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Highly edible human, designer of all things digital, co-founder of Pendect, creative native, constant wa/onderer, morse code lady, full-time dog pillow.
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Regional News • Americas • United States
Giuliani says he can't defend Trump at impeachment trial due to him being a witness
Giuliani says he can't defend Trump at impeachment trial due to him being a witness
Credit: Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)

Rudy Giuliani has announced he won't be part of Donald Trump's legal team when Trump faces his second impeachment trial for "incitement of insurrection" in the US Senate, citing to his involvement in the "Save America Rally" on January 6 where he called for a "trial by combat".

“Because I gave an earlier speech. I am a witness and therefore unable to participate in court or Senate chamber,” Giuliani told ABC News.

Regional News • World
Independent review panel criticises China and WHO for acting too slowly on Covid-19
Temperature monitoring area at Beijing Capital International Airport, 31/03/2020
Temperature monitoring area at Beijing Capital International Airport, 31/03/2020 Credit: N509FZ, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

The Independent Panel for Pandemic Preparedness and Response has criticised China and the World Health Organization for not having acted fast enough to avert catastrophe during the early stages of the Covid-19 outbreak. The Switzerland-based panel added that there was "potential for early signs to have been acted on more rapidly" in China at the start of the crisis.

"What is clear to the panel is that public health measures could have been applied more forcefully by local and national health authorities in China in January (2020)," the report said.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Pelosi opposes installing Trump loyalist as new NSA General Counsel
Pelosi opposes installing Trump loyalist as new NSA General Counsel
Credit: Nancy Pelosi, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has demanded acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller to "immediately cease" installing Trump's National Security Council staffer Michael Ellis as new NSA General Counsel.

"I ask that you immediately cease plans to improperly install Michael Ellis as the new NSA General Counsel. Additionally, with a copy of this letter to the Acting Inspector General, I am also requesting an investigation into the circumstances of the NSA General Counsel selection process. I have serious concerns about your statement that this process was free from political interference," Pelosi wrote. "Public reporting indicates that Mr. Ellis, a relatively recent law school graduate with a limited resume, was selected due to interference by the White House, and was chosen over much more qualified candidates. Moreover, Mr. Ellis has been reportedly involved in highly questionable activities that are disqualifying – including the infamous 2017 “midnight run” to launder intelligence information through Rep. Devin Nunes and with efforts to shield information about President Trump’s July 2019 call with the President of Ukraine."

Regional News • Americas • United States
FBI is vetting National Guard ahead of Biden's inauguration amid fears of insider attack
FBI is vetting National Guard ahead of Biden's inauguration amid fears of insider attack
Credit: Georgia National Guard, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

All 25,000 National Guard troops tasked with securing the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on January 20 are being vetted by the Pentagon and the FBI amid fears of a coordinated insider attack.

"This type of vetting often takes place by law enforcement for significant security events. However, in this case the scope of military participation is unique. The DC National Guard is also providing additional training to service members as they arrive in DC that if they see or hear something that is not appropriate, they should report it to their chain of command," so Christopher Miller, the acting defence secretary.

Regional News • World
Biden to not lift international travel restrictions
An officer with U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Field Operations welcomes and clears international travelers arriving at Dulles International Airport in Dulles, Va., March 13, 2020.
An officer with U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Field Operations welcomes and clears international travelers arriving at Dulles International Airport in Dulles, Va., March 13, 2020. Credit: U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Jen Psaki, President-elect Joe Biden’s press secretary, dismissed Donald Trump's order to lift the ban on travellers from Europe and Brazil that has been in place since March 2020, instead announced plans to "strengthen public health measures around international travel."

"With the pandemic worsening, and more contagious variants emerging around the world, this is not the time to be lifting restrictions on international travel," Psaki tweeted. "On the advice of our medical team, the Administration does not intend to lift these restrictions on 1/26. In fact, we plan to strengthen public health measures around international travel in order to further mitigate the spread of COVID-19."

Regional News • Americas • United States
All 50 US states prepare for possible violence ahead of Biden's inauguration
All 50 US states prepare for possible violence ahead of Biden's inauguration
Credit: The National Guard / via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

After the FBI issued a warning of potential violence in all 50 state capitals ahead of President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration on January 29, state officials are preparing for potentialyl armed and violent protests. National Guard forces have been activated in California, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Kentucky and Florida. Washington, DC is bracing for further violent protests following the attack on the US Capitol earlier this month.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Adam Schiff: Trump should be denied daily intelligence briefings
Adam Schiff: Trump should be denied daily intelligence briefings
Credit: Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.0)

House Intelligence Chair Adam Schiff said Sunday that President Donald Trump should be barred from receiving daily intelligence briefings after he leaves office.

"There's no circumstance in which this president should get another intelligence briefing, not now, not in the future," Schiff told on CBS’ in an interview. "I don't think he can be trusted with it now and in the future, he certainly can't be trusted."

Regional News • Europe • Austria
Austria extends lockdown to February 7, mandates FFP2 masks
Austria extends lockdown to February 7, mandates FFP2 masks
Credit: Herzi Pinki, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

The Austrian government has extended the nationwide lockdown to February 7, citing the new mutation B.1.1.7 that was first discovered in the United Kingdom and the daily case count of well over 1000 newly confirmed infections. Chancellor Kurz promises "complete normality" until summer and warned that "we still have two to three tough months ahead of us".

FFP2 masks will be mandatory in all stores and on public transport and strongly recommended everywhere else from January 25 on. Starting February 8, non-essential businesses will be able to reopen while hotels, restaurants and the cultural sector will have to remain closed awaiting further evaluation in February.

Arts, Entertainment, Culture • TV & Movies
10 new episodes of 'Sex and the City' announced, but Kim Cattrall won't return
Instagram post announcing the new season of Sex and the City
Instagram post announcing the new season of Sex and the City Credit: HBO (Instagram Reproduction)

A Sex and the City revival is heading to the small screen, more than 20 years after the hit series made its debut, but only Sarah Jessica Parker, Cynthia Nixon and Kristin Davis will return. Kim Cattrall, who played the popular character, Samantha, will not feature.

The new series, named 'And Just Like That...', will consist of 10 half-hour episodes and production will begin in late spring.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Mitch McConnell calls for "painstaking investigation and thorough review" into assault on U.S. Capitol
Mitch McConnell calls for "painstaking investigation and thorough review" into assault on U.S. Capitol
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter

Following the violent protests of Pro-Trump supporters at the US Capitol Wednesday, current Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell issued a statement saying the events represent "a massive failure" of "institutions, protocols, and planning that are supposed to protect the first branch of our federal government" and calls for a "painstaking investigation and thorough review."

"Yesterday represented a massive failure of institutions, protocols, and planning that are supposed to protect the first branch of our federal government," so McConnell said. "A painstaking investigation and thorough review must now take place, and significant changes must follow. Initial bipartisan discussions have already begun among committees of oversight and Congressional Leadership."