Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2024 |
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Migrants at US-Mexico border await ruling
Thousands of migrants are gathered along the U.S. border with Mexico, camping outside or packing into shelters while awaiting a Supreme Court decision on whether and when to lift pandemic-era restrictions that prevented many from seeking asylum. The limits on border crossings had been set to expire Wednesday before conservative-leaning states sought the top court’s help to keep them in place. The Biden administration asked the court to lift the restrictions, but not before Christmas. It is not clear when that decision will come. In the meantime, thousands of people have gathered all along the Mexican side of the border, camping outside or packing into shelters as they awaited the opportunity to seek refuge in the U.S.
Winter comes roaring in with massive snow storm
Much of the middle of the country was girding itself Wednesday for an extraordinarily brutal mix of frigid temperatures, blowing snow and high winds set to arrive just at the peak period of Christmas-season travel. The combination of a rapidly intensifying storm system called a “bomb cyclone” and a large arctic air mass will bring blizzard conditions and extremely dangerous wind chills to the Plains and Midwest, as well as freezes and high winds that will disrupt travel across the eastern half of the country before the holiday weekend, forecasters said. In Buffalo, New York, the National Weather Service described the coming event as a “once-in-a-generation storm.”
audited Obama and Biden, raising questions over delays for Trump
The IRS subjected President Donald Trump’s predecessor and his successor to annual audits of their tax returns once they took office, spokespeople for Barack Obama and President Joe Biden said Wednesday, intensifying questions about how Trump escaped such scrutiny until Democrats in the House started inquiring. Late Tuesday, a House committee revealed that the IRS failed to audit Trump during his first two years in office despite a rule that states that “the individual tax returns for the president and the vice president are subject to mandatory review.” But its report left unclear whether that lapse reflected general dysfunction or whether Trump received special treatment.
New label law has unintended effect: Sesame in more foods
A new federal law requiring that sesame be listed as an allergen on food labels is having unintended consequences — increasing the number of products that include the ingredient. Starting Jan. 1, all foods made and sold in the U.S. must be labeled if they contain sesame, an often-hidden ingredient that’s been declared the nation’s ninth major allergen. Food industry experts say the requirements are so stringent that many manufacturers, especially bakers, find it simpler and less expensive to add sesame to a product — and to label it. While the practice is legal, consumers and advocates say it violates the spirit of the law.
8 teenage girls charged with killing a Toronto man
The eight teenage girls, some as young as 13, made contact with one another on social media and may have never met before. But on Saturday night, they gathered in downtown Toronto and after getting into an altercation wound up surrounding and fatally stabbing a man in an apparent attack over a bottle of liquor, police said. The killing, in Canada’s largest city, was the latest and one of the most brazen episodes in the region in which people have been randomly targeted by groups of young attackers. The 59-year-old victim was yet to be identified by authorities. All of the teenagers have been charged with second-degree murder.
WHO ‘very concerned’ about reports of severe COVID in China
The head of the World Health Organization said the agency is “very concerned” about rising reports of severe coronavirus disease across China after the country largely abandoned its “zero COVID” policy. The U.N. agency said it is seeking more detailed information from China about the numbers of people hospitalized with COVID and in intensive care units. It warned China’s lagging vaccination rate could mean large numbers of vulnerable people are sickened by the omicron variant, the most infectious version yet seen of COVID-19. WHO said there were too many uncertainties about the coronavirus to conclude that the pandemic was over.
By wire sources
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