Top Stories

  • Belgian police hit organized crime with hundreds of raidsUpdated: 03/09/2021 4:40 AM

    BRUSSELS (AP) — Belgian police launched an operation of unprecedented scale against organized crime on Tuesday, according to the country's federal prosecutor’s office. About 200 searches mobilizing more than 1,200 police officers were carried out simultaneously throughout the country of 11.5 million people, the office told The Associated Press. A spokesperson at the prosecutor's office said searches started at around 5 a.m.. According to broadcaster RTBF, the searches mainly took place in the region of Antwerp, and investigators focused on drug traffickers and a crime network with international connections.See full story
  • Global shares trade mixed on recovery hopes, yield worriesUpdated: 03/09/2021 4:06 AM

    TOKYO (AP) — Global shares were mixed Tuesday, cheered by the expected passage of the U.S. stimulus package, although that optimism was tempered by worries about inflation and the coronavirus pandemic. France's CAC 40 was little changed, inching up less than 0.1% in early trading to 5,903.07. Germany's DAX slipped 0.3% to 14,341.07, while Britain's FTSE 100 rose nearly 0.1% to 6,713.26. U.S. shares were set for gains, with the future for the Dow industrials up 0.5% at 31,939.0. The S&P 500 future rose 0.8% to 3,851.00.See full story
  • Kerry in Brussels for climate change talks with EU officialsUpdated: 03/09/2021 3:36 AM

    BRUSSELS (AP) — U.S. special envoy for climate John Kerry traveled to Brussels on Tuesday to discuss transatlantic cooperation with European officials in the wake of President Joe Biden's decision to rejoin the global effort to curb climate change. Like EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, Biden has said that fighting global warming is among his highest priorities. Biden had the United States rejoin the Paris climate accord in the first hours of his presidency, undoing the U.S. withdrawal ordered by predecessor Donald Trump.See full story
  • Gibraltar, a vaccine champion, launches 'Operation Freedom'Updated: 03/09/2021 2:49 AM

    GIBRALTAR (AP) — Maskless parents pick up smiling Cinderellas, Harry Potters and hedgehogs from schools that reopened after a two-month hiatus just in time for World Book Day’s costume display. Following weeks under lockdown, a soccer team resumes training at the stadium. Coffee shops and pubs have finally raised their blinds, eager to welcome locals and eyeing the return of tourists. There's an end-of-hibernation feeling in Gibraltar. The narrow British overseas territory stretching between Spain and the mouth of the Mediterranean Sea is emerging from a devastating virus surge.See full story
  • Biden hopes to boost offshore wind as Mass. project advancesUpdated: 03/09/2021 12:16 AM

    WASHINGTON (AP) — A huge wind farm off the Massachusetts coast is edging closer to federal approval, setting up what the Biden administration hopes will be a model for a sharp increase in offshore wind energy development along the East Coast. The Vineyard Wind project, south of Martha's Vineyard near Cape Cod, would create 800 megawatts of electricity, enough to power 400,000 homes in New England. If approved, the $2 billion project would be the first utility-scale wind power development in federal waters.See full story
  • Trump policy that weakened wild bird protections is revokedUpdated: 03/08/2021 11:26 PM

    BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The Biden administration on Monday reversed a policy imposed under former President Donald Trump that drastically weakened the government's power to enforce a century-old law that protects most U.S. bird species. Trump ended criminal prosecutions against companies responsible for bird deaths that could have been prevented. The move halted enforcement practices under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act in place for decades — resulting most notably in a $100 million settlement by energy company BP after the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill killed about 100,000 birds, according to federal data.See full story
  • Asian shares trade mixed on recovery hopes, yield worriesUpdated: 03/08/2021 10:46 PM

    TOKYO (AP) — Asian shares were mixed Tuesday, cheered by the imminent passage of the U.S. stimulus package, although that optimism was tempered by worries about inflation and the coronavirus pandemic. Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 added 0.2% to 28,800.81 in morning trading. South Korea's Kospi slipped 1.2% to 2,960.17. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 added 0.3% to 6,760.10. Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 1.3% to 28,918.99, while the Shanghai Composite slipped 0.6% to 3,402.61. Jingyi Pan, senior market strategist with IG in Singapore, said Asian markets were weighing “the impact of a global recovery alongside the prospect of an accelerating climb in U.S.See full story
  • Microsoft server hack has victims hustling to stop intrudersUpdated: 03/08/2021 9:19 PM

    BOSTON (AP) — Victims of a massive global hack of Microsoft email server software — estimated in the tens of thousands by cybersecurity responders — hustled Monday to shore up infected systems and try to diminish chances that intruders might steal data or hobble their networks. The White House has called the hack an “active threat” and said senior national security officials were addressing it. The breach was discovered in early January and attributed to Chinese cyber spies targeting U.S. policy think tanks.See full story
  • Airline industry pushes US to standardize health papers Updated: 03/08/2021 8:02 PM

    Leading airline and business groups are asking the Biden administration to develop temporary credentials that would let travelers show they have been tested and vaccinated for COVID-19, a step that the airline industry believes will help revive travel. Various groups and countries are working on developing so-called vaccine passports aimed at allowing more travel. But airlines fear that a smattering of regional credentials will cause confusion and none will be widely accepted. “It is crucial to establish uniform guidance" and “the U.S.See full story
  • $40M gender equality fund by Gates, Scott picks finalistsUpdated: 03/08/2021 7:03 PM

    A gender equality philanthropic initiative spearheaded by Melinda Gates’ investment company, with support from MacKenzie Scott, has announced 10 project finalists for $40 million in funding slated to be awarded this summer. The Equality Can’t Wait Challenge, which is hosted by Gates’ Pivotal Ventures, said Monday, on International Women’s Day, that the finalists include women-led projects aiming to support victims of domestic violence, increase the influence of Black women in the South using advocacy and double the reporting capacity of The 19th, a news organization reporting on gender, politics and policy.See full story

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