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Three Republican U.S. senators warned Thursday they would not vote for a slimmed-down Obamacare repeal bill without guarantees that the House of Representatives will go into negotiations with the Senate on the measure. The senators - Lindsey Graham, John McCain and Ron Johnson - said they fear the House will simply take up the Senate-passed bill and approve it, instead of negotiating with the Senate to produce a more comprehensive measure.
DUBAI/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Iran successfully tested a rocket that can deliver satellites into orbit, state television reported on Thursday, an action the United States said breaches a U.N. Security Council resolution because of its potential use in ballistic missile development. Iranian state television showed footage of the firing of the rocket, mounted on a launchpad carrying pictures of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, founder of the Islamic Republic, and Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The rocket launch violated United Nations Security Council Resolution 2231, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said on Thursday.
RAQQA, Syria (AP) — Heavy fighting broke out Thursday as U.S.-backed Syrian fighters captured almost half of the Islamic State group's de facto capital of Raqqa. But the push into the city in northern Syria slowed due to stiff resistance and large amounts of explosives planted by the extremists, a spokeswoman for the fighters and monitors said.
The topic of editing human DNA is one that has led to heated debate within the scientific, research, and medical communities for some time now. The technology exists, but what are the ethical and moral implications of meddling with the very fabric of what makes us who we are? Those questions have led scientists in the US to be hesitant to follow in the footsteps of their international colleagues who have been dabbling in DNA editing for several years — until now. First reported by MIT Technology Review, the first attempt at editing the genes of human embryos in the US has been carried out by researchers in Portland, Oregon.
Pioneered by scientists elsewhere in the world, primarily in China, the gene editing technique known as CRISPR (short for "clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats"), a team led by Shoukhrat Mitalipov of the Oregon Health and Science University are the first known researchers to perform human embryo DNA modification in the United States.
The embryos, which were modified to test the feasibility of fixing known disease-causing genes, were terminated days after the experiment. The scientists had no plans to actually allow them to develop, but the work is a significant step forward for those who support continued development of CRISPR and the eventual implementation of the technique to correct flaws in embryos carried to full term.
Those who oppose the work worry that it could lead to an era of "designer babies," modified to fit a preconceived ideal, while supporters suggest it's a miraculous discovery that could one day eliminate many childhood and lifelong diseases.
Oil field services giant Halliburton will pay nearly $30 million to resolve allegations of bribery in Angola, US regulators announced Thursday. Former Halliburton vice president Jeannot Lorenz also agreed to pay a $75,000 fine for falsifying the company's books and circumventing internal controls, the Securities and Exchange Commission said in a statement. Lorenz steered $13 million in contracts to a local company owned by a former Halliburton employee with ties to an official at the Angolan state oil company Sonangol.
More than ten villages in central Portugal have been evacuated as forest fires rage in the provinces of Castelo Branco and Santarem. Almost 5,000 firefighters supported by water-dropping aircraft are deployed across central and northern areas of Portugal as the country continues its annual summertime battle against wildfires. “The intensity of the wind is diabolical,” said Jaime Marta Soares, saying new fires keep popping up away from the main fires. (Reuters)
Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that Moscow will ultimately have to respond to sanctions imposed by the United States that he condemned as insolent towards Russia. "We are behaving in a very restrained and patient way, but at some moment we will need to respond," Putin said at a news conference after talks with his Finnish counterpart Sauli Niinisto. "This practice is unacceptable -- it destroys internatioanl relations and international law," Putin said of sanctions.
The Ohio State Fair will open Thursday one day after a man was killed and seven other people were injured when a thrill ride broke apart, but the rides won’t be running until they all are deemed safe, officials state. Video captured by a bystander at the fair Wednesday evening shows the Fire Ball ride swinging back and forth like a pendulum and spinning in the air when it crashes into something and part of the ride flies off. Ohio State Medical Center said three of the injured were being treated there.
British American Tobacco, fresh from its takeover of US peer Reynolds, reported on Thursday sliding first-half net profits, but sales jumped on the back of the Brexit-hit pound. Profit after tax slid 15 percent to £2.3 billion ($3.0 billion, 2.6 billion euros) in the six months to June 30 from a year earlier, the maker of Lucky Strike cigarettes said in a results statement. BAT, whose cigarette brands include also Dunhill and Kent, added that sales leapt 15.7 percent to £7.71 billion in the reporting period.
Controversy over a new cross-border rail link which will see mainland laws enforced in a Hong Kong train station escalated Thursday after the justice chief likened China to the city's "landlord". It comes at a time when fears are worsening that Hong Kong's freedoms are under threat from an increasingly assertive Beijing. The high-speed rail line between Hong Kong and the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou, 80 miles away, is due to open in 2018.
By Asif Shahzad ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Pakistani police have arrested 25 members of an informal village council accused of ordering the rape of a 16-year-old girl as revenge for her brother's alleged sexual assault of another girl. The Supreme Court also requested a report on the case, which echoed a notorious case from 2002 in which another teenager was gang-raped on a local council's order. "A total of 29 people were involved in this ghastly crime, and we have 25 of them in our custody," Multan City Police Officer Ahsan Younus told Reuters by telephone on Thursday.
A former McDonald’s worker has turned the stomach of fast food fans by sharing ‘disgusting’ photos from inside a mouldy ice cream maker. Teenager Nick, who did not disclose his surname, shared the photos on Twitter, claiming: “This came out of McDonald's ice cream machine in case y'all were wondering…” This came out of McDonald's ice cream machine in case y'all were wondering... pic.twitter.com/DTXXpzE7Ce— nick (@phuckyounick) July 14, 2017 This is the side of the ice cream machine! It's not from a grease trap pic.twitter.com/nMpnFxAvZ4— nick (@phuckyounick) July 17, 2017 The 18-year-old says he worked at a McDonald’s outlet in Louisiana for five months, telling BuzzFeed he posted the photos to let people know “how disgusting the conditions are”. Nick claims he lost his job shortly after posting the photos “exposing McDonald's”, but tweeted that he already had another one lined up when he decided to post them online. Since I'm exposing McDonald's I might as well show y'all what y'all really eating... fresh out the freezer. pic.twitter.com/KZ7Ao1kWsR— nick (@phuckyounick) July 18, 2017 Nice and dirty... pic.twitter.com/vjxuVLJpgF— nick (@phuckyounick) July 18, 2017 McDonald’s said in a statement the equipment seen in the photos does not come into contact with any food. “We are committed to running great restaurants that provide our customers with high quality food, service and a clean environment,” a spokesperson said. “This is a part of our soft serve equipment that does not come into contact with any food and is required to undergo regular and timely cleaning.” Extraordinary floating McDonald’s restaurant left abandoned for 30 years How Twitter reacted How does your tweet about ONE franchise of McDonald's justifies all McDonald's?? pic.twitter.com/64ryGc8mG7— Girinator (@amiegirin) July 18, 2017 Thanks for ruining my day, I just had an ice cream cone from them ����♀️ pic.twitter.com/s7OcTdzxt4— هانا �� (@h_annaah_) July 16, 2017 Meanwhile at Wendy's...�� pic.twitter.com/2Djg3WSeSi— imari✨ (@_esstco) July 16, 2017 The employees telling us the machine is down pic.twitter.com/kLpivUpD4c— Covfefí Champu (@CuddleSweet) July 16, 2017 pic.twitter.com/O08LuxKapY— Trust in Hue (@dawg_pound69) July 17, 2017 Revealed: The real reason McDonald's hamburgers ‘never rot’ mcdonalds secret menu
The Philippines’ fiery President Rodrigo Duterte has lashed out at Oxford University as a “school for stupid people” after it published a study claiming he had paid for a cyber army to increase his popularity on social media. The study, “Troops, Trolls and Troublemakers: A Global Inventory of Organised Social Media Manipulation”, looked at the strategies used by political parties and candidates in 28 different countries to spread their party messaging and inflate social media engagement numbers. It claims that Duterte’s camp paid $200,000 (£150,000) in 2016, the year he was elected, for a social media campaign that used citizens and groups to promote and defend him online. Graduates pose for a photograph outside the Sheldonian Theatre after a graduation ceremony at Oxford University Credit: Reuters Duterte has admitted to paying people to defend him on social media but said this only happened during the campaign season, strongly denying it continued after he was elected. “Now I do not need it. I do not need to defend myself against attacks. I stated my piece during my inauguration and my campaign,” he said, according to local news outlet, Rappler. “Oxford University? That’s a school for stupid people.” Duterte, a former mayor from the southern city of Davao, won the 2016 election with a populist message that targeted drug trafficking. Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte delivers his State of the Nation Address earlier this week Credit: Barcroft Images His subsequent support of extra-judicial killings of suspected drug dealers and users has since been strongly criticised by human rights groups. The report documents how cyber troops have been used to silence political dissent online and on how trolling can lead to real-life threats and reputational damage. In the Philippines it asserts that “many of the so-called “keyboard trolls” hired to spread propaganda for presidential candidate Duterte during the election continue to spread and amplify messages in support of his policies now he’s in power." In quotes | Rodrigo Duterte, President of the Philippines
For the last two years, big cable TV companies have been charging a "Broadcast TV Fee" which, in every way, is already a bunch of bullshit. It's not a regulatory fee: it's just the cable companies charging extra for the cost of delivering channels to your TV, which is exactly what you're paying for with your monthly fees anyway.
Anyway, in case that didn't already hurt enough, Spectrum (which is also Charter, Time Warner Cable and Bright House) has raised its bullshit fee that little bit more.
Users on the DSL Reports forum have posted copies of July bills that show the price increase. It's currently at $6.05, and that's creeping up to $7.50.
That might not sound like a lot, but Charter serves around 25 million customers across the US. Even if only half of those (a low-ball estimate) subscribe to cable, a $1.50 increase is still around $17 million. That's not much compared to the billions in revenue Charter pulls down, but it's also pure unadulterated profit.
It's also not the kind of thing that gets people to quit cable, sadly. Pay TV has proven itself to be a highly inelastic product, and with the average pay TV bill over $100 a month, a $1.50 increase just isn't going to force people off.
But there is some good news. Arguably the only reason that cable companies can get away with barefaced crap like this is the lack of competition. In the majority of the regions that Charter offers service, Charter is the only company offering cable TV. But a wealth of new pay TV streaming services, which only need an internet connection, finally offers some competition to Charter's regional monopolies.
Fed up with a broadcast TV fee? Try paying $35 to Fubo, a streaming service that offers sports and all major broadcast channels. The broadcast TV fee you'll save is nearly enough to add Netflix and be happier than you already were.
US officials have said they fear North Korea may test fire another missile, using the 64th anniversary of the end of the Korean War to mark its new military assertiveness. Both US and South Korean media have cited intelligence and military officials saying transporter vehicles carrying launching equipment had been seen on the move in North Korea, a suggestion that an imminent test may be underway. July 27 marks the anniversary of the end of the three-year-long war and is celebrated as Victory Day in North Korea.
Donald Trump has launched a fresh attack on his Department of Justice, even as his Attorney General seeks to cling on to his job. Amid mounting speculation that Attorney General Jeff Sessions will have little option but to stand down, Mr Trump launched another broadside by social media against his own cabinet member. “Why didn't AG Sessions replace Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, a Comey friend who was in charge of Clinton investigation,” he said on Twitter.
By Aziz El Yaakoubi DOHA (Reuters) - Qatar said on Wednesday a decision by four Arab states to add 18 groups and individuals allegedly linked to Doha to their "terrorist" lists was "a disappointing surprise" and that it was doing all it could to fight extremism. Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain put another nine groups based in Yemen and Libya and nine people from several Arab countries on the blacklist, saying all were associated with Qatar. "(The new list) comes as a disappointing surprise that the blockading countries are still pursuing this story as part of their smear campaign against Qatar," Sheikh Saif Bin Ahmed al-Thani, director of the Gulf kingdom's Government Communications Office, said in a statement sent to Reuters.
More than two-thirds of Muslim-Americans are concerned about their place in society following the election on Donald Trump, a new poll has found. Around 62 per cent said they believed other Americans did not see Islam as part of mainstream society. In 2017, 64 per cent of Muslim Americans say they are dissatisfied about the direction the country is going in compared with 38 per cent in 2011.
In the world of dating apps, there's playing the long game, and then there's straight-up procrastinating. One pair of college students have found fame after dilly-dallying for three long years on Tinder, messaging back and forth without ever actually meeting up. But, at long last, they've met in person. Live on TV. Michelle and Josh achieved viral fame earlier this month, after Josh tweeted screen shots of their three-year long running gag of late replies to each other. Tinder caught wind of the pair's procrastination and even offered to pay for the pair to go on a date. The pair have FINALLY met for the first time on Good Morning America in front of millions of viewers and it was every bit as awkward as you can imagine. As the two hugged, they both giggled nervously. "It is so good to finally meet you," said Josh. "I'm blushing like crazy," he added. After the show, the pair headed off to Maui, Hawaii, for their casual first proper date.
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — A U.S. Navy patrol boat fired warning shots near an Iranian vessel that American sailors said came dangerously close to them during a tense encounter in the Persian Gulf, the first such incident to happen under President Donald Trump. Iran's hard-line Revolutionary Guard later blamed the American ship for provoking the situation.