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NEWS   THURSDAY, JUNE  22, 2017   NEWS

Anthem Pulls Out Of ObamaCare Exchanges In Midwest
Citing a “volatile” market, the nation’s second-largest health insurer announced Wednesday it plans to pull out of ObamaCare exchanges in Indiana and Wisconsin next year -- a move that fueled GOP calls on Capitol Hill to upend the law. Anthem Inc. said “planning and pricing for ACA-compliant health plans has become increasingly difficult due to a shrinking and deteriorating individual market, as well as continual changes and uncertainty in federal operations, rules and guidance, including cost-sharing reduction subsidies and the restoration of taxes on fully insured coverage.” Fox News
VOA VIEW: Obamacare is dying.

Sandra Smith To House Dem: Is It Time For Pelosi To Be Replaced?
Sandra Smith questioned a House Democrat this afternoon on whether it's time for the party to replace Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) as House minority leader. "Do you think she's doing a good job, congresswoman?" Smith asked. Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI) responded that there are "always rumblings" about the leadership in either party. "I don't think this is [about] one person," Dingell said, adding that Democrats need to figure out how to come together as a party and craft a winning message before the 2018 midterms. Fox News
VOA VIEW: Pelosi needs to be replaced.

House Dems Seek Answers On Kushner, Flynn Security Clearances
Democrats on a key House panel are pressing the White House on why former national security adviser Michael Flynn was allowed to maintain top-level security clearances despite allegations of security concerns while Flynn was at the White House. Rep. Elijah Cummings, the top Democrat on the House oversight committee, specifically cites Acting Attorney General Sally Yates' explicit warning to White House counsel Don McGahn that Flynn was likely vulnerable to blackmail by Russians, based on intelligence reports she reviewed. Cummings cites Yates' public comments that, rather than asking about Flynn's possible security breach, McGahn reportedly asked why the White House should be handling it. CNN
VOA VIEW: Democrats have to get off of Trump - Republicans and conservatives put up with Obama for eight years.

Russia Cancels Talks With US Over Tightening Of Sanctions
Russia has canceled a meeting between senior US and Russian officials that was aimed at resolving problems in the relationship between the two countries. The announcement comes after the US announced an expansion of sanctions against Russian individuals and legal entities in response to the ongoing crisis in Ukraine.
The previously planned meeting between Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov and US Under Secretary of State Tom Shannon was due to take place in St Petersburg. "As we know, in the next few days there were plans to continue the bilateral consultations on the 'irritants' that we have accumulated in our Russian-American relations, plans to find ways out of the extremely difficult situation in which the American side wore the partnership and cooperation with Russia down," a statement from the Russian Foreign Ministry said. CNN

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Jeh Johnson Testifies: Russians Did Not Alter Ballot Counts
Former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson told the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Wednesday that the Russian government did not alter ballots, ballots counts, or the reporting of votes in last November's U.S. presidential election. In his written testimony Johnson said, “To my current knowledge, the Russian government did not through any cyber intrusion alter ballots, ballot counts or reporting of election results. I am not in a position to know whether the successful Russian government-directed hacks of the DNC and elsewhere did in fact alter public opinion and thereby alter the outcome of the presidential election." CNS
VOA VIEW: The testimony vindicates Trump.

Venezuelan Minister Sneers At U.S. Diplomat: ‘Send In Your Marines’
Venezuela’s fiery foreign minister clashed with a senior U.S. diplomat at an Organization of American States meeting Tuesday, saying mockingly that the only way a regional mediation initiative responding to the crisis in her country could be imposed on Venezuela would be to “send in your Marines.” Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez did not take kindly to a proposal by Mexico’s foreign minister that the OAS set up a regional “contact group” in response to the political and economic crisis in the socialist-ruled country. U.S. Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan urged the OAS meeting in Cancun to “take a modest step to put together a group that would help facilitate a resolution of the serious problems which we all acknowledge are present in Venezuela.” CNS
VOA VIEW: Venezuela leaders are rogue.

U.S. Judge Urged To Halt Iraqi Deportations Due To Persecution Fears
A U.S. judge heard arguments on Wednesday to halt the deportations of around 100 Iraqis arrested by immigration authorities in the Detroit area because many belong to minorities and could face torture or religious persecution in their homeland. In a coordinated sweep in recent weeks, immigration authorities moved to detain Iraqi immigrants around the country who had final deportation orders and convictions for serious crimes. The roundup followed Iraq's agreement to accept deportees, as part of a deal that removed the country from President Donald Trump's temporary travel ban signed in March. Reuters
VOA VIEW: It is a phony way to stay in this country.

Trump Lawyers Make Final Supreme Court Pitch On Travel Ban
The Trump administration on Wednesday made its final plea to the U.S. Supreme Court to allow its proposed ban on travelers from six Muslim-majority countries to go into effect as the justices weigh how to handle the hotly contested dispute. The court papers filed by President Donald Trump's administration complete the briefing on the government's emergency application asking the justices to block lower court injunctions in favor of challengers to the ban. The Supreme Court could now act at any time. The lower court rulings blocked the 90-day ban on travelers from Libya, Iran, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen and a 120-day ban on all refugees entering the United States to give the government time to implement stronger vetting procedures. Reuters

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Democrats Ask Why Jared Kushner Still Has A Security Clearance
The Democrats on the House Oversight Committee are questioning why the White House didn't suspend the security clearances of former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn and presidential adviser Jared Kushner, after questions arose about their contacts with Russian officials. "We have serious concerns about whether the White House is properly safeguarding classified information," the committee's Democrats said in a letter to White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus released Wednesday. "In general, when there are credible allegations that employees may be unfit to continue accessing classified information, security clearances are supposed to be suspended while the allegations are investigated." At issue, they said, are Flynn and Kushner's contacts with Sergey Kislyak, Russian ambassador to U.S., and what Cummings said was their failure to tell the truth about those contacts. MSNBC
VOA VIEW: Dems are still trying to whine against Trump.

Angry Democrats In Blame Game After Georgia Defeat
Democrats are tired of losing and the accusations are flying. After going all in and coming up short in Georgia's special election Tuesday, Democratic lawmakers and political operatives are venting their frustration at losing every competitive special congressional election so far this year. Many were upset that Democrat Jon Ossoff blunted what was arguably his greatest asset — antipathy toward President Donald Trump — by going relatively easy on the president and avoiding controversy at all cost. Others, however, countered that Ossoff was a fine candidate who was the victim of a party that is too cautious and has lost its ability to connect with voters. Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT), one of the party’s rising stars, said Democrats have been distracted by the investigation in Trump’s alleged ties to Russia and need to focus more on making a concrete impact on voters' lives. MSNBC
VOA VIEW: They failed - period.

Arkansas Bar To Decide On Potential Discipline Against Hillary Clinton
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton escaped criminal charges last year but her legal troubles may not be over — the Arkansas state bar has promised a decision by next month on disciplinary action. And the State Department continues to probe Mrs. Clinton’s mishandling of classified information, with an eye toward deciding whether she and several top aides should maintain their access to classified information at the State Department. “The department’s investigation is ongoing,” officials said in a letter to Sen. Charles E. Grassley, which the Iowa Republican released earlier this month. Washington Times
VOA VIEW: Hillary is a loser.

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Acting FBI Chief Tells House Committee He’s Never Felt Uncomfortable In Meetings With Trump
Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe said Wednesday that he hasn’t had any one-on-one meetings with President Trump and said the meetings he has had, with other people in the room, have never left him feeling uncomfortable. Mr. McCabe, testifying to the House Appropriations Committee, declined to answer whether Mr. Trump ever asked him for loyalty, but said his oath is to the U.S. itself. “I don’t think it would be appropriate for me to discuss in this forum,” he said when asked by Rep. Jose Serrano, New York Democrat, about loyalty requests from Mr. Trump. Mr. McCabe became acting director after Mr. Trump fired Director James B. Comey last month.
Mr. Comey later testified that Mr. Trump had demanded loyalty from him, and had held several one-on-one conversations that the former director had deemed inappropriate — though he didn’t register that disapproval with the president himself. Washington Times
VOA VIEW: A plus for Trump.

Trump Will Hold Fundraiser At His Own Hotel In D.C.
President Trump has chosen his Washington hotel as the site for a fundraiser that could be used to benefit him and other Republicans. Campaign director Michael Glassner confirmed the location to The Associated Press on Wednesday. He calls it a premier and convenient choice. The Tuesday fundraiser in Washington will be for larger donors. Mr. Trump officially kicked off his re-election campaign on Inauguration Day by filing Federal Election Commission paperwork, making it the earliest such effort by a sitting president. But Mr. Trump has not officially announced his candidacy, and in a letter accompanying his filing, he wrote it did "not constitute a formal announcement of my candidacy for the 2020 election." CBS

Both Parties In Congress Draw Negative Ratings
The public is unhappy with the performance of both parties in Congress. And the midterms are a long way off, but the Democratic Party has not persuaded Americans that things in the country would be any better if they were in control, instead of the Republicans who hold the majority now. Independents split on this idea, most Republicans (65 percent) not surprisingly think things would become worse, and even a third of Democrats don't think things would change. CBS
VOA VIEW:  Thank Democrats.

Senate GOP Would Halt Obamacare Penalties, Taxes
Top Senate Republicans prepared Wednesday to release their plan for dismantling President Barack Obama's health care law, a proposal that would cut and revamp Medicaid, end penalties on people not buying coverage and eliminate tax increases that financed the statute's expansion of coverage, lobbyists and congressional aides said. Departing from the House-approved version of the legislation — which President Donald Trump privately called "mean" last week — the Senate plan would drop the House bill's waivers allowing states to let insurers boost premiums on some people with pre-existing conditions. It would also largely retain the subsidies Obama provided to help millions buy insurance, which are pegged mostly to people's incomes and the premiums they pay. San Diego Union

Your Coffee Could Get Worse And More Expensive Thanks To Climate Change
Coffee drinkers may be in for a bleak future, thanks to climate change. A new study published in the academic journal Nature Plants by researchers from the University of Nottingham, Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia, the Royal Botanical Gardens, and other institutions has found that the cost of coffee is likely about to go up, and the quality is about to nosedive. In short, the issue is that the Earth is getting too hot. As researchers found, more than half of the land wherein coffee crops grow in Ethiopia will be no longer agriculturally viable due to a longer dry season, unpredictable rainfall, and higher-than-usual temperatures. "Historical climate data shows that the mean annual temperature of Ethiopia has increased by 1.3 degrees Celsius (roughly 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit) between 1960 and 2006," the study reads. SF Gate

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Juror Reveals Why Bill Cosby Walked Free
Nearly every juror — 10 out of 12 — believed Bill Cosby was guilty of two counts of sex assault, a juror has revealed to ABC News. The juror, who spoke to the network on condition of anonymity, revealed that ten out of the 12 jurors agreed he was guilty on two sex assault counts — for digitally penetrating accuser Andrea Constand without her consent, and for giving her drugs without her knowledge in order to prevent her from resisting. But the weakest charge turned out to be a third sex assault count, which required proof that Constand was unconscious or unaware during the attack. Only one juror believed Cosby was guilty of that count, the report said. Surprisingly, the jurors began their deliberations with a non-binding poll, just to see where they stood before digging into the case — and they all voted that the comedian was not guilty of all three counts of aggravated indecent assault, the juror said. Tampa Tribune

Trump Tweetstorms Wash Away White House Press Briefings
Out: White House press briefings and presidential interviews. In: tweet-storms and political rallies. President Donald Trump has swapped traditional forms of White House transparency for direct but one-way communication through Twitter and speeches to friendly audiences. As he heads to Iowa on Wednesday for his fifth political rally while in office, Trump is reducing the importance of White House press briefings. Sean Spicer, the embattled press secretary, spoke for 30 minutes Tuesday and didn’t answer a number of basic questions, including whether the president believes Russia interfered in the 2016 election and whether Trump had seen the hotly debated Senate health care bill. Once more freewheeling exchanges, briefings have been shrinking both in length and content as Trump’s senior aides clamp down on information and contend with the president’s own lack of message discipline and preference for speaking directly to his fan base. Boston Globe
VOA VIEW: The liberal media are levitate.

Tropical Storm Cindy Makes Landfall In Louisiana
Gulf Coast states were in for a third day of rough weather as Tropical Storm Cindy sloshed ashore early Thursday in southwestern Louisiana. Already blamed for one death in Alabama, Cindy was expected to keep churning seas and spin off bands of severe weather from eastern Texas to northwestern Florida. Severe Weather Team 2 is tracking the impacts it will have on Georgia, on Channel 2 Action News This Morning. The storm's maximum sustained winds had decreased to near 40 mph (64 kph) Thursday morning with additional weakening expected, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said. A boy on an Alabama beach was struck and killed Wednesday by a log washed ashore by the storm. Baldwin County Sheriff's Capt. Stephen Arthur said witnesses reported the 10-year-old boy from Missouri was standing outside a condominium in Fort Morgan when the log, carried in by a large wave, struck him. Arthur said the youth was vacationing with his family from the St. Louis area and that relatives and emergency workers tried to revive him. He wasn't immediately identified. Atlanta Journal

In Iowa, The President Channels His Inner Candidate Trump
Struggling to advance his agenda in Washington, President Donald Trump traveled to the Midwest for a raucous rally with his loyal supporters — the kind of event he relished before winning the White House. Trump touched down Wednesday evening in rainy Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and headed to a local community college, where he got a look at agriculture technology innovations before leading a campaign-style rally. He reveled in Georgia Republican Karen Handel's congressional victory in an election viewed as an early referendum on his presidency. Houston Chronicle
VOA VIEW: Liberal news.

Oregon Joins States Where Roadkill Can Be Harvested For Food
Some folks in Oregon might not want to ask, when served an elk burger or a venison steak, where the meat came from. Under a roadkill bill passed overwhelmingly by the Legislature and signed by the governor, motorists who crash into the animals can now harvest the meat to eat. And it's not as unusual as people might think. About 20 other states also allow people to take meat from animals killed by vehicles. Aficionados say roadkill can be high-quality, grass-fed grub. "Eating roadkill is healthier for the consumer than meat laden with antibiotics, hormones and growth stimulants, as most meat is today," noted People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, or PETA. Washington state began allowing the salvaging of deer and elk carcasses a year ago. Pennsylvania might top the country in road kills, with Oregon wildlife officials telling lawmakers that the eastern state had over 126,000 vehicle-wildlife accidents in 2015. Houston Chronicle

Brazilian President Says He Built Warm Ties With Putin
Brazilian President Michel Temer says he has built warm ties with Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin. Temer, speaking in an interview with Tass news agency that was also broadcast by Russian state television Thursday, said he has "developed friendly personal ties" with the Russian president. Temer said his four-hour talks with Putin on Wednesday helped further boost bilateral relations. He said that Russia and Brazil agreed to expand their cooperation in space research, and noted that weapons deals were also discussed. According to Temer, Brazil also hopes to expand its food exports to Russia. The Brazilian president said he will meet with Putin again on the sidelines of a Group of 20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, next month and then at a summit in China later this year. Tampa Tribune

Jurors In Bergdahl Case Will Be Quizzed About Trump
Attorneys at a pre-trial hearing Wednesday for Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl discussed a questionnaire that could be given to potential jurors to determine whether they have been influenced by President Donald Trump's past critical remarks about the former prisoner of war. During last year's presidential campaign, Trump referred to Bergdahl as a "dirty, rotten traitor" and a "bum," among other terms, on numerous occasions as he decried the exchange of five Guantanamo Bay detainees brokered to free Bergdahl as part of his regular stump speech. ABC
VOA VIEW: Bergdahl is what he is - traitor and coward.

Congressional Black Caucus Turns Down Trump Invitation
The Congressional Black Caucus turned down an invitation to meet with President Donald Trump, telling him Wednesday they believe their concerns are falling on "deaf ears" at the White House and his policies are devastating to the millions of Americans in the nation's black communities. A White House spokeswoman said the development was "pretty disappointing" and pledged to arrange for individual members to meet one-on-one with Trump. Caucus Chairman Cedric Richmond told Trump in a letter that his proposed budget, his efforts to dismantle Democrat Barack Obama's health care law and actions by Attorney General Jeff Sessions are detrimental to many African-Americans. Richmond said the caucus had expressed its concern several times, including in eight letters and a document, but the administration has failed to respond. ABC
VOA VIEW: Blacks vote in block.

Key U.S. Banking Regulators Say They're Ready To Roll Back Rules
Top U.S. banking regulators are sprinting to ease the Volcker Rule, stress tests and other constraints on Wall Street after the Trump administration issued a long list of proposals last week for rolling back post-crisis financial rules. Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell and acting Comptroller of the Currency Keith Noreika plan to tell lawmakers Thursday that they support revamping key strictures. Both mentioned their agencies are open to rethinking Volcker’s trading restrictions and reducing the burden of the annual exams that evaluate banks’ ability to weather severe economic shocks. Bloomberg

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U.S. Stocks Drop On Brent Bear Slump, Gold Rises
Most U.S. stocks fell as oil’s worsening slump weighed on energy and industrial shares, overshadowing fresh rallies in high flying technology and biotech companies.
Brent crude slid beneath $45 a barrel to join West Texas Intermediate in a bear market as stockpiles in America remain above seasonal averages and Libya resumed some production. That sent energy shares in the S&P 500 Index to the lowest level in two months. The equity benchmark almost eked out a gain as chipmakers led a rally in its biggest component, tech shares. Treasuries were virtually unchanged after erasing losses, while the dollar slipped. Bloomberg

Protesters Clash Over Confederate Street Names In Hollywood
A pprotest over streets named for three Confederate generals turned tense Wednesday as both sides clashed outside City Hall in Hollywood. More than 20 officers kept watch as a crowd of more than 100 people exchanged heated words and insults over whether to rename the streets honoring Robert E. Lee, John Bell Hood and Nathan Bedford Forrest. The drama made its way into a commission meeting when five protesters in the audience began shouting about racist street signs. All five were arrested for disrupting the meeting, a city spokeswoman said. Sun Sentinel
VOA VIEW: The South and Confederacy were not evil empires.

Energy Secretary Perry Clarifies Remarks On Interim Storage
Energy Secretary Rick Perry has clarified his remarks on interim storage after Gov. Brian Sandoval said that he was blindsided by a suggestion that the Nevada Test Site could be suitable for interim storage. Before the Senate Energy & Water Subcommittee, Perry said Wednesday that no decision has been made on when or where waste will be stored. “I think it is appropriate to say, there are no plans for interim storage at this particular time for interim storage in New Mexico, Nevada or Texas or any other site,” he said. “Any such plans would obviously require coordination ... with the federal, state and local officials.” Las Vegas Sun

As Travel Industry Awaits Slowdown, Travelers Pack Bags
The travel industry is voicing a common refrain: President Donald Trump’s travel ban, terror attacks in Europe and a laptop ban represent a recipe for a potential sharp decline in visitors to and from the United States. “When you hear words like ‘travel ban,’ it puts a big chill” on travel and tourism, James J. Murren, chairman and chief executive of MGM Resorts, said at an industry conference last week in New York. Some data is backing up those concerns. Nearly 20 percent fewer people are visiting this summer from the Middle East, the focus of Trump’s travel ban, even though the policy has been blocked by U.S. courts. As of early June, overall advance airline bookings to the United States were down 3.4 percent for this year’s summer travel season compared with the same time last year, according to ForwardKeys, a Spanish company that tracks air travel. Las Vegas Sun

Gunman Who Shot Congressman Had No Target In Mind
Adrift and nearly out of money after three months of living out of his van in the Washington area, the gunman who shot a top House Republican and four other people on a Virginia baseball field didn't have any concrete plans to inflict violence on the Republicans he loathed, FBI officials said Wednesday. James T. Hodgkinson, 66, was shot and killed by police after he opened fire on Congressional Republicans practicing for their annual charity baseball game against Democrats last week. Rep. Steve Scalise of Lousiana, the House majority whip, was struck in the hip and gravely wounded. Scalise remains hospitalized, and his condition was upgraded to fair on Wednesday. All five people who were shot, including two U.S. Capitol police officers, survived their injuries. Philadelphia Inquirer
VOA VIEW: Hodgekinson only wanted Republicans.

Flint Stabbing Was Retaliation For US Wars In Middle East
An America-hating terrorist from Canada cried “Allahu akbar!” and stabbed a cop in the neck at a Michigan airport Wednesday — and later told the FBI he was avenging the deaths of Muslims in the Mideast, authorities said. The feds identified the attacker as Amor Ftouhi, 50, who entered the US from Quebec on June 16. FBI special agent David Gelios said during a press briefing that authorities believe Ftouhi acted alone, and that he told them during interrogation that he “had a hatred for the US” for killing people in the war-torn countries and that “you are all going to die.” Lt. Jeff Neville was standing at his post at the top of an escalator at the Bishop International Airport in Flint at about 9:45 a.m. when he was attacked from behind with what Gelios said was a 12-inch knife with an 8-inch serrated blade. NY Post

When Asked Their Sex, Some Are Going With Option 'X'
America has slowly begun to acknowledge that for many people, gender is much more complicated than simply being a man or a woman. And a growing number of Americans are seeking recognition of a third gender, neither exclusively male or female, under the label non-binary. People typically think of transgender as meaning gender reversal, where someone identifies as the opposite sex from their birth sex. But transgender is an umbrella term used to cover a wide spectrum of people whose gender identity is different from the one they were assigned at birth. More than one-third of transgender people describe themselves as non-binary, which the National Center for Transgender defines as "people whose gender is not exclusively male or female, including those who identify with a gender other than male or female, as more than one gender, or as no gender, identifying as a combination of genders or not identifying with either gender at all." USA Today
VOA VIEW: Liberal stupidity.

Report: Ku Klux Klan Smaller, Hit By In Fighting
A report due to be released by the Anti-Defamation League on Thursday morning and shared exclusively with USA TODAY says that the Ku Klux Klan appears to be weighed down by infighting and that activities are dwindling. The 10-page report, "Despite Internal Turmoil, Klan Groups Persist," says the Klan's primary activity seems to be distributing hate literature. "The distribution of racist, anti-Semitic, homophobic and Islamophobic fliers remains the most consistent Klan activity," the report said. But such activity is down from 86 incidents in 2015 to 78 in 2016 to 39 so far in 2017. The report also says that while 42 affiliated groups have staged activities in 33 states for the last 18 months, most groups have less than 25 members. The report found that social media posts reflect a fractured Klan in which leaders come and go and members do not trust one another. Today's Klan, according to the report, is chiefly preoccupied with perceived threats such as Black Lives Matter, Islam, the LGBT community and transgender restrooms, immigration and removal of Confederate symbols from public places. USA Today

Farmers At Higher Risk For Suicide Than Other Occupations
Two decades after the U.S. farm crisis, the suicide rate among American farmers remains much higher than among other workers, a new study finds. "Occupational factors such as poor access to quality health care, isolation and financial stress interact with life factors to continue to place farmers at a disproportionately high risk for suicide," said study co-author Corinne Peek-Asa. She is a professor of occupational and environmental health at the University of Iowa College of Public Health. Peek-Asa and her colleagues found that 230 U.S. farmers died by suicide between 1992 and 2010. UPI

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KUSHNER MEETS WITH ABBAS IN BID TO RENEW PEACE PROCESS
"President Trump is committed to working to reach a serious peace deal," Jared Kushner said, according to Wafa, the official Palestinian Authority news site. US President Donald Trump's top advisor and son-in-law, along with Mideast envoy Jason Greenblatt, met on Wednesday with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas at the president's residence in Ramallah. Nabil Abu Rudeinah, Abbas's spokesperson, said that all issues were discussed in-depth including final status issues such as refugees and prisoners and that Abbas affirmed during the meeting his support for a two-state solution with the establishment of a Palestinian state along 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital. Jerusalem Post
VOA VIEW: A total waste of time - there will  not be 1967 borders and East Jerusalem will not be its capital.

MOSCOW WANTS CLOSER COOPERATION WITH JERUSALEM IN SYRIA
Russia wants to increase cooperation with Israel regarding Syria, and would like Jerusalem to use any influence it has to get opposition groups there to lay down arms and enter negotiations, Konstantin Kosachev, a senior Russian parliamentarian, told The Jerusalem Post. Kosachev, who chairs the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Federation Council, the upper house of Russia’s parliament, was in the country on Tuesday and Wednesday with Viktor Ozerov, the chairman of the Federation Council’s Defense and Security Committee, for meetings with the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee. Jerusalem Post

Uber Founder Travis Kalanick Resigns After Months Of Turmoil
Uber boss Travis Kalanick has resigned as chief executive after pressure from shareholders. His resignation comes after a review of practices at the firm and scandals including complaints of sexual harassment. Last week he said he was taking an indefinite leave of absence following the sudden death of his mother in a boating accident. Mr Kalanick will remain on the board of the ride-hailing firm. Five major Uber investors demanded Mr Kalanick's immediate resignation as chief executive, the New York Times said. BBC

Cardiologist: Breast Implants Skew Heart Attack Test
Breast implants make it trickier to run tests that can help spot a possible heart attack, a cardiologist has said. Dr Sok-Sithikun Bun, from Monaco, did a small trial, with 48 women, and found electrocardiogram (ECG) tests, which measure the electrical activity of the heart, were often unreliable because the breast implants "got in the way". Dr Bun is presenting his findings at a conference in Austria. Having a pre-implant ECG for doctors to refer to would help, he said. "We do not want to frighten patients, but it may be wise to have an ECG before a breast implant operation," Dr Bun said. BBC

Data Of Nearly All Registered US Voters Left Unsecured For Weeks In RNC Trove
A data trove owned by the Republican National Committee (RNC) containing personal details of nearly every registered voter in the US was left unsecured for nearly two weeks earlier this month due to an improperly configured security setting, internet security firm UpGuard revealed on Monday. The data, which includes names, birth dates, addresses, voter registration details and social media posts, was available for download by anyone who knew to look for it from 1 June through 14 June when the oversight was corrected. Guardian

Al Gore: Battle Against Climate Change Is Like Fight Against Slavery
The fight against global warming is one of humanity’s great moral movements, alongside the abolition of slavery, the defeat of apartheid, votes for women and gay rights, according to the former US vice-president and climate campaigner, Al Gore. The battle to halt climate change can be won, he said, because the green revolution delivering clean energy is both bigger than the industrial revolution and happening faster than the digital revolution. Gore has played a major global role in raising awareness of the dangers of climate change since his 2007 film An Inconvenient Truth and made his comments, among his most outspoken to date, in a recent speech in London. Guardian
VOA VIEW: Gore is nuts.

Irish Illegal Immigrants In Boston Fear Deportation After Arrest Of Local Figure
A prominent figure in Boston's Irish community has been detained for deportation, triggering fears among thousands of other illegal immigrants in the city. John Cunningham, a former chairman of the Gaelic Athletic Association in Boston, was arrested by agents from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) at his home.
“This is the first time we’ve heard in Boston that somebody went to somebody’s house to take somebody," said Mayor Martin Walsh, according to the Boston Herald. "We haven’t heard that before. Telegraph

Russian Jet Flies 'Within Five Feet' Of US Aircraft Over The Baltic
Russian fighter jet flew within five feet of a US reconnaissance plane  in a “provocative” and “unsafe” aerial manoeuvre over the Baltic Sea said, the US military said.
The US RC-135U was flying a routine mission in international airspace when the armed Su-27 Flanker raced towards it and was less than two metres from a collision, according to the Pentagon. The Russian aircraft was flying “erratically” and its aggressive manoeuvre was “provocative”, a US official told Fox News. Telegraph
VOA VIEW: The Russian aircraft should have been shot down.

World Population To Hit 9.8 Billion By 2050, Despite Nearly Universal Lower Fertility Rates
The world population is now at least 7.6 billion, up from 7.4 billion in 2015, spurred by the relatively high levels of fertility in developing countries – despite an overall drop in the number of children people have around the globe – the United Nations today reported. The concentration of global population growth is in the poorest countries, according to World Population Prospects: The 2017 Revision, presenting a challenge as the international community seeks to implement the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, which seeks to end poverty and preserve the planet. UN News

Protection Of Civilians In Syria Must Be Ensured, Stresses UN Chief Guterres
Expressing alarm over the suffering of people Syria, in particular those in Raqqa and in other locations where fighting continues, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has called on all those conducting military operations in the country to ensure the safety and protection of civilians and civilian infrastructure. “Civilians continue to be killed, injured and displaced at a terrifying rate [and] places of refuge, such as hospitals and schools continue to be targeted,” said the Secretary-General in a statement today. UN News

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