The former lawyer also previously served as Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence at the US Treasury Department, where he dealt with terrorism financing and oversaw sanctions against countries such as Iran, Russia and North Korea.(REUTERS)
The former lawyer also previously served as Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence at the US Treasury Department, where he dealt with terrorism financing and oversaw sanctions against countries such as Iran, Russia and North Korea.(REUTERS)

Biden appoints David Cohen once more as deputy CIA director

Cohen previously served as the deputy director for the Central Intelligence Agency from 2015 to 2017 under Democratic then-President Barack Obama, when Biden served as vice president.
Reuters, Washington
PUBLISHED ON JAN 15, 2021 10:01 PM IST

President-elect Joe Biden on Friday named former Deputy CIA Director David Cohen to reprise his role at the US intelligence agency as he continued to fill out top roles for his administration.

Cohen previously served as the deputy director for the Central Intelligence Agency from 2015 to 2017 under Democratic then-President Barack Obama, when Biden served as vice president. Cohen would serve under longtime US diplomat William Burns, Biden's nominee for CIA director.

"Cohen is a national security, finance and legal expert," Biden's transition team said in a statement, noting his work leading "special projects on new technologies and how best to work with companies to advance the CIA's mission."

The former lawyer also previously served as Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence at the US Treasury Department, where he dealt with terrorism financing and oversaw sanctions against countries such as Iran, Russia and North Korea.

The president-elect's transition team also said New York City's emergency coordinator, Deanne Criswell, would lead the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which oversees the federal government's response to wildfires, hurricanes and other disasters.

Biden also picked one of his most closest confidants from his presidential campaign, Anita Dunn, to join the White House as a senior adviser.

Dunn, who helped Biden prepare for debates and was a key influence on the campaign's planning and communication strategy, will be one of several political strategists with long personal ties with Biden who will now surround him in office.

The transition also named deputy-level officials for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Office of Management and Budget.

It also separately announced several more top leaders to help with Biden's COVID-19 response, including former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner David Kessler to help lead the vaccine effort.

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Parents of kidnapped students of Government Girls Junior Secondary School wait for information about family members following an attack by gunmen in Jangebe, Nigeria.(AP)
Parents of kidnapped students of Government Girls Junior Secondary School wait for information about family members following an attack by gunmen in Jangebe, Nigeria.(AP)

UN calls for immediate release of 317 girls abducted from school in Nigeria

ANI
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 05:58 AM IST
Peter Hawkins, a representative of the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) in the country, urged the assailants to let the teenagers go immediately, Xinhua reported.
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Grounded Boeing 737 MAX aircraft are seen parked in an aerial photo at Boeing Field in Seattle, Washington, US in this file photo from 2019. (REUTERS)
Grounded Boeing 737 MAX aircraft are seen parked in an aerial photo at Boeing Field in Seattle, Washington, US in this file photo from 2019. (REUTERS)

Boeing CEO asked to testify in Ethiopian 737 MAX crash litigation

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 05:41 AM IST
A Senate report in December detailed lapses in aviation safety oversight and failed leadership in the FAA. It found that FAA leaders obstructed that report as well as a DOT watchdog review of the regulator's oversight, the results of which were released on Wednesday.
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"You can't act with impunity. Be careful," Biden told reporters while traveling to survey the damage from a severe winter storm in Texas.(Reuters file photo)
"You can't act with impunity. Be careful," Biden told reporters while traveling to survey the damage from a severe winter storm in Texas.(Reuters file photo)

Iran 'can't act with impunity,' Biden says after US air strike

Posted by Harshit Sabarwal | Reuters
UPDATED ON FEB 27, 2021 04:12 AM IST
The United States carried out air strikes authorized by Biden against facilities belonging to Iranian-backed militia in eastern Syria on Thursday, in response to rocket attacks against US targets in Iraq.
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Asked about the trajectory of the relationship between the US and Pakistan under President Joe Biden, Price said Pakistan has an “important role to play” in bringing peace to Afghanistan.(HT_PRINT)
Asked about the trajectory of the relationship between the US and Pakistan under President Joe Biden, Price said Pakistan has an “important role to play” in bringing peace to Afghanistan.(HT_PRINT)

United States welcomes Indo-Pak ceasefire pact

By Yashwant Raj, Washington
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 02:46 AM IST
The United States welcomed the India-Pakistan joint statement – released on Thursday — committing to a ceasefire along the LoC with Ned Price, spokesperson of the state department, saying: “We encourage continued efforts to improve communication between the two sides and to reduce tensions and violence along the Line of Control.”
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Saudi officials have said Khashoggi’s killing was the work of rogue Saudi security and intelligence officials.(AFP Photo)
Saudi officials have said Khashoggi’s killing was the work of rogue Saudi security and intelligence officials.(AFP Photo)

US implicates Saudi crown prince in journalist Jamal Khashoggi's killing

Posted by Harshit Sabarwal | AP
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 12:11 AM IST
The central conclusion of the report was widely expected given that intelligence officials were said to have reached it soon after the brutal Oct. 2, 2018, murder of Jamal Khashoggi, a critic of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s authoritarian consolidation of power.
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The Feb. 1 military takeover in Myanmar shocked the international community and reversed years of slow progress toward democracy.(REUTERS)
The Feb. 1 military takeover in Myanmar shocked the international community and reversed years of slow progress toward democracy.(REUTERS)

Myanmar's UN envoy dramatically opposes coup in his country

Posted by Harshit Sabarwal | AP
PUBLISHED ON FEB 26, 2021 11:48 PM IST
Ambassador Kyaw Moe Tun urged all countries to issue public statements strongly condemning the military coup and refuse to recognize the military regime and ask its leaders to respect the free and fair elections in November won by Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy party.
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REGN-COV2 is a combination of casirivimab and imdevimab, two monoclonal antibodies which is given to a patient via a drip, the EMA said.(via AP)
REGN-COV2 is a combination of casirivimab and imdevimab, two monoclonal antibodies which is given to a patient via a drip, the EMA said.(via AP)

EU medicines regulator approves Regeneron Covid-19 therapy

Posted by Harshit Sabarwal | AFP
PUBLISHED ON FEB 26, 2021 11:38 PM IST
Regeneron's synthetic antibody treatment was used to treat former US President Donald Trump after he contracted coronavirus last year.
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In a 44,000-person trial, the vaccine overall was 66% effective at preventing moderate-to-severe cases of Covid-19 compared with a placebo.(AP)
In a 44,000-person trial, the vaccine overall was 66% effective at preventing moderate-to-severe cases of Covid-19 compared with a placebo.(AP)

FDA advisory panel to review J&J Covid-19 vaccine with thumbs up expected

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON FEB 26, 2021 11:09 PM IST
After it receives the recommendation, the FDA is likely to authorize the vaccine for emergency use within a day or so, making it the third available in the United States, and the only one that requires just one shot.
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Bank of America said in December it would extend pandemic benefits for employees who need child- or adult-care services.(REUTERS)
Bank of America said in December it would extend pandemic benefits for employees who need child- or adult-care services.(REUTERS)

Bank of America gives paid time off for US staff to get Covid-19 vaccines

Posted by Kunal Gaurav | Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON FEB 26, 2021 10:50 PM IST
Staff at Bank of America will have the option to use two half days, for up to four hours each, for vaccination appointments this year.
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The administration also will encourage businesses to advocate for the benefits of masks and vaccines. (Representative Image)(Samir Jana/HT File)
The administration also will encourage businesses to advocate for the benefits of masks and vaccines. (Representative Image)(Samir Jana/HT File)

Biden administration to promote vaccination with businesses

Bloomberg
UPDATED ON FEB 26, 2021 10:46 PM IST
The White House will partner with the US Chamber of Commerce; leaders of the Black, Latino and Asian business community; the Business Roundtable and the National Association of Manufacturers on the efforts, White House adviser Andy Slavitt announced in a briefing.
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The conversation between the two strategic partners will be overshadowed by the expected release of US intelligence findings.(AP)
The conversation between the two strategic partners will be overshadowed by the expected release of US intelligence findings.(AP)

Biden team looking to stop Saudi arms deals that help it attack others

Posted by Kunal Gaurav | Reuters, Washington
PUBLISHED ON FEB 26, 2021 10:45 PM IST
The Biden administration is recalibrating its relationship with Saudi Arabia, a country with which it has severe human rights concerns.
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J&J’s progress is being watched by experts as its vaccine has the potential to make mass vaccination campaigns much easier.(MINT_PRINT)
J&J’s progress is being watched by experts as its vaccine has the potential to make mass vaccination campaigns much easier.(MINT_PRINT)

Third US vaccine could raise question: Which Covid-19 shots are best?

Posted by Kunal Gaurav | AP
PUBLISHED ON FEB 26, 2021 10:12 PM IST
  • If cleared for emergency use, the J&J vaccine would offer a one-dose option that could help speed vaccinations.
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A man holds a portrait of late Vichar Ratanapakdee, a 84-year-old immigrant from Thailand, who was violently shoved to the ground in a deadly attack in San Francisco.(AP)
A man holds a portrait of late Vichar Ratanapakdee, a 84-year-old immigrant from Thailand, who was violently shoved to the ground in a deadly attack in San Francisco.(AP)

US justice department pledges to probe, as attacks on Asian Americans increase

Posted by Kunal Gaurav | Reuters, Washington
PUBLISHED ON FEB 26, 2021 09:56 PM IST
While verbal harassment has made up more than 70 per cent of the incidents, more than 8 per cent involved physical assaults.
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The meeting was held at the Prime Minister's official residence in Baluwatar. In picture - Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli.(HT Photo)
The meeting was held at the Prime Minister's official residence in Baluwatar. In picture - Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli.(HT Photo)

Nepal cabinet recommends President to call meeting of reinstated Lower House

ANI, Kathmandu, Nepal
PUBLISHED ON FEB 26, 2021 09:40 PM IST
The meeting comes after the Nepal Supreme Court had reinstated the House of Representatives (HoR) and directed the government to summon a session of the country's Lower House of Parliament within 13 days.
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Even with the addition of the COVAX vaccines, CARICOM will only be able to cover about 20% of its needs, the group said. Some members have also been trying to broker deals through the African Union’s Medical Supplies Platform. (Representative Image)(REUTERS)
Even with the addition of the COVAX vaccines, CARICOM will only be able to cover about 20% of its needs, the group said. Some members have also been trying to broker deals through the African Union’s Medical Supplies Platform. (Representative Image)(REUTERS)

Caribbean countries ask wealthy nations to share vaccine supply

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON FEB 26, 2021 09:38 PM IST
In a statement issued late Thursday, CARICOM said it was “dissatisfied and deeply concerned about the inequitable access to vaccines” it was facing.
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