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COVID-19 vaccinations are no longer required for military personnel. But that hasn’t ended litigation over the issue. Government lawyers want a federal appeals court to lift earlier orders blocking punishment for Navy personnel who refuse to get vaccinated. They say the case is now moot. But lawyers for a group of Navy SEALS and other Navy personnel who oppose the COVID vaccines on religious grounds say the case still presents important issues because commanders can still make assignments based on vaccination status. Both sides presented arguments Monday at the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.

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Police say three tourists from the U.S. mainland were stabbed in Puerto Rico after someone told them to stop filming in a renowned seaside community known as La Perla that is popular with visitors. Police say the confrontation began Monday when one of the tourists began filming a mobile hamburger cart and was told to stop and leave the area. Authorities said two of the tourists remain hospitalized, including one who was stabbed six times. The attack took place nearly two years after a tourist from Delaware was killed and set on fire after police said he was warned not to take pictures while buying drugs in La Perla.

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COVID-19 vaccinations are no longer required for military personnel. But that hasn’t ended litigation over the issue. Government lawyers want a federal appeals court to lift earlier orders blocking punishment for Navy personnel who refuse to get vaccinated. They say the case is now moot. But lawyers for a group of Navy SEALS and other Navy personnel who oppose the COVID vaccines on religious grounds say the case still presents important issues because commanders can still make assignments based on vaccination status. Both sides presented arguments Monday at the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.

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Police say three tourists from the U.S. mainland were stabbed in Puerto Rico after someone told them to stop filming in a renowned seaside community known as La Perla that is popular with visitors. Police say the confrontation began Monday when one of the tourists began filming a mobile hamburger cart and was told to stop and leave the area. Authorities said two of the tourists remain hospitalized, including one who was stabbed six times. The attack took place nearly two years after a tourist from Delaware was killed and set on fire after police said he was warned not to take pictures while buying drugs in La Perla.

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Officials in Ukraine say Russian forces are keeping Ukrainian troops tied down with attacks in the eastern Donbas region. Moscow is thought to be assembling additional combat power there for an expected offensive in the coming weeks. Officials said Monday that intense fighting that has raged for weeks continued around the city of Bakhmut and the nearby towns of Soledar and Vuhleda. They are located in the Donetsk region, which with neighboring Luhansk region makes up the Donbas industrial area that borders Russia. Russian President Vladimir Putin is hungry for some battlefield success to mark the anniversary of his invasion on Feb. 24.

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Poland's Defense Ministry says Patriot missile batteries acquired from the U.S. last year have been deployed to the capital city Warsaw as part of military exercise. Poland is taking steps to further strengthen its defensive capabilities as Russia's war in neighboring Ukraine enters its second year later this month. At least three ground-to-air missile launchers were seen Monday at Warsaw's Bemowo airport. The defense minister said on Twitter over the weekend that the launchers were being moved from their base in Sochaczew, in central Poland, Warsaw, as part of exercise. The Patriot batteries are part of Poland's multibillion dollar armaments purchases from the U.S., South Korea and elsewhere.

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COVID-19 vaccinations are no longer required for military personnel. But that hasn’t ended litigation over the issue. Government lawyers want a federal appeals court to lift earlier orders blocking punishment for Navy personnel who refuse to get vaccinated. They say the case is now moot. But lawyers for a group of Navy SEALS and other Navy personnel who oppose the COVID vaccines on religious grounds say the case still presents important issues because commanders can still make assignments based on vaccination status. Both sides presented arguments Monday at the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.

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Police say three tourists from the U.S. mainland were stabbed in Puerto Rico after someone told them to stop filming in a renowned seaside community known as La Perla that is popular with visitors. Police say the confrontation began Monday when one of the tourists began filming a mobile hamburger cart and was told to stop and leave the area. Authorities said two of the tourists remain hospitalized, including one who was stabbed six times. The attack took place nearly two years after a tourist from Delaware was killed and set on fire after police said he was warned not to take pictures while buying drugs in La Perla.

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Officials in Ukraine say Russian forces are keeping Ukrainian troops tied down with attacks in the eastern Donbas region. Moscow is thought to be assembling additional combat power there for an expected offensive in the coming weeks. Officials said Monday that intense fighting that has raged for weeks continued around the city of Bakhmut and the nearby towns of Soledar and Vuhleda. They are located in the Donetsk region, which with neighboring Luhansk region makes up the Donbas industrial area that borders Russia. Russian President Vladimir Putin is hungry for some battlefield success to mark the anniversary of his invasion on Feb. 24.

  • 0

Poland's Defense Ministry says Patriot missile batteries acquired from the U.S. last year have been deployed to the capital city Warsaw as part of military exercise. Poland is taking steps to further strengthen its defensive capabilities as Russia's war in neighboring Ukraine enters its second year later this month. At least three ground-to-air missile launchers were seen Monday at Warsaw's Bemowo airport. The defense minister said on Twitter over the weekend that the launchers were being moved from their base in Sochaczew, in central Poland, Warsaw, as part of exercise. The Patriot batteries are part of Poland's multibillion dollar armaments purchases from the U.S., South Korea and elsewhere.

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Officials in Ukraine say Russian forces are keeping Ukrainian troops tied down with attacks in the eastern Donbas region. Moscow is thought to be assembling additional combat power there for an expected offensive in the coming weeks. Officials said Monday that intense fighting that has raged for weeks continued around the city of Bakhmut and the nearby towns of Soledar and Vuhleda. They are located in the Donetsk region, which with neighboring Luhansk region makes up the Donbas industrial area that borders Russia. Russian President Vladimir Putin is hungry for some battlefield success to mark the anniversary of his invasion on Feb. 24.

  • 0

Poland's Defense Ministry says Patriot missile batteries acquired from the U.S. last year have been deployed to the capital city Warsaw as part of military exercise. Poland is taking steps to further strengthen its defensive capabilities as Russia's war in neighboring Ukraine enters its second year later this month. At least three ground-to-air missile launchers were seen Monday at Warsaw's Bemowo airport. The defense minister said on Twitter over the weekend that the launchers were being moved from their base in Sochaczew, in central Poland, Warsaw, as part of exercise. The Patriot batteries are part of Poland's multibillion dollar armaments purchases from the U.S., South Korea and elsewhere.

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An Iranian singer who faces possible prison time for his song that’s become an anthem to the ongoing protests shaking the Islamic Republic wept early after seeing he’d won a Grammy. Shervin Hajipour appeared stunned early on Monday in Iran after hearing Jill Biden, the wife of President Joe Biden, announce that he’d won the Grammy’s new song for social change special merit award for “Baraye.” An online video showed Hajipour in a darkened room, wiping tears away after the announcement. There was no immediate reaction in Iranian state media or from government officials to Hajipour’s win. The singer is among over 19,600 people arrested amid the demonstrations.

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The federal government’s pandemic-era prohibition against kicking people off Medicaid is ending, meaning that hundreds of thousands of people in Pennsylvania face losing free health insurance. Many people who stand to lose Medicaid coverage have no idea that the changes are coming. That's according to advocacy organizations who do outreach to the poor. Enforcing the eligibility rules will be a massive bureaucratic task for the new administration of Gov. Josh Shapiro. All told, state caseworkers must resume enforcing eligibility rules April 1 for more than 3.6 million people who are on Medicaid. Those who are no longer eligible — or who didn’t submit information — will be guided to low-cost programs.

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An Iranian singer who faces possible prison time for his song that’s become an anthem to the ongoing protests shaking the Islamic Republic wept early after seeing he’d won a Grammy. Shervin Hajipour appeared stunned early on Monday in Iran after hearing Jill Biden, the wife of President Joe Biden, announce that he’d won the Grammy’s new song for social change special merit award for “Baraye.” An online video showed Hajipour in a darkened room, wiping tears away after the announcement. There was no immediate reaction in Iranian state media or from government officials to Hajipour’s win. The singer is among over 19,600 people arrested amid the demonstrations.

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The federal government’s pandemic-era prohibition against kicking people off Medicaid is ending, meaning that hundreds of thousands of people in Pennsylvania face losing free health insurance. Many people who stand to lose Medicaid coverage have no idea that the changes are coming. That's according to advocacy organizations who do outreach to the poor. Enforcing the eligibility rules will be a massive bureaucratic task for the new administration of Gov. Josh Shapiro. All told, state caseworkers must resume enforcing eligibility rules April 1 for more than 3.6 million people who are on Medicaid. Those who are no longer eligible — or who didn’t submit information — will be guided to low-cost programs.

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A federal task force has reunited nearly 700 children who were separated from their families during the Trump administration. President Joe Biden issued an executive order on his first day in office to reunite families separated under his predecessor's policy of forcibly separating parents and children at the U.S.-Mexico border to discourage illegal immigration. Thursday marked the two-year anniversary of a task force set up address the issue. According to government figures, nearly 4,000 children were separated from their families from 2017 to 2021. About 74% of those have been reunited, including 689 after the task force was created.

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The Memphis Police Department has disciplined an officer involved in the arrest, beating and death of Tyre Nichols, the department said Monday, widening the circle of punishment for a killing that has already led to the murder indictment of five officers and outraged the nation with another display of police brutality. Officer Preston Hemphill, who is white, was relieved of duty shortly after Nichols’s Jan. 7 arrest, the department said. Five Black officers were fired and charged last week with second-degree murder and other offenses in Nichols’ beating and death. The killing of Nichols, who was also Black, has led to days of public discussion of how police forces can treat Black citizens with excessive violence, regardless of the race of the police and and the policed.

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Authorities say a New Jersey borough councilwoman was found shot to death in an SUV outside of her home. The Middlesex County prosecutor’s office says 30-year-old Sayreville Councilwoman Eunice Dwumfour was found in the vehicle at around 7:20 p.m. Wednesday. Authorities have not made any arrests or said if they believe the motive for the slaying might be personal, political or a random act. Colleagues recalled the Republican councilwoman as a soft-spoken devout Christian who could maintain her composure in contentious situations. She served as the borough's liaison to the police department now helping to investigate her death.

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House Republicans have voted to oust Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar from the House Foreign Affairs Committee. The vote in a raucous session on Thursday to remove the Somali-born Muslim lawmaker came after her past comments critical of Israel. It was also a response by the new Republican majority after Democrats booted far-right GOP lawmakers from committees over their incendiary, violent remarks in the last session. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy worked quickly to solidify wavering Republican support after some GOP lawmakers had expressed reservations about taking such a dramatic step. The Minnesota Democrat has apologized for comments that she has said she came to understand were antisemitic.

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The FBI has searched President Joe Biden’s Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, home as part of its investigation into potential high-level mishandling of classified records. Biden's attorney says that agents didn't find any classified documents during the Wednesday search, but did take some handwritten notes and other materials relating to Biden's time as vice president for review. It's the latest turn in an extraordinary series of searches of Biden's and his predecessor’s properties. Unlike former President Donald Trump, Biden has been voluntarily allowing the Justice Department into his residences as a separate Trump criminal investigation continues.