Students in one US school district are being armed with rocks to defend themselves during a mass shooting. Five-gallon buckets of river stone have been placed in 200 classrooms across the Blue Mountain School District in Pennsylvania. “If an armed intruder attempts to gain entrance, they will face a classroom full of students armed with rocks, and they will be stoned,” said superintendent David Helsel.
Former Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont faces arrest in Finland after authorities there received an international warrant for his detention issued by Spain, the latest legal action against separatist politicians from the wealthy northeastern region. Scarlett Cvitanovich reports
Thirty-eight days after the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, hundreds of thousands of students across the country have taken to to the streets in an anti-gun violence protest of unprecedented size. The marches – which consists of a main event in Washington DC alongside sister protests in New York, Los Angeles and hundreds of communities across the country and around the world – is the culmination of weeks of planning by student survivors of the Parkland, Florida shooting in which 17 people were killed on Valentine's Day. The focal point was the March for Our Lives rally in Washington DC, but tens of thousands also turned out in New York, Boston, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston and Minneapolis in demonstrations sparked by the survivors of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on Valentine’s Day.
Gunman shot dead after taking hostages in Trebes, France Attacker named as petty criminal Redouane Lakdim, 26 At least two people killed in store and dozen more wounded Attacker also shot a driver in the head and stole his car Gunman 'shouted Allahu Akbar' and 'said he supported Isil' Military officer, 45, dies in hospital after swapping himself for hostage A French policeman shot by an Islamist gunman when he swapped himself for a hostage in a supermarket siege has died. Arnaud Beltrame, a lieutenant-colonel in the gendarmerie, was hailed a hero after the attacker - who killed four people in a shooting spree - was shot dead by police. Mr Beltrame was among the officers who rushed to the scene when the assailant stormed the store in the southwest town of Trèbes, firing on shoppers and staff before taking a hostage. Gérard Collomb, the interior minister, announced early on Saturday that Mr Beltrame had passed away after he was reportedly hit by several bullets and one injury to the throat. "Lieutenant Colonel Arnaud Beltrame has left us. France will never forget his heroism, his bravery, his sacrifice." Arnaud Beltrame, the policeman who died after being seriously injured during the siege, was praised by Emmanuel Macron Credit: BOYER Claude In an interview in December with the local Independent newspaper, Mr Beltrame said he had taken part in an attack simulation in Carcassonne that centred around a mass attack in a supermarket. "A mass killing took place in a supermarket. This is the only information that was given to the police," he was quoted by the newspaper as saying, describing the simulation scenario. "We want to be closer to real conditions, so there is no pre-established scenario". Emmanuel Macron, the French President, called Mr Beltrame a hero. "He saved lives and honoured his colleagues and his country," President Macron said of the officer. Arnaud Beltrame poses for a photo in Avranches, western France Credit: AP The gunman was identified as 26-year-old Redouane Lakdim, a petty criminal of Moroccan origin who claimed allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil). He opened fire on passengers in a car, killing one of them, then shoot dead another two people at the supermarket. The gunman was eventually killed in the police assault after a standoff of more than three hours. He reportedly shouted "Allahu Akbar" as he burst into the Super U store on the outskirts of the picturesque medieval town of around 5,000 inhabitants. Eyewitnesses told French media that Lakdim demanded the release of Salah Abdeslam, the only surviving member of the 2015 Paris jihadist attacks that killed 130 people, and said he was taking revenge for the international coalition bombing Isil targets in Syria. "He was known by the police for petty crimes, we had monitored him and did not think he had been radicalised," Interior Minister Gerard Collomb told reporters at the scene in Trebes. Radouane Lakdim, who authorities have named as the 26-year-old attacker responsible for the death of at least three people in southwest France Credit: Getty Lakdim was described by a neighbour as a "pleasant young man" who lived with his parents and sisters in a flat in Carcassonne, taking the youngest children to school every day. The incident in Trèbes came as France is still on high alert after suffering a string of terror attacks since January 2015. Lakdim began his shooting spree in his home town, whose huge medieval castle makes it a tourist hotspot, around 10 am local time when he hijacked a car, shooting dead a passenger and seriously injuring its driver. Then he fired at a group of CRS riot policemen who were jogging near the castle in Carcassonne and wounded one of them. Gendarmes and police officers at the supermarket after the hostage situation in Trebes Credit: REGIS DUVIGNAU /Reuters The attacker then drove off towards Trèbes, about five miles away, where he dumped the hijacked vehicle in the car park of a supermarket before storming into the Super U store, and shooting dead a shop worker and a customer. Other customers and staff fled or hid, with one group hiding themselves in the supermarket's cold store Christian Guibbert was one of them. He described how he heard gunshots when he arrived at the supermarket with his wife and sister-in-law, who hid in the cold room while he called police. He saw the attacker holding a handgun and a knife screaming "Allahu Akbar" and ordering people to get on the ground. "At one point he saw me and took after me with his knife," Mr Guibbert told Reuters. "Then I looked back and he wasn't there any more and I slipped out of an emergency exit.” Police arrived shortly after the start of the siege at around 11am. "They managed to get some of the people out," said Interior Minister Collomb, but the attacker kept one woman hostage to use as a human shield. Carcassonne shooing - locator map It was then that Mr Beltrame, the 45-year-old lieutenant-colonel, offered to take the woman's place and remained holed up with Lakdim while negotiations to end the standoff continued. The officer "left his telephone on the table", switched on, to allow police surrounding the building in to listen in, said Mr Collomb. "When we heard shots the GIGN (an elite police force) intervened," the minister said. A team of about a dozen officers entered the building and quickly shot dead the attacker. 'We got him, we got him!," one police officer shouted as he re-emerged from the building, according to an eyewitness account by a journalist from the local newspaper La Depeche. An officer from the GIGN team was also hurt in the operation to neutralise the gunman. 3:37PM Theresa May: We stand in solidarity with our friends and allies in France After the "cowardly" attacks, Theresa May, the Prime Minister, said Britain stands "in solidarity with our friends and allies in France, just as they always stand with us": PM: My thoughts are with the victims of the cowardly attacks in Trèbes and Carcassonne. We stand in solidarity with our friends and allies in France, just as they always stand with us.— UK Prime Minister (@10DowningStreet) March 23, 2018 3:25PM Elite officer who swapped places with hostage kept phone on so colleagues could hear conversation with attacker The unnamed police officer who volunteered to swap his place with a hostage managed to leave his phone on so his colleagues outside could hear his conversation with the attacker. French Interior Minister Gerard Collomb praised the "heroism" of the 45-year-old lieutenant-colonel, who suffered a bullet wound during the assault in which the hostage-taker was shot dead by police and is seriously injured. Mr Collomb said he managed to leave his mobile phone switched on after the swap, establishing a contact with officers outside the supermarket in the stand-off. Mr Collomb said elite French forces stormed the market and killed the gunman after hearing gunshots inside. He did not say how or when the police officer was injured. French security and police gather outside the Super U supermarket in the town of Trebes Credit: PASCAL PAVANI /AFP France Info radio reported that police at first negotiated with the attacker and persuaded him to agree to swap an unspecified number of hostages - perhaps all of them - for an officer from the GIGN unit present at the scene. The GIGN is an elite tactical unit of the Gendarmerie whose operations include hostage rescue, counter-terrorism, and the protection of top government officials. 3:00PM Isil claims responsibility for France attack Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil) has claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement, but gave no evidence for the claim. 2:59PM Police officer who swapped himself for hostage suffered bullet wound Interior Minister Gerard Collomb has confirmed that a gendarme who offered himself in exchange for hostages held in the supermarket was injured. He said that the lieutenant-colonel suffered a bullet wound during the assault in which the hostage taker was shot dead by police. Gendarmes of the French special unit GIGN are seen next to the Trebes supermarket Credit: REGIS DUVIGNAU /Reuters 2:48PM Attacker named as 26-year-old Redouane Lakdim The man who killed at least three people in attacks in southern France was a 26-year old known for petty crimes and possession of drugs, Interior Minister Gerard Collomb told reporters, adding that he acted alone. Collomb named the attacker as Redouane Lakdim and said he was from nearby Carcassonne, where the attacks started. "He was known for petty crimes. We had monitored him and thought there was no radicalisation," Collomb said. 2:35PM Attacker was 'radicalised petty criminal under surveillance' The suspect in a supermarket hostage-taking in southern France who killed three people is believed to have acted alone, the French interior minister has said. He described the unnamed attacker as a "radicalised petty criminal under surveillance". Although he was known to authorities, he was "not considered an Islamist threat", the minister added. A military helicopter flies over the village of Trebes during the incident Credit: JEAN-PAUL PELISSIER /Reuters 2:30PM Suspect was 'pleasant young man who... always had a nice word to say' Police have raided the home in Carcassonne of the man suspected of carrying out the supermarket attack in Trebes, Le Parisien newspaper reported. It said police had also raided the homes of his associates and relatives. One neighbour told the newspaper the suspect was a pleasant young man who was "calm, friendly, and always had a nice word to say." He reportedly lived in an apartment block with his parents and sisters, and would take the youngest child to school every day. 2:17PM 'We got him!' shouts police officer after attacker is shot dead A police officer emerged from the supermarket where the hostage-taker was holed up and shouted: "We got him, we got him!" A journalist from the local La Depeche newspaper described the scene as police moved in to put an end to the incident. They wrote: "I saw a dozen police from the GIGN (an elite police corps specialised in hostage and terror situations) go inside the Super U supermarket. "From the outside you couldn't hear any shots being fired. Very quickly after this assault ambulances and a helicopter arrived at the car park. "Then security forces sent sniffer dogs into the building. I saw a police officer come out, shouting: 'We got him, we got him!" French gendarmes block access to Trebes, where a man took hostages Credit: ERIC CABANIS /AFP 2:13PM President Emmanuel Macron: 'All evidence suggests' this is terror attack French President Emmanuel Macron said "all evidence suggests" the shootings in southern France are a terrorist attack. Speaking in Brussels, where he is attending an EU summit, Macron offered his "full support" to everyone involving in the situation. French President Emmanuel Macron speaking on Friday afternoon Credit: Geert Vanden Wijngaert /AP 2:10PM Military officer swapped himself for supermarket hostage Interior Minister Gerard Collomb confirmed that French police killed the gunman who was holed up in the Super U store. It also emerged that a French military officer took the place of a supermarket hostage. The 45-year old lieutenant-colonel swapped himself in exchange of one of the hostages, a source close to the investigation said. 1:50PM Breaking: Police shoot supermarket attacker dead The suspect in the hostage-taking situation has been shot dead by police, a police union official confirmed. 1:30PM Gunman shot motorist in head before stealing car to drive to supermarket Police have found a body in bushes in Carcassonne and another man there who suffered bullet wounds is being treated in hospital, local media reported. The gunman is believed to have shot a motorist in the head - and also injured the passenger - before stealing the car to drive to the Trebes supermarket. Bruno Bartocetti, the regional representative of the SGP police union, said the Carcassonne attacker is believed to the same person who has taken hostages in Trebes. Local media report that the Trebes attacker is a Moroccan man who lived in Carcassonne. 1:19PM Customers escape after hiding in freezer room for an hour One woman who was shopping in the Trebes supermarket when the attacker burst in said she and other customers hid in a freezer room for an hour before managing to escape. "A man started shouting and fired a gun several times," the shopper, who was not named, told France Info radio. "I saw a door into a freezer room and I told other people around me to come and take refuge there. There were ten of us and we stayed there for an hour. "There were more shots and we eventually got out through an emergency exit at the back." Another witness said the attacker was armed with a gun, knives and a hand grenade. Armed police outside the supermarket on Friday morning Credit: REUTERS 1:16PM Attack comes after string of atrocities in France The attacker holed up in the supermarket in Trebes has reportedly claimed allegiance to Isil. If that is confirmed, the incident would be the first deadly jihadist attack in France since last October, when two young women were stabbed to death outside the main railway station in Marseille. The incident in Trebes, a picturesque medieval town of around 5,000 inhabitants, come as France is still on high alert after suffering a string of terror attacks since January 2015, when a gun attack by radical Islamists on the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo killed 12 people. The deadliest assault came in November the same year, when attackers claiming allegiance to Isil killed 130 people in bombings and shootings at bars, restaurants, the Bataclan concert venue and the national stadium. Paris terror attacks: The 25 images that define the tragedy in France The following July, in another attack claimed by Isil, a man drove a truck through revellers celebrating Bastille Day in the Riviera resort of Nice, killing 84 people. The government put the country under a state of emergency after the Paris attacks. This was was finally lifted in October last year, but soldiers continue to patrol major tourist sites and transport hubs. 1:05PM Car used by man in police shooting found at supermarket - police sources The car of the man who fired at riot police near Carcassonne has been found in the car park of the supermarket where an armed man has holed up after reportedly killing at least one person, AFP has reported citing police sources. This would suggest that - as suspected - the two attacks were carried out by the same man. A damaged vehicle in the spot where police officers were shot at and wounded near the town of Carcassonne Credit: Amenvals Nathalie /PA 12:38PM Police confirm at least two people killed in hostage-taking French police have confirmed that two people have been killed and about a dozen wounded in the supermarket hostage-taking. However, the casualty toll is likely to rise, the regional head of the gendarmes said. "We are unfortunately expecting to find more victims," he told Sud-Ouest newspaper. A spokesman with the national police service said that it is unclear whether there are still hostages inside the store. The spokesman said a police operation to apprehend the assailant is still under way. 12:12PM Attacker reported to be Moroccan national known to French intelligence services The attacker is a Moroccan national known to France's intelligence services, according to La Depeche, a regional newspaper. The authorities have so far given no details about the man's identity. 12:10PM Hostage-taker 'demanding release of Salah Abdeslam' A French TV station reports that the hostage-taker has demanded the release of Salah Abdeslam, the only surviving member of the Isil cell that attacked Paris in November 2015 and killed 130 people. He is currently in a prison near Paris awaiting trial for those attacks. Salah Abdeslam Credit: AFP/Getty 12:03PM French PM: We believe this is a terrorist act French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said: "The information which we currently have to hand makes us believe that this is a terrorist act." He said he will cut short a visit to the eastern town of Mulhouse and return to Paris to monitor the situation in Trebes and will "remain in constant contact with the president," Emmanuel Macron, who is in Brussels today for a European Council meeting. Meanwhile, around 50 people who fled the supermarket have taken refuge in a Peugeot garage next to the store. 11:46AM Attacker shouted Allahu Akbar as he burst into store - witness The hostage-taker has killed at least one person inside the supermarket, a police union official said, reports Rory Mulholland. The hostage-taking began at 11am local time when a man burst into the supermarket and fired shots, the local prosecutor’s office said. Local police said they believed one or two people were hit hit by the gunfire. One witness said the attacker had shouted Allahu Akbar as he burst into the store. Police close to the scene of the hostage-taking at a Super U supermarket in Trebes Credit: Sky News 11:34AM Attacker wanted to 'take revenge for Syria' The attacker, who is believed to be in his 30s, has one or more grenades and said that he wanted to "take revenge for Syria", sources told the Dépêche du Midi newspaper. Local media said it was the same man who shot the police officers and then took refuge in the supermarket, but this has not been confirmed. 11:25AM Two confirmed injured in supermarket hostage-taking The Mayor of Trebes has told BFM TV that there are at least two people injured in the supermarket-hostage situation. The scene in Trebes as the attack was under way Credit: Sky News 11:17AM Policeman injured after man opens fire on officers A man opened fire on four French police officers before fleeing the scene in Carcassonne. He is reported to have fired five shots. One police officer was injured after he was shot in the shoulder. He is being treated in hospital. It has not yet been confirmed if this incident is linked to the hostage-taking in nearby Trebes. 11:15AM Counter-terror investigation launched into hostage-taking Counter-terrorism prosecutors are investigating the incident, a source in Paris said. The Super U supermarket in Trebes. File picture Credit: Google Street View 11:15AM People urged to avoid area around supermarket The French Interior Ministry said on its Twitter account Friday that police and rescue operations were the priority. Authorities in the Aude region are warning people to avoid the area around the supermarket.
Tucker: Kids in the 'March for Our Lives' protests are front and center by design, a handful of activist teens from Stoneman Douglas High school in Florida. They have a right to their views. But the rest of us are allowed to assess what they're saying, and decide whether it ought to become the law of the land. There's aren't religious figures and we're not the faithful. So let's assess exactly what they're saying. #Tucker
A woman has received a $10,000 travel voucher from United Airlines after she was bumped from her flight. United reportedly had an issue with one of the seats on a fully booked plane leaving from Washington and headed to Austin. In a series of tweets, the experience is documented on Ms Preiss’ Twitter feed as she shifts from outrage that United was forcing a traveller off a flight, to still-inconvenienced surprised delight.
A teenage girl left brain dead after she was wounded in a school shooting in Maryland died after she was removed from life support, local officials said Friday. The girl, 16 year old Jaelynn Willey, was shot in the head by the attacker, with whom she had had a relationship. "My daughter was hurt by a boy who shot her in the head and took everything from us," said her mother, Melissa Willey, according to The Washington Post.
A former Cambridge Analytica political consultant said the company's management misled the British public about work the firm did for a pro-Brexit group before the vote to leave the European Union, the Guardian reported on Friday. Brittany Kaiser, a business development director at the company from 2014 until earlier this year, said in an interview that Cambridge Analytica was carrying out data crunching and analysis work for Leave. Late on Friday, a High Court judge granted an application by the UK Information Commissioner's Office for a warrant to search Cambridge Analytica's offices.
French shipbuilder STX handed over the world's biggest cruiseliner, the Symphony of the Seas, to US giant Royal Caribbean International on Friday ahead of its maiden voyage in the Mediterranean. The ship, which weighs 228,000 tonnes, is at 362 metres (1,188 feet) long just 20 metres shy of the length of the Empire State Building. It is marginally bigger than its sister ship, the Harmony of the Seas, which STX France delivered to Royal Caribbean in 2016.
Donald Trump is replacing H.R. McMaster with John Bolton as his national security adviser. Bolton will have plenty on his desk, including North Korea, Russia and Iran. He’s also expected to shake up Trump’s National Security Council.
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari received the released Dapchi girls on Friday in a meeting clouded by the absence of a Christian student still held by Boko Haram for refusing to convert to Islam. This strategy paid off as the girls are being released without any incident," Buhari said to reporters at the presidential villa in Abuja. The girls, dressed in brightly coloured hijabs, enthusiastically sang the national anthem before posing for photos with Buhari outside in a garden.
Kevin and Amy Sharp, along with their two children, were found dead in their vacation condo in Akumal, Mexico, one week after their family back in Iowa had last heard from them. A family member said there was no foul play and autopsy results are pending.
Survivors of last month’s Florida school shooting who remain at the forefront of the reignited debate on US gun control have appeared on the cover of Time magazine. The Parkland teenagers, who have become the face of a national youth movement calling for tighter gun laws following the tragedy, appear next to the headline ‘ENOUGH’. In the five weeks since the Valentine’s Day mass shooting carried out by alleged gunman Nikolas Cruz which left 17 dead, the students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School have taken on the powerful US gun lobbyists, the National Rifle Association (NRA), and politicians urging for Congress to pass meaningful gun legislation. Survivors Jaclyn Corin, Alex Wind, Emma Gonzalez, Cameron Kasky and David Hogg represent a much larger group driving the movement against gun violence, using social media to mobilise protests calling for action on gun control. Emma Gonzalez TIME's new cover: The school shooting generation has had enough https://t.co/4YI173gqTxpic.twitter.com/7yFEXuVjyb— TIME (@TIME) March 22, 2018 Emma Gonzalez, 18, gained global prominence after delivering an impassioned 11-minute speech at a gun control rally outside a federal courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, just days after the shooting. Addressing President Donald Trump and the NRA, the grieving teenager told the crowd: “They say that tougher gun laws do not decrease gun violence. We call BS!” I believe Emma Gonzalez is the most inspiring female of 2018 with her pure, raw speech that started a movement & she deserves special mention this #IWD2018https://t.co/VOpfZYaU8S— Johnny Boy (@GeeForce77) March 8, 2018 “We are going to be the last mass shooting,” the buzzcut senior announced in the speech that has subsequently been watched by millions on social media. Gonzalez, who hid at the back of the school’s auditorium during the gunman’s rampage, also co-founded the Never Again movement and has won praise for her mature cross examination of NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch in a live TV debate. Good Morning! It's a beautiful day to remember that teachers shouldn't have to worry about anything except their Home Life and Educating their Students �� (and maybe sometimes planning ice cream parties but thats just me)— Emma González (@Emma4Change) February 26, 2018 She now has more followers than the NRA on Twitter, a platform she only joined last month. David Hogg David Hogg hid during the mass shooting Credit: Getty Aspiring journalist David Hogg, who studies TV production at Stoneman High and writes for the school paper, has become the group’s informal press secretary. The 17-year-old was in an environmental science class when he heard gunshots and hid in a closet with other students as the school was placed on lockdown. He began recording from inside the building on his mobile phone and started interviewing other terrified students who called for the introduction of tighter gun control laws. “Hopefully I’ll live through this,” he said. As desperate students called their parents from the classroom, Hogg recorded a plea for legislators “to take action and stop this from happening”. “Thousands of people have died from gun violence and it's time to take a stand … for human lives, for children's lives,” he said. After a series of TV interviews, Hogg was even forced to rebut conspiracy theories claiming he was a crisis actor employed by anti-gun activists. Jaclyn Corin #WHATIFpic.twitter.com/wpUsRVzevG— Jaclyn Corin (@JaclynCorin) February 26, 2018 Jaclyn Corin, a junior-class president who appears barefoot on the Time cover, lost her friend Joaquin Oliver in the Parkland mass shooting. The 17-year-old, who wrote a 50-page research paper on gun control last year, became an anti-gun activist the day after the shooting and is a prominent member of the Never Again movement. Her video using the hashtag #whatif to create debate about gun control and posted by fellow Parkland survivors has garnered more than 1.5 million views. Shooting survivor Jaclyn Corin meets with the House Speaker Paul Ryan in the US Capitol in Washington Credit: Reuters “What if politicians valued children’s lives, not dollars?” she asked. “What if 19-year-old’s didn’t have access to weapons of war?” Ms Corin also organised a trip with 100 of her fellow students to meet lawmakers to discuss gun legislation in Tallahassee. Cameron Kasky The Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students Credit: AP Cameron Kasky is one of the founding members of the Never Again movement, coining the name and posting it as a hashtag on Facebook. He invited friends to his house after the shooting to discuss what they could do to make a meaningful difference on gun control. The 17-year-old junior has given more than 50 interviews since the shooting and asked Senator Marco Rubio live on CNN: “Can you tell me right now that you will not accept a single donation from the NRA?” WATCH & SHARE Stoneman Douglas Student Cameron Kasky asks Marco Rubio whether he will pledge not to take any more NRA money #CNNTownHall#StudentsStandUp#NoNRAMoney#AMJoypic.twitter.com/yYEdYRjGan— #LaquanMcDonald (@ifuaskmee) February 24, 2018 Senator Rubio responded: “I will always accept the help of anyone who agrees with my agenda.” In an op-ed for CNN, Kasky wrote: “We can't ignore the issues of gun control that this tragedy raises. And so, I'm asking -no, demanding - we take action now.” Alex Wind Alex Wind speaks during a rally in advance of Saturday's March for Our Lives event Credit: Reuters Alex Wind joined Kasky at his home in the hours following the shooting where they founded the Never Again movement. He urged Mr Trump to “make stricter gun control laws” on Twitter after the president offered “prayers and condolences” to families of the victims. Make stricter gun control laws then https://t.co/UH9VGlX8XK— Alex Wind (@al3xw1nd) February 14, 2018 In an interview with CNN, Wind admitted he was “terrified” of returning to school following the tragedy. “I want change to happen so badly, I don’t want to feel unsafe in my own school,” he said. March For Our Lives The students will be leading the March For Our Lives protests on 24 March, as protesters take to the streets of Washington DC to demand action to end gun violence and mass shootings in schools. Tens of thousands of students will also be campaigning in cities across the US and in six continents this weekend. Mass shootings have become more frequent in the US “People are saying that it’s not time to talk about gun control, and we can respect that,” said Kasky announcing the march. “Here’s a time: March 24, in every single city marching together as students begging for our lives.” Miley Cyrus, Ariana Grande, Jennifer Hudson, Demi Lovato and Common are due to be among performers at Saturday's main march.
Russia’s fleet of new build Tupolev Tu-160M2 Blackjack strategic bombers will be equipped with upgraded engines that would extend the range of the aircraft by roughly 600 miles. According to Russian deputy defense minister Yuri Borisov, engine manufacturer Kuznetsov is working on the development of a modernized version of the NK-32 afterburning turbofan for the new Tu-160M2 variant. "In its upgraded version, it [the engine] will be 10% more efficient, which will make it possible to increase the flight range of the strategic bomber by about 1,000 km," Borisov said during his visit to the Kuznetsov plant in Samara according to TASS.
The leaders of several EU countries said Friday they are mulling whether to expel Russian diplomats or take other steps to support Britain following a nerve agent attack on a former spy. European Union leaders returned to summit talks on Friday after uniting behind British Prime Minister Theresa May in blaming Russia for the attack in England, and agreeing to recall the bloc's ambassador to Moscow for consultations. Britain expelled 23 Russian diplomats they said were spies, and has been pressing EU allies to follow suit despite Moscow's warning against confrontational steps.
MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Friday he would repay the trust voters had placed in him by working toward creating jobs, raising incomes, improving healthcare and building new infra-structure. Putin, in an address to the nation after his victory in an election last Sunday was confirmed, said though it would be irresponsible to promise that all shortcomings would be fixed immediately. He said there was a role in Russia for debate about the authorities' actions, but there was no place for irresponsible populism by Kremlin opponents. ...
HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — Residents startled awake by loud noise and smoke signaled for help with lit mobile phones and crawled onto cranes from their balconies to escape a fire Friday at a large condominium complex in southern Vietnam's Ho Chi Minh City. At least 13 people were killed and 28 injured, with police saying it was unclear if anyone was missing.
Hackers demanding ransom payable in bitcoin have attacked computers of the Atlanta city government in the southern US state of Georgia, officials say. The ransomware assault shut down multiple internal and external applications for the city, including apps that people use to pay bills and access court-related information, Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms told a news conference Thursday. A ransom note sent to the city gave instructions for paying to free up files encrypted by the hackers.
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — After the first package exploded on an Austin doorstep, police assured the public that there was no wider threat, no signs of terrorism. The idea of a serial bomber striking random strangers never came up.
Air India launched on Thursday the first scheduled service to Israel to be allowed to cross Saudi airspace, a sign of a behind-the-scenes improvement in ties between the Arab kingdom and the Jewish state. "It is the first time that there is an official connection between the state of Israel and Saudi Arabia," he said in Hebrew. There will now be three flights weekly in each direction, ending a decades-long Saudi ban on the use of its airspace for commercial flights to Israel.
By Sharon Bernstein SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Reuters) - Newly released video footage of police killing an unarmed black man in a barrage of gunfire in Sacramento, California, left the mayor "horrified" and sparked street protests on Thursday that gridlocked traffic in the state capital for hours. Police said the video, captured by body cameras worn by officers involved in Sunday night's confrontation, showed the victim, Stephon Clark, 22, holding an object that later turned out to be a cell phone as he was shot 20 times. More than 200 demonstrators gathered on Thursday to denounce the shooting in a protest organized by the Black Lives Matter movement.
Melissa Willey told a news briefing at Prince George's Hospital Center in Cheverly, Maryland, that she would take her daughter, Jaelynn Willey, off life support because she was brain dead. A tearful Melissa Willey held one of her younger children as her husband, Daniel, stood beside her while she spoke about Jaelynn, the second eldest of her nine children. Austin Rollins, a 17-year-old student at Great Mills High School, is suspected of bringing his father's handgun to the school on Tuesday morning and shooting Willey in a hallway, according to the St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office.