Monster Hurricane Ian hammers Florida

Heavy winds and rain pummelled Florida on Wednesday as Hurricane Ian intensified to just shy of the strongest Category 5 level, threatening to wreak “catastrophic” destruction on the southern US state. Forecasters warned of a looming once-in-a-generation calamity, with life-threatening storm surges, extensive flooding and devastating winds promising what Florida Governor Ron DeSantis called a … Read more

Kremlin proxies claiming victory in ‘sham’ annexation votes

Kremlin-installed authorities were already claiming victory Tuesday in annexation votes in Ukrainian regions under Russian control, as Moscow it could use nuclear weapons to defend the territories. Ukraine and its allies have denounced the so-called referendums as a sham and said the West would never recognize the results of the ballots that have dramatically ratcheted … Read more

Putin grants Edward Snowden Russian citizenship

President Vladimir Putin on Monday granted Russian citizenship to US whistleblower Edward Snowden, who exposed massive surveillance by the US National Security Agency on Americans and then sought refuge in Russia. A presidential decree published Monday included Snowden on a list of newly-minted Russian citizens, at a time when relations between Washington and Moscow are … Read more

Russia stiffens penalty for surrender, replaces top general

Russia on Saturday toughened penalties for voluntary surrender and refusal to fight with up to 10 years imprisonment and replaced its top logistics general after a series of setbacks to its seven-month war in Ukraine. The tough new amendments and personnel change come days after Russia instigated partial mobilization with Kyiv taking back more and … Read more

Russia replaces top general, pursues breakaway Ukraine polls

Moscow its top logistics general on Saturday after a series of setbacks as Kremlin-held regions of eastern and southern Ukraine voted for a second day on becoming part of Russia. The changing of the guard comes amid a major mobilization drive by Russia after the Ukraine invasion revealed widespread logistical difficulties, with Kyiv now taking … Read more

US, China top diplomats meet to contain high tensions on Taiwan

The top US and Chinese diplomats met Friday in New York as soaring tensions show signs of easing, but Beijing issued a new warning against support for Taiwan. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi shook hands but only exchanged pleasantries before the cameras before sitting down with aids on the … Read more

Russia begins troop mobilisation for Ukraine fight

Moscow began its mandatory troop call-up Thursday to try to bolster a stumbling war effort in Ukraine, with authorities saying thousands had volunteered even as Russian men fled the country to avoid being forced to fight. Amateur footage posted on social media since President Vladimir Putin ordered the mobilization of reservists on Wednesday purported to … Read more

Global Fund raises $14.25 billion to end HIV, TB and malaria

The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria raised $14.25 billion Wednesday at a donor conference led by US President Joe Biden, as decades of progress against the diseases are set back by Covid. It was the highest amount ever pledged for a multilateral health organization — but fell far short of the ambitious … Read more

American, Russians reach space station as war rages in Ukraine

A US astronaut and two Russian cosmonauts have arrived safely at the International Space Station (ISS), NASA said Wednesday, after blasting off on a Russian-operated flight in a rare instance of cooperation between Moscow and Washington. The Russian space agency Roscosmos and NASA both distributed live footage of the launch from Kazakhstan and commentators speaking … Read more

Global Fund seeks $18 billion to end HIV, TB and malaria

The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria on Wednesday sought to raise at least $18 billion at a donor conference led by US President Joe Biden, the decades of progress against the three diseases are set back by Covid. It is the highest ever “replenishment” goal set by the organization, which brings together … Read more