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Iran denies US claim it's helping Venezuela oil sector

Venezuela has the world’s largest proven oil reserves (AFP Photo/JUAN BARRETO) More Tehran (AFP) – Iran on Friday rejected US claims it is helping Venezuela to rebuild its oil industry, saying the accusations are designed to increase pressure and disrupt the two countries’ trade ties. Elliott Abrams, the envoy leading ... Read More »

Sudan criminalises female genital mutilation (FGM)

There has been a global trend towards banning FGM More Sudan has criminalised carrying out female genital mutilation (FGM), making it punishable by three years in jail. Some 87% of Sudanese women aged between 14 and 49 have undergone some form of FGM, according to the UN. In Sudan it ... Read More »

Clashes in Yemen UNESCO site threaten rare species

SANAA, Yemen (AP) — Explosions rocked Yemen’s Socotra archipelago, a UNESCO World Heritage site, Friday, as an armed unit funded by the United Arab Emirates fought to wrest control of the provincial capital Hadebo, the former prime minister and witnesses said. The unit is part of the UAE-backed separatist Southern ... Read More »

Why the WHO, often under fire, has a tough balance to strike in its efforts to address health emergencies

<figcaption class="C($c-fuji-grey-h) Fz(13px) Py(5px) Lh(1.5)" title="Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, right, has his temperature taken as he arrives at Ruhenda airport in Butembo in eastern Congo, June 15, 2019. AP Photo/Al-hadji Kudra Maliro” data-reactid=”18″> Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, right, ... Read More »

The Senate’s coronavirus testing conundrum

with help from Heather Caygle and Andrew Desiderio NO TEST FOR THE WEARY — Senators are returning to the Capitol next week, but one tool that could make them safer won’t be available: across-the-board testing. During a conference call with top GOP officials yesterday, the Capitol physician said that they ... Read More »

In a US now in puppy love, Labs still tops, but corgis rise

FILE – In this Feb. 8, 2020 file photo, Tag, a Labrador retriever weaves, through a series of poles during Westminster Kennel Club’s agility competition in New York. Labrador retrievers remain the nation’s most popular purebreds for a record-extending 29th year. That’s according to American Kennel Club rankings being released ... Read More »

Virus-hit Iran holds drive-in religious ceremonies

Deprived by the coronavirus of the opportunity to pray at mosques during Ramadan, Iranians are jumping into their cars to attend drive-in religious ceremonies (AFP Photo/STR) Tehran (AFP) – With mosques in Iran closed as it battles the coronavirus, worshippers have adopted the novel solution of getting behind the wheel ... Read More »

The daily business briefing: May 1, 2020

1. <p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Another 3.8 million U.S. workers filed new claims for unemployment benefits last week, the Labor Department reported Thursday. The new figures bring the total over six weeks to more than 30 million as the coronavirus crisis continues to shut down businesses. The ... Read More »

Jobless fret as rent comes due again amid virus outbreak

PHOENIX (AP) — The rent is due again for more than 30 million people around the U.S. who have filed for unemployment benefits after losing work in the coronavirus pandemic. Jason W. Still has been waiting six weeks for his first unemployment check since losing his job as a cook ... Read More »

Unsealed Docs Reveal Strzok Stopped FBI From Ending Flynn Probe, Despite ‘Derogatory’ Info: “Hey Don’t Close RAZOR”

Internal FBI documents unsealed Thursday indicate that Peter Strzok — the now-disgraced anti-Trump former head of FBI counterintelligence — ordered the investigation of former national security adviser Michael Flynn to remain open even after it was slated to be closed due to a lack of so-called “derogatory” information, Fox News reported. The new ... Read More »

VIRUS DIARY: In a morning run, a tonic for pandemic anxiety

In this April 20, 2020, photo, a duck and her ducklings waddle along the greenbelt in Scottsdale, Ariz. For many, a morning run offers a quiet interlude in chaotic lives. Amid the coronavirus pandemic, they have become even more essential: an endorphin-rich routine that provides fresh air and clears the ... Read More »

In the Face of a Global Farming Crisis, Taiwan's Tano Security is Helping to Solve the World Bank's Agriculture Challenges

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="TAIPEI, Taiwan, April 30, 2020 /PRNewswire/ –&nbsp;Undoubtedly, the agriculture industry will become even more important these next few decades. Yet, the global farming sector is facing ever-increasing risks as natural disasters become more frequent and disruptive as a result of climate change. What’s ... Read More »

Mitch McConnell’s big bet

with help from Marianne LeVine THE MITCH IS BACK — The House decided it wasn’t safe to return to Washington next week — so then why is the Senate still coming back? That’s the question on the top of some minds, as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is standing by ... Read More »

AI in Africa: Teaching a bot to read my mum's texts

Bonaventure Dossou is working on an AI model to help translate Fon to French More Bonaventure Dossou has been thinking a lot about how to improve phone conversations with his mother. She often sends him voice messages in Fon, a Beninese language, as he is away studying in Russia. He, ... Read More »

Iran virus death toll surges past 6,000

Since April 11, Iran has allowed a phased reopening of its economy saying that it sees no swift end to the coronavirus pandemic (AFP Photo/ATTA KENARE) More Tehran (AFP) – Iran’s health ministry said on Thursday that 71 new deaths from the novel coronavirus took the country’s overall toll past ... Read More »

10 things you need to know today: April 30, 2020

1. <p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="A federal trial found that the Gilead Sciences antiviral drug remdesivir can speed the recovery of COVID-19 patients, and the Food and Drug Administration reportedly plans to issue an emergency approval to start using it, Trump administration officials said Wednesday. "This is ... Read More »

AP-NORC poll: Seeking virus data, people struggle with trust

In this image from a video interview, John Manley, 58, a civilian U.S. Army public affairs officer at U.S. Africa Command in Stuttgart, Germany, and wife Heidi Mathis, 60, answer questions during an interview. Manley also spent 21 years in the Marines. Americans are grappling with an essential question as ... Read More »

Navy to widen carrier probe, delaying decision on commander

In this March 18, 2020, photo provided by the U.S. Navy, an F/A-18F Super Hornet launches from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) in the western North Pacific Ocean. (Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Nicholas V. Huynh/U.S. Navy via AP)) <p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) ... Read More »

We’ve Lost Time in the Race for a Covid-19 Cure

(Bloomberg Opinion) — It’s been three months since the World Health Organization declared the novel coronavirus a public health emergency of international concern on its way to becoming a full-blown pandemic.  Despite much hype around several existing drugs, we still haven’t found a proven, evidence-based treatment for Covid-19. The stakes are clearly high, ... Read More »

Wary Russian doctors count their own dead from virus

A woman walks past a makeshift memorial for Russian medical workers who have died from the COVID-19 disease, set up outside the local health department in Saint Petersburg. More than 70 have died so far. (AFP Photo/OLGA MALTSEVA) Moscow (AFP) – When Russian cardiologist Alexei Erlikh and several colleagues started ... Read More »

VIRUS DIARY: A positive test, then a Mumbai hotel quarantine

In this April 24, 2020, photo, Associated Press photographer Rafiq Maqbool’s daughters are seen on a screen as they video chat with their father, at a hotel room where Maqbool was placed in quarantine in Mumbai, India. Maqbool tested positive for COVID-19 with dozens of other journalists, who were then ... Read More »

Half of world’s workers at risk as coronavirus devastates jobs

Indian migrant workers – Pallava Bagla/Corbis news More <p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Half of the world's workers could lose their livelihoods due to the coronavirus pandemic, the&nbsp;International Labour Organisation has warned,&nbsp;with the poorest&nbsp;likely to suffer the brunt of the damage.” data-reactid=”17″>Half of the world’s workers could lose ... Read More »

NYC mayor takes heat after lashing out at Jewish funeral

FILE – In this March 31, 2020 file photo, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio speaks at the USTA Indoor Training Center where a 350-bed temporary hospital will be built in New York. De Blasio oversaw the dispersal of a large, tightly packed Hasidic Jewish funeral and lashed out ... Read More »

House and Senate split over returning

with help from Marianne LeVine DROP IT LIKE IT’S A HOTBED — Well that was fast. Less than 24 hours after announcing the House will return to Washington next week, Democratic leaders decided to reverse course, citing advice from the Capitol physician who warned lawmakers could be at risk. In ... Read More »

Rep. Justin Amash Announces Presidential Exploratory Committee: “I’m Excited & Honored To Be Taking These First Steps”

Rep. Justin Amash (I-MI) announced Tuesday night that he is launching an exploratory committee for a presidential campaign. Amash, a Republican-turned-Independent congressman and a vocal Trump critic, announced his libertarian bid on Twitter, along with launching a website. “Today, I launched an exploratory committee to seek the @LPNational’s nomination for ... Read More »