North America

US President Biden forms commission to study expanding Supreme Court

  by Michael Mathes Agence France Presse WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) — US President Joe Biden on Friday established an expert commission to study reforming the powerful US Supreme Court, including the explosive question of expanding its bench. The move follows months of debate over whether Democrats should seek to expand the court beyond its current nine justices, after moves during Donald Trump’s presidential term gave the bench a firm conservative majority. The Supreme Court […]

Volcano spewing ash, hot gravel on Caribbean island of St Vincent

  by Gemma Handy Agence France Presse Ash and hot gravel rained down Friday on the Caribbean island of Saint Vincent, after powerful eruptions from a volcano that had been dormant for decades sent thousands of panicked locals fleeing to safety. The initial blast from La Soufriere, the highest peak in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, sent plumes of hot ash and smoke 6,000 meters (20,000 feet) into the air Friday morning, the local emergency […]

New York to pay undocumented migrants pandemic relief

NEW YORK, United States (AFP) — New York state will issue one-time payments of up to $15,000 to undocumented migrants who lost work during the pandemic under a multi-billion-dollar fund championed by progressive Democrats but opposed by Republicans. The payments, by far the largest of their kind in the United States, will help tens of thousands of people who arrived in America illegally and who are unable to collect unemployment insurance or federal stimulus checks. […]

One dead, multiple victims wounded in Texas shooting

BRYAN, United States (AFP) — One person was dead and several in critical condition following a shooting at a business in Texas Thursday, just hours after US President Joe Biden called gun violence an “epidemic” and unveiled plans to tackle the crisis. The suspect was “in custody,” according to the police department in the east Texas town of Bryan where the attack took place. Officials said the individual shot and wounded one officer following the […]

Iglesia Ni Cristo members donate food to low-income families in Waipahu, Hawaii

  By Alfred Acenas (EBC Hawaii-Pacific) Eagle News Service WAIPAHU, Hawaii (Eagle News) – As the COVID-19 pandemic entered its second year with new cases surging to triple digits daily, members of the Iglesia Ni Cristo (INC) or Church Of Christ in Hawaii bravely continue their works of charity though the Church’s Aid to Humanity program. In West Oahu, Church members distributed bags of groceries to the residents of the Waipahu Towers, an eight-storey high-rise […]

US promises ‘much more’ vaccine aid, puts envoy in charge

  WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) — The United States will soon be able to ramp up vaccine assistance abroad and will not seek “favors in return,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Monday, putting a veteran aid administrator in charge. Blinken said the top US priority was to fight Covid-19 at home but that the goal would be achieved soon, pointing to President Joe Biden’s promise that 90 percent of Americans will be near a […]

US Capitol attack sparks debate over security

  WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) — Officials in Washington appealed Sunday for balance between securing the US Capitol and public accessibility after the second deadly attack this year targeted the seat of American democracy. A policeman was killed and another wounded Friday after a man rammed through security and crashed into a barrier at the complex, forcing it into lockdown less than three months after a mob insurrection at Congress. Capitol Police shot the driver […]

Florida homes evacuated as wastewater leak risks ‘catastrophic’ flood

by Leila MACOR MIAMI, United States (AFP) — Emergency crews in central Florida were working Sunday to prevent an environmental catastrophe at a leaking reservoir that risked sending millions of gallons of contaminated wastewater toward nearby homes and into the Tampa Bay. More than 300 homes near the site of an abandoned phosphate mine and fertilizer-production facility in Manatee County were under mandatory evacuation orders, and Governor Ron DeSantis on Saturday declared a state of […]

Biden aide to meet Japan, S.Korea on next steps on N.Korea

WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) — Top security officials of the United States, Japan and South Korea will meet Friday to discuss next steps on North Korea as President Joe Biden completes a policy review. Jake Sullivan, Biden’s national security adviser, will huddle with his counterparts from South Korea and Japan, Suh Hoon and Shigeru Kitamura, at the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. Sullivan will share “where we are in terms of our review,” State […]

Four people, including child, shot and killed in California

  ORANGE COUNTY, United States (AFP) — Four people, including a child, were shot and killed Wednesday evening at an office building in Southern California, police said. It is the third such shooting in the United States in weeks, with 18 people killed in two separate gun violence incidents in March. The shooter, whose motivations are so far unknown, sustained a gunshot wound and was taken to hospital, police lieutenant Jennifer Amat said, adding the […]

NBA superstar James joins Liverpool ownership group

WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) — NBA superstar LeBron James has increased his ownership stake in English Premiership club Liverpool via a deal confirmed on Wednesday that makes him a partner in Fenway Sports Group. FSG announced that James and longtime business associates Maverick Carter and Paul Wachter had become partners in the Boston-based global sports, entertainment and real estate platform, along with RedBird Capital. James, 36, previously held a 2% stake in Liverpool, but now […]

US plant ruins 15 million J&J coronavirus vaccine doses: report

WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) — About 15 million doses of the single-shot coronavirus vaccine made by Johnson & Johnson were ruined in a factory error in the United States, The New York Times reported — a blow to the company’s efforts to quickly boost production. When contacted by AFP, the pharmaceutical giant said it had identified a batch of doses at a plant in Baltimore run by Emergent BioSolutions “that did not meet quality standards” […]