UN cites possible crimes against humanity in China’s Xinjiang
GENEVA (AP) — A long-awaited report from the UN human rights office says China’s discriminatory detention of Uyghurs and other predominantly Muslim ethnic groups in the western region of Xinjiang could amount to crimes against humanity. The report released Wednesday calls for an urgent response to allegations of torture and other rights violations in Beijing’s campaign to eradicate terrorism in Xinjiang. UN human rights chief Michelle Bachelet dismissed China’s vocal pleas to her office not to release the report. Beijing argues that the report is part of a Western campaign to smear China’s reputation. The report broadly corroborates previous reports by advocacy groups and cites “patterns of torture” and arbitrary detention under China’s counter-extremism policies.
Obstruction is now at the center of the Trump documents investigation
WASHINGTON (AP) — An FBI investigation into the presence of top-secret information at Mar-a-Lago is focused on whether former President Donald Trump’s team obstructed the investigation. A filing filed Tuesday night alleges that government records were covered up and suppressed and that law enforcement officials were misled about the continued presence of classified documents on the property. This allegation does not necessarily mean that Trump or anyone else will ultimately face charges. But it could pose the most direct legal threat to Trump and those in his orbit, in part because Justice Department officials have historically viewed obstruction as an aggravating factor that favors criminal prosecution in investigations involving the mishandling of classified information.
Reported sexual assaults in the US military increase by 13%
WASHINGTON (AP) — Reports of sexual assaults in the U.S. military jumped 13% last year, led by significant increases in the Army and Navy as bases began to emerge from pandemic restrictions and as public places would reopen. US defense and military officials also told The Associated Press that nearly 36,000 service members said in a confidential survey they had experienced unwanted sexual touching. That’s a dramatic increase from the roughly 20,000 people who said so in a similar 2018 survey. The latest numbers are sure to anger Capitol Hill lawmakers who have criticized Pentagon efforts to get crime under control. sex and misconduct.
Serena beats No. 2 seed Kontaveit at US Open to reach 3rd place
NEW YORK (AP) — Serena Williams knocked out No. 2 seed Anett Kontaveit 7-6 (4), 2-6, 6-2 in the second round of the US Open to ensure the Grand Slam on 23 occasions will play at least one more singles match. Williams, 40, has hinted this will be the last tournament of his illustrious career. Williams missed about a year of action before returning to the tour in late June at Wimbledon. She lost in the first round there and was 1-3 in 2022 at the US Open, where she is 2-0 so far this week. She beat Danka Kovinic in the first round before moving on against Kontaveit on Wednesday night in front of a packed house at Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Jackson’s water crisis forces residents to find alternatives
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – People line up for water in Jackson, Mississippi, after the city’s water system partially failed. Some homes and businesses have running water, but many do not. The Pearl River flooding compounded long-standing problems at one of the two water treatment plants. President Joe Biden has declared an emergency over water issues in the Mississippi capital. Biden called the city’s mayor on Wednesday to discuss response efforts. A city news release said the main water treatment plant had “issues with water chemistry” on Wednesday, which led to lower water production. This caused the water tanks to run out and the water pressure to drop sharply.
Peltola defeats Palin to win Alaska House special election
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Democrat Mary Peltola won the special election for the lone U.S. House seat in Alaska, beating a field that included Republican Sarah Palin. Peltola, who is Yup’ik, will become the first Alaska Native to serve in the House and the first woman elected to the Alaska House seat, held for 49 years by Republican Don Young. Young died in March. This was the first statewide ranked-choice voting election in Alaska. Peltola’s victory is a boon for Democrats, especially after better-than-expected performances in special elections nationwide this year following the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade. Peltola says she is honored and touched by the support she has received.
US clears updated COVID boosters targeting new variants
WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. regulators have authorized updated COVID-19 boosters, the first to directly target today’s most common omicron strain. The decision made on Wednesday by the Food and Drug Administration changes the recipe for the shots made by Pfizer and its rival Moderna. The hope is that the modified boosters will mitigate yet another winter surge. Until now, vaccines have targeted the original coronavirus. The new boosters are half the original recipe and half protection against the latest omicron builds. Before injections begin, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention must recommend who should receive the extra dose. CDC advisers will debate this Thursday.
UN inspectors visit Ukrainian nuclear power plant in war zone
KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — United Nations inspectors head to Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant. It is a long-awaited mission that the world hopes will help secure the Russian-held facility in the middle of a war zone and avert catastrophe. Underlining the danger, Kyiv and Moscow again accused each other on Wednesday of attacking the area around Europe’s largest nuclear power plant. In recent days, the plant was temporarily taken out of service due to a fire on the transmission line. This heightened fears that the fighting could lead to a massive radioactive leak or even a reactor meltdown. The risks are so severe that authorities have started distributing anti-radiation iodine tablets to nearby residents.
New York to restrict carrying guns after Supreme Court ruling
NEW YORK (AP) — New York City will begin posting signs proclaiming the iconic tourist destination Times Square as a “gun-free zone.” The 25-block business district in midtown Manhattan is arguably the busiest in the United States. Under a sweeping new gun law that comes into force on Thursday, it would be one of dozens of ‘sensitive’ places including parks, churches and theaters that would be banned from guns . The new rules seek to address a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that further expanded Second Amendment gun rights when it struck down a century-old law that required gun owners to prove that ‘they had a strong need to carry.
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