US Northeast still facing flooding, outages after killer storm

PRINCETON, NJ (Reuters) – Some 1.8 million customers remained without power throughout the eastern United States on Saturday, and communities on the New England coast faced more flooding a day after a powerful storm snapped trees, downed wires and killed at least seven people.

Germany awaits coalition blessing from SPD’s 464,000 members

BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany will learn on Sunday whether the Social Democrat (SPD) party’s 464,000 members have voted in favour of a coalition with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives, opening the way to a new government for Europe’s economic powerhouse.

China pledges friendship with Taiwan amid tensions over US bill

BEIJING (Reuters) – China wants to deepen friendship with Taiwan, the ruling Communist Party’s fourth-ranked leader said on Saturday, a day after state media warned China could go to war over Taiwan if a US bill promoting closer ties with the island becomes law.

Drastic staff cuts at U.S. Embassy in Cuba now permanent

HAVANA,  (Reuters) – The United States said yesterday it was making permanent its decision last year to slash staffing at its Havana embassy by around two-thirds because a spate of alleged health incidents among its diplomats remained unsolved.

Brazil sugar mills start genetically-modified cane plantation

PIRACICABA, Brazil,  (Reuters) – Brazilian sugar mills looking to grow the world’s first variety of genetically modified (GM) sugarcane have planted an initial area of 400 hectares (988 acres), according to the research firm behind the project.

Venezuela postpones presidential election to May 20

CARACAS,  (Reuters) – Venezuela yesterday postponed its upcoming presidential vote to May 20 in a move cementing an opposition split as socialist incumbent Nicolas Maduro seeks re-election despite an economic crisis and global censure.

India regains status as fastest growing major economy

NEW DELHI, (Reuters) – India regained its status as the world’s fastest growing major economy in the October-December quarter, surpassing China for the first time in a year as government spending, manufacturing and services all picked up.

Ex-Trump top aide Manafort pleads not guilty, faces September trial

WASHINGTON, (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort pleaded not guilty yesterday to a new indictment brought against him in the investigation into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election and will face trial in September.

Top U.S. court curbs rights of immigrants awaiting deportation

WASHINGTON, (Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court yestreday curbed the ability of immigrants held in long-term detention during deportation proceedings to argue for their release in a ruling in sync with President Donald Trump’s get-tough approach toward immigration.

Russian operatives compromised election systems in seven states in 2016 -NBC News

WASHINGTON,  (Reuters) – U.S. intelligence had evidence that voter registration systems or websites in seven states – Alaska, Arizona, California, Illinois, Texas, Florida and Wisconsin – were compromised by Russian-backed operatives before the 2016 election but never told the states, NBC News reported on Tuesday.