USA & CANADA

Senate intelligence panel rejects Trump wiretap claim

There are “no indications” that Trump Tower was under surveillance by the US government before or after the election, a Senate committee has said. The statement from Republican Senator Richard Burr, Senate Intelligence Committee chairman, dismissed Donald Trump’s claim his phones were tapped. Mr Trump had accused his predecessor Barack Obama of wiretapping Trump Tower during the presidential race. But ...

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Trump budget: Rex Tillerson defends foreign aid budget squeeze

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has defended swingeing budget cuts to his own department proposed by President Donald Trump. Speaking in Japan, he said the level of state department spending in the past had been “simply not sustainable” and he willingly accepted the “challenge”. If Congress backs the budget, and that is far from a done deal, the state ...

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'Family wanted' ad in Kansas sparks huge reaction

A US newspaper’s “Family Wanted” ad featuring five siblings up for adoption has received a massive response and sparked a huge number of offers. “This is a viral response,” said Corey Lada with the Kansas Children’s Service League. “And it’s pretty insane.” Since the children’s profile was first featured in the Kansas City Star on Saturday, the state’s adoption service ...

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Amanda Todd cyberbully suspect jailed

A Dutch man was sentenced to 11 years for blackmailing dozens of young women around the world into performing sex acts in front of web cams. Aydin C, 38, was found guilty of internet fraud and blackmail on Thursday in Amsterdam. He faces additional cyberbullying charges in Canada in connection with the online harassment of Amanda Todd. The 15-year-old Todd ...

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Pregnant teenage model dies during railway photoshoot in Texas

An aspiring 19-year-old model was killed during a photoshoot on railway tracks after being hit by a train. A photo of Fredzania Thompson, taken moments before the incident in Navasota, Texas, has been shared by her family. Local police report that Fredzania, who was pregnant at the time, stepped out of the way of one train and was then hit ...

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Enda Kenny meets US President Donald Trump in Oval Office

Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Enda Kenny has held talks with US President Donald Trump in the White House. “I love Ireland,” said Mr Trump, adding that he would visit the Republic of Ireland during his term in office. The DUP’s Ian Paisley later invited Mr Trump to golf’s 2019 British Open in Portrush, and said Mr Trump was keen. After their ...

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US tourists feared dead after avalanche in Alberta

Canadian police say two US tourists are missing, feared dead, after an avalanche in Banff National Park in the province of Alberta. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police say the pair from Boston didn’t check out of their hotel on Tuesday and their car was found near Lake Louise. A rescue team found snowshoe tracks leading to avalanche debris. The risk ...

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Trump budget to cut foreign aid to pay for defence boost

The Trump administration has laid out plans to boost US defence spending by $54bn (£44bn) while slashing funding for foreign aid. The federal government budget plan will be submitted to Congress on Thursday. The state department, which oversees foreign affairs, faces a budget cut of about 28%. And the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is in line for cuts to programmes ...

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Trump travel ban: Second US judge block new executive order

Federal judges in Hawaii and Maryland have blocked US President Donald Trump’s new travel ban, which was due to begin after midnight on Thursday. The order would have placed a 90-day ban on people from six mainly Muslim nations and a 120-day ban on refugees. Both judges questioned the legality of the ban, which critics say is discriminatory. President Trump ...

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Trump stands by unverified wiretap claim

US President Donald Trump has stood by his unsubstantiated claim that Barack Obama wiretapped Trump Tower last year. He told Fox News a “wiretap covers a lot of different things” and hinted more could emerge in the coming weeks. Mr Obama has denied the charge and former spy chiefs and several lawmakers have said they have seen no evidence. The ...

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