2020.02.20

News Headlines - 20 February 2020

Coronavirus: Hong Kong, Japan have new CDC travel notices

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued new advisories on Wednesday for travelers going to Hong Kong and Japan in the wake of the deadly coronavirus spreading across the world.
The advisories are notably only a "level 1," a "watch," meaning travelers should exercise "usual precautions," unlike the "level 3" issued for China Jan. 27, which warns to "avoid nonessential travel." China's "level 3" advisory excludes Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan. In the new Japan and Hong Kong advisories, the CDC specifically mentions it "does not recommend canceling or postponing travel."

Ex-S. Korea President Lee sent back to jail over corruption - The Mainichi

Nearly a year after he was bailed out of jail while facing corruption charges, former South Korean President Lee Myung-bak was taken back into custody on Wednesday after an appeals court sentenced him to a lengthier prison term of 17 year over bribery, embezzlement and other convictions.
The Seoul High Court also ordered the 78-year-old to pay 13 billion won ($10.9 million) in fines and forfeit another 5.78 billion won ($4.6 million) over the alleged crimes that took place while he was president from 2008 to 2013 or when he was a candidate before winning the 2007 election.

How North Korea’s Leader Buys Purebred White Horses From Russia’s Stud Farms - The Moscow Times

On a chilly April morning in 2019, four North Korean men arrived unannounced at the Verona stud farm in Moscow’s elite suburb of Rublyovka in search of a perfect white Welsh pony for the son of their Supreme Leader Kim Jong-Un.
They settled on Sansa, an exceptional three-year-old that had won awards across Russia... A few months later, the same group visited the neighboring Moscow Stud Farm No. 1, founded by the first Soviet leader Vladimir Lenin and known for breeding Russia’s most famous horse, the Orlov Trotter, developed in the late 18th century by Russian aristocrat Alexei Orlov. They bought two white animals - named Druzhba and Dubrovnik - for 1.5 million rubles ($23,400).
Russia supports the UN Security Council sanctions on North Korea. However, the export of horses and other livestock is not prohibited.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's Palace office shuts in April | Daily Mail Online

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will no longer have an office at Buckingham Palace from April, it was revealed today as preparations for 'Megxit' continue.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will be represented by their UK foundation team going forward following their decision last month to step down as senior royals.
Harry will retain the ranks of Major, Lieutenant Commander, and Squadron Leader - but his honorary military positions will not be used during a 12-month trial period.
The couple are expected to complete their final duties on March 9 before they official leave the firm on March 31.

Donald Trump 'offered Julian Assange a pardon if he denied Russia link to hack' | The Guardian

The extraordinary claim was made at Westminster magistrates court before the opening next week of Assange’s legal battle to block attempts to extradite him to the US, where he faces charges for publishing hacked documents. The allegation was denied by the former Republican congressman named by the Assange legal team as a key witness.
Assange’s lawyers alleged that during a visit to London in August 2017, congressman Dana Rohrabacher told the WikiLeaks founder that “on instructions from the president, he was offering a pardon or some other way out, if Mr Assange … said Russia had nothing to do with the DNC [Democratic National Committee] leaks.”A few hours later, however, Rohrabacher denied the claim, saying he had made the proposal on his own initiative, and that the White House had not endorsed it.

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