Feb. 6, 2020

REUTERS

President Donald Trump was acquitted on Wednesday in his U.S. Senate impeachment trial, saved by fellow Republicans who rallied to protect him nine months before he asks voters in a deeply divided America to give him a second White House term.

President Donald Trump, facing a bruising re-election campaign and the possibility of more Democratic investigations in Congress, will make a public statement on Thursday about his acquittal on impeachment charges by a deeply divided U.S. Senate.

The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits dropped to a nine-month low last week, suggesting a tightening labor market would continue keep the longest economic expansion in history on track. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits decreased 15,000 to a seasonally adjusted 202,000 for the week ended Feb. 1.

Wall Street's main indexes were set to hit record highs at the open on Thursday as China's plan to chop additional tariffs on some American goods by 50% helped ease fears over the financial fallout of the coronavirus epidemic.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he expected China to maintain its commitment to boost purchases of American goods and service by at least $200 billion over the next two years, despite the coronavirus outbreak that has killed hundreds and jolted the Chinese economy.

An aggressive campaign by American authorities to root out Chinese espionage operations in the United States has snared a growing group of Chinese government officials, business people, and academics pursuing American secrets.

China's fast-moving coronavirus spread among passengers of a quarantined Japanese cruise liner on Thursday and dragged down production at more global businesses, as scientists across the world searched for a vaccine.

The United States and China clashed on Thursday over the issue of Taiwan's exclusion from World Health Organization (WHO) meetings, where it is represented by China, with Beijing accusing Washington of political "hype-up".

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will block New York state residents from most of its "trusted traveler" programs in response to a state law that limits cooperation with federal immigration enforcement, acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf told Fox News on Wednesday.

U.S. astronaut Christina Koch, who led the first all-female spacewalk in 2019, landed in Kazakhstan on Thursday after a record stay on the International Space Station, ending a 328-day mission expected to yield new insights into deep-space travel.

AP Top Stories

The Democratic women of Congress arrived wearing white yet again as a way to show their unity and a commitment to defending the rights of women and disenfranchised groups at the 2020 State of the Union address.

French police believe the murder of a blogger from the disputed Russian region of Chechnya in a French hotel room last week was "politically motivated," according to a French police official briefed on the case.

A cruise ship has been quarantined in Hong Kong amid concerns that three passengers who tested positive for coronavirus could cause an outbreak. None of 1,800 passengers and 1,800 crew members aboard the World Dream are allowed to leave the ship without permission.

Turkey sent more reinforcements into northwestern Syria on Thursday, setting up new positions in an attempt to stop a Syrian government offensive on the last rebel stronghold in the war-torn country, state media and opposition activists said.

This month marked 75 years since the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, a concentration camp where an estimated 1.1 million people were murdered. But it was also where 3,000 babies were born because of the brave work of a Stanislawa Leszczyńska, a Polish Catholic midwife.

BBC

A Chinese doctor who tried to issue the first warnings about the deadly coronavirus outbreak has died of the infection, Chinese media said.

A passenger plane landing at an airport in Istanbul has skidded off the runway and broken into three parts, killing three people and injuring 179 others.

Rain and floods have hit the eastern states of New South Wales and Queensland in Australia, and some drought-affected regions have received their heaviest rainfall in two years. Heavy rain in areas with no vegetation can lead to washing away of topsoil.

WND

Ancestry, the largest seller of at-home DNA tests for health and genealogy reports, is laying off about 100 people, about or approximately 6% of its total workforce. The post cites "a slowdown in demand across the entire DNA category".

According to a survey of 2,000 U.S. citizens, just one in four Americans have enough savings to cover no more than two months of bills.

Yale's health benefits now cover surgery to make men's faces look more feminine - a procedure that can run from $20,000 to $50,000.

A Hong Kong-based airline asked 27,000 employees Wednesday to take three weeks of unpaid leave to lessen the economic impact from the coronavirus that has engulfed mainland China.

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