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A US citizen was killed Tuesday in an attack by Islamist militants on an upmarket hotel and office complex in Nairobi, a US official said. An AFP photographer in Nairobi saw the bodies of five victims and a police source said he had seen as many as 14 dead. Al-Shabaab, the Al-Qaeda-linked Somali group that assaulted a Nairobi shopping mall in 2013, claimed responsibility for Tuesday's attack on the DusitD2 compound, which includes a 101-room hotel, spa, restaurant, and offices for local and international companies.
“I will commit to providing as much information as I can consistent with the regulations” on special counsels, Barr, President Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the Justice Department, said Tuesday in the first of two days of hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Barr, 68, has been through the confirmation process before and served as attorney general in the 1990s.
The only meaningful unity that the United Kingdom has seen in the past two years has been opposition to the Brexit deal Prime Minister Theresa May negotiated with the European Union. The defeat, as predicted, has prompted Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn to propose a vote, expected to be held on Wednesday, of no confidence in the government. When future historians consider Brexit, they will surely marvel at May’s obstinate capacity for survival in the face of unending political humiliation.
BGR has partnered with The Points Guy for our coverage of credit card products. BGR and The Points Guy may receive a commission from card issuers. With large banks like JP Morgan and American Express poised to start significantly changing up how they structure rewards associated with premium credit cards, consumers may find it trickier than ever these days to figure out how to wade through the choices of plastic available to them and come to a decision. These kinds of cards, in particular, come with generally high fees to go along with the abundance of perks. Large financial institutions have historically enticed borrowers to spring for their most luxe credit options by offering incentives like free air travel and tons of points, though as The Wall Street Journal reported in recent days some banks are now looking to tweak that model -- changing up the rewards so that you get less on the front end and you're induced to actually use the cards more to get the benefits over the long term. All of which is to say, when you consider all of the above and the various options on the market available to you, there are several reasons why the Platinum Card® from American Express is a smart choice for consumers who want the best mix of price and rewards. Here's some of what it offers. An impressive domestic lounge network One of the easiest reasons to cite for why it's worth it to spring for the Amex Platinum Card is the lounge access you're afforded. This card gets you into any of the more than 30 Delta Sky Clubs around the globe plus American Express' own luxurious Centurion Lounges -- which also happen to be multiplying. Examples include the new 12,500-square-foot Centurion Lounge at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport's Terminal D that opened in the fall and which offers a full bar menu that features local wines and beer as well as a menu with Texas-themed dishes. In all, this card unlocks access to more than 1,200 airport lounges across 130 countries. The Platinum Card's Priority Pass membership also makes free food and drinks available at a growing number of airport restaurants and bars, so this benefit definitely helps take the sting out of getting hit with a long layover between flights. Tons of points, baby! The Platinum card is also offering a whopping 60,000-point bonus that kicks in once you make $5,000 in purchases within the first three months of your card membership. By one estimate, those points are worth up to $1,200 according to The Points Guy's recent valuation, and come on top of the card's other benefits like lounge access. When you book through an airline or via American Express Travel, you can earn 5 points for every dollar you spend on flights and hotels. This particular benefit has also been singled out for praise as being the best offering in its category among all cards, given that the 5x multiple on points for airfare can be earned even when you book through any airline - whereas you need to book through Amex Travel to get the 5 points for every dollar benefit. A combined up to $400 in airline fee and Uber credits Among the other ways this card's benefits more than offset that $550 fee each year, you also get up to $200 airline fee credit that can pay for everything from checked bag fees to in-flight food and drink purchases. The only caveat is you have to choose one airline each year that you'll direct your fee credit to, but it's a small price to pay. And as if that wasn't enough, Amex is also throwing in up to $200 in Uber savings each year. It's structured as a $15 Uber credit each month, with up to an additional $20 extra in December - which, while frequent travelers will have no problem using that up quickly, is still one more welcome perk to have. You've got to connect the card to your Uber app, and the monthly benefit is of the use-it-or-lose-it variety, but don't worry. If you don't have need of an Uber ride during a particular month, you can always use that month's credit on an UberEats delivery, instead. Complimentary premium status and memberships galore, from hotels to car rentals The Amex Platinum also has a ton of hotel-related perks alone that will quickly offset the costs that rack up from frequent travel, including complimentary gold status at Hilton and Starwood Hotels, which lets you enjoy benefits at hotels and resorts within the Hilton chain and which can also be matched with Marriott Gold status. Likewise, Platinum card members can also upgrade to Starwood Preferred Guest Gold Elite Status without having to meet any minimum stay requirements. And as if that wasn't enough, other elite member benefits include being given an enhanced room at check-in, when available. For car rentals, it's the same story. You get complimentary elite status with brands like Avis and Hertz, giving you the ability to take advantage of free membership in premium car rental programs that include special upgrades and discounts. The verdict: As the industry-leading charge card, the Platinum Card from American Express is the quintessential credit card. It's not even hard to not only over the card's annual fee, but actually come out ahead. If you travel a lot during the course of a year, or even if you're only on the road and hopping flights sporadically here and there, the Amex Platinum Card definitely is worthy of serious consideration. Benefits span beyond travel, like the card's stellar purchase protection, which reimburses you if you use it to buy an item that's later lost, stolen or damaged accidentally. Amex will cover you for the amount you paid, up to $10,000 per item with a $50,000 yearly maximum, for starters. You'll get plenty of use out of this card, in other words, and then some.
Neiman Marcus is investing in the cannabis beauty trend. The luxury department store chain has announced the addition of multiple CBD (cannabidiol) products to its beauty department, as part of its ‘Trending Beauty' initiative. The retailer will now stock several major cosmetics brands known for their use of CBD oil, including Sagely Naturals, Cannuka, Cannabliss Organic, Code of Harmony, Ildi Pekar, Vertly, and Yuyo Botanics.
Venezuela‘s president has raised the country’s minimum wage by 300 per cent as part of routine wage increases as his government battles hyperinflation. Nicolas Maduro increased the minimum wage to 18,000 bolivars, around £5.20, per month amid an economy suffering from annual inflation nearing two million per cent. Mr Maduro announced his economic plans at the start of his second, disputed, term on Monday, as calls increased for him to surrender power.
British Prime Minister Theresa May told her senior ministers she would respond quickly to Tuesday's evening's vote in parliament on her proposed Brexit deal, her spokesman said. Asked by reporters if she would quit if, as widely expected, she lost the vote, the spokesman said May was determined to deliver the will of public and take Britain out of the EU.
Amid a government shutdown now in its 25th day – the longest in history – many presidential staff remain furloughed, forcing Mr Trump to set the menu for the visit of the Clemson Tigers, who won the national championship last year. Mr Trump, a fast food lover, said he even paid for their meal himself.
Authorities said Jake Patterson, 21, had confessed to killing Jayme Closs' father with a shotgun while the teen and her mother hid in a bathtub, then killing the mother after forcing her to help duct-tape her daughter's mouth shut. The October discovery of the parents' bodies in the family home in rural Barron, Wisconsin, with the door blasted open and their daughter gone, sparked a search by hundreds of police officers and thousands of volunteers. At a brief hearing in Barron County Circuit Court on Monday, Patterson appeared via live video from jail, wearing an orange jumpsuit and glasses.
Trump also disputed a Washington Post report that he had concealed details about his meetings with Russian President Vladimir Putin and confiscated his interpreter's notes. Congressional Democrats raised the possibility of subpoenaing the translator. The New York Times reported on Friday that the FBI opened the investigation after Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey raised concerns that the president posed a threat to national security.
All Washington D.C. federal offices would be closed on Monday, but train and bus service in the metro D.C. area would resume after being shut down on Sunday, officials said. "There's some digging out to do," Jim Hayes, a forecaster with the National Weather Service's Weather Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland, said early Monday. "In Virginia, D.C. and Maryland, 6-to-12 inches of snow fell with some places getting 13 inches," he said.
A Chinese court sentenced a Canadian man to death on drug trafficking charges on Monday after his previous 15-year prison sentence was deemed too lenient, deepening a diplomatic rift as Canadian premier Justin Trudeau accused Beijing of "arbitrarily" using capital punishment. Robert Lloyd Schellenberg, 36, nodded as the judge in the northeast city of Dalian asked him whether he understood the verdict, following a day-long retrial in which he declared his innocence, saying, "I am not a drug smuggler. The sentence comes against the backdrop of Beijing's anger over the arrest in Canada of a top executive from telecom giant Huawei last month on a US extradition request related to Iran sanctions violations.
You probably already know that contributing to your 401(k) plan will improve your retirement finances. There are some circumstances when it makes sense to pay down debt and build up some savings outside of your 401(k) before boosting your 401(k) withholding. Here's what you should think about before increasing your 401(k) contributions.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has fired back at Donald Trump after he dismissively asked: “Who cares?” when a journalist him about her. The president made the throwaway remark in front of reporters on the White House lawn, prompting Ms Cortez to tweet: “I bartended for *years* in New York City. The youngest-ever Congresswoman then suggested the real reason the president is hiding his taxes from the public is because he doesn't actually make the amount he suggests.
If you want the latest and greatest new Apple Watch models and you don't want to pay full price, your options are severely limited. Apple Watch Series 4 discounts are still very rare. In fact, the only place you have to turn at the moment is Amazon, which is still offering small discounts on the Apple Watch Series 4 with GPS (the 40mm model is also discounted right now) as well as the Apple Watch Series 4 with GPS + Cellular. If you want bigger discounts than that, you're probably out of luck... unless you decide to go for the Apple Watch Series 3 instead. Series 4 models have slightly larger displays, which is nice but it also might not be worth the added expense for many people. Don't worry though, because we've got you covered. Best Buy is running a huge sale right now on a ton of different Apple Watch Series 3 models. At the time of this writing there were a whopping 83 different configurations available at a discount from Best Buy, and savings span from $50 up to $100. Prices start at just $229 in this sale, and there's definitely something for everyone in terms of styles. You can shop the whole sale right here on the Best Buy website, or you'll find a few of our favorites below. ## Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS) 42mm Space Gray Aluminum * GPS and a barometric altimeter track how far and high you go * New dual-core processor for faster app performance¹ * Ultimate sports watch and intelligent activity tracker * Swimproof so you're always ready for the pool or ocean² * Aluminum case * watchOS 4 is even more intuitive and intelligent * Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS) requires an iPhone 5s or later with iOS 11 or later. Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS) 42mm Space Gray Aluminum: $259.00 (save $50) ## Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS) 42mm Silver Aluminum * GPS * Optical heart sensor * Digital Crown * S3 with dual-core processor * Accelerometer and gyroscope * Swimproof² * watchOS 5 * Aluminum case * Selection may vary; see a sales associate for available models. Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS) requires an iPhone 5s or later with iOS 11 or later. Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS) 42mm Silver Aluminum: $259.00 (save $50) ## Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS) 38mm Space Gray Aluminum * GPS * Optical heart sensor * Digital Crown * S3 with dual-core processor * Accelerometer and gyroscope * Swimproof² * watchOS 5 * Aluminum case * Selection may vary; see a sales associate for available models. Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS) requires an iPhone 5s or later with iOS 11 or later. Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS) 38mm Space Gray Aluminum: $229.00 (save $50) ## Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) 38mm Silver Aluminum * GPS + Cellular¹ * Optical heart sensor * Digital Crown * S3 with dual-core processor * Accelerometer and gyroscope * Swimproof³ * watchOS 5 * Aluminum case * Selection may vary; see a sales associate for available models. Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) requires an iPhone 6 or later with iOS 12 or later. Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) 38mm Silver Aluminum: $279.00 ( save $100) ## Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) 42mm Space Gray Aluminum * GPS + Cellular¹ * Optical heart sensor * Digital Crown * S3 with dual-core processor * Accelerometer and gyroscope * Swimproof³ * watchOS 5 * Aluminum case * Selection may vary; see a sales associate for available models. Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) requires an iPhone 6 or later with iOS 12 or later. Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) 42mm Space Gray Aluminum: $309.00 (Save $100)
Russia told Japan on Monday that Moscow's sovereignty over several disputed islands was not up for discussion and that disagreements between the countries still obstruct the path to a peace deal. Russia and Japan have been in dispute since World War Two over islands captured by Soviet troops in the last days of the war. The islands are known as the Southern Kuriles to Russia and the Northern Territories to Japan.
Turkey has responded furiously to a threat from US President Donald Trump to devastate its Nato ally’s economy if they attacked Kurdish partners in Syria. Mr Trump tweeted late on Sunday that the US will “devastate Turkey economically if they hit Kurds." Mevlut Cavusoglu, Turkish Foreign Minister, sharply rebuked Mr Trump, saying that strategic partners do not speak to each other through social media and stressing that Turkey is "not afraid of any threat. You cannot achieve anything with economic threats." "We would do whatever is necessary to eliminate threat to our security," said Mr Cavusoglu, adding that Ankara saw the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) as terrorists who needed to be defeated. Starting the long overdue pullout from Syria while hitting the little remaining ISIS territorial caliphate hard, and from many directions. Will attack again from existing nearby base if it reforms. Will devastate Turkey economically if they hit Kurds. Create 20 mile safe zone....— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 13, 2019 ....Likewise, do not want the Kurds to provoke Turkey. Russia, Iran and Syria have been the biggest beneficiaries of the long term U.S. policy of destroying ISIS in Syria - natural enemies. We also benefit but it is now time to bring our troops back home. Stop the ENDLESS WARS!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 13, 2019 Mr Trump's tweet saw the Turkish lira lose some 1.6 per cent of its value against the dollar on Monday, dealing another blow to its already ailing economy. Asked to explain the tweet, Mike Pompeo, US Secretary of State, said he assumed Mr Trump was referring to the imposition of sanctions should Ankara take military action against the YPG, its allies in the fight against Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil). Mr Trump imposed sanctions and trade tariffs on Turkey in August to pressure them to release an American pastor who had been arrested on charges of supporting a failed 2016 coup against Mr Erdogan. Relations between Turkey and the US have soured in recent years over the issue of Washington’s support for the YPG, and has only been made worse by the US’s confused messaging on its withdrawal of troops from Syria. John Bolton, US National Security adviser, visited Ankara last week as part of a tour of the Middle East aimed at assuaging fears over the drawdown. Kurdish fighters from the People's Protection Units (YPG) stand near U.S military vehicles in the town of Darbasiya Credit: Reuters But by all accounts, the meetings went badly. Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey’s president, declined to meet Mr Bolton over comments the adviser made before his visit imploring Ankara to protect Syria’s Kurdish fighters. Turkish officials had been expecting Mr Bolton to bring with him draft plans for the withdrawal, but instead delivered what they described as a "non-paper'. They claimed Mr Bolton’s team did not present any operational information or discuss a timetable or post-pullout planning. The two countries did appear to agree on one point, however, with Mr Trump tweeting his support for a Turkish proposal for a 20-mile “safe zone” along Turkey’s southern border with Syria. Such a zone would see Kurds pushed back from the frontier, but would provide them some protection against a threatened Turkish assault. A Syrian Democratic Forces'(SDF) fighter holds a sniper rifle on his shoulder as he attends the funeral of a slain People's Protection Units (YPG) commander in the northeastern city of Qamishli Credit: AFP "We want to make sure that the folks who fought with us to down Isil have security... and also that terrorists acting out of Syria aren't able to attack Turkey," Mr Pompeo said. But the proposal has been met with concern from Syrian Kurds, who fear a large-scale repopulation of Kurdish areas. Turkey has already led offensives inside Syria aimed at installing allied rebels along its border to prevent Kurdish expansion and the transfer of weapons between the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), an insurgent group operating out of southern Turkey, and the YPG. A map of the “safe zone” drawn up by Turkish analysts Syria Agenda, shows some of the largest Kurdish-majority towns in their area of self-administration would be included. “What does a safe zone mean? Who keeps it safe? And safe from whom?” asked Nadim Houry, a director at Human Rights Watch. “A 20-mile safe zone would encompass some of the most populated towns in Northeast Syria. Kobane, Qamishli, Tal Abyad, Amuda, Derbasiyeh, Rumeilan.”
If you buy only one smartphone accessory today, well, it should probably be Anker's awesome 10W fast wireless charging stand, which is on sale right now at its best price yet. But if you buy two smartphone accessories today, the second one should definitely be the Silicon Power 128GB High Speed MicroSD Card. It's just as fast and reliable as microSD cards from big names like SanDisk and Samsung, but it's only $18.99 right now on Amazon. Here's more info from the product page: * UHS-1 Class 10 specifications, enabling fast file transfer speeds and Full-HD video recording. * High compatibility for different types of devices including smartphones, tablets, DSLR and HD camcorder. * Come with a SD card adapter that enables versatile usages for any SD enabled devices. * Compatible with Nintendo Switch, which enables a budget-friendly solution for you to boost the storage.
The Turkish lira dropped. In a Sunday night tweet, Trump said his government was starting the “long overdue pullout” from Syria while “hitting the little remaining ISIS territorial caliphate hard,” and would attack it again from a nearby existing base if the jihadists regroup. “The U.S. is withdrawing from northeast Syria in a strong, deliberate and coordinated manner, and seeks to ensure that the forces that have fought alongside coalition partners in the campaign against ISIS are not mistreated,” an administration official said following the president’s tweet.
The cockpit voice recorder from an Indonesian Lion Air jet that crashed in October has been recovered, officials said Monday, a discovery that could be critical to explaining why a brand new plane fell out of the sky just after take-off. The Boeing 737 MAX vanished from radar about 13 minutes after departing Jakarta, slamming into the Java Sea moments after pilots had asked to return to the capital and killing all 189 people onboard. The bright orange voice recorder was discovered early Monday about 10 metres from a flight data recorder that was located back in November, authorities said.
A Palestinian teenager succumbed to his wounds on Monday three days after being shot by Israeli forces during clashes on the Gaza border, the health ministry in the coastal enclave said. In a statement, health ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra said Abdul Raouf Salha, 14, "died as a result of his injuries from (Israeli) occupation fire last Friday east of Jabalia" in the northern Gaza Strip. Palestinians have been taking part in often violent protests at least weekly since March along the Gaza-Israel border.
The air quality index, or AQI, climbed to 182 in Bangkok at 10:14am -- higher than the levels in Asia’s famously polluted metropolises of New Delhi, Beijing and Jakarta -- before falling back to 138 by 3 p.m., according to website AirVisual, which monitors air pollution around the world. People living in areas with high pollution levels in Bangkok should avoid “unnecessary” outdoor activities or wear masks, Prayuth told reporters in Chiang Mai province Monday.