Daily Brief5

10 things you need to know today !

1. Trump suggests canceled North Korea summit might proceed

Hasil gambar untuk Trump suggests canceled North Korea summit might proceed

After canceling his scheduled June 12 summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Thursday, President Trump said Friday the meeting could still happen as planned. “We will see what happens,” Trump mused. “We’re talking to them now.”

On Twitter later Friday, Trump said his team is “having very productive talks with North Korea about reinstating the Summit,” adding that it could “be extended beyond” the original date if needed. Kim told Trump pulling out of the summit wasn’t “the world’s desire.” [Reuters, The Associated Press]

2. Kim and Moon meet amid summit uncertainty

South Korean President Moon Jae-in bids fairwell to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un as he leaves after their summit at the truce village of Panmunjom

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in gathered for a surprise meeting Saturday to discuss the fate of inter-Korean relations given the new uncertainty over Kim’s proposed summit with President Trump. The two-hour talks happened in the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) bordering the two Koreas and focused on how to keep the Trump-Kim conversation on track. “We see it as fortunate that the embers of dialogue between North Korea and the United States weren’t fully extinguished and are coming alive again,” said Moon’s office. “We are carefully watching the developments.”

On Saturday, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said: “The White House pre-advance team for Singapore will leave as scheduled in order to prepare should the summit take place.”

Mr. Trump had said on Friday that the summit with North Korea “could even be the 12th,” after canceling the summit the day before.

“We’ll see what happens,” Mr. Trump said. “It could even be the 12th. We’re talking to them now. They very much want to do it. We’d like to do it. We’re gonna see what happens.”

He also said in a Friday tweet: “We are having very productive talks with North Korea about reinstating the Summit which, if it does happen, will likely remain in Singapore on the same date, June 12th., and, if necessary, will be extended beyond that date.”— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 26, 2018

[CBS News, The Wall Street Journal]

3. Trump makes sanctions relief deal for Chinese telecom

Hasil gambar untuk Trump makes sanctions relief deal for Chinese telecom

The Trump administration on Friday announced it has made a deal to help a Chinese telecom, ZTE, shuttered by a U.S. Commerce Department export ban. ZTE obtains about one quarter of its manufacturing components from American businesses, and it suspended operations earlier this month after the administration imposed sanctions as a penalty for violating U.S. sanctions on Iran and North Korea. On Twitter Friday evening, Trump accused Democrats of letting “ZTE flourish with no security checks.” He continued: “I closed it down then let it reopen with high level security guarantees, change of management and board, must purchase U.S. parts and pay a $1.3 Billion fine.”

The reported deal involving China’s second-largest telecommunications equipment maker ran into immediate resistance in Congress, where Democrats and Trump’s fellow Republicans accused him of bending to pressure from Beijing to ease up on a company that U.S. intelligence officials have suggested poses a significant risk to U.S. national security.

ZTE was banned in April from buying U.S. technology components for seven years for breaking an agreement reached after it violated U.S. sanctions against Iran and North Korea.. After ZTE makes a series of changes it would now be allowed to resume business with U.S. companies, including chipmaker Qualcomm Inc.

Hasil gambar untuk Trump makes sanctions relief deal for Chinese telecom

The deal, earlier communicated to officials on Capitol Hill by the Commerce Department, requires ZTE to pay a substantial fine, place U.S. compliance officers at the company and change its management team, the aide said.

The Commerce Department would then lift an order issued in April preventing ZTE from buying U.S. products. ZTE shut down most of its production after the ruling was announced.

[Reuters, Fox News]

4. Federal government lost track of 1,475 migrant children

Hasil gambar untuk Federal government lost track of 1,475 migrant children

Immigrants stand in line for tickets at a bus station after they are released from a Customs and Border Protection processing facility in Texas.

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is unable to say what happened to 1,475 of 7,635 migrant children it placed with sponsors and then checked on late last year. The sponsors are typically parents or other family members and are vetted by HHS before the placement is made, but the system is far from perfect: In one case in 2016, migrant minors were handed over to human traffickers running an egg farm. News of the missing children first came to light in an HHS official’s congressional testimony in late April, but it drew widespread attention Friday and Saturday given the Trump administration’s policy of separating migrant parents and children.

Eric Hargan, the deputy secretary of HHS, issued a statement saying the Office of Refugee Resettlement began voluntarily making calls in 2016 as a follow up to make sure sponsors did not require additional services.”This additional step, which is not required and was not done previously, is now being used to confuse and spread misinformation,” Hargan said. “These children are not ‘lost’; their sponsors … simply did not respond or could not be reached when this voluntary call was made.”

Hargan said there are many reasons the sponsor cannot be reaching, including that they may be in the country illegally as well “and do not want to be reached by federal authorities.”

“This is the core of this issue: In many cases, HHS has been put in the position of placing illegal aliens with the individuals who helped arrange for them to enter the country illegally. This makes the immediate crisis worse and creates a perverse incentive for further violation of federal immigration law.”More than 40,000 children were referred to the Office of Refugee Resettlement during the 2017 fiscal year, Wagner said.

HHS has recently adopted multiple changes, including interviewing sponsors, conducting background checks, and refining the type of documents sponsors can use to reduce the possibility of fraud, to address problems, such as placing several Guatemalan minors in the hands of human traffickers.According to a Senate investigation, HHS turned the minors over to human traffickers in 2015, who then forced many of them to work in an egg farm in Ohio for six or seven days a week. Their paychecks were withheld by the traffickers to pay off smuggling debts, according to the report.

[The New York Times, BuzzFeed News]

5. Cohen reportedly met with Russian oligarch at Trump Tower

In the run-up to the inauguration, President Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, met with a Kremlin-linked Russian oligarch to discuss strengthening relations between Washington and Moscow, The New York Times reported Friday.

Viktor Vekselberg reportedly met with Cohen three separate times, including on the day of the inauguration. Soon after, a private equity firm linked to Vekselberg awarded Cohen a $1 million contract. Cohen also received hundreds of thousands of dollars from businesses like AT&T and Novartis to provide access and insight into the Trump administration.

By all accounts, it did not work out as planned for any of the men. Mr. Cohen is under investigation; the Trump administration hit Mr. Vekselberg with sanctions last month, making him one of seven Kremlin-linked oligarchs to be punished as part of a response to meddling and other aggressions; and Columbus Nova parted ways with Mr. Cohen after no new deals or investors materialized, despite paying him $580,000 of the $1 million contract.

Mr. Cohen and Mr. Intrater initially met shortly before the 2016 election and discussed ways to invest in the taxi business, which had made the fixer millions of dollars over the years.

In the interview, Mr. Intrater described the lead-up to the Trump Tower meeting as a series of coincidences around that potential deal: Mr. Cohen and he intended to meet on the morning of Jan. 9, 2017, to discuss investing in distressed taxi loans. But Mr. Cohen had to reschedule for the afternoon, when Mr. Intrater had planned to meet Mr. Vekselberg, who was visiting New York and then came along to the meeting.

The next week, the three men sat together at one of the inaugural dinner events. While there, Mr. Intrater took a photo with Michael Flynn, Mr. Trump’s first national security adviser, Mr. Intrater said.

Mr. Intrater donated $250,000 to Mr. Trump’s inaugural committee, which entitled him to the tickets he and Mr. Vekselberg used to attend the event. Days later, Mr. Cohen signed on as a consultant to Columbus Nova, and documents show that in addition to the taxi loans, he pitched the firm on an oil and gas operation in the American Southwest.

In contrast, Mr. Vekselberg’s discussion with Mr. Cohen at Trump Tower about Russian relations partly reflected his role as an informal diplomat of sorts, a billionaire businessman who shuttles between Russia and the United States to promote economic and philanthropic ventures.

He founded his company, Renova Group, in 1990 as a Russian-American joint venture, according to an archived version of the company’s website.

Mr. Vekselberg, whose fortune is now estimated at more than $13 billion, also sponsored the American-Russian Chamber of Commerce & Industry. At one point, Renova donated between $50,000 and $100,000 to the Clinton Foundation. And he lavished funds on a California park that is designated a historic preservation site, working informally in tandem with the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The park includes a fort that the Russians built in 1812 for trade.

“He always has been a key Russian conduit for investing in U.S. political causes, business causes, other things that would allow him to gain entree to the U.S. elite,” said Michael Carpenter, the Russia director at the National Security Council during the Obama administration, who is now senior director of the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement.

As Mr. Vekselberg’s business empire expanded, he picked up various Kremlin projects, including a plan to create a Silicon Valley-style development outside Moscow and the construction of a hotel cluster for the 2014 Winter Olympics. In return, the Kremlin awarded him a medal of honor.

He also attended a now-famous December 2015 dinner in Moscow where Mr. Flynn sat at a table with Russia’s president, Vladimir V. Putin.

The day before Mr. Trump was sworn in, Mr. Vekselberg expressed doubt on Russian television that the United States would quickly lift its economic sanctions against Russia. It was worse than he feared: Last month, he and Renova were placed on the Treasury Department’s sanctions list. Although Columbus Nova is not subject to the sanctions and continues to operate, Mr. Intrater said he had not spoken to his cousin since the sanctions were imposed.

[The New York Times, CNN]

6. Irish pro-life campaign concedes defeat

Exit polling and early vote counts indicate a majority of Irish voters have backed the repeal of their country’s constitutional ban on abortion. Save the 8th, the campaign supporting retention of the amendment prohibiting abortion, conceded defeat Saturday after Friday’s vote, calling the decision “a tragedy of historic proportions.” If the ban is lifted, the Irish Parliament is expected to pass a law legalizing abortion through the 12th week of pregnancy, with exceptions for later abortions if the mother’s health is at risk or there is a diagnosis of fatal fetal abnormalities or non-life-threatening risk to maternal health.

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“What we have seen today is a culmination of a quiet revolution that has been taking place in Ireland for the past 10 or 20 years,” Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said.

Hasil gambar untuk Ireland votes to overturn its abortion ban, ‘culmination of a quiet revolution,’ prime minister says

The turnout was a 64.1 percent — the third-highest for a referendum vote since the adoption of the constitution in 1937 and the decision to join the European Economic Community in 1972. By comparison, turnout was just over 60 percent when Ireland voted to legalize same-sex marriage in 2015.

Ireland’s political leadership promised that Parliament will quickly pass a new law guaranteeing unrestricted abortion up to 12 weeks and beyond that in cases of fatal fetal abnormalities or serious risks to a mother’s health. That would bring Ireland’s access to abortion in line with the other 27 members of the European Union.

Hasil gambar untuk Ireland votes to overturn its abortion ban, ‘culmination of a quiet revolution,’ prime minister says

In Ireland, seeking or providing an abortion has been punishable by up to 14 years in prison. Since 2013, there has been an exception for when a mother’s life is at risk.

Varadkar, who is gay and whose right to marry was accepted in Ireland only three years ago, called the vote a turning point.

“It’s also a day when we say no more,” the prime minister said. “No more to doctors telling their patients there’s nothing can be done for them in their own country, no more lonely journeys across the Irish Sea, no more stigma as the veil of secrecy is lifted and no more isolation as the burden of shame is gone.”

Hasil gambar untuk Ireland votes to overturn its abortion ban, ‘culmination of a quiet revolution,’ prime minister says

Simon Harris, Ireland’s minister of health, said a bill would be written this summer and passed by year’s end. “The people of Ireland have told us to get on with it,” he said.

Harris said he was as surprised as anyone with the high turnout and outsize vote for repeal. “If you can find anybody today who said they were expecting this majority, I’d love to meet them. I don’t think anybody was expecting this margin,” he said.

[The Guardian, The Washington Post]

7. Harvey Weinstein pleads not guilty, posts $1 million bail

PHOTO: Harvey Weinstein appears in the New York State Supreme Court Building , May 25, 2018, in New York City.

Disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein turned himself in to the police Friday morning, where he was charged with first- and third-degree rape and a first-degree criminal sex act. He entered a “not guilty” plea and was released on a $1 million cash bail, fitted with a GPS tracker.

rose mcgowan

Actress Rose McGowan, who alleges Weinstein raped her in 1997, tweeted, “We got you, Harvey Weinstein, we got you.”“I, and so many of Harvey Weinstein’s survivors, had given up hope that our rapist would be held accountable by law,” actress Rose McGowan told Variety.”Twenty years ago, I swore that I would right this wrong. Today we are one step closer to justice.”

Mira Sorvino

Actress Mira Sorvino, who has accused Weinstein of sexual harassment, called him a “monster” and said she was “proud of and grateful to” all the women who “stood up” to him.More than 80 women have accused Weinstein of sexual harassment, assault or rape, including A-list actresses Gwyneth Paltrow, Ashley Judd and Angelina Jolie.

Hasil gambar untuk Harvey Weinstein released on $1M bail after arrest on rape, sexual abuse charges

Weinstein was later escorted out of the 1st Precinct with a smile on his face and his hands cuffed behind his back. He was then transported in an unmarked SUV to the New York State Supreme Court Building in Manhattan for his arraignment on the charges.

Judge Kevin McGrath set Weinstein’s bond at $10 million, with $1 million paid in cash to post bail. The judge also imposed a temporary protective order directing Weinstein to stay away from the two women whose complaints prompted the charges.

Weinstein put up the $1 million in cash and was released. The case was adjourned to July 30.

Weinstein surrendered his passport to authorities and will be expected to wear an electronic monitoring device at all times that requires him to stay in New York or Connecticut. He must seek approval from authorities if he wishes to travel beyond those two states.

Hasil gambar untuk Harvey Weinstein released on $1M bail after arrest on rape, sexual abuse charges

Weinstein’s attorney Benjamin Brafman, who appeared in court alongside him, told reporters after the hearing that his client will enter a plea of not guilty on all the charges brought against him. They have known about the investigation for several months and the charges “are not factually supported by the evidence,” Brafman added.

When asked how Weinstein is doing, the attorney said his client is “as well as can be expected when you are accused of a crime that you vehemently denied that you committed.”

“We intend to move very quickly to dismiss these charges,” Brafman told a throng of reporters outside court. “We believe, by the end of the process, Mr. Weinstein will be exonerated.”

While defending Weinstein, Brafman said his client “did not invent” Hollywood’s “casting couch” culture and that “bad behavior is not on trial in this case.”

“My job is not to defend behavior. My job is to defend something that is criminal behavior,” he told reporters. “Mr. Weinstein did not invent the casting couch in Hollywood. To the extent that there’s bad behavior in that industry, that is not what this is about.”

[ABC News, New York Daily News]

8. Indiana science teacher stops middle school shooting

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Hasil gambar untuk Indiana science teacher stops middle school shooting

A science teacher named Jason Seaman stopped a school shooting in his classroom at Noblesville West Middle School in Noblesville, Indiana, on Friday. A boy in the class asked to be excused, returning shortly with two handguns he begin firing in the room. Seaman threw a basketball he was holding at the shooter and then tackled and disarmed him, restraining the student despite being shot three times. Seaman and one injured student were hospitalized as the investigation into the attack continues. He is expected to make a full recovery. [ABC News, Reuters]

9. USC president resigns over campus doctor’s sex abuse scandal

Image: The University Of Southern California's Commencement Ceremony

University of Southern California President C.L. Max Nikias resigned Friday under pressure over his administration’s handling of a sex abuse scandal involving a campus gynecologist, Dr. George Tyndall. Some 300 people have accused Tyndall of inappropriate behavior over the course of his 30 years on campus. One of the dozen civil lawsuits now leveled against USC says he “routinely made crude comments, took inappropriate photographs, and forced plaintiffs to strip naked and groped them under the guise of medical treatment for his ‘sexual gratification.'” Tyndall has denied all wrongdoing.

Earlier this week, 200 professors signed a letter calling for Nikias’ resignation. The professors accused Nikias of having been tone-deaf and of having failed to grasp the scope of the damage the scandal was doing to the university. The board responded then by defending Nikias’ handling of the scandal, which has already led to at least 11 lawsuits. Around 300 people have called a hotline set up by the university where former patients could report complaints, a university spokesperson said earlier this week.

On Friday, the board signaled that it had changed its mind. “We have heard the message that something is broken and that urgent and profound actions are needed,” the executive committee said.

[NPR, NBC News]

10. 42 million Americans expected to travel for Memorial Day weekend

Gas prices spike just in time for Memorial Day weekend road trips

A huge number of Americans are planning to hit the road over Memorial Day weekend, AAA estimated Friday. Around 42 million people are expected to take some kind of trip, a 5 percent increase from last year’s holiday weekend and the highest estimate in more than a decade. About 37 million will be driving to their destination, despite a recent spike in gas prices. Airfare prices are slightly down, likely a factor for many of the three million who will be flying for their vacations.”A strong economy and growing consumer confidence are giving Americans all the motivation they need to kick off what we expect to be a busy summer travel season with a Memorial Day getaway,” said Bill Sutherland, senior vice president at AAA.

The Long Island Rail Road, Metro-North and Staten Island Railway are adding extra getaway trains on Friday.

The unofficial kickoff to summer will see millions of people on the move this Memorial Day weekend — and for those with cars, it’ll mean pain at the pump.Gas prices around New York have tipped over the $3-a-gallon mark. Motorists filling up in the city will pay 24 cents more for each gallon than the national average of $2.91.Still, higher gas costs “do not seem to be putting a damper on the total number of those who are traveling,” said AAA Northeast spokesman Robert Sinclair.Most people will still drive for their holiday getaways, though Sinclair said there’s been a slight decrease in the share of motorists making the weekend trek out of the city.Around the country, 41.5 million people are expected to travel, a 5% increase from last year.Sinclair said drivers can expect their trips to be nearly three times longer than normal if they try to escape New York from 3:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday.

“We’ve seen increased traffic in our area during normal conditions,” Sinclair said. “When you combine holiday travelers along with commuters on ‘Getaway Day Friday,’ I think we’re looking for some epic traffic leading into the holiday weekend.”Around the region, the Port Authority is prepared for 6 million people traveling by air, car or rail during the holiday weekend’s three full days.

That includes 3.3 million people using bridges and tunnels, and 1.8 million flyers in airports.For the airport crowd, the MTA’s LaGuardia Link bus — also known as the Q70 — will be free through the weekend.The Long Island Rail Road, Metro-North and Staten Island Railway are adding extra getaway trains on Friday.

[New York Daily News, The Week]


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