Dec 13, 2019

REUTERS

A U.S. House committee is scheduled to vote on charges against President Donald Trump on Friday, setting up a likely showdown by the full House of Representatives next week that could make Trump the third president in U.S. history to be impeached.

U.S. asylum seekers sent to Guatemala under a new Trump administration program have mostly preferred to return to their country of origin instead of staying in the Central American nation, Guatemala's Interior Minister said on Thursday.

Britain was speeding towards Brexit on Friday after Prime Minister Boris Johnson won a resounding election victory, ending three years of uncertainty since Britons voted to leave the European Union.

South Africa's government on Friday asked industry for the cheapest and quickest options to ease a power crunch, as cabinet held an emergency meeting to try and resolve a crisis threatening growth in Africa's most industrialized economy.

Zimbabwe's President Emmerson Mnangagwa vowed on Friday not to revert to using the U.S. dollar after a new local currency plunged against the greenback since its introduction this year, fueling inflation and economic hardship.

Hong Kong police have earned an average of $11,000 for each officer in overtime pay during the last six months of anti-government protests, with the total overtime bill coming to more than $120 million, government figures showed on Friday.

U.S. retail sales increased less than expected in November as Americans cut back on discretionary spending despite a strong labor market, raising fears of a much faster slowdown in fourth-quarter economic growth than currently anticipated.

Fifty-two countries and other donors have pledged $23.5 billion in new funds for the world's poorest states, pushing replenishment of the International Development Association (IDA) fund to a record $82 billion, the World Bank said on Friday.

AP Top Stories

The Pentagon on Thursday flight-tested a missile that had been banned under a treaty that the United States and Russia abandoned last summer. Some U.S. arms control advocates said the test risks an unnecessary arms race with Moscow.

Christians in the Gaza Strip will not be allowed to visit holy cities such as Bethlehem and Jerusalem to celebrate Christmas this year, Israeli authorities said on Thursday.

An internal investigation by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), which was recently made public, predicted that the Boeing 737 Max crash could crash 15 times more over its lifespan. 15 crashes of full 737 Max planes - if they were as catastrophic as the two that took place - would kill as many as 3,450 people.

A Scandinavian woman says she was forced by Cypriot police to withdraw a rape claim or face arrest, in a striking parallel to the case of a British teenager who was allegedly gang raped on the Mediterranean island.

The Navy has laid the keel for its first new, Flight III DDG 51 surface warfare destroyer armed with improved weapons, advanced sensors and new radar 35-times more sensitive than most current systems, changing attack and defensive options for the surface fleet.

A Texas man who killed a prison officer was executed late Wednesday, bringing to 22 the number of people put to death in the US this year.

On Friday and Saturday, December 6-7, soldiers, airmen, military families, and civilians of the Vicenza Military Community participated in a two-day clean-up of Venice following widespread flooding during the annual "acqua alta," or high water, that struck the iconic island city on November 12.

Authorities on Friday recovered the bodies of six people who died after one of New Zealand's most active volcanoes erupted on Monday, bringing the known death toll to 14.

American Airlines is apologizing after a passenger says she was forced to remove her "Hail Satan" shirt or get off the flight.

BBC

The US and China have announced a preliminary trade agreement. The so-called phase one deal will see billions of dollars in tariffs removed or delayed.

The UN has accused the Chilean police and armed forces of committing serious human rights violations in their response to recent mass demonstrations. UN investigators say they have verified four cases of unlawful deaths involving state agents. It notes 345 people have suffered eye trauma from pellets, with torture and sexual violence also highlighted.

The newly elected governor of Kentucky Andy Beshear has restored the right to vote to up to 140,000 people with non-violent felony convictions - a move praised by rights groups.

A free, three-digit suicide hotline is being set up for Americans after it was approved by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on Thursday. When it becomes operational, the 988 dial-code will provide mental health support and ease pressure on the 911 line, which covers all emergencies.

Qantas has picked Airbus jets to fly its ultra-long haul routes, dealing a blow to rival plane maker Boeing. The airline selected the A350-1000 for its planned non-stop Sydney to London service, which would be the world's longest commercial flight.

WND

A new report from the pro-abortion Abortion Care Network found that almost one third of all independent abortion facilities have closed since 2012.

In the midst of a difficult impeachment fight, President Donald Trump asked 50 Christian leaders to come into the Oval Office and pray for him last week.

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