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Spotted lanternfly, a crop-killing pest, is hitchhiking and hopping its way to the Midwest

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DETROIT — A small, winged pest some people even think is pretty is getting a lot of attention online, as agriculture and natural resource experts warn that it can do considerable damage to grapes and, once established, is difficult to kill.

Lycorma delicatula — better known as the dreaded spotted lanternfly — made its way from Asia to the...Read more

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Haiti asks for international help to investigate Moise's killing

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Haitian Prime Minister Ariel Henry reaffirmed a request for “mutual legal assistance” to investigate the murder of President Jovenel Moise.

In prerecorded remarks to the UN General Assembly, Henry emphasized that finding all those responsible for the assassination was a “top priority” of his government.

“This is a transnational ...Read more

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More than 1,000 Haitian migrants intercepted at sea this fiscal year, Coast Guard says

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MIAMI — The number of Haitian migrants stopped at sea by the U.S. Coast Guard zoomed past 1,000 for this fiscal year after two interceptions of 260 migrants returned to Haiti Friday, the agency announced.

For the fiscal year that began Oct. 1, 2020 and will end Thursday, the Coast Guard says, crews have intercepted 1,119 Haitian migrants. ...Read more

Nelvin C. Cepeda/The San Diego Union-Tribune/TNS

New California law tightens gun-buying loophole exposed by Poway synagogue shooting

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SAN DIEGO — Like the many gun safety bills that have come before it, the one just signed by California Gov. Gavin Newsom is borne from tragedy.

In 2019, John T. Earnest, a then-19-year-old Rancho Penasquitos college student, opened fire on a Poway synagogue using a rifle he bought at a Grantville gun shop.

He did so under a narrow provision ...Read more

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School bus driver stabbed to death in front of students in Washington state

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A school bus driver was fatally stabbed in front of students after picking them up from a Washington state elementary school Friday afternoon, authorities said.

The alleged killer, who is now in custody, got on the bus near Longfellow Elementary in the city of Pasco around 3 p.m. and launched the knife attack as multiple children watched in ...Read more

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Venezuelans in US live mostly in Florida, and they top Hispanic population growth

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TAMPA, Fla. — The top-line trends are widely known, visible in political campaigns, video programming and store shelves: People of Hispanic heritage are growing in total number and as a share of the U.S. population.

This decades-old progression is affirmed again in a much-anticipated annual survey from the Pew Research Center that coincides ...Read more

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Huawei CFO Meng gets a hero's welcome in China while 2 Canadians land quietly

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China gave a hero’s welcome to Huawei Technologies Co.’s executive Meng Wanzhou as she touched down three years after her arrest in Canada, while two Canadians freed by Beijing returned to their homeland with less fanfare.

“I am finally home after over 1,000 days of suffering,” Meng, wearing a red dress, said tearfully to the cheering ...Read more

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Fawn fire in N. California swells to more than 7,000 acres, but officials 'optimistic'

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ANDERSON, Calif. — Firefighters faced off against the fast-moving Fawn fire as it edged closer to Shasta Lake on Saturday, hoping to take advantage of lighter winds and cooler temperatures expected to last through the weekend.

The fire broke out Wednesday afternoon in a rocky quarry area near Bear Mountain Road and has charred 7,544 acres in ...Read more

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US move to end Huawei saga helps China ties -- at a cost

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The U.S. met one of China’s key demands to improve relations with the release of a top Huawei Technologies Co. executive, paving the way for better ties at the cost of appearing to reward Beijing for what critics have called “hostage diplomacy.”

Meng Wanzhou, Huawei’s chief financial officer, flew to China from Vancouver after reaching...Read more

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Gabby Petito's funeral open to public Sunday on Long Island

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NEW YORK — Funeral services for Gabby Petito will be held Sunday afternoon on Long Island, closing another chapter in a mysterious case that has sparked nationwide attention and a massive manhunt for her fiancé.

The visitation, which will be open to the public, is set to take place at Moloney’s Funeral Home in Holbrook from noon to 5 p.m.,...Read more

Hurricane Sam intensifies to major Category 3 storm; Teresa weakens

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ORLANDO, Fla. — Hurricane Sam strengthened to a major Category 3 storm Saturday morning while Teresa is now a subtropical depression, the National Hurricane Center said.

Sam, the seventh hurricane of the season is expected to strengthen more today as it moves west-northwest at 10 mph with maximum sustained winds of 120 mph and higher gusts, ...Read more

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Delta variant of coronavirus extinguishes beta in South Africa, study shows

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The more infectious nature of the delta mutation of the coronavirus has seen it almost completely displace the beta variant in South Africa, the discovery of which led to widespread travel bans.

A study, released by two South African genomics institutes on Thursday, showed that the delta variant, first identified in India, drove a third wave of...Read more

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Hate crime reports in SC have nearly doubled, FBI says

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COLUMBIA, S.C. — With reported hate crimes rising in South Carolina, the Federal Bureau of Investigation has launched a campaign to encourage residents to report crimes of discrimination.

“No one should ever be subjected to hate crimes in our society,” said Special Agent Susan Ferensic, the FBI agent in charge of its Columbia Field Office...Read more

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Federal judge taps the brake on NYC public school vaccine mandate

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NEW YORK — An appeals court judge has tossed a monkey wrench into the city’s demand that teachers and other adults in public schools be vaccinated against COVID-19 by Monday, buying time for the city's Department of Education workers who are resisting a jab.

In a Friday night order, Judge Joseph Bianco of the Court of Appeals for the Second...Read more

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Merkel in campaign finale tells voters that leadership is key

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BERLIN — In his first run for chancellor, Christian Democrat Armin Laschet risks losing the office that Angela Merkel held tight for conservatives for 16 years.

So a day before the nation’s most competitive election in almost two decades, Merkel joined him on the campaign trail one last time to stump for her would-be successor.

For ...Read more

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Huawei CFO Meng getting a hero's welcome on return to China

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China prepared to give a hero’s welcome to Huawei Technologies Co.’s Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou as she returned to the country three years after her arrest in Canada.

Meng was due to land Saturday in Shenzhen, where Huawei is based, around 10 p.m. local time and her plane’s flight trajectory was hashtagged on the Chinese social ...Read more

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Ivermectin advocates push online for using unproven COVID drug

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When Catherine Moring, president of Mississippi’s Public Health Association, tested positive for COVID-19, she turned to ivermectin to keep her safe.

Federal health officials warn that improper dosing of ivermectin, often used for worms in domestic animals, can cause nausea, dizziness, seizures, coma and even death. Moring, however, preferred...Read more

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Americans ramp up Google searches for COVID tests amid scarcity

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Searches for COVID-19 tests on Google are surging as the delta variant spreads in the U.S. and more employers and large-scale events require testing.

The number of Americans looking up “at-home COVID test near me” on the platform has doubled in the past month, according to Google Trends, while those asking how long rapid test results take ...Read more

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Years into attorney general investigation of Maryland's Catholic Church, abuse survivors wonder where it stands

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BALTIMORE — Three years after it became public that Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh was investigating child sexual abuse in the Catholic church, abuse survivors are wondering: Is he building a case, or has the probe stalled?

In September 2018, Baltimore Archbishop William E. Lori told clergy the archdiocese was under investigation by ...Read more

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Australia's Morrison says he told India's Modi and Japan's Suga about submarine deal in advance

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WASHINGTON — Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he told the leaders of India and Japan in advance about a deal to purchase nuclear-powered submarines from the U.S., an announcement that blindsided and angered French leaders.

“I had the opportunity to speak with both Prime Minister Modi and Prime Minister Suga before we made the ...Read more