China accuses US of sowing discord in South China Sea

BEIJING (AP) — China on Tuesday described a U.S. rejection of its maritime claims in the South China Sea as completely unjustified and accused the U.S. of attempting to sow discord between China and the Southeast Asian countries with which it has territorial disputes.

The Chinese Embassy in Washington said that a statement issued by U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo deliberately distorts the facts and disregards the efforts of China and the others to achieve peace and stability in the South China Sea.

USA: Judge seeks more details on Trump’s clemency for Roger Stone

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge on Monday demanded more information about President Donald Trump’s decision to commute the prison sentence of longtime ally Roger Stone.

U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson ordered that the parties provide her by Tuesday with a copy of the executive order that commuted Stone’s sentence. She also asked for clarity about the scope of the clemency, including whether it covers just his prison sentence or also the two-year period of supervised release that was part of his sentence.

Global COVID-19 cases top 13 mln: Johns Hopkins University

NEW YORK, July 13 (Xinhua) -- Global confirmed COVID-19 cases topped 13 million on Monday, reaching 13,006,764 as of 4:34 p.m. local time (2034 GMT), according to the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University.

A total of 570,776 people worldwide have died from the disease, the data showed.

The United States suffered the most from the pandemic, with 3,346,246 cases and 135,477 fatalities; Brazil followed with 1,864,681 cases and 72,100 deaths, the tally showed.

USA Prosecutors: Epstein victim to speak at associate’s hearing

NEW YORK (AP) — One or more victims of Jeffrey Epstein will tell a judge Tuesday that his ex-girlfriend should be denied bail on charges that she recruited teenage girls for him to sexually abuse in the 1990s, prosecutors said Monday.

Prosecutors made the revelation in court papers as they argued there is no reason to free British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell on bail.

They also revealed new details about Maxwell’s July 2 arrest at a $1 million New Hampshire estate she purchased in December, saying FBI agents had to bust into her residence after she failed to cooperate.

'Worst-case' UK winter could see 120,000 COVID deaths in second wave

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain faces a potentially more deadly second wave of COVID-19 in the coming winter that could kill up to 120,000 people over nine months in a worst-case scenario, health experts said on Tuesday.

With COVID-19 more likely to spread in winter as people spend more time together in enclosed spaces, a second wave of the pandemic “could be more serious than the one we’ve just been through,” said Stephen Holgate, a professor and co-lead author of a report by Britain’s Academy of Medical Sciences (AMS).

USA: Prominent Democrats press Fed, Treasury to aid states, citing racial inequality

(Reuters) - With the Republican-controlled U.S. Congress far from agreement on how or even whether to give more aid to states and cities reeling from revenue losses during the coronavirus crisis, three U.S. Senate Democrats are appealing to the U.S. Treasury and the Federal Reserve to do more to help.

White House turns on Fauci as Trump minimizes virus spike

WASHINGTON (AP) — With U.S. virus cases spiking and the death toll mounting, the White House is working to undercut its most trusted coronavirus expert, playing down the danger as President Donald Trump pushes to get the economy moving before he faces voters in November.

The U.S. has become a cautionary tale across the globe, with once-falling cases now spiraling. However, Trump suggests the severity of the pandemic that has killed more than 135,000 Americans is being overstated by critics to damage his reelection chances.

UK to purge Huawei from 5G by 2027, angering China and pleasing Trump

LONDON (Reuters) - Prime Minister Boris Johnson ordered Huawei equipment to be purged completely from Britain’s 5G network by 2027, risking the ire of China by signalling that the world’s biggest telecoms equipment maker is no longer welcome in the West.

The seven-year lag will please telecoms operators such as BT (BT.L), Vodafone (VOD.L) and Three (0215.HK) which feared they would be forced to spend billions of pounds to rip out Huawei equipment much faster. But it will delay the roll out of 5G.

USA: Judge blocks federal executions; administration appeals

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (AP) — A U.S. district judge on Monday ordered a new delay in federal executions, hours before the first lethal injection was scheduled to be carried out at a federal prison in Indiana. The Trump administration immediately appealed to a higher court, asking that the executions move forward.

Late Monday, the federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., refused to allow the executions to proceed. The administration has asked the Supreme Court to step in.

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