Jan. 2, 2019

REUTERS

President Trump invited Democratic and Republican leaders in Congress to the White House for a border security briefing on the 12th day of a partial federal government shutdown triggered by the Republican president's demand for $5 billion in border wall funding.

U.S. border agents launched tear gas into Mexico early on Tuesday to deter a group of migrants that one official called "a violent mob" from crossing over from Tijuana.

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis gave his farewell message to the U.S. armed forces on Monday, telling them to "keep the faith in our country" and stand firm alongside allies after he resigned over policy differences with President Donald Trump.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Tuesday that the United States would continue to cooperate with Israel over Syria and in countering Iran in the Middle East, even as President Donald Trump plans to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria.

The top U.S general in Afghanistan told NATO troops on Tuesday to prepare themselves to deal with "positive processes or negative consequences" as peace talks between the U.S. and the Taliban to end a 17-year war gain momentum.

The U.S. Navy has informed lawmakers of its intent to pursue a block purchase of two Ford-class aircraft carriers, Senator Tim Kaine's office said on Monday, a step officials have said could save billions of dollars as the Trump administration tries to expand the size of the fleet.

The death toll from landslides and devastating floods in the central Philippines triggered by a tropical depression climbed to 85, officials said on Wednesday, and 20 people were missing as rescuers slowly reached cut-off communities.

Acting U.S. Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan told civilian leaders of the U.S. military to remember "China, China, China" even as they wage counter-insurgency battles, in remarks during closed-door talks on Wednesday recounted by a U.S. official.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo discussed Venezuela with the foreign minister of Brazil's new right-wing government on Wednesday, in the context of what he termed a joint front against authoritarian regimes in Latin America.

Sudanese authorities are blocking access to popular social media platforms used to organize and broadcast nationwide anti-government protests triggered by an economic crisis, internet users say.

A retired U.S. marine who has been detained by Russia for alleged spying was visiting Moscow for the wedding of a former fellow marine and is innocent of the espionage charges against him.

AP Top Stories

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un warned he might take a "new path" if Washington maintains sanctions amid his country's push for economic development, but experts say it may be too late to change the trajectory of negotiations.

At least eight people were injured, one seriously, when a vehicle plowed into crowds celebrating New Year's Day in Tokyo early on Tuesday.

A man injured four people in Germany after driving into a group celebrating the New Year, in what police described on Tuesday as an anti-migrant attack.

The United States and Israel officially quit the U.N.'s educational, scientific and cultural agency at the stroke of midnight, the culmination of a process triggered more than a year ago amid concerns that the organization fosters anti-Israel bias.

NASA's New Horizons spacecraft pulled off the most distant exploration of another world, skimming past a tiny, icy object 4 billion miles from Earth looks to be shaped like a bowling pin.

Pope Francis, in his first message of the new year on Tuesday, bemoaned a lack of unity across the world, and warned against a soulless hunt for profit that benefits only a few.

The 11th day of the partial federal government shutdown, which has forced furloughs of hundreds of thousands of federal government employees, has left many parks without most of the rangers and others who staff campgrounds and otherwise keep parks running.

Afghanistan's neighbors, caught off-guard by reports of U.S. plans to withdraw thousands of troops, have begun preparing for the risk that a pullout could send hundreds of thousands of refugees fleeing across their borders, diplomats say.

Beijing will not rule out the use of force to ensure the "unshakable historic task" of its complete reunification with Taiwan, Xi Jinping, the Chinese President, said on Wednesday, warning that independence for the island would bring "profound disaster."

Ocasio-Cortez has been calling for the creation of 'Green New Deal' legislation, which would eliminate much of the United States' fossil-fuel consumption. So far, Sens. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and Cory Booker, D-N.J., and 40 House Democrats have said they support the proposal, but incoming House Democratic leadership has put it on pause for now.

BBC

Two Indian women have made history by entering a prominent Hindu shrine in the southern state of Kerala, following months of protests against their entry.

As an increasing number of young South Africans reveal that their gender identities differ from their sex at birth, schools are learning about the challenges these students face.

WND

The Washington Examiner reports the FBI has barred "a record number of cases of illegal immigrants from buying guns." The FBI report lists a total of 7,836,000 cases of illegal or unlawful aliens being reported.

A new Israeli law restricting the use of cash for either wages or payments for transactions has taken effect.

German citizens who are 'intersex' - people who do not fit biologically as either male or female - will be able to choose a 'third gender option on official documents as of, January 1.

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