Conoco aims to seize PDVSA oil inventories in Curacao -sources

HOUSTON,  (Reuters) – ConocoPhillips is trying to seize PDVSA’s oil assets at the 335,000-barrel-per-day (bpd) Isla refinery in Curacao, which would expand its control over the Venezuelan state-run company’s barrels for export, according to sources close to the matter.

Hezbollah allies gain in Lebanon vote, underscoring Iran sway

BEIRUT, (Reuters) – Hezbollah and its political allies made significant gains in Lebanon’s parliamentary election, official results showed, boosting an Iranian-backed movement fiercely opposed to Israel and underlining Tehran’s growing regional clout.

Kennedy Center rescinds top prizes bestowed on Bill Cosby

(Reuters) – The Kennedy Center trustees have voted to rescind Bill Cosby’s Kennedy Center Honors and Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, two of the nation’s top artistic prizes, following his sex assault conviction, the organization said yesterday.

Venezuela slams ‘supremacist policies’ of Pompeo, Trump ‘regime’

CARACAS, (Reuters) – Venezuela yesterday slammed comments by U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo about the government of President Nicolas Maduro, denouncing “supremacist policies” and aggression by the “regime of Donald Trump.” In a speech on Friday, Pompeo said that “a dictator today in Venezuela cripples his economy and starves his people,” and urged the State Department help to those who flee the crisis-stricken country.

U.S. condemns China for ‘Orwellian nonsense’ over airline websites

WASHINGTON, (Reuters) – The White House yesterday sharply criticized China’s efforts to force foreign airlines to change how they refer to Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau, labeling China’s latest effort to police language describing the politically sensitive territories as “Orwellian nonsense.” Amid an escalating fight over China’s trade surplus with the United States, the White House said China’s Civil Aviation Administration sent a letter to 36 foreign air carriers, including a number of U.S.

Protests staged for gun control, gun rights outside NRA meeting

DALLAS, (Reuters) – Protesters on both sides of the U.S. gun debate took to the streets yesterday outside the National Rifle Association’s annual meeting in Dallas after the latest in a long series of mass shootings put the issue back in the spotlight.

American who killed Indian man in Kansas bar sentenced to life

(Reuters) – A U.S. Navy veteran who reportedly told an Indian software engineer to “get out of my country” before shooting him dead and wounding two others in a bar in Kansas last year has been sentenced to life in prison, the local prosecutor said.

Trump team demands China slash U.S. trade surplus, cut tariffs

WASHINGTON/BEIJING, (Reuters) – The Trump administration has drawn a hard line in trade talks with China, demanding a $200 billion cut in the Chinese trade surplus with the United States, sharply lower tariffs and advanced technology subsidies, people familiar with the talks said yesterday.

British PM May avoids London wipeout in local elections

LONDON, (Reuters) – Prime Minister Theresa May’s Conservative Party avoided a wipeout in London local elections and eked out gains in Brexit-supporting regions elsewhere, results yesterday showed, denting the opposition Labour Party’s hopes of a big win.