World News Briefs — September 14, 2020 (Evening Edition)


Reuters: Potential sign of alien life detected on inhospitable VenusWASHINGTON (Reuters) – Scientists said on Monday they have detected in the harshly acidic clouds of Venus a gas called phosphine that indicates microbes may inhabit Earth’s inhospitable neighbor, a tantalizing sign of potential life beyond Earth.

The researchers did not discover actual life forms, but noted that on Earth phosphine is produced by bacteria thriving in oxygen-starved environments. The international scientific team first spotted the phosphine using the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope in Hawaii and confirmed it using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) radio telescope in Chile.

“I was very surprised – stunned, in fact,” said astronomer Jane Greaves of Cardiff University in Wales, lead author of the research published in the journal Nature Astronomy.

The existence of extraterrestrial life long has been one of the paramount questions of science. Scientists have used probes and telescopes to seek “biosignatures” – indirect signs of life – on other planets and moons in our solar system and beyond.

Read more ….

MIDDLE EAST

Israel deal protects Bahrain’s interests amid Iran threat, minister says.UN nuclear watchdog to visit 2nd Iran site in ‘a few days’.

Hopes dim for timely Lebanon govt as French deadline looms.

Attacks on U.S. troops in Iraq have increased, U.S. commander says.

Palestinian leadership to reconsider relations with Arab League.

G20 leaders urged to act over Saudi detentions as summit approaches .

‘Deadly consequences’ of Yemen aid obstruction, HRW warns.

Greece hails Turkish survey ship’s return to Mediterranean port as a ‘positive sign’.

Ankara doesn’t expect EU sanctions over dispute with Greece in eastern Mediterranean – FM .

Iran executes wrestler who said he was tortured for false confession.

Israel to impose new nationwide lockdown as Covid-19 surges. Israeli government to impose second Covid-19 national lockdown .

ASIA

China warns US over US-Taiwan economic talks.India’s Modi faces turbulent session as Parliament reopens.

UN warns of ‘further war crimes’ in Myanmar’s Rahkine.

Japan’s Suga wins LDP race to succeed Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Afghan government presses truce demand in Taliban talks.

South China Sea heats up as Indonesia shadows Chinese ship near Natuna Islands.

US Ambassador to China Terry Branstad steps down after row over opinion piece.

New Zealand to lift coronavirus restrictions in most of country on September 21.

Restrictions return in Jakarta as hospitals, cemeteries fill up.

Dong Tam case: Two sentenced to death in Vietnam over police killings.

Philippines deports U.S. Marine convicted of killing transgender woman.

AFRICA

Nigeria reels from twin crises that threaten food availability.Moroccan medics protest over conditions, staff shortages as pandemic surges.

AFRICOM: Russian fighter jets flown by mercenaries are conducting combat activities in Libya.

Libya’s eastern government resigns amid protests.

Mali opposition rejects junta’s post-coup charter.

New violence as Ivorians protest president’s third-term bid.

Tanzania: Presidential election campaign under way in Zanzibar.

‘Hotel Rwanda’ hero charged with terrorism, financing rebels.

Congo gold mine collapses killing at least 50.

EUROPE

EU presses China on market access, human rights.Coronavirus: Europe death rate set for autumn rise, warns WHO.

UK’s Johnson defends planned law, says EU ‘unreasonable’.

5 former British PMs oppose Boris Johnson’s Brexit bill.

Putin, Lukashenko begin talks in Sochi.

Belarusian police detain 774 protesters on September 13.

Alexei Navalny’s allies claim council wins in Russia local elections.

Navalny’s health improving, he can leave bed for short periods of time.

Germany claims French & Swedish labs ‘confirmed’ Navalny’s Novichok poisoning, as Macron labels incident ‘attempted murder’.

Refugees demand rescue from Lesbos after Moria camp blaze .

AMERICAS

Trump and Biden clash over Western wildfires as blazes become election issue.US West Coast fires: Row over climate change’s role as Trump visits.

Donald Trump says shooter of two Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies should get death penalty if the officers die.

Peru govt petitions top court to block impeachment vote.

Venezuela: President Maduro says US spy seized near oil sites. US ‘spy’ to be charged with terrorism: Venezuela.

Colombia protests: Bogota mayor calls for reconciliation.

Paraguayans call for release of kidnapped ex-VP Óscar Denis.

Greenland glacier loses 110 square kilometres’ worth of ice.

TERRORISM/THE LONG WAR

Iran is plotting to assassinate the US ambassador to South Africa Lana Marks as revenge for killing General Qassem Soleimani, intelligence officials claim.Iran blasts US for ‘worn-out propaganda’ after Politico article about ‘plot’ to kill American envoy in revenge for Soleimani.

Al-Qaida: Fading priority, persistent threat.

ECONOMY/FINANCE/BUSINESS

Wall Street posts solid gains after surge in corporate deals.OPEC cuts oil demand forecasts, BP sees ‘peak oil’ in 2020s. OPEC expects slower recovery for global oil demand.

OPEC turns 60.

Amazon adding 100,000 more employees in new hiring spree.

Reports: TikTok agrees to partner with Oracle, not Microsoft, in U.S..

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