COVID Vaccines To Be Required For Military Under New US Plan

WASHINGTON — Members of the U.S. military will be required to get the COVID-19 vaccine beginning next month under a plan laid out by the Pentagon Monday and endorsed by President Joe Biden. In memos distributed to all troops, top Pentagon leaders said the vaccine is a necessary step to maintain military readiness. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said the mid-September deadline could be accelerated if the vaccine receives final FDA approval or infection rates continue to rise. “I will seek the president’s approval to make the vaccines mandatory no later…

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Jury selection begins in R. Kelly sex abuse trial

R. Kelly, the disgraced R&B superstar who faces a battery of sex abuse charges in several US states, appeared in court Monday as jury selection began in his federal New York trial. Dressed in a navy blue suit, the 54-year-old appeared stoic as the questioning of jurors began in the Brooklyn court, where he faces charges of racketeering, sexual exploitation of a child, kidnapping, bribery and forced labour, spanning from 1994 to 2018. Kelly’s lawyer Deveraux Cannick was reticent when asked by AFP how he was feeling, smiling and saying:…

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Nursing home to workers: Get vaccine or lose your job

NEW YORK — The U.S. nursing home industry’s resistance to forcing workers to get vaccinated against COVID-19 for fear that too many of them might quit began to crack this week when its biggest player announced its employees must get the shot to keep their jobs. The new requirement at Genesis Healthcare, which has 70,000 employees at nearly 400 nursing homes and senior communities, is the clearest sign yet that owners may be willing to risk an exodus at already dangerously understaffed facilities to quickly vaccinate the 40% of workers…

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‘We can do it’: Biden brings message of comfort to Surfside

SURFSIDE, Fla. (AP) — President Joe Biden on Thursday offered comfort to the grieving and federal support for the ongoing efforts to search for the missing and rebuild after last week’s collapse of a high-rise condo building along the Florida coastline. Biden, responding to what appeared to be the deadliest calamity of his young presidency, also met with first responders hunting for survivors among the rubble in Surfside. But underscoring the dangers still present in the search, work was halted before Biden arrived due to concerns about the stability of…

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A US Supreme Court Overturn Cosby’s Sexual Assault Conviction

Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court has overturned the US comedian Bill Cosby’s sexual assault conviction paving the way for his release. Cosby, 83, has served more than two years of a three to 10-year sentence at a state prison near Philadelphia. He had been found guilty of drugging and molesting ex-basketball player Andrea Constand in 2004. Cosby is best known for starring in the 1980s TV series The Cosby Show and was once known as “America’s Dad”. Dozens of women had publicly accused him of sexual assault, and his conviction in 2018…

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Chauvin gets 22 1/2 years in prison for George Floyd’s death

MINNEAPOLIS — Former Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin was sentenced to 22 1/2 years in prison for the murder of George Floyd, whose dying gasps under Chauvin’s knee led to the biggest outcry against racial injustice in the U.S. in generations. The punishment — which fell short of the 30 years that prosecutors had requested — came after Chauvin broke his more than yearlong silence in court to offer condolences to the Floyd family and say he hopes more information coming out will eventually give them “some peace of mind.”…

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CALIFORNIA COP VIDEO SHOWS KICK TO SUSPECT’S HEAD … Deputy Under Investigation

A Sheriff’s deputy in Southern California is under investigation due to a video of him winding up and kicking a suspect in the head AFTER the guy appeared to surrender. Surveillance footage from a Toyota dealership in Victorville, CA captured Wednesday’s violent interaction on camera … you see the suspect roll out from under a parked car before he’s confronted by a deputy with a flashlight, who appears to order the suspect on the ground. The man complies, but then the cop takes a big step and unloads a couple…

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US pullout from Afghanistan half done, but questions remain

WASHINGTON — The U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan is more than half done, and U.S. officials say that while it could be completed by July 4, the final exit of equipment and troops more likely will be later in the summer. As early as this week, the top U.S. commander for the Middle East, Gen. Frank McKenzie, will give Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin a range of military options for securing the U.S. embassy in Afghanistan and providing counterterrorism support from outside the country once the withdrawal is complete, officials said. The…

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US to swiftly boost global vaccine sharing, Biden announces

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden announced Thursday the U.S. will swiftly donate an initial allotment of 25 million doses of surplus vaccine overseas through the United Nations-backed COVAX program, promising infusions for South and Central America, Asia, Africa and others at a time of glaring shortages abroad and more than ample supplies at home. The doses mark a substantial — and immediate — boost to the lagging COVAX effort, which to date has shared just 76 million doses with needy countries. The announcement came just hours after World Health Organization…

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Free Beer is the latest vaccine incentive for Biden ‘month of action’

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden is announcing a “month of action” Wednesday to urge more Americans to get vaccinated for COVID-19 before the July 4 holiday, with an early summer sprint of incentives, including free beer, childcare and sports tickets to convince Americans to roll up their sleeves. In an afternoon address from the White House, Biden will announce a slew of new initiatives to ease barriers to vaccinations and to make getting shots more appealing to those who haven’t received a dose yet. It comes as he is closing…

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