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February 21, 2018

First Line News Articles for Wednesday, February 21 2018

World

Gita blasts New Zealand; several districts declare emergency

Seven districts on New Zealand’s South Island have declared states of emergency after Tropical Cyclone Gita hit — and left behind floods, power outages, road closures and disrupted air and train travel.

Russia admits dozens of Russian casualties in Syria battle

Russia’s foreign ministry has confirmed that “several dozen” Russian citizens – not regular soldiers – were killed or wounded in a recent battle in Syria.

Pro-Trump South Korean conservatives want tougher policy toward Kim Jong Un

As the grandeur of the Winter Olympics opening ceremony dazzled inside South Korea’s Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium – complete with North Korean cheerleaders singing and the media fawning over their dictator’s sister, Kim Yo Jong – hundreds of South Korean activists protested passionately outside.

New Corruption Cases Entangle Netanyahu Aides

Israeli police alleged on Tuesday that Benjamin Netanyahu’s former spokesman tried to bribe a judge to drop a fraud case against Netanyahu’s wife, the latest corruption investigation encircling the long-serving prime minister.

Inflation-stricken Venezuela launches a digital currency, the petro

Venezuela on Tuesday is becoming the first country to launch its own version of bitcoin, a move it hopes will provide a much-needed boost to its credit-stricken economy.

U.K.’s Brexit Vision Takes Shape as Davis Calls for Mutual Trust

Prime Minister Theresa May is planning to set out next week the kind of trade deal she wants to achieve in Brexit negotiations but the broad outlines of her vision are already becoming clear.

Outrage Over Poland’s Holocaust Law Prompts Call to Look for a Way Out

One of Poland’s most senior lawmakers said it’s time to back away from a new law criminalizing suggestions that the nation was in any way responsible for the Holocaust following an international outcry.

More bombs hit Syria’s Ghouta after heaviest death toll in years

Pro-government forces pounded Syria’s eastern Ghouta on Tuesday, killing at least 66 people after the enclave’s heaviest one-day death toll in three years, a monitoring group said.

U.S. envoy to U.N. tells Abbas that U.S. negotiators ready to talk

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday, during a U.N. Security Council Middle East meeting, that U.S. negotiators were “ready to talk, but we will not chase after you.”

Netanyahu puts Gaza terror groups on notice after bomb attack

PM inaugurates reinforced emergency ward in Ashkelon hospital, saying ‘whoever harms us will himself be hurt’