RationalWiki:What is going on in the world?/August 2018

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August 2018[edit]

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8NetherlandsDutch lawmaker Geert Wilders cancels plans for a Mohammad cartoon contest over safety concerns.
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16 Ukraine Alexander Zakharchenko, Prime Minister of the disputed Donetsk People's Republic, has been killed in an explosion at a cafe.
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19 United Kingdom Self-styled "Paedophile Hunter" Stevie Trap has been found guilty of malicious communications after Facebook followers vandalised an accused groomer's house, then deleted the allegations to avoid association.
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6 United Kingdom Naa'imur Zakariyah Rahman is to be jailed for life over his plot to assassinate Theresa May.
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22 European Union The European Commission proposes to abolish daylight savings time throughout the union, after a survey.
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11 United States The FDA expands a recall of homeopathic producer King Bio's water-based products, as it turns out that the water used in their brand of snake oil is filled with all kinds of microbes, including one which causes bacterial meningitis.
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6 New ZealandAustralia Immigration New Zealand has allowed Chelsea Manning entry into the country, as part of her book tour. Although Australia has refused her entry, based not passing "the character test".
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0 New Zealand One New Zealand town has announced that no more cats will be allowed to live there anymore.
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14 United States A NPR investigative report revealed that an annual Department of Education study of school shootings was highly flawed, with 116 of 240 shootings reported during the 2015-2016 school year found to be unverifiable.
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8Switzerland The Swiss government has recommended a “no” vote in an initiative to make political financing more transparent, by requiring all donations over CHF 10 000 (US$10 300) to be made open. They say that it is unnecessary and “hardly compatible with the Swiss system”.
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14United Kingdom Payday money-lender Wonga, has gone into administration after compensations over excessive usury caused irreparable damage.
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6United States Legal action against an alleged New Mexico terror training camp has collapsed when the state initially failed to file credible charges, then failed to attend a preliminary hearing. The five individuals in the case are now under house arrest.
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-3United Kingdom Labour MP Frank Field is to resign from the Labour Party in the continuing deterioration between the party and Jewish groups.
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3United States White House ethics lawyer Stefan Passantino is to resign.
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7United States Cuomo collected $25,000 from Weinstein's attorney's firm six days before suspension of probe
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7Netherlands Pakistan Anti-Islam politican Geert Wilders has effectly asked for a re-run of the Muhammed drawing competition. Following the announcement, a Pakistani cricketer has put a bounty of $24 000 on his head.
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9SwedenReports from the Swedish Defence Research Agency, states that the number of active automated Twitter political accounts has more than doubled in the last few weeks from 500 to 1200. A large majority of them, aiming at immigration and crime and are affiliated to far-right parties, the Sweden Democrats and Alternative for Sweden.
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15United States President Trump has accused Google; Facebook and Twitter of only showing news stories critical of him, with adviser Larry Kudlow suggesting the federal government should regulate social media to give a pro-Trump bias make news more fair.
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7United States Don McGahn is to resign from his position as a White House lawyer, after it emerged he cooperated with the Mueller investigation.
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12United KingdomBrazilGoats 'drawn to happy human faces'
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18United StatesCalifornia will become the first US state to abolish monetary bail.
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8GermanyViolence has erupted in the German city of Chemnitz between leftist and far-right protesters.
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7United States 81% of economists predict recession in 2020-2021.
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20European Union Switzerland Decay of the Higgs boson into two bottom quarks finally observed.
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5United StatesUnited KingdomNew study into the replicability of social science experiments finds that the original result could be reproduced in only 13 out of 21 cases. Experiments which they failed to reproduce include one that showed that looking at a statue of Rodin's The Thinker reduced religious belief.
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20AfghanistanThe leader of the Afghan branch of DAESH was killed in an airstrike.
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14United StatesMass shooting at video game tournament in Jacksonville leaves multiple dead.
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8IranIranian parliament votes to sack the finance minister.
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16United StatesDespite the events of the past week, Trump's approval rating remains virtually unchanged, though 56% of voters say he has been dishonest about the Mueller probe.
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9Vatican City Carlo Maria Viganò the Vatican's ambassador to the US between 2011 and 2016, claims Popes Benedict and Francis knew about sexual abuse allegations against Cardinal McCarrick and calls on Francis to resign.
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14Ireland Under 130,000 people attend Papal Mass in Phoenix Park, Dublin. 500,000 tickets were available, only around a quarter have showed up.
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32United States US Senator John McCain has died at 81, just 1 day after announcing he was stopping his cancer treatment.
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9United States California Republican Duncan Hunter has been indicted for using $250,000 in campaign funds for personal use.
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15United StatesA federal judge struck down most of Trump's executive orders limiting the power of federal employee unions.
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13MyanmarBangladeshOver 15,000 Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh protest against their genocide.
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22United StatesPolling shows that 70% of Americans support single-payer healthcare, including a slim majority of Republicans.
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6United StatesDOJ announces a whopping 19 arrests of non-citizen voters.
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4United StatesPalestineThe US is cutting over $200 million in aid to the Palestinians.
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8United States Senator John McCain discontinuing cancer treatment.
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11United States National Enquirer hid damaging Trump stories in a safe.
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0United States As a side-effect of the recent sexual abuse scandal in Pennsylvania, an Indiana priest has been assaulted in a revenge attack in his own chapel.
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3United Kingdom Former First Minister of Scotland Alex SalmondWikipedia has denied allegations of sexual harassment
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14United StatesTwo have been sentenced for maliciously wounding a black man during the Charlottesville rally.
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7YemenSaudi ArabiaAirstrikes by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen on an IDP camp killed at least 26 people.
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4United States Reality Winner has been found guilty of breaking the Espionage Act, for leaking an NSA report on a Russian military intelligence cyberattack on the 2016 US presidential election. She was sentenced to more than five years in prison.
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5Netherlands The liberal VVD parliamentary chairman Klaas Dijkhoff has slammed anti-vaxxers and has suggested making vaccinations against childhood diseases compulsory now that the Netherlands has fallen under the 95% level set for measles by the World Health Organisation.
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7Australia In the face of a Liberal Party leadership crisis, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has resigned to be replaced by Scott Morrison. This is likely far from the end.
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5United StatesRussia It wasn't just politics that Russian troll farms were engaged in; they also attempted to sow discord over vaccines.
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12IndonesiaIndonesian Buddhist woman jailed on blasphemy charges for complaining about the volume of her nearby mosque's call for prayers. Indonesian civil society, including two Muslim advocacy groups are working to fight this.
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13United StatesChinaThe US and China announce tariffs on $16 billion of each others' imports.
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12United StatesBetsy DeVos is reportedly considering a plan to let states use federal funds to purchase guns for schools.
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16United Kingdom A Welsh man has been sentenced to six years in prison after burning down two buildings; vandalising a town with swastika graffiti and putting up recruitment posters for an offshoot of the terrorist organisation, National Action, dubbed "System Resistance Network".
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45United States Michael Cohen, Trump's longtime lawyer and personal fixer, pleaded guilty to eight charges of bank fraud, tax fraud, and illegal campaign contributions, implicating the President in the process.
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40United StatesPaul Manafort has been found guilty on eight counts of fraud, while a mistrial has been declared on the other ten counts.
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17United StatesThe EPA unveils its new climate proposal, a weaker replacement (not to mention a coal bailout) of Obama's previous Clean Power Plan, which is estimated to lead to upwards of 1400 additional premature deaths a year due to air pollution.
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7Sweden The next plastic straws? Sweden's third largest grocery store chain Axfood, has annouced they are going stop selling single-use disposable barbecues due to being a fire risk and difficult to recycle.
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14RussiaUnited StatesMicrosoft says it has uncovered new Russian hacking attempts targeting US political groups.
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9South AfricaSouth African white farmers' land to be seized in a controversial land redistribution claim.
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15European UnionUnited Kingdom A no-deal Brexit could endanger the NHS.
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11European Union European measles cases hit record high
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8VenezuelaVenezuela devalues its currency by 95% and pegs it to a state-run cryptocurrency.
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12North KoreaSouth KoreaFamilies divided by the Korean War reunite at a tourist resort in North Korea.
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12AfghanistanThe Taliban celebrates the below ceasefire by kidnapping some 150 people.
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11AfghanistanThe Afghan government declares a three-month ceasefire with the Taliban.
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12United Kingdom A tax on plastic wastes receives broad popular support in the U.K.
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9AustriaUnited StatesDark energy might pose a challenge to string theory.
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16AustriaAustria rejects Afghan's asylum bid because he 'did not act or dress gay'
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18United StatesPresident Trump talked to veterans about Apocalypse Now and it was super awkward
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16United StatesCorey Stewart, a clown running for the United States Senate in Virginia against Senator Tim Kaine needs to stay away from Photoshop. Kaine's spokesman called Stewart “a chronic, serial liar who will say or do anything just to get attention. He thinks Virginians and all of us are stupid.”
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9ColombiaPhotos surface of 22 female Colombia National Police officers wearing their uniforms found aboard the Sea-Org ship Freewinds.
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15United StatesOhio state officials probe the advocate of Jilly Juice. To give credit where it's due, Candida: Weaponized Fungus Mainstreaming Mutancy may be the best book title since The First Blast of the Trumpet against the Monstrous Regiment of Women.
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29United StatesMore than 300 US newspapers are running editorials promoting press freedom as a result of Trump's attacks on the media.
UPDATE: The Senate has unanimously passed a resolution rebuking Trump's statement that news media is "the enemy of the people".
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22United States Illinois is suing the Chicago Trump Tower for breaking a number of environmental regulations in its use of river water for cooling. The Trump Organisation responded by declaring the suit to be politically-motivated.
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13Australia Condemnation to the Fraser Anning's "final solution" speech by all major party leaders in Australia, even his former leader Pauline Hanson "stopped clock" by comparing it to Goebbels!
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28Puerto RicoPower has been restored to Puerto Rico for the first time in almost 11 months.
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16United StatesHey, remember when people used to think measles would be gone for good? Measles outbreaks in 21 US states.
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11United StatesA grand jury report says the Pennsylvanian Catholic Church protected over 300 "predator priests".
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9United StatesNebraska carried out its first execution in 21 years, as well as the first one in the US using fentanyl.
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9United KingdomA man has been arrested on suspicion of terrorism offences after a car crashed outside the Houses of Parliament. Update: The suspect has been identified as Salih Khater, a British-Sudanese man from Birmingham. Raids have also taken place.
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17Australia An Australian senator, formerly from One Nation use his maiden speech to call for 'final solution to immigration problem'. Update: The next day on talk radio, he stated that he stands by his speech and has said that Muslims migration was like poisonous jellybeans.
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11United States American-made specialist computer case manufacturer CaseLabs has filed for chapter 7 bankruptcy and liquidation, due in part to the current American-Chinese trade war tariffs, says the company.
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8Serbia Flag of Kosovo.svg Concern in Europe after Trump propses to rejig the Serb-Kosovan border in a deal between Serbia and Kosovo.
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18United StatesFBI special agent Peter Strzok has been fired.
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29United StatesAlex Jones uploads over 50 new videos to Vimeo...and is banned within a few days.
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41United StatesThe Unite the Right 2 rally was a pathetic failure. Attendance was less than forty people, far less than the few hundred that organizer Jason Kessler predicted, and they were outnumbered by nearly a thousand counterprotesters.
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24United StatesA Florida GOP candidate is revealed to have faked her college degree.
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25United Kingdom If there was a second Brexit vote now, both a majority of voters and constituencies would vote to remain. On top of that, the most change has happened in the traditional Labour voting heartlands of the regions of North-East England and Wales.
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14United Kingdom Following the Bayer-Monsanto glyphosate trial, both of Britain's major home improvement chains Homebase and B&Q are reviewing the sale of the weedkiller.
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14United States Parker Solar Probe: NASA launches mission to 'touch the Sun'.
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20United States Renewable energy saves fresh water and creates plenty of jobs, statistics show.
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6United StatesMonsanto ordered to pay $289m damages in Roundup cancer trial.
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7ItalyItalian deputy PM Salvini orders the wording on identity card application forms for children be changed to exclude same-sex couples.
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15United States A New York woman phoned the police on a state senator because his primary campaign criticised President Trump.
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14ChinaUnited NationsThe UN is claiming it has credible evidence that China is holding about 1 million Uyghurs in internment camps
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34ChinaOrganic solar power is closer to reality. Using plastic instead of silicon, organic solar cells are much lighter, cheaper to produce, require fewer resources, and can be used in a number of places traditional solar panels can not. Historically, the issue has been that they are less efficient, but now have efficiency comparable to silicon based solar panels for only a fraction of the price.
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18JapanTokyo medical school 'changed test scores to keep women out'
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9YemenSaudi ArabiaUnited Arab EmiratesAn airstrike by the Saudi-UAE coalition in Yemen on a school bus killed dozens, including at least 29 children.
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14United StatesThe leadership of the fifth largest megachurch in the United States resigns over a sexual misconduct scandal.
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7ArgentinaThe Argentine Senate votes against legalizing abortion.
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28Saudi ArabiaCanada Saudi Arabia attempts to criticize Canada's human rights record (Not a Poe.) while at the same time continuing to use one the most barbaric methods of execution known to humankind, Crucifixion.
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11United States Though there is no far-right rally scheduled there, Charlottesville has declared a state of emergency for the one-year anniversary just in case.
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12United Kingdom Boris Johnson faces growing opposition within the Conservative Party after a joke in the Telegraph about women wearing Burqas look like criminals or walking letter-boxes was criticised by party leaders as purposely offensive; misogynistic and preventing serious discussion.
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9United States A police search at a New Mexico ranch uncovers evidence of a terror training camp preparing children to take part in school shootings.
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5United States In a bid to make trophy hunting unpopular, PETA has called on the NRA to remove Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump in exchange for $100,000.
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10United States A side-effect of the US-China trade war is the prospect of a South Carolina television factory losing its workforce.
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12Musicians only got 12% of the $43 billion the music industry generated in 2017, and it mostly came from touring
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14United StatesMexicoFederal court rules that US Border Patrol agent is not immune from a lawsuit over killing a Mexican teenager
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9United StatesGOP congressman Chris Collins has been indicted on charges of insider trading.
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11Italy Italian families are no longer obliged to have children vaccinated against measles and other infectious diseases after Italy’s upper chamber voted through legislation to remove the vaccination law.
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18United StatesEPA is now re-allowing asbestos manufacturing.
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9United StatesBosnia and HerzegovinaAccording to Mother Jones, ex-Trump campaign aides are lobbying for pro-Russian Bosnian-Sprska leaders in Washington. This included arranging meetings between the prime minister and the Tresuary-sanctioned president with Steve Bannon, Corey Lewandowski, and Dana Rohrabacher.
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14United StatesFormer Trump aide Rick Gates testifies that he and Manafort committed crimes together.
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24Saudi ArabiaCanadaSaudi Arabia freezes all new trade and investment transactions with Canada along with ordering the Canadian ambassador to leave after Canada demands activists be freed. While Egypt and Russia voiced their support for Saudi Arabia, no nations have done the same for Canada, as they have nothing to gain from getting involved.
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10United StatesIranThe first round of US nuclear sanctions on Iran go back into effect.
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28United States Donald Trump admits his son Trump Jr. met with a Russian for information on an opponent. However, he insists it was completely legal and there was no collusion.
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30United StatesFacebook bans four pages run by Alex Jones as Apple bans most of his podcasts, YouTube deletes his account, and Spotify takes down The Alex Jones Show.
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19United Kingdom A "Make Britain Great Again" has taken place in London in protest in response to Facebook's suspension of Alex Jones' personal account, resulting in an attack on a Socialist book store alongside racist chanting.
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10VenezuelaVenezuelan president Maduro survives an assassination attempt.
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12UkraineThe head of the local police department in Kyiv Andriy Kryshchenko, has suggested decriminalizing people who have small possessions of drugs. However this is opposed by the head of the national police force.
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16United StatesRepublican Michigan Supreme Court justices face political retaliation from their own party for voting in favor of allowing Michigan voters to have a say on amendments to the state constitution to end gerrymandering in Michigan.
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15United States An accountant for Paul Manafort has testified in court under immunity she altered financial records to claim the transfer of Manafort's Ukrainian money to his accounts was a loan.
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11United Kingdom Facing accusations the Labour party is institutionally racist, the Jewish Museum has chosen to turn down Jeremy Corbyn's visit. His speech has instead been published in the Guardian.
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10United States A Russian woman hired by the Secret Service at the American embassy in Moscow may have sold state secrets to FSB over a decade.
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15United States After reading 1800 documents sent to PACEI, Maine Secretary of State Matt Dunlap declares that the Trump Administration had no credibility in its claims of mass vote rigging.
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12United StatesA federal judge orders the full restart of DACA.
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19United StatesThe NRA is in deep financial trouble and is facing an existential crisis
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13United StatesDozens of goats wander throughout a neighborhood in Boise Idaho
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25AustraliaModified mosquitoes eliminate dengue fever in Australian town for first time in recent history
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22Vatican CityThe Catholic Church now considers the death penalty wrong under any circumstances.
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18United StatesThe EPA moves to repeal Obama-era fuel efficiency standards and bar California from implementing stricter ones.
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10United States An Illinois state representative has resigned following allegations he used photos of his ex-girlfriend to "catfish other men".
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11ColombiaA retired Colombian national police general gives David Miscavage an award while dressed in his uniform. The police say he wasn't authorized to do that. $cientology says otherwise.
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26United StatesApparently, Trump has never been to a grocery store in his life. He claims you need a photo ID to go grocery shopping. Maybe his idea of a balanced diet involves booze and cigarettes?
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15United StatesA Pennsylvanian Catholic diocese releases a list of over 70 of its clergy going back decades accused of child sex abuse.
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14DenmarkProtest in Denmark as the ban on full face veils comes into effect.
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17United StatesA US appeals court rules Trump's executive order barring sanctuary cities from federal funding is unconstitutional.
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17United States An entire Massachusetts town's police department has retired in protest of severe cutbacks endemic to small-town America.
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-14United Kingdom British far-right activist Tommy Robinson has had his conviction for contempt of court quashed and is out on bail pending a retrial. As yet his bail conditions (and likelihood of breaking them) are unclear.