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HeadlinesJuly 03, 2018

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Pompeo to Head to North Korea for Third Time

Jul 03, 2018

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is preparing to head back to North Korea to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. The trip comes as a number of news reports—citing unnamed U.S. intelligence officials—are raising questions about Kim’s commitment to denuclearize.

U.N. Urges Jordan to Open Border as 270,000 Syrians Flee Fighting in Daraa

Jul 03, 2018

The United Nations is urging Jordan to keep its border open as more than 270,000 Syrians have fled the southwestern city of Daraa due to fierce fighting. At least 40,000 Syrians are currently massed near the border with Jordan trying to reach safety. Meanwhile, the Israeli military is sending armored and artillery forces into the Israeli-occupied Syrian territory of the Golan Heights.

Federal Judge: U.S. Can’t Arbitrarily Detain Asylum Seekers

Jul 03, 2018

In immigration news, a federal judge has ruled the Trump administration may not arbitrarily detain people seeking asylum. The judge ruled asylum seekers who have passed a credible fear interview should be given humanitarian parole, not indefinite detention. The suit was brought by the American Civil Liberties Union, Human Rights First and the Center for Gender and Refugee Studies.

HHS Refuses to Say How Many Separated Children Remain in Custody

Jul 03, 2018

The Department of Health and Human Services is refusing to disclose how many migrant children separated from their parents at the border they are still holding. Last week, HHS Secretary Alex Azar said 2,047 separated minors were still in the care of the Office of Refugee Resettlement. But the department has refused to give updated numbers even though the Trump administration is facing a July 10 court-imposed deadline to reunite all separated children under the age of 5 with their parents.

18 Arrested in Los Angeles at ICE Protest

Jul 03, 2018

In Los Angeles, 18 people were arrested on Monday during a protest outside the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement office.

3-Year-Old Ethiopian Refugee Dies After Stabbing at Birthday Party in Idaho

Jul 03, 2018

A 3-year-old child refugee from Ethiopia has died after being stabbed in an attack during her birthday party in Boise, Idaho. Police said eight other people, including five children, were also wounded. Many of the other victims were also refugees who had fled violence in Syria, Iraq and Ethiopia. Police have arrested a 30-year-old man from Los Angeles who had been staying in the same apartment building. Boise Police Chief William Bones condemned the attack.

Police Chief William Bones: “Our victims are some of the newest members of our community. They’re victims from their past homes who have fled violence from Syria, Iraq and Ethiopia. Our suspect is a man with an extensive criminal record spanning multiple states, who has spent time in prison and whose past criminal violations do include violence against others.”

Trump Refuses to Lower Flags for Victims of Capital Gazette Shooting

Jul 03, 2018

In Maryland, the first funeral was held Monday for the five victims of last week’s shooting at the Capital Gazette newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland. At the funeral, Samantha Hiaasen remembered her father, the journalist Rob Hiaasen.

Samantha Hiaasen: “My dad is my best friend. He is my hero. He is my strength. He is the purest form of happiness I’ve ever felt in my life.”

The gunman who attacked the newspaper—Jarrod Ramos—is facing five counts of first-degree murder. He had previously filed an unsuccessful defamation lawsuit against the paper. While the shooting was the deadliest attack on journalists since 9/11, the Capital Gazette is reporting President Trump has refused to lower flags to honor the five victims.

Rhode Island Files Landmark Lawsuit Against 21 Oil Companies

Jul 03, 2018

As a deadly heat wave continues throughout the Northeast, the state of Rhode Island has filed a groundbreaking lawsuit against 21 oil companies, including BP, Chevron, ExxonMobil and Shell. The state accuses the companies of “knowingly contributing to climate change, and causing catastrophic consequences to Rhode Island, our economy, our communities, our residents, our ecosystems.”

EPA Chief Scott Pruitt Keeps Secret Calendar to Hide Meetings with Industry Figures

Jul 03, 2018

The climate change-denying EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt is facing yet another scandal. CNN is reporting Pruitt kept a secret calendar and schedule in an attempt to hide his meetings with many industry executives. In one case, a meeting with the CEO of coal producer Alliance Resource Partners was listed on Pruitt’s secret calendar but not his public calendar. This comes as one of Pruitt’s former top aides has revealed Pruitt once asked her to help find his wife a job as a fundraiser at the Republican Attorneys General Association.

“I Urge You to Resign”: A Mother Confronts Pruitt at Restaurant

Jul 03, 2018

Meanwhile, on Monday, Scott Pruitt fled a restaurant after he was confronted during lunch by a schoolteacher holding her child. The woman, Kristin Mink, posted a video of their interaction online.

Kristin Mink: “This is my son. He loves animals. He loves clean air. He loves clean water. Meanwhile, you’re slashing strong fuel standards for cars and trucks for the benefit of big corporations. You’ve been paying about 50 bucks a night to stay in a D.C. condo that’s connected to an energy lobbying firm, while approving their dirty sands pipeline. We deserve to have somebody at the EPA who actually does protect our environment, somebody who believes in climate change and takes it seriously for the benefit of all of us, including our children. So, I would urge you to resign before your scandals push you out.”

Pruitt did not respond, but he left soon after.

Trump Meets with Four Possible Supreme Court Nominees

Jul 03, 2018

The Trump administration is rushing to nominate a replacement for Justice Anthony Kennedy on the Supreme Court. On Monday, Trump interviewed four conservative judges. Trump is expected to announce his pick next Monday.

Michael Cohen Indicates He Will Work with Prosecutors

Jul 03, 2018

President Trump’s longtime attorney Michael Cohen has given his first media interview since FBI agents raided his home and office in April as part of a probe into possible bank and tax fraud. Speaking to ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, Cohen indicated he would be cooperative with prosecutors. He also directly criticized Russia for interfering in the 2016 election.

Trump Urges NATO Allies to Increase Military Spending

Jul 03, 2018

Tension is rising between the United States and some of its NATO allies ahead of next week’s NATO summit in Brussels. The New York Times is reporting President Trump recently sent sharply worded letters to the leaders of Germany, Belgium, Norway, Canada and other NATO allies, complaining that they are spending too little money on military expenses.

New Charges Against Harvey Weinstein Could Result in Life Sentence

Jul 03, 2018

The Manhattan district attorney has announced new criminal charges against film producer Harvey Weinstein. The new charges could bring the disgraced Hollywood mogul a life sentence. In May, Weinstein was arrested on charges related to sexually assaulting two women. The new indictment involves a third woman. A total of more than 100 women have accused him of sexual misconduct.

Thailand Races to Rescue Youth Soccer Team Trapped in Cave

Jul 03, 2018

In Thailand, rescuers are racing to free 12 members of a youth soccer team and a coach who have been trapped in a flooded cave for 10 days. On Monday, divers found the teammates and coach alive, but they have been unable to rescue them yet.

Report: Melania Trump Made Over $100K in Royalties from Photos Licensed to Media

Jul 03, 2018

President Trump’s financial disclosure form has revealed that first lady Melania Trump earned between $100,000 and $1 million in royalties in 2017 from the photo service Getty Images. NBC News reports that Melania Trump had a deal with Getty for the use of nearly 200 photos. The agreement stated that the photos of her that it licensed to news outlets had to be used in positive coverage only.

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