Thursday, 12 January 2017

Democrats Question Carson's Qualifications To Be Housing Chief

While Ben Carson's celebrated career as a neurosurgeon leaves no doubt about his medical credentials, his lack of experience in government and public policy are raising questions about his qualification to serve as housing secretary.

President-elect Donald Trump wants Carson, a former rival for the Republican presidential nomination, to lead the Department of Housing and Urban Development, a sprawling agency with 8,300 employees and a budget of about $48 billion.

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CNN Says Its Reports On Donald Trump Intel Documents Different From Buzzfeed's

CNN, the news division of Time Warner Inc, said on Wednesday its decision to publish "carefully sourced reporting" on unverified intelligence documents concerning President-elect Donald Trump is "vastly different than BuzzFeed's decision to publish unsubstantiated memos."

CNN's statement came after Trump called the news outlet "fake news" and refused to take a CNN reporter's questions at his first formal news conference since his Nov. 8 electoral win.

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Belgium Charges 2 New Suspects Over Paris Attacks: Prosecutor

Belgium has charged two new suspects in connection with the November 2015 Paris attacks claimed by the ISIS group which left 130 people dead, federal prosecutors said on Thursday.

The two -- identified as Farid K. and Meryem E. B. -- are "suspected to have provided Khalid El Bakraoui with the false documents afterwards used in preparation of the Paris attacks," a statement said.

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London's Heathrow Airport Cancels 80 Flights After Snow Forecasts

Heathrow Airport said it will cancel 80 flights out of the 1,350 scheduled on Thursday as it prepares for forecasts for snow later in the day.

Heathrow, Britain and Europe's busiest airport, said that wintry weather would mean that fewer aircraft can take off and land at its two runways.

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Wednesday, 11 January 2017

US Will Build A Wall And Mexico Will Pay, Reiterates Donald Trump

Donald Trump vowed on Wednesday to forge ahead with plans for a wall on the southern US border after taking office, and said Mexico would reimburse the United States for the cost.

"I could wait about a year and a half until we finish our negotiations with Mexico, which we'll start immediately after we get to office, but I don't want to wait," Mr Trump told a news conference.

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Taiwan Scrambles Jets, Navy As China Aircraft Carrier Enters Taiwan Strait

Taiwan scrambled jets and navy ships on Wednesday as a group of Chinese warships led by China's sole aircraft carrier sailed north through the Taiwan Strait, the latest sign of heightened tensions between Beijing and the self-ruled Taiwan.

The Soviet-built Liaoning aircraft carrier, returning from exercises in the South China Sea, was not trespassing in Taiwan's territorial waters but entered its air defence identification zone (ADIZ) in the southwest, Taiwan's defence ministry said.

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Donald Trump Briefed On Potentially Compromising Report

Top intelligence officials last week told President-elect Donald Trump about an unsubstantiated report that Russia had compromising personal and financial information about him, a US official says.

The briefing about the document was first reported by CNN. A summary of the allegations was separate from a classified assessment of Russia's suspected attempts to meddle in the U.S. presidential election. Trump and President Barack Obama were briefed on the intelligence community's findings last week.

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Monday, 9 January 2017

Florida Police Officer Fatally Shot, Deputy Dies In Manhunt

A man wanted for killing his former girlfriend fatally shot an Orlando, Florida, police officer on Monday, authorities said, prompting a manhunt and a reward of up to $60,000.

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German Government Says Closely Examining Reports Of Russian Fake News Campaigns

German government officials on Monday said they were carefully examining an unprecedented proliferation of fake news items amid intelligence agency reports of Russian efforts to influence the country's parliamentary election in September.

The BfV domestic intelligence agency also confirmed that a December cyber attack against the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) used the same tools seen in a 2015 hack of the German parliament that was attributed to the APT28 Russian hacking group.

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Chinese State Tabloid Warns Trump, End One China Policy And China Will Take Revenge

State-run Chinese tabloid Global Times warned U.S. President-elect Donald Trump that China would "take revenge" if he reneged on the one-China policy, only hours after Taiwan's president made a controversial stopover in Houston.

Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen met senior U.S. Republican lawmakers during her stopover in Houston on Sunday en route to Central America, where she will visit Honduras, Nicaragua, Guatemala and El Salvador. Tsai will stop in San Francisco on Jan. 13, her way back to Taiwan.

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US Says Navy Ship Fired warning Shots At Iranian Vessels

A US Navy destroyer fired three warning shots at four Iranian fast-attack vessels after they closed in at a high rate of speed near the Strait of Hormuz, two US defense officials told Reuters on Monday.

The incident, which occurred Sunday and was first reported by Reuters, comes as US President-elect Donald Trump prepares to take office on January 20. In September, Trump vowed that any Iranian vessels that harass the US Navy in the Gulf would be "shot out of the water."

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No 'Cherry Picking' For Britain In Brexit Talks: German Chancellor Angela Merkel

The European Union must consider limiting Britain's access to its market if London fails to accept the bloc's 'four freedoms' in Brexit negotiations, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Monday.

Ms Merkel's remarks add to pressure on British Prime Minister Theresa May, who has been criticised for hinting at a "hard Brexit" - in which border controls are prioritised over market access - and had to clarify her comments.

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Saturday, 7 January 2017

FBI Releases Information On San Bernardino Shooter iPhone Hacking But Vendor Remains Unidentified

The FBI have released 100 pages of heavily censored documents related to its agreement with an unidentified vendor to hack into an iPhone used by one of the attackers involved in the San Bernardino shootings.

The records were provided in response to a federal lawsuit filed against the FBI by The Associated Press, Vice Media and the parent company of USA Today.

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Germany Says Can't Figure Out Trump's Foreign Policy Goals

German officials who have held talks with members of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump's transition team have not been able to figure out what kind of foreign and security policy his administration wants to pursue, a spokesman said on Friday.

"It ultimately remains the case that there still is no clear, coherent and comprehensive picture of what kind of foreign and security policy the new Trump administration wants to pursue in the world," Foreign Ministry spokesman Martin Schaefer told a regular government news conference.

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Report On US Election Hacking Says Russia Plans To Do More

The new, declassified report on Russian efforts to influence the presidential election has a troublesome prediction: Russia isn't done intruding in US politics and policymaking.

Immediately after Election Day, Russia began a "spear-phishing" campaign to try to trick people into revealing their email passwords, targeting US government employees and think tanks that specialize in national security, defense and foreign policy, the report released on Friday said.

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'It Is Over': Biden Quiets Democrats As Congress Meets To Make Trump Victory Official

Congress made President-elect Donald Trump's victory official Friday, meeting in joint session to tally electoral votes ahead of Trump's inauguration on Jan. 20.

The final count was 304 to 227, with two "faithless" Republican electors having chosen candidates other than Trump when they cast their ballots last month. Five Democratic electors broke with their party's nominee, Hillary Clinton.

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Suspected Florida Shooter Is A Troubled Iraq War Veteran

An Iraq war veteran took a gun out of his checked luggage and opened fire in a crowded baggage claim area at Fort Lauderdale's airport on Friday, killing five people before being taken into custody, authorities said.

Eight other people were wounded in the shooting rampage, which sent panicked travelers running for cover inside the terminal and onto the tarmac.

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Friday, 6 January 2017

SHOCKING: Multiple People Shot At Ft. Lauderdale Airport

Authorities say multiple people have died after a lone suspect opened fire at the Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, international airport.

The Broward County Sheriff's Office tweeted the information following Friday afternoon's shooting.

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VP Biden To President-elect Trump: 'Grow Up'

Vice President Joe Biden told President-elect Donald Trump Thursday to "grow up."

Biden dismissed a Trump complaint on Twitter about how the Obama administration has handled the transition. The vice president told "PBS NewsHour" in an interview: "Grow up, Donald. Grow up. It's time to be an adult."

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US Envoys Appointed By Barack Obama Asked To Quit By Inauguration Day

US President-elect Donald Trump's transition team has issued a blanket mandate requiring politically appointed ambassadors installed by President Barack Obama to leave their posts by Inauguration Day, the US ambassador to New Zealand said on Friday.

"I will be departing on January 20th," Ambassador Mark Gilbert said in a Twitter message to Reuters.

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Obama Calls Facebook Live Attack ‘Despicable,’ But Says He’s Optimistic About Race Relations

In a new interview, President Obama has denounced what he called the “despicable” video on Facebook Live of what appears to be an assault on a mentally challenged white teenager by four young black people in Chicago. However, he said he does not believe racial tensions are getting worse.

Speaking with Chicago’s local CBS affiliate Thursday, the president pointed to the gruesome incident as an example of how technology is helping to draw attention to racial issues that have long existed below the surface.

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Austrian Defense Minister Eyes ‘Protective Zones’ To Rid EU of Illegal Migrants

Austria has proposed tough new anti-migrant measures, with its Defense Minister calling for a pan-European cap on migration, external application centers for refugees and “protective zones” to hold and deport illegals from the EU.

The first step of Hans Peter Doskozil’s plan to fix migration problems in the EU involves establishing limiting migration numbers and “effective protection of the EU’s external borders,” Germany's Bild newspaper reported on Thursday.

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Wednesday, 4 January 2017

Gambia Army Chief Stands By Embattled President Jammeh

Gambia's army chief reaffirmed his loyalty to embattled President Yahya Jammeh on Wednesday in the face of a possible regional military intervention to enforce the result of an election that dealt the longtime leader a surprise defeat.

Jammeh initially accepted his defeat in the Dec. 1 election but a week later reversed his position, vowing to hang onto power despite a wave of regional and international condemnation.

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WikiLeaks Urges Leaks Of Departing President Obama White House Documents

WikiLeaks appealed Tuesday for leaked White House documents before President Barack Obama leaves office, as its founder Julian Assange again denied Russia was the source of hacked Democratic party emails that hurt Hillary Clinton's bid for the US presidency.

"System admins: Don't let the White House destroy US history again! Copy now, then send to WikiLeaks at your leisure," the secret-spilling website announced on Twitter, shortly before Assange gave an in-depth interview to US network Fox.

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Trial Of Equatorial Guinea Leader's Playboy Son Adjourned In France

A French court agreed on Wednesday to adjourn the corruption trial of the playboy son of Equatorial Guinea's leader at the request of his defence team.

Dates for the resumption of the trial, which opened on Monday, were being discussed, with the presiding judge in favour of June 19.

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Czech Interior Ministry Seeks Right For Citizens To Use Arms Against Terrorists

The Czech Republic is considering amending its constitution to allow citizens to use legally obtained arms for defense against terrorists following the attacks in Berlin and Nice.

“The terrorist attacks we have seen in Western Europe and elsewhere have increased security concerns among the public,” Czech interior Minister, Milan Chovanec said as quoted by the country’s Radio Praha.

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US Can't Afford 'Twitter Presidency': Senate Democrats

Democratic leader in the Senate Chuck Schumer slammed President-elect Donald Trump for his Twitter habit, claiming the US cannot afford "Twitter presidency" on the first day of the 115th session of the Congress.

"'Making America Great Again' requires more than 140 characters per issue," Xinhua news agency quoted Schumer as saying in his first speech on Tuesday as the Senate minority leader.

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