Jul. 11, 2019

REUTERS

President Donald Trump plans to meet with prominent conservative social media figures on Thursday at a White House forum where he is set to reiterate frustrations with big tech firms for allegedly suppressing conservative voices.

Alaska's governor won a showdown on Wednesday with lawmakers trying to reverse his bid to slash spending on higher education by 40%, but opponents vowed to keep fighting the unprecedented cut, which university officials have warned would wreak havoc.

Roundups of undocumented immigrant families will start Sunday in 10 U.S. cities, fulfilling a hardline immigration stance from U.S. President Donald Trump which will be a key issue in his 2020 re-election bid, the New York Times reported.

Israeli soldiers mistakenly shot a Hamas operative on Thursday who had been trying to prevent Palestinians from approaching the Israel-Gaza border, the Israeli military said.

Three Iranian vessels tried to block a tanker passing through the Strait of Hormuz but backed off when confronted by a Royal Navy warship, the British government said on Thursday, raising the stakes in a test of nerves between Tehran and the West.

Britain has recommended all British-flagged ships go to a heightened state of security in the Strait of Hormuz, Sky News reported on Thursday, citing unnamed maritime industry sources.

The U.N. Human Rights Council voted on Thursday to set up an investigation into thousands of killings in Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte's so-called 'war on drugs' - a step that activists said was long overdue.

The Trump administration has withdrawn a rule that it had said would lower drug prices by ending the system of prescription drug after-market discounts called rebates that drugmakers pay to pharmacy benefit managers.

The retreat from agricultural lending by the nation's biggest banks comes as shrinking cash flow is pushing some farmers to retire early and others to declare bankruptcy.

Lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives said on Thursday they have sent letters seeking documents and information from three companies responsible for detaining illegal immigrants arrested by U.S. border agents.

As NASA scrambles to meet U.S. President Donald Trump's mandate to return humans to the moon by 2024, two longtime heads of NASA's human exploration wing were demoted Wednesday in a slew of administrative shakeups, officials said in an internal memo.

AP Top Stories

Mandatory evacuations were ordered southeast of New Orleans on Thursday as the city and a surrounding stretch of the Gulf Coast braced for a possible hurricane over the weekend that could unload heavy rain and send water spilling over levees.

Iran's Revolutionary Guards said Thursday that the United States and Britain will "strongly regret" the seizure of a tanker off Gibraltar. "If the enemy had made the smallest assessment they wouldn't have done this act," said Rear-Admiral Ali Fadavi, deputy commander in chief of the Revolutionary Guards, referring to the seizure of an oil tanker late last week by Gibraltar's police aided by British Royal Marines.

India has successfully test-fired a vertical deep dive version of BrahMos, the world's fastest supersonic cruise missile, that can now change the dynamics of conventional warfare...the upgraded version of the missile with enhanced range of up to 500 km is also ready. Both of these new variants will feature the Mach 2.8 speed of the original BrahMos missile, roughly three times the speed of sound.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday invoked an unlikely ally while defending his opposition to reparations for slavery: former President Barack Obama.

Japan's Hayabusa2 space probe made its second touchdown on a distant asteroid on Thursday, in a bid to collect mineral samples that could reveal more about the solar system's evolution.

Regime and Russian air strikes on northwestern Syria on Wednesday killed 11 civilians including four children and knocked a hospital out of service, a monitor said.

California has become the first state to offer taxpayer-funded health benefits to young adults living in the country illegally.

BBC

France has approved a digital services tax despite threats of retaliation by the US, which argues that it unfairly targets American tech giants. The 3% tax will be levied on sales generated in France by multinational firms like Google and Facebook.

A US couple are suing a fertility clinic, saying the company implanted their embryo into a different woman. The woman gave birth to twins in March, only for DNA tests to allegedly show the babies were not related to her or even to each other.

A European Vega rocket has been lost shortly after blast off, the commercial space company Arianespace said. It is the first time in 15 launches that a Vega rocket has failed.

WND

Thirty years of increasingly liberal attitudes towards gay sex may be coming to an end after the number of people who said they considered it wrong rose for the first time since the Aids crisis.

A Minnesota city council's decision to stop reciting the Pledge of Allegiance at the start of its meetings drew protesters Monday night. Council Member Tim Brausen explained the council "concluded that in order to create a more welcoming environment to a diverse community we're going to forgo saying the Pledge of Allegiance before every meeting."

Walmart is leaving the firearms business in New Mexico later this month after the state expanded background checks last week to nearly all firearms and required licensed dealers to facilitate private party transfers.

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