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7 dead, 9 missing after heavy rain in southwestern Japan

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TOKYO -- At least seven people were dead and nine unaccounted for after torrential rains triggered landslides and flooding in southwestern Japan, local media reported on Sunday.

Fourteen others were feared dead as flooding hit a nursing home in a rural area of Kumamoto prefecture, broadcaster NHK reported.

About 50 people were rescued from the...Read more

Columbus statue in Baltimore brought down, tossed into harbor

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BALTIMORE -- A crowd of protesters yanked down the Christopher Columbus statue near Baltimore's Little Italy neighborhood and tossed it into the Inner Harbor as fireworks went off around the city on the evening of the Fourth of July.

The group shouted as they pulled down the monument with ropes and rolled it with a splash into the water. ...Read more

Indigenous groups, Black Lives Matters join forces to decry historical 'sins' on July Fourth

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LOS ANGELES -- Members of indigenous groups joined forces with Black Lives Matters organizers and other demonstrators Saturday afternoon near Olvera Street in a peaceful, masked protest and march that called for several actions, such as unity among minorities and an acknowledgment of the nation's many sins on its birthday.

Some burned incense, ...Read more

Despite coronavirus fears, Austin's 'bat attitude' prevails

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AUSTIN, Texas -- As the sun sets over Lady Bird lake on a warm summer night, a stream of shadows begins to emerge from beneath the Ann Richards Congress Avenue Bridge. The shadows dart and dance across the orange sky like insects silhouetted by a flame.

Tiffany Toronto, visiting family from her home in Maine, watched the display with her ...Read more

Mexico overtakes France to have fifth deadliest virus outbreak

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MEXICO CITY -- Mexico reported a daily rise of 523 COVID-19 deaths, bringing the total to 30,366 and making it the world's fifth-deadliest country for the disease.

Total cases rose by a record 6,914 to 252,165, according to data released by the Health Ministry Saturday night. Mexico overtook Spain and France this week as the pandemic's toll on ...Read more

Biden vows to uproot systemic racism in Fourth of July message

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Former Vice President Joe Biden vowed Saturday to "rip the roots of systemic racism out of this country" in a Fourth of July message that contrasted sharply with President Donald Trump's warning at a Mount Rushmore fireworks display that "angry mobs" at protests against racism were assaulting America's history and culture.

In a video posted on ...Read more

Trump marks July 4 with a pledge to defeat the 'radical left'

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WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump marked Independence Day by promising to defeat the "radical left" and boasting of his handling of the coronavirus, even as cases spike in the U.S.

Trump, speaking from the South Lawn of the White House, reprised themes from a speech he delivered in South Dakota the day before, by lashing out at those ...Read more

WHO reports record daily increase of global COVID-19 cases

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GENEVA -- The World Health Organization reported Saturday an increase of 212,326 cases of COVID-19 in 24 hours, a global daily record.

The health organization reported over 10.9 million confirmed COVID-19 cases and 523,011 deaths -- including 5,134 over in the last 234 hours -- related to the disease caused by the new coronavirus.

The biggest ...Read more

US nuclear envoy will reportedly visit South Korea and Japan

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U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Biegun, the Trump administration's main representative for North Korea, will visit South Korea Tuesday before heading to Japan, Yonhap reported Saturday, citing unidentified diplomatic sources.

Biegun will visit Seoul on July 7, where he is likely to meet South Korean counterpart Lee Do-hoon along with ...Read more

Texas sets coronavirus records: 8,258 new cases, numbers in hospital reach all-time highs

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AUSTIN, Texas -- Texas saw 8,258 new confirmed cases of the coronavirus Saturday and an additional 238 people who are hospitalized with the virus -- the highest numbers in both categories to date.

Texas coronavirus cases have spiked throughout June and into July, and the number of people hospitalized in Texas has risen nearly every day -- ...Read more

Another fired Minneapolis police officer charged in Floyd death is out of jail

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MINNEAPOLIS -- A third fired Minneapolis police officer charged in George Floyd's Memorial Day death has been released from jail, according to Hennepin County jail records

Tao Thao, 34, posted $750,000 bail and was released from the downtown Minneapolis jail Saturday morning. He had been held on $1 million bail with no conditions or $750,000 ...Read more

Woman who went on anti-Asian tirades in California park faces arrest on separate battery charge

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LOS ANGELES -- A woman whose racist, anti-Asian tirades last month shocked the public and the city of Torrance has a warrant out for her arrest in connection to a confrontation separate from those recently captured on cellphone videos at a park.

Lena Hernandez, 54, was charged Thursday in an alleged case of battery stemming from an incident on ...Read more

Fearful and frugal: Coronavirus wreaks havoc on America's psyche

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As the U.S. reopens, Americans aren't much interested in going out and spending.

A survey of 2,200 U.S. adults shows how COVID-19 has dramatically changed behavior in the world's biggest economy, potentially for the long haul. The data flashes warning signs for the recovery, showing waning interest in public events and material things, like ...Read more

Minnesota prosecutors fail to hold police accountable, critics say

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MINNEAPOLIS -- Over the past three years, five different judges in Hennepin County have ruled that Corcoran, Minn., police officer Cody Vojacek conducted unlawful searches, leading to the dismissal of six criminal cases.

In a February hearing on the most recent case, when asked under oath if he had adjusted his methods based on the courts' ...Read more

California records almost 4,000 new coronavirus cases as some counties pause reporting

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SAN JOSE, Calif. -- California reported 3,974 new coronavirus cases and 51 deaths on Friday, a decline from previous days tempered by the fact that several counties did not report new data, most notably Los Angeles County.

The state has now had 249,262 cases and 6,312 COVID-19 deaths since the start of the pandemic. The cases reported Friday ...Read more

Leaked emails and passwords were from 'third-party data breaches,' University of Michigan says

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DETROIT -- Thousands of University of Michigan students got a scare Friday night: warnings circulating on social media about an apparent data breach leaking their U-M email addresses and passwords.

On Saturday, the University of Michigan released a statement saying the information was from older "third-party data breaches, such as Chegg, Zynga,...Read more

Joey Chestnut sets record, cruises to 13th victory in Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest

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SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Joey Chestnut didn't need a crowd or his closest competitor.

Instead, in one of the most unusual editions of one of the most distinctly American traditions, the San Jose native downed his 1,000th career hot dog, broke his own record by eating 75 dogs and buns in 10 minutes and cruised to a 13th victory in the Nathan's Hot ...Read more

21 Mexican nationals caught in two-boat maritime smuggling attempt

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SAN DIEGO -- Federal authorities intercepted 21 Mexican nationals trying to enter the U.S. illegally in a pair of panga boats off the San Diego coast early Friday, officials said.

The boats were spotted by a U.S. Customs and Border Protection aircraft about 1 a.m. as they crossed from Mexican territorial waters toward the United States, ...Read more

Christopher Columbus statue in Waterbury, Conn., beheaded

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HARTFORD, Conn. -- Someone smashed the head off of the Christopher Columbus statue that has stood in front of Waterbury's city hall for many years.

The decapitated statue was discovered Saturday morning and police are investigating.

The Waterbury chapter of UNICO, an Italian American service organization, said on its Facebook page Saturday it ...Read more

North Korean vice foreign minister rules out more US talks

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North Korea is ruling out more talks with the U.S., saying the American authorities are using the idea as a mere political tool.

"We do not feel any need to sit face-to-face with the U.S.," North Korea Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son Hui said, according to the official Korean Central News Agency Saturday. The U.S. does not consider the North ...Read more