter they have received a request for assistance from Scottish authorities “on the basis of which several alleged Stasi employees are questioned, including in Berlin.” German news agency dpa reported that prosecutors in Frankfurt an der Oder, 80 kilometers (50 miles) east of Berlin, received similar requests. The ex-Stasi agents are considered possible witnesses, not suspects. According to German daily Bild, which first reported the story, almost 20 former Stasi employees are being sought for questioning in the Lockerbie bombing. Libyan Abdelbaset al-Megrahi was convicted of the bombing in 2001. He maintained his innocence until death in 2012, and Al-Megrahi’s family is seeking to overturn his murder conviction, citing concerns about the evidence. Bild reported that Scottish prosecutors are investigating whether the Stasi agents may have been part of a plot to bomb the plane, which was ordered by then-Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi. Most of those questioned were members of the Stasi’s Department 22, which had contacts with extremist groups in Western Europe, the paper reported.

UN Calls for More Relief for Democratic Republic of Congo

The United Nations humanitarian chief and the U.N. agency for child welfare, UNICEF, are calling on the new government of the Democratic Republic of Congo to commit humanitarian aid to people in war-torn areas where some 13 million people are still struggling for access to food, housing and education after years of violent conflict. UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore and Undersecretary for Humanitarian Relief Mark Lowcock returned from a trip to the DRC this week calling for “urgent and sustained funding”  to help some 4 million malnourished children, as well as vulnerable communities like the disabled. The U.N. representatives met with President Felix Tshisekedi and had what they called “constructive discussions” with him on humanitarian aid. “In conflict-affected areas of the country,” Fore said, “children and young people have been recruited as fighters, sexually assaulted and denied education, health, and protection services.” The representatives also met with health minister Oly Ilunga to discuss the recent Ebola virus outbreak in Beni and Butembo. The United Nations says over 1,000 children have been separated from their parents or orphaned due to Ebola, and in this outbreak, children account for one-third of all Ebola cases. Lowcock, the humanitarian relief authority, said the key to defeating Ebola is community involvement. “Only if local people are fully involved and consulted can the outbreak be defeated,” he said. “That means engaging them actively in the response, as well as doing better to meet their wider needs.” Fore, the director of UNICEF, called on the new government of DRC and the international community to “do better for children.”

Tech News

Big tech companies cast as monopolies in UK government study

UK review of digital competition urges new rules to deal with power of tech giants

Facebook says outages due to ‘server configuration change’

Facebook says its lengthy outage problems were the result of a "server configuration change."

Cities of the future: Working to reverse the health, climate impacts of urban sprawl

A National Geographic special issue looks at the way we’ve built cities in the past and how we will reverse the effects on the climate and our own health in the future.

Canada Breaking News

Are you ready for another round of snow, Montreal?

Sorry, Montreal. Despite what the calendar says, winter isn’t over yet.

Rare, century-old steam locomotive to be restored in Alberta

It has taken eight years but a century-old steam locomotive has finally made the two-day trek from Prince Albert, Sask., to Mossleigh, Alta.

Federal government’s journalism plan prompts praise from newspapers, criticism from broadcasters

While the newspaper industry has applauded the $595-million, five-year funding commitment, a group representing Canadian broadcasters says it’s unfair.

UK Breaking News

London Waterloo: South Western Railway delays as works overrun

Passengers into London Waterloo are being disrupted after engineering works overran.

Hackney death: Met ‘too stretched to investigate’ murder case

The Met accepted an offer from City of London Police to take on the case of a man’s betting shop death.

Joel Urhie death: Man sought over fire which killed boy

Before Joel Urhie died he told his mother they were “going to make it together” out of the burning house.

Australia Breaking News

Fast-rail to ease population pressure

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says fast-rail links will ease population pressure on major cities, with $2 billion set aside for a Geelong to Melbourne line.

Cyclone Trevor set to hit NT as category 4

Cyclone Trevor is expected to smash into the Northern Territory coast as a category four storm with residents urged to prepare for destructive conditions.

Vic salmonella egg scare linked to NSW

An outbreak of a rare salmonella strain in NSW may be the source of the infection at a Victorian poultry farm, prompting an egg recall across four states.

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