Thu, Jul 05, 2018 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take

Agencies

UNITED STATES

Russia intelligence ‘sound’

A Senate committee on Tuesday said that intelligence agencies’ assessment of Russian activities during the 2016 presidential election was based on “sound” analysis not swayed by politics. The January last year intelligence assessment said that Russian activities in the run-up to the presidential election represented a “significant escalation” in a long history of Russian attempts to interfere in domestic politics, the committee said. The intelligence agencies found that Russians had engaged in cyberespionage and distributed messages through Russian-controlled propaganda outlets to undermine public faith in the democratic process, “denigrate” Democratic candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton and develop a “clear preference” for President Donald Trump. The Senate intelligence committee’s report comes two weeks before Trump is scheduled to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki.

ECUADOR

Ex-president faces arrest

A court on Tuesday ordered the arrest of former president Rafael Correa over alleged links to the kidnapping of an opponent in Colombia. The National Court of Justice said Judge Daniella Camacho “resolves to impose preventive detention” against Correa — who is based in Brussels — and has alerted Interpol. Correa, president from 2007 to last year, was one of the feistiest characters in Latin American politics. He now lives in his wife’s native Belgium, but is under investigation at home for involvement in the kidnapping of former lawmaker Fernando Balda in 2012. Correa questioned the motivation for the case, after he and his former ally, President Lenin Moreno, struggled for control of their deeply divided leftist ruling Country Alliance party. Balda considered himself a persecuted politician under Correa’s government. Last month, a judge ordered Correa to appear in court every two weeks to assist the investigation.

UNITED STATES

Hawaii bans sunscreens

Hawaii Governor David Ige on Tuesday signed legislation that would ban the sale of sunscreens containing two chemicals believed to harm coral reefs. The move makes Hawaii the first US state to enact a ban on oxybenzone and octinoxate. “This is just one small step toward protecting and restoring the resiliency of Hawaii’s reefs,” Ige said at a signing ceremony for the bill, which takes effect in 2021. Ige said the state would also need to continue other efforts to protect coral, including fighting invasive species, pollution from land runoff and climate change. Sunscreen containing oxybenzone and octinoxate would only be available to those with a prescription from a physician.

UNITED KINGDOM

Arrest in baby killings case

British police on Tuesday arrested a female healthcare worker on suspicion of murdering eight babies and trying to kill six others at a hospital neonatal unit in the northwest of England. Detectives began investigating the deaths of babies at the Countess of Chester Hospital in Chester more than a year ago, after the hospital reported a higher than expected mortality rate, which it could not explain, on the unit that cares for premature babies and infants needing special care. The hospital asked police to “rule out unnatural causes of death.” The investigation initially focused on the deaths of eight babies. Police said that they are investigating the deaths of 17 babies and 15 “non-fatal collapses” at the unit between March 2015 and July 2016.

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