Tribune News Service

International Budget for Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Updated at 0000 UTC (8 p.m. U.S. EDT Tuesday).

Additional news stories, including full U.S. coverage, appear on the MCT-NEWS-BJT and MCT-NEWSFEATURES-BJT.


^Trump hosts officials from Israel, UAE and Bahrain, but unclear what deals will do<

USMIDEAST-1ST-LEDE:LA — Hoping to bolster his foreign policy credentials ahead of November's election, President Donald Trump on Tuesday oversaw the formal recognition of Israel by two Arab countries, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, during a White House South Lawn ceremony.

The two Persian Gulf nations became only the third and fourth Arab countries to fully open ties with Israel, a country most Middle Eastern nations have long refused to recognize, in part for its failure to resolve the conflict with Palestinians. Egypt and Jordan had previously established ties with Israel.

1100 by Tracy Wilkinson in Washington and Noga Tarnopolsky in Jerusalem. MOVED


^World Trade Organization sides with China in trade war with US<

WTO-USCHINA:DPA — The United States has been violating free trade rules by slapping hefty tariffs on imports from China as part of its trade spat with the Asian manufacturing giant, the World Trade Organization said in a ruling Tuesday.

Beijing had filed a complaint at the Geneva-based body after Washington imposed 234 billion dollars of duties on Chinese goods in 2018, as retaliation against alleged unfair government subsidies and theft of technological know-how by China.

350 by Albert Otti and Shabtai Gold in Geneva. MOVED


^Navalny plans to return to Russia after surviving poison attack<

^RUSSIA-NAVALNY:BLO—<Alexey Navalny is planning to return to Russia even as the Kremlin critic and opposition leader remains under guard in a German hospital after a near fatal poisoning in his homeland last month.

"No other option was ever considered," Navalny's spokeswoman Kira Yarmysh said by text message. "We haven't discussed concrete plans yet."

300 by Ilya Arkhipov and Jake Rudnitsky. MOVED


^California fires claim more lives as North Complex death toll rises<

CALIF-WILDFIRES:LA — The confirmed death toll from California's unprecedented firestorm has risen to 25 as crews work to hem in some two dozen major blazes still burning statewide.

Another fatality was confirmed Monday in the area of the North Complex fire near Oroville — boosting that fire's death toll to 15, according to the Butte County Sheriff's Office. In recorded state history, only four blazes have been deadlier.

700 by Luke Money in Los Angeles. MOVED



^Gazans fire rockets into Israel during UAE, Bahrain accords signing<

^USMIDEAST-GAZA-ATTACK:DPA—<Two rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip into Israel on Tuesday at the same time as a ceremony was being held in Washington for the signing of normalization agreements between Israel and the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.

Sirens sounded in the Israeli cities of Ashkelon and Ashdod near the border with the Gaza Strip.

700 by Maher Abukhater, Saud Abu Ramadan and Tamara Zieve in Tel Aviv, Israel. MOVED


^Taliban leaders tell Afghan government they have no aim to seize power<

AFGHAN-TALIBAN:BLO — Taliban leaders told their government counterparts at the Afghan peace talks they wouldn't seek to seize power and that their struggle was to free the country from foreign forces and establish an Islamic system.

The government is holding the first peace talks in 19 years with the Taliban in Doha, Qatar, where the group has an office, facilitated by the U.S.

200 by Eltaf Najafizada in Kabul, Afghanistan. MOVED


^American diplomat demands release of husband held in Belarus<

BELARUS-DETAINEE:BLO — An American diplomat in Ukraine is demanding that Belarus release her husband, a dual U.S.-Belarusian citizen whom she argues was detained for writing articles critical of President Alexander Lukashenko.

Heather Shkliarov's statement, issued Tuesday, was an unusual move because it broke with precedent in which diplomats leave such statements to senior State Department officials. Both Secretary of State Michael Pompeo and his deputy, Stephen Biegun, have called for Vitali Shkliarov's release.

450 by Nick Wadhams.

^Smoke from California wildfires reaches East Coast and Europe<

CALIF-WILDFIRES-SMOKE:LA — The wildfires that have choked California's skies with smoke in recent weeks — littering cities with ash, wreaking havoc on regional air quality and transforming the sun into an ominous red orb — have now stretched their sooty tendrils to the other side of the country and beyond.

Plumes from deadly and record-breaking fires burning up and down the West Coast are being caught in the atmospheric jet stream and carried across the United States, according to the National Weather Service.

There is enough smoke to partially shroud the sun in parts of the East Coast, forecasters said.

400 by Luke Money in Los Angeles. MOVED



^Coronavirus most likely to kill minority children, CDC says<

^CORONAVIRUS-CHILDREN-DEATHS:BLO—<Coronavirus is disproportionately killing minority children in the U.S., especially those with other underlying health conditions, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that shows how devastation from COVID-19 among Black and Hispanic adults has carried down to their offspring.

Children are much less likely than adults to contract coronavirus or fall seriously ill because of the infection, health records show, though vulnerability varies based on demographics.

500 by Michelle Fay Cortez. MOVED


^Amid stalemate, bipartisan group of lawmakers floats $1.5 trillion compromise for COVID-19 relief<

CORONAVIRUS-RELIEF-COMPROMISE:NY — A group of moderate lawmakers rolled out a $1.5 trillion compromise plan Tuesday that they hope will break the partisan logjam on Capitol Hill over how much money to spend on shoring up the U.S. economy amid continued financial hardship caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The stimulus compromise, presented by 50 members of the bipartisan House Problem Solvers Caucus, is larger than the half-trillion-dollar bill favored by Senate Republicans, but smaller than the $3.4 trillion rescue package approved by House Democrats this spring.

550 by Chris Sommerfeldt. (Moved as a Washington story.) MOVED


^House will stay until coronavirus aid deal, Pelosi says<

CORONAVIRUS-RELIEF:CON — Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Tuesday the House won't close up shop for the elections until congressional leaders and the Trump administration can negotiate another coronavirus relief package.

"I just got off a call with my colleagues; we are committed to staying here until we have an agreement that meets the needs of the American people," she said on CNBC. "We're optimistic that the Repub — that the White House, at least, will understand that we have to do some things."

Pelosi was responding to charges earlier on the program leveled by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy that she was willing to sacrifice her own members' reelection prospects if it meant denying President Donald Trump a legislative victory he could tout on the campaign trail. She called McCarthy's accusation "silliness that has no idea."

450 by Jennifer Shutt in Washington. MOVED


^295,000 guns may have been sold without background checks during pandemic, report says<

CORONAVIRUS-GUNSALES:CH — Nearly 300,000 gun sales may have been allowed to proceed without complete background checks during the first few months of the coronavirus pandemic, a report found.

The report from advocacy group Everytown for Gun Safety is based on Federal Bureau of Investigation data obtained through the Freedom of Information Act. It shows that as more Americans bought guns during the pandemic, more background checks were delayed and more guns could have been sold without them.

600 (with trims) by Bailey Aldridge in Charlotte, N.C. MOVED



^Hurricane Sally creeps toward Gulf Coast, poses threat of flash flooding<

^WEA-SALLY:BLO—<Hurricane Sally is inching toward the U.S. Gulf Coast, where it could inflict as much as $5 billion in damage and losses across Mississippi, Alabama and the Florida Panhandle from the "historic" flooding it's about to unleash on the region.

Sally's core will come ashore Wednesday along the Mississippi and Alabama coastline, reducing the threat to New Orleans, but raising worries in Mobile. The storm's top winds dropped to 80 miles per hour, down from 85 mph earlier, as of 5 p.m. in New York on Tuesday. Sally is a Category 1 hurricane on the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale, moving toward the coast at 2 mph.

650 by Brian K. Sullivan. MOVED


^Louisville agrees to pay record $12 million to settle Breonna Taylor shooting<

KY-POLICE-DEATH-1ST-LEDE:NY — The family of Breonna Taylor and the city of Louisville, Kentucky, announced a record $12 million settlement Tuesday after the Black EMT was shot dead by police in a botched raid in March.

The settlement is the largest ever paid by the city in an officer-involved shooting case.

The pact also made history for the long list of police reforms that the Louisville Metro Police Department will implement.

750 by Jessica Schladebeck and Nancy Dillon. MOVED


^Economic expansion in 2019 brought income gains, poverty reduction but more uninsured<

CENSUS-INCOME:LA — New government data on household income and poverty for 2019 paints a broadly positive picture of the nation's long economic expansion — gains now in the past as the pandemic has inflicted severe damage on millions of Americans.

But another key measure of economic well-being, the share of people without health insurance, ticked higher last year, the U.S. Census Bureau said Tuesday, a concern that weighs especially heavily as many families struggle with the health crisis.

1050 by Don Lee in Washington. MOVED


^Trump says coronavirus vaccine could be ready in as little as 4 weeks as doctors warn against politicizing effort<

^TRUMP-CORONAVIRUS-VACCINE:NY—<President Donald Trump claimed Tuesday that a coronavirus vaccine could be ready as early as Oct. 13, just weeks before Election Day.

Even as public health experts warn against politicizing the rush to produce a vaccine, Trump predicted a shot to ward off COVID-19 could be rolled out within as little as "four weeks."

"It could be four weeks, it could be eight weeks," Trump said in a Fox News interview.

300 by Dave Goldiner. MOVED


^For Biden, risks abound in questioning COVID-19 vaccine breakthrough<

CAMPAIGN-BIDEN-VACCINE:WA — President Donald Trump's push for a coronavirus vaccine breakthrough before Election Day is forcing his Democratic presidential opponent, Joe Biden, to make a choice.

He can either cast doubt on a vaccine process widely seen among Democrats as political — or begin to build up trust in an eventual vaccine that Biden may be tasked with distributing early next year if he wins in November.

1200 (with trims) by Michael Wilner and David Catanese in Washington. MOVED


^Millennials and seniors are spurning Trump. Here's why middle-aged voters are sticking with him<

CAMPAIGN-TRUMP-SUPPORTERS:WA — Generation Z loathes him. Millennials overwhelmingly back his opponent. And even once-supportive seniors have turned away.

As his turbulent reelection bid enters its final phase, President Donald Trump has been hindered by lackluster approval from most generations of voters — with one important exception.

In poll after poll of the 2020 race, Trump receives his highest share of support from middle-aged men and women, an often overlooked demographic that is now playing a critical role in keeping the president's electoral hopes alive against Democratic nominee Joe Biden.

These voters — older members of Generation X and younger Baby Boomers ranging in age from their late 40s to early 60s — are often the only age group that give Trump the majority of their support in national and battleground state surveys.

1500 (with trims) by Alex Roarty in Washington. MOVED


^John Bolton faces criminal probe into tell-all book that criticized Trump<

^BOLTON:NY—<Former national security adviser John Bolton is reportedly now the subject of a criminal investigation by the Justice Department, which accuses him of disclosing classified information in his tell-all book that took aim at President Donald Trump.

A grand jury has been convened and is subpoenaing records related to the publication of Bolton's book "The Room Where It Happened," The New York Times reported Tuesday.

350 by Dave Goldiner. MOVED


^Jon Stewart lashes out against Congress for lack of funds for 9/11 responders who worked the fire pits<

CONGRESS-911FUND-STEWART:NY — Known for his passionate defense for 9/11 first responders, Jon Stewart, U.S. Sen. Kristin Gillibrand and other 9/11 advocates criticized Congress and the federal government again, this time on behalf of veterans and service members sickened by exposure to burning pits of toxic trash.

"Welcome to another exciting episode of, 'When is America going to start acting like the great country we keep telling ourselves we are?'" the former "Daily Show" host told reporters Tuesday on Capitol Hill.

800 by Michael McAuliff in Washington. MOVED


^Analysis: Joe Biden doesn't just feel your pain, he has lived it. Will that help him win?<

^CAMPAIGN-BIDEN-ANALYSIS:LA—<Joe Biden grieves. His voice thickens; his eyes mist over.

He recounts his life's many tragedies — death, near-death, crushing political defeat — in a way that makes them seem not only palpable but still raw.

It's not just campaigning-as-therapy, though it sometimes feels that way. Rather, the torment is central to Biden's candidacy, a mix of agony and empathy unlike any since 1992, when the emotive Bill Clinton won the White House telling distressed voters he felt their pain.

The difference is the subtext to Biden's suffering, a message befitting these angst-ridden times: He not only feels America's pandemic- and economic- and injustice-induced pain but relates by having experienced as much, if not more, pain himself.

1200 (with trims) by Mark Z. Barabak. MOVED


^In Tampa, Joe Biden vows to military: 'I'll always have your back'<

CAMPAIGN-BIDEN-MILITARY:PT — Democratic nominee Joe Biden touched down Tuesday afternoon at Tampa International Airport, and it didn't take long for it to feel like something less than a typical campaign stop.

His destination, a gymnasium on the campus of Hillsborough Community College, sat empty, but for some production lights and cameras, a lectern in front of a Biden-Harris backdrop, and tables arranged in a half rectangle.

Biden in his remarks soon hit upon the theme of his Tampa visit: the military.

1250 by Steve Contorno, Ileana Najarro and Josh Solomon in Tampa, Fla. MOVED


^House Republican campaign platform promises a rebuild from current circumstances<

CAMPAIGN-HOUSE-GOP-PLATFORM:CON — Less than two months before the November election, House Republicans on Tuesday revealed their agenda, which aims to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, rebuild the economy and increase funding for the police.

The House GOP's "Commitment to America" outlines their legislative priorities if they win the majority this fall. The announcement comes after the Republican National Committee chose not to craft an updated platform for 2020 and use the same one adopted at the 2016 Republican National Convention.

850 by Chris Marquette in Washington. MOVED


^In Florida as race tightens, Biden outlines a plan for Puerto Rico's recovery<

CAMPAIGN-BIDEN-PUERTORICO:MI — During his first visit to Florida as the Democratic presidential nominee, Joe Biden on Tuesday appealed directly to hundreds of thousands of Puerto Rican voters living in the state by releasing a long-awaited plan to help their bankrupt and storm-battered island rebuild and shed its crippling debt.

Biden — who acknowledged Monday that he needs to "work like the devil" to win over more of Florida's Hispanic voters — stopped short of endorsing Puerto Rican statehood, among the highest profile political issues hanging over the U.S. territory.

1250 (with trims) by David Smiley, Bianca Padr Ocasio and Alex Daugherty in Miami. MOVED


^'Been shot in the head': 2 deputies struggle to survive after Calif. attack<

LA-DEPUTIES-SHOT:LA — A thick layer of blood covered her tan shirt, part of her Los Angeles County sheriff's uniform. She was bleeding from her face.

Minutes before, she and her partner working transit security were sitting in their patrol car at the Compton Metro station when a gunman approached and opened fire. A bullet went through the 31-year-old deputy's mouth, and she was hit in the arms. Her male partner, 24, was more badly wounded, shot in the head as well as the arm and shoulder, according to a surveillance camera video of the attack and interviews.

But the deputy, the mother of a 6-year-old boy, managed to get out of the cruiser and help her partner hide behind a concrete pillar for safety, not knowing if the gunman was still in the area.

700 by Richard Winton in Los Angeles. MOVED


^Vanessa Bryant slams LA County sheriff for challenging LeBron James to match reward<

LA-DEPUTIES-SHOT-BRYANT:LA — Vanessa Bryant is unhappy with comments made by Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva in the aftermath of the shooting of two sheriff's deputies Saturday in Compton.

During a radio interview Monday, Villanueva challenged Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James to double a $175,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the assailant.

450 by Chuck Schilken in Los Angeles. MOVED


^State, federal authorities arrest 26 suspected gang members in Bay Area; charges include 4 homicides<

CALIF-GANGBUST:SJ — Twenty-six suspected Sure o members and associates have been charged with serious crimes, including murder, according to Bay Area officials who Tuesday announced the arrests after a years-long law enforcement operation targeting the Southern California-based gang that has earned a reputation for violent reprisals against informants and rivals.

Authorities served 34 search warrants across the Bay Area in recent weeks and seized 42 guns, according to prosecutors.

1050 by Nate Gartrell in San Francisco. MOVED


^Crowd control weapons caused at least 115 head injuries amid summer protests across US, study says<

^PROTESTS-INJURIES:NY—<The use of crowd control weapons during protests that have unfolded nationwide after the officer-involved death of George Floyd has left scores of people with head injuries, according to a new study.

Physicians for Human Rights, a Texas-based organization, in a study published on Monday, identified 115 people who were shot in the head or neck at demonstrations with "Kinetic Impact Projectiles" — like rubber bullets and bean bags — starting the day after 46-year-old Floyd died in Minneapolis.

550 by Jessica Schladebeck. MOVED


^LAPD chief points to pandemic as driving factor in increased gun violence, killings<

LA-VIOLENCE:LA — Los Angeles Police Chief Michel Moore said Tuesday that the COVID-19 pandemic has helped drive gun violence and increase killings in the city this year, including by spurring economic despair and interpersonal dramas while undercutting efforts to interrupt cycles of retaliation.

850 by Kevin Rector in Los Angeles. MOVED


^Bill Gates Sr., civic figure and father of Microsoft co-founder, dies at 94<

GATESSR-OBIT:SE — William Gates Sr., the father of Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, has died at 94, the family said Tuesday.

Gates was a prominent Seattle attorney and the founding partner of one of the region's best-known law firms. But it was his son's fortune in the tech field that made the name "Bill Gates" known the world over. And it launched an entirely different path for the elder Gates when he was nearly 70.

That's when he became one of the guiding forces behind the William H. Gates Foundation — later renamed the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, after his son and daughter-in-law.

750 by Katherine Long in Seattle. MOVED


^Michael Cohen 'sobbed' after getting letter from Rosie O'Donnell while in prison<

COHEN-ODONNELL:NY — Michael Cohen, former attorney for President Donald Trump, says he was moved to tears after he received a letter from talk show host Rosie O'Donnell while he was in prison.

Speaking on his new podcast Monday, Cohen said he received a "beautiful" six-page note from O'Donnell — a longtime adversary of Trump — last December during his stay at the Federal Correctional Institution near Otisville in upstate New York.

400 by Peter Sblendorio in New York. MOVED


^Eisenhower Memorial, opening in DC this week, pays tribute to Ike's Kansas roots<

EISENHOWER-MEMORIAL:WA — The Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial will open in Washington this week, a long-awaited tribute to his legacy as Supreme Allied Commander in World War II and the 34th president.

But the memorial, designed by renowned architect Frank Gehry, also honors Eisenhower's Kansas roots.

The statues of a general and president are joined by a barefoot boy from rural Kansas alongside a quote from a 1945 speech: "The proudest thing that I can claim is that I am from Abilene."

1350 (with trims) by Bryan Lowry in Washington. MOVED


^Study finds dramatic increases in vaping marijuana, nicotine among young adults<

MED-VAPING-YOUNGPEOPLE:DTN — The number of young adults in the U.S. who are vaping marijuana and nicotine has more than doubled in two years, according to a national study by researchers at the University of Michigan.

Vaping has increased dramatically among 19- to 22-year-olds in and out of college as the perception of harmful heath risks decline, researchers say.

1100 by Sarah Rahal in Ann Arbor, Mich. MOVED



^Report: Hackers aimed at manufacturing firms during pandemic<

^CPT-HACKERS-MANUFACTURING:CON—<In the first six months of the year, as most of the world shut down because of COVID-19 and workers everywhere shifted to working remotely, online criminals and state-backed hackers got busy breaking into computer networks, especially those of manufacturing, technology and telecom companies.

Indeed, hackers worked at a greater pace than they did all of last year, according to cybersecurity research firm CrowdStrike.

950 by Gopal Ratnam. MOVED


^US removes Canada aluminum tariffs amid retaliation threat<

^USCANADA-TRADE-ALUMINUM:BLO—<The U.S. announced the removal of aluminum tariffs it slapped on Canada last month.

The decision impacts the 10% tariff on non-alloyed, unwrought aluminum and comes a month after the administration reimposed the tariffs on Canada, citing a "surge" of imports coming from the country. During the summer, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer expressed concern about recent struggles by American aluminum producers hurting from the flow of metal into the U.S.

Canada threatened a dollar-for-dollar retaliation that was expected to be announced Tuesday. Two Canadian government officials confirmed Canada would drop the counter tariffs on U.S. aluminum following the U.S. announcement.

400 by Joe Deaux, Jenny Leonard and Kait Bolongaro. MOVED



^Trump announces plan to appear on 'Fox & Friends,' much to the surprise of one host<

TV-FOXNEWS-TRUMP:NY — President Donald Trump performed with the cast of "Fox & Friends" Tuesday, where the commander in chief said he'd made arrangements to appear on the morning show every week until the Nov. 3 election.

"We're going to do it every week?" host Brian Kilmeade asked the president.

550 by Brian Niemietz in New York. MOVED


^Chick Corea, a tireless music legend, 'Plays' on with new live album and online music academy<

^MUS-COREA:SD—<The coronavirus pandemic brought the careers of countless musicians to a standstill, including keyboard legend Chick Corea, whose European concert tour ended abruptly with the mid-March global shutdown.

But that standstill was brief for Corea, who in January earned his 23rd Grammy Award and has collaborated over the years with everyone from Miles Davis, Alicia Keys and flamenco guitar master Paco de Lucia to Foo Fighters and the London Philharmonic Orchestra. The Massachusetts-born native sprang back into action soon after returning from Europe to the Florida home he shares with his wife and periodic musical partner, singer Gayle Moran.

"We're all anxious to go back on the road. But I'm unable to predict the way the restrictions will go, or when they will be lifted, so I'm creating as much as I can," said Corea, whose splendid new live double-album, "Plays," was released Friday by Concord Jazz. Recorded on tour in 2018, it features his singular solo piano renditions of music by everyone from Mozart, Chopin and Gershwin to Thelonious Monk, Stevie Wonder and Corea himself.

1700 by George Varga. MOVED


^Chick Corea bonus Q&A: What he learned playing with Miles Davis, Sarah Vaughan, Stan Getz and others<

^MUS-COREA-QA:SD—<What did Chick Corea learn from the time he spent playing in the bands of Miles Davis, Sarah Vaughan, Stan Getz and other jazz giants?


"I've had the best teachers, haven't I?" said Corea, who in January won the 23rd Grammy Award of his illustrious career. He credits his musical apprenticeships as a young artist for laying the foundation for his multifarious career as a solo artist and band leader.

1100 by George Varga. MOVED



^Tiger Woods' age-old maladies, demanding Winged Foot make him a US Open long shot<

GLF-USOPEN-WOODS:ND — In retrospect, the brilliant career of Tiger Woods was like a comet flashing across the sports universe as he piled up 14 major championships from 1997 to 2008. But then, Woods plunged into an unfathomable 11-year major drought marred by personal problems and injuries before finally surfacing to win No. 15 at the Masters in April 2019, leaving him three short of Jack Nicklaus' record 18 majors.

Last October at the Zozo Championship in Japan, Woods won his 82nd PGA Tour title to tie Sam Snead for first all-time. Since then, Woods has made only six appearances in 2020 with just one top-10 finish.

650 by Greg Logan in Mamaroneck, N.Y. MOVED



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