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The Latest Headlines From Around the World

    Iraq's Oil Ministry says Iraq has resumed exports from its oil fields around Kirkuk, one year after the city was seized by federal forces from the autonomous Kurdish administration in the north of the country. Ministry spokesman Assem Jihad says an agreement was reached with the Kurdish Regional Government to export 50,000 to 100,000 barrels of oil per day, beginning Friday, through a pipeline that runs through Kurdish territory to Turkey. Exports were halted in October 2017 after federal forces took control of the disputed city, costing the KRG millions of dollars in income as the two sides haggled over revenues and pipeline fees. The Turkey pipeline is the only one available to Kirkuk for exports. Jihad said the federal government would collect the revenue from the renewed sales.
  • Pandemonium reigned in Sri Lanka's Parliament on Friday as lawmakers supporting disputed Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa threw books and chairs to try to block the proceedings a day after a fierce brawl between rival legislators worsened political turmoil in the island nation. Police who escorted Speaker Karu Jayasuriya into the chamber held boards around him to protect him from being hit by the angry Rajapaksa loyalists, who did not allow him to sit in the speaker's chair. Jayasuriya, using a microphone, conducted the proceedings while standing on the floor of Parliament, which for the second time passed a no-confidence motion against Rajapaksa and his government by a voice vote. Jayasuriya then adjourned the house until Monday. Lawmakers loyal to Rajapaksa hooted and continued to hurl abuse at Jayasuriya until he left the chamber. Arundika Fernando, a lawmaker allied with Rajapaksa, sat in the speaker's chair while others shouted slogans. Opposition lawmaker R. Sampathan accused Rajapaksa loyalists of preventing a roll-call vote on the motion, as requested by President Maithripala Sirisena. On Thursday, Sirisena held an emergency meeting with the leaders of the opposition parties that voted for the first no-confidence motion against Rajapaksa and asked them to take up the motion again and allow it to be debated and then put to a roll-call vote. Sirisena held the meeting following the chaos in Parliament on Thursday, when rival lawmakers exchanged blows, leaving one injured, after the speaker announced the country had no prime minister or government because of Wednesday's no-confidence motion against Rajapaksa. Rajapaksa has refused to accept the no-confidence motion, also saying it should not have been done by voice vote. He also insisted the speaker had no authority to remove him and said he is continuing in his role as prime minister. Sri Lanka has been in a political crisis since Oct. 26, when Sirisena abruptly sacked Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and appointed Rajapaksa. Wickremsinghe says he still has the support of a majority in Parliament. Rajapaksa, a former president, is considered a hero by some in the ethnic Sinhalese majority for ending a long civil war by crushing ethnic Tamil Tiger rebels. However, his time in power was marred by allegations of wartime atrocities, corruption and nepotism. Tensions had been building between Sirisena and Wickremesinghe for some time, as the president did not approve of economic reforms introduced by the prime minister. Sirisena has also accused Wickremesinghe and another Cabinet member of plotting to assassinate him, a charge Wickremesinghe has repeatedly denied.
  • The Latest on a scientific meeting on how to define weights and measures (all times local): 1:35 p.m. The international system of measurements has been overhauled with new definitions for the kilogram and other key units. At a meeting in Versailles, France, countries have voted to approve the wide-ranging changes that underpin vital human activities like global trade and scientific innovation. The most closely watched change was the revision to the kilo, the measurement of mass. Until now, it has been defined as the mass of a platinum-iridium lump, the so-called Grand K, that is kept in a secured vault on the outskirts of Paris. It has been the world's one true kilo, against which all others were measured, since 1889. It is now being retired and replaced by a new definition based on a scientific formula. In their vote, countries also unanimously approved updates to three other key units: the kelvin for temperature, the ampere for electrical current and the mole for the amount of a substance. The vote was greeted by sustained applause and cheers, after the 50-plus countries in attendance said yes or oui when asked one by one for their decision. ___ 9:05 a.m. Humankind is about to sever one of the links between its present and its past. The so-called 'Grand K' kilogram, a cylinder of polished platinum-iridium alloy that has been the world's sole true kilo since 1889, is to be retired. Nations gathered in Versailles, west of Paris, are expected on Friday to instead approve the use of a scientific formula to define the exact weight of a kilogram. The change will have no discernable impact for most people. Their bathroom scales won't get kinder and kilos and grams won't change in supermarkets. But scientists are hailing the vote as a mini-revolution in the field of weights and measures, which underpins vital human activities like international trade. And it will mean redundancy for the Grand K and its six official copies.
  • The rescue of 33 lions from South American circuses and their 2016 transfer to a South African refuge was billed as a compassionate gesture, a return 'home' after years of abuse and living in cages. Things didn't turn out as planned. Animal Defenders International, a group that airlifted the lions to South Africa, has secured a court order allowing the removal of 27 surviving lions from the Emoya Big Cat Sanctuary in Vaalwater. The two organizations had collaborated on the project, but disputes over alleged mismanagement at the sanctuary soon arose and six lions have died since arriving there. 'ADI believes that if we leave our rescued lions at Emoya, they will die before their time,' Animal Defenders International said Thursday. 'We will move the animals as soon as possible and in accordance with the court order.' The group said it was acting after the 'preventable deaths' of five lions, including from food poisoning and poaching, and that it was denied immediate access to another lion that died. Animal Defenders International cited 'other problems including misappropriation of funds, materials for the lions and associations with trophy hunters and more.' Emoya has denied allegations of wrongdoing and said the South African court ruling against it is based solely on a 90-day termination clause in its contract with Animal Defenders International. 'The truth is this: Despite unforeseen tragic events, the lions have been and are in excellent condition,' Emoya said on its website. The lions live in large enclosures 'in the natural Africa habitat,' receive a venison diet with added supplements and are protected by an upgraded security system, according to Emoya. While Animal Defenders International said it is organizing a 'road trip' for the lions to another location, Emoya said the move can only happen if it is satisfied with the logistics and the quality of the new home. The judge's order requires coordination between the two groups. Nine of the original 33 lions were surrendered by a circus in Colombia. The remaining 24 were rescued in raids on circuses in Peru as part of a crackdown on wildlife trafficking. The transfer to South Africa had no conservationist value because the animals, which were in poor condition, had been held in captivity and could not live in the wild. ___ Follow Christopher Torchia on Twitter at www.twitter.com/torchiachris
  • North Korea on Friday said it will deport an American citizen it detained for illegal entrance, an apparent concession to the United States that came even as it announced the test of a newly developed but unspecified 'ultramodern' weapon that will be seen as a pressuring tactic by Washington. The two whiplash announcements, which seemed aimed at both appeasing and annoying Washington, suggest North Korea wants to keep alive dialogue with the United States even as it struggles to express its frustration at stalled nuclear diplomacy. North Korea in the past has held arrested American citizens for an extended period before high-profile U.S. figures travelled to Pyongyang to secure their freedom. Last year, American university student Otto Warmbier died days after he was released in a coma from North Korea after 17 months in captivity. On Friday, the Korean Central News Agency said American national Bruce Byron Lowrance was detained on Oct. 16 for illegally entering the country from China. It said he told investigators that he was under the 'manipulation' of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. It was not clear if the North's spelling of the man's name was correct, and past reports from Pyongyang have contained incorrect spellings. A short KCNA dispatch said North Korea decided to deport him but did not say why and when. The North's decision matches its general push for engagement and diplomacy with the United States this year after a string of weapons tests in 2017, and a furious U.S. response, had some fearing war on the Korean Peninsula. In May, North Korea released three American detainees in a goodwill gesture weeks ahead of leader Kim Jong Un's June 12 summit with President Donald Trump in Singapore. The three Americans returned home on a flight with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Weeks after the summit, North Korea returned the remains of dozens of presumed U.S. soldiers killed during the 1950-53 Korean War. The United States, South Korea and others have previously accused North Korea of using foreign detainees to wrest diplomatic concessions. Some foreigners have said after their release that their declarations of guilt had been coerced while in North Korean custody. Warmbier and other previous American detainees in the North were imprisoned over a variety of alleged crimes, including subversion, anti-state activities and spying. The latest detained American is likely a man that South Korea deported last year, according to South Korean police. In November 2017, a 58-year-old man from Louisiana was caught in South Korea after spending two nights in the woods in a civilian-restricted area near the border with North Korea. The name written in his passport was Lowrance Bruce Byron, said police officers at Gyeonggi Bukbu Provincial Police Agency. Before his deportation, the man told interrogators that he 'knows lots of people in the Trump administration so that he wants to work as a bridge between the United States and North Korea to help improve their ties worsened by Warmbier's death,' said one of the police officers who investigated the man. He requested anonymity citing department rules. Earlier Friday, KCNA said Kim observed the successful test of an unspecified 'newly developed ultramodern tactical weapon,' though it didn't describe what the weapon was. It didn't appear to be a test of a nuclear device or a long-range missile with the potential to target the United States. A string of such tests last year pushed always uncomfortable ties on the peninsula to unusually high tension before the North turned to engagement and diplomacy. Still, any mention of weapons testing could influence the direction of stalled diplomatic efforts spearheaded by Washington and aimed at ridding the North of its nuclear weapons. Experts say the weapon test was likely an expression of anger by North Korea at U.S.-led international sanctions and ongoing small-scale military drills between South Korea and the United States. It's the first publicly known field inspection of a weapons test by Kim since he observed the testing of the Hwasong-15 intercontinental ballistic missile in November of last year, according to South Korea's Unification Ministry. 'It's North Korea-style coercive diplomacy. North Korea is saying 'If you don't listen to us, you will face political burdens,'' said analyst Shin Beomchul of Seoul's Asan Institute for Policy Studies. Earlier this month, North Korea's Foreign Ministry warned it could bring back its policy of bolstering its nuclear arsenal if it doesn't receive sanctions relief. Shin said the weapon North Korea tested could be a missile, artillery, an anti-air gun, a drone or other high-tech conventional weapons systems. Yang Wook, a Seoul-based military expert, said a 'tactical weapon' in North Korea refers to 'a weapon aimed at striking South Korea including U.S. military bases' there, so the North may have tested a short-range missile or a multiple rocket launch system. Diplomacy has stalled since the Singapore summit, with Washington pushing for more action on nuclear disarmament and the North insisting that the U.S. first approve a peace declaration formally ending the Korean War and lift sanctions. But Friday's report from the North was noticeably less belligerent than past announcements of weapons tests, and didn't focus on North Korean claims of U.S. and South Korean hostility. Yang said the latest North Korean test won't completely break down nuclear diplomacy, though more questions would be raised about how sincere the North is about its commitment to denuclearization. U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, attending a Southeast Asian summit in Singapore, cited the 'great progress' made on North Korea but said more had to be done. A year and a half ago, 'nuclear tests were taking place, missiles were flying over Japan and there were threats and propagations against our nation and nations in the region,' Pence said. 'Today, no more missiles are flying, no more nuclear tests, our hostages have come home, and North Korea has begun anew to return fallen American heroes from the Korean War to our soil. We made great progress but there's more work to be done.' Pence stressed that U.N. sanctions had to remain enforced. The North said the test took place at the Academy of National Defense Science and that Kim couldn't suppress his 'passionate joy' at its success. He was described as 'so excited to say that another great work was done by the defense scientists and munitions industrial workers to increase the defense capability of the country.' Last year's string of increasingly powerful weapons tests, many experts believe, put the North on the brink of a viable arsenal of nuclear-tipped missiles that can target anywhere in the mainland United States. __ Associated Press writer Foster Klug in Seoul, Annabelle Liang in Singapore and Matthew Pennington in Washington contributed to this report.
  • The Latest on the Brexit negotiations (all times local): 10:15 a.m. British Prime Minister Theresa May has had one piece of good news as she battles a rebellion within her Conservative Party. Environment Minister Michael Gove has decided not to follow two other Cabinet ministers and resign over May's Brexit deal with the European Union, according to multiple media reports. Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab and Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey quit Thursday, saying they could not support the agreement. May still faces the threat of a no-confidence vote, after several Conservative lawmakers said they had written letters asking for one. Sky News reports that all Conservative whips have been summoned to London, amid rumors the number of letters may have reached 48 — the threshold needed to trigger a vote. ___ 9:15 a.m. France's finance minister is calling some British politicians 'liars' who fooled voters into thinking leaving the EU would be easy and in their interests. As British Prime Minister Theresa May battles to save her Brexit plan amid domestic criticism, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said Friday 'the truth is that Brexit could end with a nightmare.' Le Maire defended the European Union's single market, calling it a 'considerable force' in global trade and warning that Britain could face 'economic disaster' if it leaves. French President Emmanuel Macron's government is among the strongest defenders of the EU and is trying to limit the damage to the bloc from Britain's exit and ensure that Brexit doesn't encourage other EU members to leave. Le Maire was speaking to a conference in Paris on reforming the global trade system. ___ 8:40 a.m. British Prime Minister Theresa May is appealing directly to voters to back her Brexit plan, as she waits to see whether rivals within her party have gained enough support to launch a leadership challenge. May was answering questions from callers on a radio phone-in Friday, the day after she vowed to stay in office and see through Britain's exit from the European Union. May is battling to save her Brexit plan, and her job, after the draft withdrawal agreement between Britain and the EU sparked fierce opposition from euroskeptic politicians in her Conservative Party. Several Conservative lawmakers are pushing for a no-confidence vote, hoping to reach a threshold of 48 to trigger a challenge. Two ministers quit May's government on Thursday. A third, Environment Secretary Michael Gove, is considering whether to follow them.
  • British Prime Minister Theresa May appealed directly to voters to back her Brexit plan Friday as she braced for a potential leadership challenge from rivals within her party. May answered questions from callers on a radio phone-in, the day after she vowed to stay in office and see through Britain's exit from the European Union. It was not an easy ride. One caller said May should resign and let a more staunchly pro-Brexit politician take over; another compared her to Neville Chamberlain, the 1930s prime minister who vainly tried to appease Nazi Germany to avoid a war. May stood by her plan. 'For a lot of people who voted 'leave,' what they wanted to do was make sure that decisions on things like who can come into this country would be taken by us here in the U.K., and not by Brussels, and that's exactly what the deal I've negotiated delivers,' she said. May is battling to save her Brexit plan, and her job, after the draft withdrawal agreement between Britain and the EU sparked fierce opposition from euroskeptic politicians in her Conservative Party. They say the agreement, which calls for close trade ties between the U.K. and the bloc, would leave Britain a vassal state, bound to EU rules it has no say in making. Several Conservative lawmakers are pushing for a no-confidence vote, hoping to reach a threshold of 48 to trigger a challenge. If May lost her job as party leader, she would also lose her position as prime minister. Sky News reported Friday that all Conservative whips had been summoned to London, amid rumors that 48 letters had been submitted. May got one piece of good news, when Environment Secretary Michael Gove decided not to follow two Cabinet colleagues and quit over the divorce deal. Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab and Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey quit Thursday, saying they could not support the agreement. Like them, Gove was a strong supporter of the 'leave' campaign in Britain's 2016 EU membership referendum. Gove said Friday that he 'absolutely' had confidence in May, adding that he would work with government colleagues to achieve 'the best future for Britain.' But he did not answer when asked if he supported May's Brexit deal. A defiant May vowed Thursday to 'see this through,' and said abandoning her Brexit plan, with Britain's exit just over four months away on March 29, would plunge the country into 'deep and grave uncertainty. The political turmoil prompted a big fall in the value of the pound. On Friday it recouped some gains, trading 0.4 percent higher at $1.2821, partly on relief that Gove didn't join the others in quitting the government. But investors and businesses remain worried about the prospect of Britain crashing out of the EU in March without a deal. That could see tariffs on British exports, border checks, restrictions on travelers and workers and interruption to the supply of goods. 'The markets are looking for a deal,' said Michael Baker, a financial analyst at ETX Capital. 'They're looking for some sort of agreement, some sort of orderly withdrawal for the U.K. to come out of the European Union.' Simon Kempton of police officers' union the Police Federation said a 'no-deal' Brexit could spark protests, and 'it's a real concern that those protests might escalate into disorder.' 'It's 2018. It's the year that people dial (emergency number) 999 because KFC ran out of chicken,' he told Sky News. 'If that will happen, imagine what will happen if we start seeing food or medical supply shortages.' EU leaders, who have called a Nov. 25 summit in Brussels to sign off on the draft agreement, were doing their best to refrain from commenting on Britain's political chaos. But French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire on Friday called some British politicians 'liars' who fooled voters into thinking leaving the EU would be easy and in their interests. 'The truth is that Brexit could end with a nightmare,' he said at a conference in Paris on reforming the global trade system. ___ Angela Charlton in Paris contributed to this story.
  • A bishop who has resisted demands to join China's Communist Party-controlled church body has been taken into custody, a Catholic news service reported, despite recent moves by Beijing and the Holy See toward reconciliation. Asia News reported that Peter Shao Zhumin dropped out of sight several days ago, but gave no details other than saying he had been subjected to 'dozens of days of indoctrination as in the times of the Cultural Revolution,' a reference to Mao Zedong's radical 1966-76 attack on traditional Chinese culture, religion and the intelligentsia. Shao was appointed by the pope in 2016 and was posted to the southeastern city of Wenzhou, which has a large Christian community. Officials reached Friday by phone at the local religious affairs bureau, its department regulating the Catholic church and police headquarters said they had no knowledge of Shao's situation and refused to give their names. Asked about the matter, foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying offered no information on Shao's disappearance but reiterated Beijing's hopes for better ties with the Holy See. 'We would like to improve our mutual understanding and enhance our mutual trust so as to advance our relations with the Vatican,' Hua said at a daily briefing. Shao's disappearance follows a breakthrough agreement to give China some say over the appointment of bishops that critics called a cave-in to the ruling Communist Party just as it is waging a sweeping crackdown on religion. Others characterized it as an imperfect but much-needed step toward uniting Catholics in the world's most populous country. The Vatican has long hoped to bring together China's 12 million Catholics who are divided between those worshipping in state-sanctioned churches and the underground priests and parishioners loyal to the pope, who are frequently detained and harassed. Details of the September agreement haven't been released, although analysts say the Vatican will retain the power to put forward candidates while Beijing will likely have the right to refuse them. Such moves are seen as a concession on the Vatican's part in the face of Beijing's assertion that it would not allow 'foreign forces' to govern the country's faith groups. Under President and Communist Party leader Xi Jinping, the authorities have in recent months cracked down heavily on Protestants, Catholics, Muslims and Buddhists in the name of national security and the 'Sinosization' of religion. China broke off relations with the Holy See in 1951, after the officially atheist Communist Party took power and established its own church. All religions were harshly persecuted during the rule of ex-leader Mao Zedong, but underwent a revival following his death in 1976 and have continued to grow in recent years despite the party's efforts to rein them in.
  • Shinzo Abe became the first prime minister of Japan to visit Darwin since the northern Australian city was bombed by Japanese forces in World War II, as he and his Australian counterpart spoke Friday of strengthening defense and other ties between their countries. Abe's one-night stay was described by Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison as a deeply symbolic one. It was also another chance for Japan and Australia to present a united front as regional partners in the Asia-Pacific amid ongoing concerns of spreading Chinese influence, including the country's building of islands in the disputed South China Sea. 'Australia and Japan also stand united on the importance of resolving disputes in the South China Sea, peacefully and in accordance with international law, and we are strongly opposed to any actions that could increase tensions within the region,' Morrison said., reading from a prepared statement after meeting Abe. He added that a 'stable and secure regional maritime ... order is central to both Australia and Japan's visions for the region, and is underpinned by respect for international law.' Morrison also said he looked forward to increased cooperation with Japan to support regional maritime safety and security. The leaders said they hope to conclude early next year an agreement on increased defense links, including more joint military exercises. Abe said Japan and Australian would promote cooperation to strengthen the rule of law at sea. They also agreed to promote cooperation in providing building assistance for maritime security-related projects in Southeast Asian and Pacific island nations. The two leaders reiterated their commitment to the denuclearization of North Korea, while Abe also praised Australia's role in a revamped Pacific Rim free-trade agreement that President Donald Trump had pulled the U.S. out of. It comes into effect later this year. 'Darwin, connecting the Indian and Pacific oceans, is a crucial place for the stability and prosperity of the whole of the Indo-Pacific,' Abe said. 'It is at this very place where Prime Minister Morrison and I confirmed our commitment to further deepen this special strategic partnership between Japan and Australia, in pursuit of our common vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific.' Abe arrived for his visit Friday afternoon and immediately went to lay a wreath with Morrison at the city's main war memorial. Abe then stood solemnly with head bowed as an army bugler played 'The Last Post.' The visit continues Abe's moves to show remorse for Japan's role in the war, following his trip to Pearl Harbor in 2016. 'Darwin was once the place where the former Japanese forces conducted their first air bombing against Australia, leading to much sacrifice,' Abe said. 'At the war memorial, I extended my condolences in honor of all the foreign soldiers, and renewed my vow towards peace.' On Saturday, Abe will honor his country's war dead, visiting the memorial of the 80-crew Japanese submarine I-124, which was sunk off Darwin in January 1942.
  • Fire swept through a passenger bus in Zimbabwe, and police said Friday that more than 40 people died and at least 20 were injured, some with severe burns. Police spokeswoman Charity Charamba said she did not have details about the cause of the accident on Thursday night. A photograph posted on Twitter by the Zimbabwe Red Cross shows the remains of a bus that was completely incinerated. The Red Cross said its teams responded to a 'horrific accident' involving a bus heading to neighboring South Africa at around midnight. The accident happened in Gwanda district, about 550 kilometers (340 miles) south of Harare, Zimbabwe's capital. Last week, a collision between two buses in Zimbabwe killed 50 people and injured about 80.

The Latest Headlines You Need To Know

  • While allies of House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi pressed hard this week to put her on the way to become the next Speaker of the House, a small group of Democratic holdouts is threatening to block her from getting to 218 votes on the floor in January, leaving Democrats uncertain about their leadership. “I’m concerned about the situation,” said Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA), as he left a closed door meeting of House Democrats at the U.S. Capitol on Thursday afternoon. “I can’t say that I’m optimistic,” Connolly told reporters, noting that those opposed to Pelosi as the next Speaker did not seem to be backing down. “I’m always true to my word,” said Rep.-Elect Jeff Van Drew of New Jersey, who made clear repeatedly during his campaign for Congress that he would not vote for Pelosi as Speaker. “Sometimes it’s good to have a fresh new face, and to have change and go forward with some new ideas, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that,” Van Drew told reporters. . @edokeefe: 'If the election were held today on the House floor do you have the votes to be elected Speaker?' @NancyPelosi: 'Yes.' pic.twitter.com/PUqW5bpgUr — CSPAN (@cspan) November 15, 2018 Meanwhile, Pelosi’s office continued on Thursday to churn out public endorsements from both established Democrats and those who have just been elected. “I truly believe that Rep. Pelosi has demonstrated the proven, tested leadership we need to confront the issues before our nation,” said Rep. John Lewis (D-GA). “We cannot afford to come up short.” As for recently elected lawmakers, two new Democrats from California said they would stick with their home state colleague, arguing Pelosi would deliver ‘leadership that is bold, pragmatic, and capable of swift results.’ “This is why we support Nancy Pelosi for Speaker,” wrote Katie Hill and Mike Levin, who won seats in southern California. But the math to 218 votes seemed somewhat fraught for Pelosi, as if Democrats end up with around 235-240 votes in the House, a relatively small slice of the party could block Pelosi’s ascension, much as the Freedom Caucus threatened to do for several years in the House with the GOP. Senior House Democratic lawmaker on if Pelosi can’t get the votes to become Speaker: “It’s who blinks first. Is it Nancy or is it the caucus?” Another sr Hse Dem on the leadership fight: “It’s going to get ugly” — Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) November 15, 2018 “We had the biggest victory since 1974,” Pelosi said. “All of us are committed to a better future for America’s working families.” Whether that story line includes Pelosi as Speaker again – that won’t be determined until the week after Thanksgiving.
  • Pasco County deputies and members of the community are working together to bring awareness to people who fail to stop for a stopped school bus. On Wednesday, Monica Douglas recorded a video of a caravan of drivers blowing past a stopped school bus unloaded children on U.S. 19 in Pasco County.  According to WFLA-TV, deputies ticketed 13 people during their multi-day operation at that location. The U.S. has recently seen numerous incidents involving children being hit by cars while waiting for the bus.  In Tampa, a car hit five children and two adults waiting for a bus.  Two of those children suffered serious injuries. Here’s Douglas’ video of the Pasco County operation in action: (Video)
  • Investigators with the FBI are probing the death of an American woman on a Princess Cruises ship bound for Aruba, according to multiple reports. >> Read more trending news The 52-year-old woman, whose name was not released, died early Tuesday while aboard the Royal Princess, The Associated Press reported. Princess Cruises officials told WPLG in a statement that Aruban authorities boarded the ship, which can carry 3,600 passengers, when it arrived in the country. “We are cooperating fully with the investigating authorities, including the FBI,” the statement said. “An official cause of death has not been announced.” Citing local media reports, CBS News reported that Aruban authorities are investigating the case as a possible homicide. The Royal Princess left Florida’s Port Everglades on Nov. 9 for a 7-day Southern Caribbean cruise. It will return on Saturday to Fort Lauderdale. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
  • In what has almost been a daily event since Election Day last week, Democrats won another GOP seat in the House on Thursday, as a new form of runoff election in Maine knocked off a Republican incumbent, increasing the gains of Democrats to 35 seats, with seven GOP seats still undecided. In Maine, Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R-ME) had asked a federal judge to block the final tabulation of results in his district under the format known as “ranked choice voting” – but the judge refused, saying that was a political question, as Maine voters had approved the new runoff format twice in statewide elections. Poliquin is the 26th House GOP incumbent to be defeated in last week’s elections; Democrats lead in three of the seven remaining undecided House races, while Repulbicans are ahead in the other four – as Democrats could win three or four more seats. “Now we’re getting up to forty,” said House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi. “That’s really a very big – almost a tsunami,” arguing that Democrats had to overcome Republican gerrymanders to notch their victories. At her press conference, Nancy Pelosi notes this year's freshman Dem class is the biggest since 1974 'Watergate babies.' “I don’t know if this Congress will name itself, but we’re almost close to 60 new Democrats,” she says. — Ella Nilsen (@ella_nilsen) November 15, 2018 Regardless of what term you use to describe the gains by Democrats in the House, it will be the party’s biggest pickup since 1974, a class that was dubbed, “the Watergate babies,” when Democrats gained 49 seats. Overall, there will most likely be over 90 new members of the House, getting close to the total change in the Tea Party midterm election of 2010, when 94 new members arrived on Capitol Hill. While Pelosi expressed excitement about the growing number of new Democrats in the Congress, she flashed a bit of impatience with reporters on Thursday, as they pestered her again with questions about whether she would have the votes to once again be Speaker of the House. “I intend to win the Speakership,” said Pelosi, who served as Speaker for four years between 2007 and 2011. “I have overwhelming support in my caucus to be Speaker of the House,” Pelosi added, even as other Democrats were trying to come up with another candidate to oppose her. PELOSI latest: 1. Rep Jayapal isnt saying where she is – told us she, Rep. Pocan are meeting w Pelosi later. 2. Rep. Richmond (CBC chair) said he is not anti-Pelosi but if Fudge runs he will likely support. Also said he spoke w Fudge today and she did not bring up Speaker run. — Lisa Desjardins (@LisaDNews) November 15, 2018 Pressed by reporters at a news conference, Pelosi said she would welcome a challenge by Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-OH), or anyone else. “I say it to everybody, come on in, the water’s warm,” Pelosi said. While Republicans held their leadership elections this week – House Democrats won’t vote until after Thanksgiving.
  • Imtiaz Muhammad was putting a cardboard box in his family’s garden shed Monday morning when he found his wife’s ex-husband hiding there -- with a loaded crossbow.  When all was said and done, Muhammad’s pregnant wife, Sana Muhammad, 35, was dead and their tiny son, born by emergency Cesarean section, was fighting for his life.  The morning was a typical one in the family’s home in Ilford, London, until Imtiaz Muhammad came across Ramanodge Unmathallegadoo in the shed, the grieving widower told London’s Evening Standard.  “He stared at me. He was going to shoot, so I ran into the house,” Imtiaz Muhammad told the Standard. “My wife was doing the washing up, (and) I was shouting, ‘Run, run, run!’” >> Read more trending news Sana Muhammad was shot before she could get away. Her other five children, ages 1 to 17, witnessed the shooting, the Standard reported.  The Daily Mail reported that the three oldest children are Sana Muhammad’s children with Unmathallegadoo. The two youngest are from her second marriage.  “I can’t help thinking she took my arrow,” Imtiaz Muhammad told the Standard. “Maybe it should have hit me. “The kids were all there; it was horrific.” Officials from the Metropolitan Police said Sana Muhammad was shot in the abdomen. She died a short time later at a hospital.  Unmathallegadoo has been charged with murder, police officials said. He remained in police custody Thursday.  No motive for the crime was given. The Daily Mail reported that friends of the Muhammads said Sana Muhammad, who went by the name Devi Unmathallegadoo during her first marriage, was previously Hindu and that her first marriage had been an arranged one.  Her marriage to her second husband, for whom she converted to Islam, was one of love, the Mail reported.  Medical staff were able to deliver the couple’s son, who the arrow missed by inches. The Mail reported that the projectile was still lodged in Sana Muhammad’s abdomen even as the baby was removed from his mother’s body.  “The arrow went up into her heart but did not touch the unborn baby,” Imtiaz Muhammad told the Mail. “The baby was due in four weeks. They operated with the arrow still in, because it would have been too dangerous to take out.” The baby, who has been named Ibrahim, was initially listed in critical condition, but Scotland Yard officials told the Standard that he has been upgraded to stable condition.  Unmathallegadoo is expected to stand trial for murder sometime next year.  Neighbors described the scene for the newspaper.  “I can hear the man screaming a lot, saying, ‘Help, help,’” one man told the Standard. “He’s knocking the doors, on the neighbors as well, he’s asking for help, screaming for help.” Nisa Khan, who lives across the street, called the homicide a terrible thing. She was friends with Sana Muhammad.  “She was more like a sister than a friend. I knew her for a good seven years, ever since they moved there, we’ve known them,” Khan told the Standard. “She was just a lovely lady, lovely mother, lovely wife. I never saw her being upset, she always had a smile on her face even in the hard times. “It’s just horrible. Everyone goes from this world, we all go, but the way she’s gone, it just hurts.” A GoFundMe page established by the Newbury Park community in Ilford is raising money to help Sana Muhammad’s family. A local Muslim cemetery, Gardens of Peace, has offered its services to the family free of charge. “Nothing can replace any loss, but we have come together as friends and as a community to provide additional support to the family,” the page said.