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International News

Sweden is latest country to stop using AstraZeneca vaccine

BERLIN (AP) — Sweden on Tuesday became the latest country to pause use of AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine as European regulators review safety data following reports of dangerous blood clots in some recipients. The company and international regulators continue to say the vaccine is safe, ...

Mexico’s last island penal colony may now host cruise ships

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexican officials said ferries and cruise ships may soon be visiting the former Isla Marias prison, after the last island penal colony in the Americas was closed and turned into an environmental education center in 2019. The education camp hasn't gone very well — only 40 ...

War’s timeline as Syrians mark 10 years since uprising began

BEIRUT (AP) — Syrians are marking 10 years since peaceful protests against President Bashar Assad's government erupted in March 2011, touching off a popular uprising that quickly turned into a full-blown civil war. Despite a decade of fighting and a broken country, Assad remains firmly in ...

Hong Kong activists say democracy fight to continue abroad

HONG KONG (AP) — Hong Kong democracy activists have launched a new push to continue their fight among residents living abroad in the wake of a sweeping crackdown by Beijing and changes to the the semi-autonomous Chinese city's electoral system aimed at shutting out opposition voices. In a ...

Merkel’s party faces German election ‘wake-up call’

BERLIN (AP) — Chancellor Angela Merkel's party is considering how to respond to historically bad state election results that a senior member described as a "wake-up call," six months before a national vote that will determine who succeeds Germany's long-time leader. Final results early ...

Hope that South Africa’s COVID-19 corruption inspires action

CAPE TOWN, South Africa (AP) — There's some hope in South Africa that this time the outrage against corruption inspires effective action. Public anger over suspect government contracts worth nearly $900 million for the purchase of supplies to fight COVID-19 may finally bring the South ...

Group reports health facilities looted in Ethiopia’s Tigray

KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) — Health facilities in Ethiopia's embattled region of Tigray have been "looted, vandalized and destroyed in a deliberate and widespread attack on health care," the humanitarian group Doctors Without Borders said Monday. Nearly 70% of 106 health facilities surveyed from ...

Flights canceled during China’s worst sandstorm in a decade

BEIJING (AP) — China's capital and a wide swath of the country's north were enveloped Monday in the worst sandstorm in a decade, forcing the cancelation of hundreds of flights. Skyscrapers in the center of Beijing appeared to drop from sight amid the dust and sand. Traffic was snarled and ...

WHO grants emergency authorization for J&J COVID vaccine

GENEVA (AP) — The World Health Organization granted an emergency use listing Friday for the coronavirus vaccine made by Johnson & Johnson, meaning the one-dose shot can now theoretically be used as part of the international COVAX effort to distribute vaccines globally, including to poor ...

Gunmen abduct 39 students from school in northwest Nigeria

LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) — Gunmen have attacked a school in northwestern Nigeria and kidnapped 39 students just weeks after a similar mass abduction in the region, authorities said Friday. The latest kidnapping took place late Thursday night at the Federal College of Forestry Mechanization, ...

US resumes aid to Yemen’s rebel north as famine threatens

The United States announced a resumption of aid to Yemen's rebel-held north on Friday to fight a looming famine as the country's nearly six-year-old war grinds on. U.N. officials warned that a blockade of fuel deliveries to a main port was heightening the world's worst humanitarian crisis. The ...

Bolivia’s ex-interim leader says authorities seek her arrest

LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) — Bolivia's former interim president said Friday that authorities are seeking her arrest as they move against officials who backed the ouster of former leader Evo Morales, which his party — now back in power — considers a coup. "The political persecution has begun," ...

New Zealand marks 2 years since Christchurch mosque killings

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — New Zealand on Saturday marked the second anniversary of one of its most traumatic days, when 51 worshippers were killed at two Christchurch mosques by a white supremacist gunman. Several hundred people gathered at the Christchurch Arena for the remembrance ...

Black scholar: It’s time France confronts its colonial past

PARIS (AP) — A Black French scholar and expert on U.S. minority rights movements who's taking charge of France's state-run immigration museum says it's "vital" for his country to confront its colonial past so that it can conquer present racial injustice. "The French are highly reluctant to ...

4 killed as Myanmar forces continue crackdown on protesters

MANDALAY, Myanmar (AP) — Security forces in Myanmar on Saturday again met protests against last month's military takeover with lethal force, killing at least four people by shooting live ammunition at demonstrators. Three deaths were reported in Mandalay, the country's second-biggest city, ...

Afghan bomb kills at least 8; UN slams high civilian deaths

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A powerful car bomb killed at least eight people and wounded 47 in Afghanistan's western Herat province, officials said Saturday. Hours later, the U.N. condemned an "alarming" increase in attacks in the country targeting civilians. The death toll in the explosion ...

Coronavirus pandemic casts long shadow over Dutch elections

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — Housing shortages, the environment, health care, education. Dutch voters have plenty of issues to consider in next week's election but one towers over all others: the COVID-19 pandemic. The Dutch vote for the 150-seat lower house of parliament, deeply conscious ...

UK policeman charged with woman’s murder appears in court

LONDON (AP) — A serving British police officer accused of the kidnap and murder of a woman in London appeared in court for the first time Saturday. Wayne Couzens, 48, is charged with kidnapping and killing 33-year-old Sarah Everard, who went missing while walking home from a friend's ...

Putin: US Capitol unrest was a ‘stroll’

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday characterized the January insurrection at the U.S. Capitol by supporters of former President Donald Trump as a "stroll." Putin made the comment in a meeting on increasing investment activity, during which he said Russia is interested ...

Parliament votes to declare entire EU an LGBT ‘freedom zone’

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Parliament has overwhelming adopted a resolution declaring the entire 27-member European Union a "freedom zone" for LGBT people, an effort to push back on rising homophobia in Poland and elsewhere. The parliament announced Thursday that there were 492 ballots in ...