Nov 19, 2019

REUTERS

Democrats responded skeptically on Monday to President Donald Trump's declaration that he might be willing to testify in his impeachment inquiry and also said they were examining the truthfulness of his testimony in the Russia 2016 election interference probe.

Four more witnesses were set to appear on Tuesday in the third public hearing of the House of Representatives impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump including two – Alexander Vindman and Kurt Volker – who previously have offered contrasting testimony behind closed doors.

The Trump administration is set to harden the rules this week on those allowed to seek asylum in the United States, as it attempts to stem a wave of migration on its southern border with Mexico.

Protesters prevented Lebanon's parliament from holding its first session in two months on Tuesday, escalating a wave of demonstrations against rulers blamed for steering the country towards economic collapse.

Britain's opposition Labor Party on Tuesday took aim at "obscene" billionaires, pledging a radical redistribution of wealth to cut the power of the super-rich and to introduce policies including a pay cap at some companies.

A scheme for entrepreneurs founded by Prince Andrew has taken down the logos of its corporate sponsors from its website, as firms and charities distance themselves from the British royal over a sex scandal.

Security forces have "obliterated" Islamic State (IS) militants in Afghanistan, President Ashraf Ghani said on Tuesday, hours after a prisoner swap with Taliban insurgents raised hopes of a lull in violence in the country.

A Swedish prosecutor dropped an investigation into an allegation of rape against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, ending the near decade-old case that had sent the anti-secrecy campaigner into hiding in London's Ecuadorian embassy to avoid extradition.

U.S. homebuilding rebounded in October and permits for future home construction jumped to a more than 12-year high, pointing to strength in the housing market amid lower mortgage rates.

Boeing's 737 MAX took center stage at the Dubai Airshow on Tuesday as airlines announced plans to order up to 50 of the jets worth $6 billion at list prices despite a global grounding in place since March.

Emirates, the largest customer of Boeing's upcoming 777x aircraft, wants the plane to be put through "hell on Earth" in testing to ensure it is safe to fly and meets performance expectations.

AP Top Stories

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Monday that the United States is terminating the sanctions wavier related to Iran's Fordow nuclear plant, adding that it is closely monitoring ongoing protests in Iran and is deeply concerned by reports of several fatalities.

Some families of the 39 Vietnamese people found dead in a truck in Britain last month will take on steep loans from the government to repatriate their relatives' remains, they told AFP Tuesday. Vietnam's foreign ministry said they would help to bring either the ashes or the bodies of the victims back – but that families would have to cover the cost of repatriation.

The price to bring ashes back in a jar was $1,774, while the fee to repatriate a body in a coffin was $2,858.

Mexico, Uruguay and representatives of the Caribbean Community on Monday rejected the use of force and human rights violations in Venezuela, urging a peaceful and democratic solution to solve the crisis in the troubled South American nation.

A Spanish National Court official confirmed Monday that a former Venezuelan spymaster accused of attempting to "flood" the United States with drugs remains missing since an order for his arrest pending extradition was issued this month.

BBC

Lebanon's parliament, besieged by angry protesters Tuesday, for a second time postponed a session to discuss draft laws which critics charge would let corrupt politicians off the hook.

Bolivian officials have flown basic provisions into the capital, La Paz, amid reports of food and fuel shortages.

People in Sydney woke up to a city shrouded in smoke on Tuesday, as scores of bushfires rage across the region. Strong winds overnight brought smoke from fires inland, pushing the air quality in Australia's largest city to beyond "hazardous" levels at times.

Ghanaians are being encouraged to rethink what it means to be a man by a campaign called #IAmUNLEARNING. Free workshops and summits will be offered to help men "unlearn what doesn't serve them, their families, their community, society".

A court in Zimbabwe has awarded transgender activist Ricky Nathanson $25,000 in compensation after police arrested her in 2014 for wearing female clothes and using a ladies toilet in a hotel in the second city, Bulawayo.

Millions of Spanish mobile phone users are being tracked this week as part of the government's census, in a move that critics fear is a step closer towards spying on the population.

WND

Thousands of Disney customers say they have been hacked after signing up to its online streaming service. Since Disney+ went live, hackers have stolen thousands of customers' accounts and put them up for sale on the dark web, according to a report.

The Student Senate at Grand Valley State University has voted to stop reciting the Pledge of Allegiance at its meetings, with some arguing it's non-inclusive and represents an oppressive government.

A new report from the Center for Military Readiness reveals 84% of the women who take a new Army combat-fitness test fail.

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