Walmart Returns Firearms, Ammunition to US Store Floors Ahead of Election

Walmart Returns Firearms, Ammunition to US Store Floors Ahead of Election

Walmart Inc said on Friday it had begun returning firearms and ammunitions to the floors of its U.S. stores a day after the world’s largest retailer said it had removed these products to protect customers and employees as tensions across the country rise.”After civil unrest earlier this week resulted in damage to several of our stores … we asked stores to move firearms and ammunition from the sales floor …. As the current incidents have remained geographically isolated, we have made the decision to begin returning these products to the sales floor today,” the company said.A Walmart spokesperson declined to comment on why the decision to place firearms and ammunition back on U.S. store floors was made days before the U.S. presidential election on Nov. 3, with many worried that the result could be contested or spark violence.Gun control advocates criticized the move on social media, saying they were “disappointed” and “surprised” by the news and that it was a “huge mistake.”Retailers have been on edge after people earlier this year smashed windows, stole merchandise and, at times, set stores ablaze in Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Portland and other U.S. cities. In another trend that has fed concern, gun sales in the United States this year have reached record highs, and more first-time buyers have purchased firearms in recent months.Shares of the Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer, which sells firearms in approximately half of its more than 5,000 U.S. stores, were trading roughly flat after the bell.

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Court Rejects Appeal Seeking Gun Ban Outside Michigan Polling Places

The Michigan appeals court on Thursday rejected an appeal from a Democratic state official who wants to ban the open carrying of guns outside polling places.The court, in a 3-0 order, declined to hear the case but noted that it’s already illegal to intimidate voters or aggressively wave a gun in public.”Anyone who intimidates a voter in Michigan by brandishing a firearm or, for that matter, by threatening with a knife, baseball bat, fist, or otherwise menacing behavior, is committing a felony under existing law,” the court said.The three-judge panel included Brock Swartzle, who is a candidate for the state Supreme Court.The order came two days after a judge said Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson had exceeded her authority in prohibiting the open carrying of guns within 100 feet of a polling place.Formal processCourt of Claims Judge Christopher Murray said the policy didn’t go through a formal rule-making process required under Michigan law.Benson, the state’s chief election officer, acted after federal authorities on October 8 said they broke up a scheme by anti-government paramilitary groups to kidnap Governor Gretchen Whitmer. But some county sheriffs said they wouldn’t enforce the order, and the Michigan Association of Chiefs of Police also had panned it.FILE – In this June 4, 2019, file photo, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel listens to a question from reporters in Detroit.Attorney General Dana Nessel, a Democrat, said she’ll now ask the Supreme Court to take the case. Her office pointed to a weekend poll by The Detroit News that found 73% supported a gun ban.Attorneys defending Benson said the secretary of state has discretion to set certain rules related to elections. They quoted voters as saying they would be discouraged from casting a ballot if they saw someone with a gun near a polling place. Some don’t trust the absentee ballot option.”While the presence of firearms might comfort some, that same presence instills discomfort and even fear in others,” Assistant Attorney General Ann Sherman said in a court filing.Steve Dulan, an attorney for the Michigan Coalition for Responsible Gun Owners, said the group’s members were upset with the “demonization” of gun owners through Benson’s order.

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Illinois Judge OKs Protest Shooting Suspect’s Extradition to Wisconsin

An Illinois judge on Friday ordered the extradition of a 17-year-old accused in the fatal shooting of two demonstrators in Kenosha, Wisconsin.The ruling in Kyle Rittenhouse’s case came after a hearing at the Lake County Courthouse in Waukegan, Illinois. Defense lawyers sought to persuade Judge Paul Novak to block their client’s transfer to Wisconsin to face homicide charges.Rittenhouse’s attorneys argued the teen acted in self-defense on Aug. 25 when he opened fire during unrest after the shooting of a Black man by a white police officer in Kenosha. They said the charges are politically motivated and that extraditing the teenager would violate his constitutional rights.Lake County prosecutors have said those arguments were irrelevant on the question of extradition and that it’s the role of a Wisconsin judge, not one in Illinois, to decide whether there are sufficient grounds for charges.In Wisconsin, Rittenhouse faces first-degree intentional homicide in the fatally shooting of two protesters, which carries a life prison sentence. He is also charged with attempted intentional homicide in the wounding of a third protester.Rittenhouse’s case has become a rallying point for some conservatives who see him as a patriot who was exercising his right to bear arms during unrest. Others portray him as a domestic terrorist who incited protesters by showing up wielding a rifle.

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Pope Francis Focused on Fighting Vatican Corruption

Pope Francis said he is focused on fighting corruption in the Catholic Church, despite the challenges.”I know I have to do it (fight corruption), I was called to do it, but it will be the Lord to decide if I did well or not. Sincerely, I am not very optimistic,” he said during an interview Friday with Italian news agency AdnKronos.Pope Francis also said he is not deterred by criticisms in whatever area, noting he takes them “on board because it can lead to self-examination.” He added he will not let himself be “dragged down by every non-positive thing written about the pope.”In 2013, Pope Francis was elected by cardinals on a mandate to clean up the Vatican’s finances, after a series of corruption scandals.Last month, Francis fired a former top Vatican official, Cardinal Angelo Becciu, for alleged embezzlement in the purchase of a luxury London building for the Vatican. Becciu has denied all accusations.A former worker of Becciu, 39-year-old Cecilia Marogna, was released Friday after spending at least two weeks in jail. Marogna is awaiting a judge’s decision on extradition from the Vatican.Francis says he is worried the “cases of malfeasance, of betrayals” hurt believers of the Catholic faith.

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US Coronavirus Cases Surpass 9 Million

The U.S. surpassed 9 million confirmed coronavirus cases Friday, recording 1 million new cases in just two weeks, according to the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center.Previously, it had taken the country three weeks to jump from 7 million cases to 8 million.As of Friday afternoon, the U.S. had more than 9,018,500 cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, and 229,356 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins. The increase in cases has been a result of a resurgence of the coronavirus since mid-October, health officials said.The death rate attributed to the virus has risen 14% over the past two weeks, with more than 800 every day.Confirmed cases are on the rise in 47 U.S. states, and dozens of states set records Thursday for new infections in a single day, including the Midwestern states of Illinois, Wisconsin and Ohio, according to Johns Hopkins. Record daily highs were also reported in Texas, California and Florida.The rising tide of new coronavirus cases worldwide is forcing leaders to consider new lockdown measures to contain an increase in infections.Great BritainBritish Foreign Minister Dominic Raab said in an interview with BBC television Friday a national lockdown in his country is not inevitable to prevent the further spread of the disease, adding that a localized approach would be efficient if rules for each area were strictly observed.Raab’s statement followed announcements by leaders of France and Germany earlier in the week to impose new lockdowns.FranceFrench President Emmanuel Macron announced a nationwide, monthlong lockdown that will take effect Friday. Macron said restaurants, bars, cafes and other nonessential businesses will be closed, while citizens will be allowed to leave their homes only for work, shopping and doctor appointments.Officials in Paris said people eager to escape the effects of the new lockdown created traffic jams Thursday evening with a total length of 730 kilometers.GermanyGerman Chancellor Angela Merkel announced a set of similar measures in her own monthlong lockdown, which takes effect Monday. In addition to restaurants and bars, all gyms, theaters and opera houses will be closed under Merkel’s order, while the majority of businesses, shops and hair salons will be allowed to remain open.Schools in both nations will remain open during their respective lockdowns.The restrictions were announced by Macron and Merkel as both nations struggle with a record number of new COVID-19 cases almost every day.France and Germany joined several other European nations that have been forced to impose a new set of restrictions to deal with a second and growing wave of the virus as the cold weather season approaches in the Northern Hemisphere.Ukraine reported Friday a record 8,312 new COVID-19 cases in the previous 24 hours, up from the October 23 high of 7,517, with total infections at 378,729. The deaths also jumped by a record 173, for a toll of 7,041.In Japan, the health ministry said Friday that the coronavirus cases topped 100,000, nine months after the first case was reported in mid-January. Japan has more than 1,700 deaths.EuropeEuropean countries, meanwhile, are calling on the global community to grant the World Health Organization greater authority to independently investigate outbreaks after the pandemic exposed the agency’s deficiencies.After European Union ministers met to discuss the matter, German Health Minister Jens Spahn said Friday that countries should give the agency more political and financial support.WHOThe WHO does not have the authority to independently investigate epidemics, forcing it to rely on countries to approve their lists of suggested experts and to abide by the agendas developed by them.As of Friday, there are more than 45 million total coronavirus cases worldwide, including more than 1.18 million COVID-19 deaths. India has reached the milestone of more than 8 million cases, second only to the U.S.

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Голова «Опори»: суд зобов’язав ТВК оголосити повторні вибори в Одеській області

Одеський окружний адміністративний суд скасував рішення територіальної виборчої комісії щодо результатів виборів сільського голови в Кароліно-Бугазькій громаді в Одеській області. Про це повідомила голова правління громадянської мережі «Опора» Ольга Айвазовська.

Вона розмістила фото рішення суду, за яким той скасував рішення Кароліно-Бугазької сільської територіальної виборчої комісії Білгород-Дністровського району Одеської області. Своєю постановою комісія визнавала головою села Кароліно-Бугаз Андрія Апанасенка.

«Нагадую, ТВК не встановивши результатів виборів, скликала перше засідання ОМС, на якому кандидати склали присягу. Суд зобов’язав ТВК визнати вибори такими, що не відбулись та оголосити повторні», – зазначила Айвазовська.

Суд наразі публічно не повідомляв про це рішення.

 

В Україні 25 жовтня відбулися місцеві вибори. Українці обирали депутатів місцевих рад, селищних, сільських і міських голів. Явка склала близько 37%.

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У Туреччині і на грецькому острові вдарив сильний землетрус, принаймні 19 загиблих

Місто Ізмір на заході Туреччини і розташований неподалік грецький острів Самос в Егейському морі вразив сильний землетрус, унаслідок якого наразі повідомляють про 19 загиблих і понад 700 поранених чи травмованих.

Магнітуда землетрусу, за оцінкою Геологічної служби США, що є одним із провідних у світі сейсмологічних моніторів, склала 7,0. Турецькі сейсмологи оцінили її як 6,6, грецькі як 6,7.

Додаткові руйнування після самого землетрусу спричинили на узбережжі високі припливні хвилі, що виникли внаслідок землетрусу на кшталт цунамі і затопили значні території.

 

У майже 3-мільйонному Ізмірі, третьому найбільшому місті Туреччини, повідомляють на цей час про 17 загиблих, із яких одна людина втонула, і 709 поранених чи травмованих. Там кажуть про 4 повністю зруйновані будинки і понад 10 значною мірою зруйнованих, іще багато будівель тією чи іншою мірою пошкоджені.

На острові Самос із його 45-тисячним населенням повідомляють про двох загиблих підлітків, яких завалила зруйнована стіна, і принаймні про 19 травмованих.

І Туреччина, і Греція розташовані на лініях тектонічних зсувів, і землетруси в них стаються часто. Зокрема, в січні 2020 року понад 30 людей загинули і понад 1600 були травмовані внаслідок землетрусу на сході Туреччини, в провінції Елазиг. У липні 2019 року через землетрус залишилися без електроенергії значні частини столиці Греції Атен. Одним із найбільш смертоносних був останнім часом землетрус 1999 року, який вразив турецьке місто Ізміт неподалік Стамбулу – тоді загинули близько 17 тисяч людей.

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‘Our Heart Breaks’: South Digs Out From Zeta’s Wrath

Trees on top of buses and cars. Roofs ripped off homes. Boats pushed onto the highway by surging seawater. Hundreds of thousands of people left in the dark.The remnants of Hurricane Zeta were far from land over the Atlantic on Friday, but people across the South were still digging out from the powerful storm that killed six people.The wind effects of Zeta, which came ashore in Cocodrie, Louisiana, and barreled northeast, were felt all the way from the Gulf Coast to southern New Jersey. At the height of the outages, as many as 2.6 million people were without power across seven states from Louisiana to Virginia. Utility crews were out assessing the damage and fixing it.In Louisiana, one of the hardest hit areas was Grand Isle, a barrier island community south of New Orleans. Governor John Bel Edwards called the damage there “catastrophic” and ordered the Louisiana National Guard to fly in soldiers to assist with search-and-rescue efforts.Dodie Vegas, who with her husband owns Bridge Side Marina on Grand Isle, said damage was minimal at their waterside complex of cabins, campgrounds and docking facilities, but the rest of the island wasn’t so lucky.”As far as you can see, going down the island, the power lines are cracked in half,” she said by phone Thursday after riding out the storm with family. She described torn-off roofs and scattered debris: “The middle of the island looks like a bomb was dropped.”Members of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers survey levee damage along Grand Isle, La., Oct. 30, 2020. Gov. John Bel Edwards says the damage from Hurricane Zeta was “catastrophic” in Grand Isle, a barrier island community south of New Orleans.FatalitiesA man was electrocuted in New Orleans, and four people died in Alabama and Georgia when trees fell on homes, authorities said, including two people who were pinned to their bed. In Biloxi, Mississippi, a man drowned when he was trapped in rising seawater.Officials repeatedly stressed that the risks were not over — pointing out that fatalities often come after a storm has passed, from things like breathing toxic generator fumes or being electrocuted by downed power lines.Zeta was the 27th named storm of a historically busy year, with more than a month left in the Atlantic hurricane season. It set a new record as the 11th named storm to make landfall in the continental U.S. in a single season, well beyond the nine that hit in 1916. And the coronavirus pandemic has only made things more difficult for evacuees.”Our heart breaks because this has been a tough, tough year,” said Edwards, whose state has taken the brunt of the hurricanes.Every storm is different, and with Zeta the biggest threat was its winds. The hurricane intensified quickly and was just shy of a major, Category 3 storm when it hit the Louisiana coast.The howling gale toppled trees and knocked limbs off stately oaks in New Orleans, and in Mississippi the storm surge whipped up by the winds tossed a shrimping boat into a front yard.Olivia Mancing and Zachery Quale talk outside Flora Gallery and Coffee Shop near a downed tree in the street after Hurricane Zeta swept through New Orleans, Oct. 29, 2020.Trees block roadsMayor Sheldon Day of Thomasville, Alabama, said hundreds of trees fell in roads and on homes, while some gas station canopies blew over.”At one point, every major thoroughfare was blocked by trees,” Day said.Many people were still assessing the damage.Keith Forrest of Bridge City, Louisiana, was launching a boat with his nephew in Lafitte, Louisiana, on Thursday to try to get to his fishing camp.”I got a phone call because the roof blew off one camp,” Forrest said.With just a few days until the November 3 election, there were concerns about whether the storm would affect voters’ ability to get to the polls.Far fewer early voters showed up after the storm in Pascagoula, Mississippi, a court clerk said, and power failures in two Georgia counties disrupted voting. In Louisiana, getting power back to polling centers was a priority, as was letting voters know quickly if there were any changes to locations come Tuesday.In Georgia, a group of civil rights organizations asked the governor to extend early voting hours Friday.A collapsed building is seen after Hurricane Zeta swept through New Orleans, Oct. 29, 2020.No electricity, no workIn the remote area of Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana, commercial fisherman Acy Cooper said his boats survived the storm. But without electricity, he feared operations could be shut down as long as two weeks.”Without no lights, none of the docks can work,” he said. “Everything’s automated now — the scales and the conveyors.”The heightened storm activity has focused attention on climate change, which scientists say is causing wetter, stronger and more destructive storms.And as bad as the 2020 hurricane season has been, it isn’t over. Forecasters said disturbed air off the northern coast of South America could become a tropical depression and head toward Nicaragua by early next week — a forecast not lost on Louisiana’s governor.”Let’s not pray it on anybody else,” Edwards said. “Let’s just pray it away from us.”

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US Coronavirus Cases Set to Reach 9 Million

Coronavirus infections in the U.S. are poised to reach 9 million Friday after daily cases in the country on Thursday reached a record high 88,521, according to Johns Hopkins University.
 
The 9 million milestone in the U.S. is set to be reached just 15 days after the total number of infections reached 8 million.  
 
Dozens of U.S. states set records Thursday for new infections in a single day, including the midwestern states of Illinois, Wisconsin and Ohio, according to Hopkins. Record daily highs were also reported in Texas, California and Florida.
 
The rising tide of new coronavirus cases worldwide is forcing leaders to consider new lockdown measures to contain an increase in infections.
 
British Foreign Minister Dominic Raab said in an interview with BBC television Friday a national lockdown in his country is not inevitable to prevent the further spread of the disease, adding that a localized approach would be efficient if rules for each area were strictly observed.
 
Raab’s statment followed announcements by leaders of France and Germany earlier in the week to impose new lockdowns.
 
French President Emmanuel Macron announced a nationwide monthlong lockdown that will take effect Friday. Macron said restaurants, bars, cafes and other nonessential businesses will be closed, while citizens will be allowed to leave their homes only for work, shopping and doctor appointments.
 
Officials in Paris said people eager to escape the effects of the new lockdown created traffic jams Thursday evening with a total length of 730 kilometers.
 
German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced a set of similar measures in her own monthlong lockdown which takes effect Monday. In addition to restaurants and bars, all gyms, theaters and opera houses will be shut down under Merkel’s order, while the majority of businesses, shops and hair salons will be allowed to remain open.
 
Schools in both nations will remain open during their respective lockdowns.  
The restrictions were announced by Macron and Merkel as both nations struggle with a record number of new COVID-19 cases almost every day.
 
France and Germany joined several other European nations that have been forced to impose a new set of restrictions to deal with a second and growing wave of the virus as the cold weather season approaches in the Northern Hemisphere.
 
Ukraine reported Friday a record 8,312 new COVID-19 cases in the previous 24 hours, up from the October 23 high of 7,517, with total infections at 378,729. The deaths also jumped by a record 173, for a toll of 7,041.
 
In Japan, the health ministry said Friday that the coronavirus cases topped 100,000, nine months after the first case was reported in mid-January. Japan has more than 1,700 deaths.
 
European countries, meanwhile, are calling on the global community to grant the World Health Organization greater authority to independently investigate outbreaks after the pandemic exposed the agency’s deficiencies.
 
After European Union ministers met to discuss the matter, German Health Minister Jens Spahn said Friday that countries should give the agency more political and financial support.
 
The WHO does not have the authority to independently investigate epidemics, forcing it to rely on countries to approve their lists of suggested experts and to abide by the agendas developed by them.  
 
As of Friday, there are more than 45 million total coronavirus cases worldwide, including over 1.18 million COVID-19 deaths. India has reached the milestone of over 8 million cases, second only to the U.S.

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Рішуча реакція влади врятує «безвіз» – Ольга Стефанішина

Рішення Конституційного суду підриває довіру до України з боку західних партнерів, проте представники української влади своїми діями і кроками демонструють готовність продовжувати реформи. Таку думку висловила в прямому ефірі Радіо Свобода віцепрем’єр із питань європейської та євроатлантичної інтеграції України Ольга Стефанішина.

«Такі рішення підривають довіру і послідовність українських реформ. Треба зазначити, що питання боротьби з корупцією були частиною переговорів щодо отримання Україною безвізового режиму, і сьогодні Європейський союз має спеціальний механізм, коли Україна відступає від вимог, і Єврокомісія може ініціювати такі процедури. Водночас рішучі кроки, продемонстровані українською владою, зокрема засідання РНБО і публічна позиція ключових гравців (президент, уряд і парламент), свідчать про те, що Україна налаштована продовжувати ці реформи, і наразі питання щодо перегляду умов «безвізу» не є на порядку денному», – сказала віцепрем’єр.

За словами Стефанішиної, «послідовність і рішуча політична реакція» з боку влади є запорукою стабільної роботи з міжнародними партнерами, європейської та євроатлантичної інтеграції.

Президент Володимир Зеленський вніс до Верховної Ради законопроєкт, яким пропонує припинити повноваження суддів Конституційного суду, визнати його рішення про декларування «нікчемним» і без правових наслідків і скасувати внесені судом зміни до Закону «Про запобігання корупції». Це випливає з проєкту закону «про відновлення суспільної довіри до конституційного судочинства».

У КСУ заявили, що законопроєкт президента України Володимира Зеленського має ознаки конституційного перевороту.

27 жовтня Конституційний суд України визнав неконституційною статтю 366-1 Кримінального кодексу, яка передбачає покарання за декларування недостовірної інформації. Так само суд скасував низку положень закону про запобігання корупції. КСУ пояснював, що антикорупційне законодавство створює передумови для неправомірного впливу на суд.

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Єрмак після загибелі на фронті двох бійців: перемир’я триває, але бувають провокації

Керівник офісу президента України Андрій Єрмак після загибелі на лінії фронту на Донбасі двох українських військовослужбовців унаслідок прицільних обстрілів противника продовжує стверджувати, що перемир’я далі триває, хоча й стаються провокації.

Із такою заявою він виступив на зустрічі з послами країн «Групи семи», повідомляє офіс президента.

«Керівник офісу президента розповів про пріоритетне для влади і особисто голови держави питання досягнення миру на Донбасі. За його словами, режим припинення вогню на сході України триває вже майже 100 днів, але стаються провокації з боку незаконних збройних формувань з метою його зриву», – наводить слова Єрмака сайт Банкової.

За цими словами, «вчора (тобто 29 жовтня – ред.) під час таких ворожих обстрілів, на жаль, двоє українських військових загинули, ще двоє зазнали поранень, ситуацією на місці нині займається начальник Генерального штабу, а Україна ініціювала сьогодні термінове засідання робочої підгрупи з безпеки Тристоронньої контактної групи».

«Керівник офісу президента закликав послів країн G7 та уряди їхніх держав підтримати Україну в захисті позицій і закликати всі сторони дотримуватися режиму тиші», – мовиться в повідомленні без уточнень, які саме «сторони» гібридної агресії Росії проти України на частині Донбасу, на думку Єрмака, треба до цього закликати.

Двоє українських бійців загинули насправді 30 жовтня, невдовзі по півночі, внаслідок прицільного вогню російських гібридних сил по українських позиціях біля села Водяного на півдні Донеччини. Попереднього дня, 29 жовтня, там же й теж унаслідок прицільного вогню ще один український військовослужбовець був поранений (і ще один був поранений на іншій ділянці фронту).

При цьому, виходячи з позиції Зеленського про необхідність збереження перемир’я будь-якою ціною, українська делегація в Тристоронній контактній групі для переговорів про врегулювання на окупованій частині Донбасу вустами свого нового речника, блогера Олексія Арестовича заявила, що обстріли з боку противника були припинені «за допомогою координаційних механізмів», без згадок ні про які дії українських військ у відповідь. Задля позірного дотримання перемир’я українські війська вкрай рідко відповідають на обстріли.

Натомість у пресцентрі Об’єднаних сил, що ведуть операцію проти російських гібридних сил на окупованій частині Донбасу, навели цього разу іншу версію: «на вогневі провокації противника підрозділи Об’єднаних сил надали адекватну відповідь», своїм вогнем змусивши його «повернутись до режиму тиші».

Командувач Об’єднаних сил у зв’язку з цим обстрілом заявив: така «зухвалість» противника свідчить, що російські гібридні сили спрямовано йдуть на зрив домовленостей про припинення вогню. «Сьогоднішній обстріл доводить, що противник не має на меті досягнути миру», – наголошено в його заяві.

Із 00:01 27 липня на Донбасі набрала чинності чергова домовленість про «повне та всеосяжне припинення вогню». При цьому російські гібридні сили порушують її практично щодня, внаслідок чого українські військові час від часу зазнають поранень чи й гинуть. Українська сторона, дотримуючись перемир’я зі свого боку, вкрай рідко відповідає на ці обстріли.

Унаслідок російської гібридної агресії на сході України з квітня 2014 року, за останніми оприлюдненими оцінками ООН станом іще на 31 жовтня 2019 року, загинули від 13 тисяч до 13 тисяч 200 людей, із яких було щонайменше 3 тисячі 354 цивільних, приблизно 4 тисячі 100 українських бійців і приблизно 5 тисяч 650 членів російських гібридних збройних формувань. За цими ж даними, за цей час російської агресії також були поранені від 29 тисяч до 31 тисячі людей: приблизно від 7 тисяч до 9 тисяч цивільних, від 9 тисяч 500 до 10 тисяч 500 українських бійців і від 12 тисяч 500 до 13 тисяч 500 членів російських гібридних збройних формувань.

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At Least 4 Dead After Powerful Earthquake Hits Turkey

Officials in Turkey say at least four people are dead in western Izmir province following a powerful earthquake that struck Friday along the Turkish coast and the Greek island of Samos. From his Twitter account, Turkish Health Minister Fahrettin Koca reported that four people were killed in Izmir and 120 were injured. He said 38 ambulances, two ambulance helicopters and 35 medical rescue teams were working in the province. The European-Mediterranean Seismological Center said the quake had a preliminary magnitude of 6.9 with an epicenter 13 kilometers north-northeast of Samos and 32 kilometers off the coast of Turkey.  The United States Geological Survey put the magnitude at 7.0. It is common for preliminary magnitudes to differ in the early hours and days after a quake. Multiple aftershocks struck the region. Turkey’s official Anadolu news agency said three injured people were pulled from the wreckage of a building in Izmir. Izmir mayor Tunc Soyer told CNN Turk that about 20 buildings collapsed. The city is the third largest in Turkey with about 4.5 million residents. Turkey’s interior minister said there were small cracks in some buildings in six other provinces.Some damage also was reported to buildings and roads on Samos, an island in the eastern Aegean Sea. The director of the hospital in Samos said four people were treated there for light injuries.Greek public television said the quake also caused a mini-tsunami on Samos, damaging buildings. Video taken at the scene showed boats pushed up onto city streets. Media reports say the quake was felt as far away as Britain and Bulgaria.  

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2nd Suspect Held After Deadly Knife Attack at French Church

Police in France have detained a second suspect in connection with Thursday’s deadly knife attack at a church in the city of Nice. The suspect is a 47-year-old man believed to have been in contact with the attacker the night before the attack at Notre Dame Basilica, according to a judicial official, who was not authorized to be publicly named.  In Tunisia, authorities are reportedly investigating whether a group called the Mahdi Organization carried out the attack. The state news agency TAP reported Friday investigators were also trying to determine whether the group exists and that the probe is based on claims of responsibility on social media. A picture of Brahim al-Aouissaoui, who is suspected by French police and Tunisian security officials of carrying out Thursday’s attack in Nice, is seen in this undated photo provided by his family on Oct. 30, 2020.Authorities have identified the attacker as a Tunisian national, 21-year-old Ibrahim Issaoui. He was shot and seriously wounded by police Thursday and remained hospitalized Friday in life-threatening condition.  Three people were killed in Thursday’s attack. French anti-terrorism prosecutor Jean-Francois Ricard said a 60-year-old woman and a 55-year-old man had their throats slit, while a 44-year-old woman was stabbed several times. Brazilian media identified the stabbing victim as a Brazilian national, Simone Barreto Silva. Ricard said she was able to flee the church but died after collapsing at a nearby restaurant. Issaoui was not on Tunisia’s list of suspected militants and was not known to French intelligence services.  Ricard said Issaoui arrived on the Italian island of Lampedusa on September 20 and traveled to Paris on October 9.He said Issaoui was carrying a copy of the Quran. The knife used in the attack was found near him and two other knives not used in the attack were found in a bag that belonged to him. French leaders have termed Thursday’s incident an Islamist terrorist attack and raised the country’s security alert to its highest level. President Emmanuel Macron said he would increase the number of troops deployed to protect schools and churches from 3,000 to 7,000. He vowed the country will not give in to any terrorism.

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Trump, Biden Head to Battleground States Friday

With just a few days until voters cast the last ballots in the U.S. presidential election, the top candidates are focusing their campaign efforts Friday in four midwestern battleground states. President Donald Trump will campaign in Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin, while former Vice President Joe Biden will campaign in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa.Michigan has 16 electoral votes, Minnesota and Wisconsin have 10 each, and Iowa 6.WATCH: Blue states and Red states  Sorry, but your browser cannot support embedded video of this type, you can
Democratic U.S. presidential nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden greets suporters at a drive-in, Get Out the Vote campaign stop in Tampa, Florida, Oct. 29, 2020.Biden slams Trump over ‘super spreader events’
Biden criticized President Trump for holding packed rallies amid the coronavirus pandemic where most attendees are not wearing masks, calling them ”super spreader events.” The president is “spreading more than just coronavirus. He’s spreading division and discord,” Biden said at a second drive-in rally later in the day in Tampa that was cut short by a rain shower. Trump, addressing a large crowd in a stadium parking lot in Tampa, again predicted heavy Republican voter turnout — “a great red wave” — on November 3.  “We’re going to win this election so big. You watch,” the president predicted. Trump had been scheduled to hold another rally later Thursday in North Carolina, but because of “very bad weather,” including high winds, the event was postponed until Monday, he told reporters.U.S. President Donald Trump gestures as he speaks during a campaign rally outside Raymond James Stadium, in Tampa, Florida, Oct. 29, 2020.Trump touts coronavirus vaccine
Trump, in his speech in Tampa, also said the country would have a vaccine for COVID-19 “in a few weeks,” promising that “seniors will be first in line to have it.” In Florida, people over the age of 65 this year could comprise about a third of those voting for president.    In every election since 1996, the winner of Florida has won the presidency. The winner there earns 29 of the 270 electoral votes needed to clinch the election.       According to an Unprecedented early voting numbers
More than 80 million people had already voted as of Thursday, well above half of the overall 2016 vote count, which was 138.8 million.    About two-thirds of America’s early voters have mailed in or dropped off their ballots, and the rest voted in person at polling places throughout the country.    Biden voted Wednesday in Wilmington, Delaware, while Trump cast his ballot Saturday at a library in West Palm Beach, Florida, near his Mar-a-Lago resort.       Voting experts say voter turnout for the contest between the Republican Trump and Democratic challenger Biden could be the highest percentage of the electorate since 1908, when 65% of the country’s eligible voters cast ballots.  

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