NEWS   TUESDAY, JUNE  27, 2017   NEWS
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Senate Health Care Bill Would Lower Deficit, Increase Number Of Uninsured
Senate Republicans’ health care bill would reduce the federal deficit and eventually lead to lower premiums, but would result in millions more Americans being uninsured a decade from now, according to a fresh analysis from Capitol Hill’s nonpartisan budget scorekeepers. The bill’s highly anticipated “score” was released Monday afternoon and immediately became part of the Senate’s raging health care debate as GOP leaders scramble to win over reluctant Republicans and tee up a vote to repeal and replace much of ObamaCare as early as this week. Fox
VOA VIEW: The inspired heath care bill is much better than ObamaCare.

Trump Travel Ban: Supreme Court Reinstates Key Parts Of Executive Order
In a victory for the Trump administration, the Supreme Court on Monday lifted key components of an injunction against President Trump's proposed ban on travel from six majority-Muslim nations, reinstating much of the policy and promising to hear full arguments as early as this fall. The court's decision means the justices will now wade into the biggest legal controversy of the Trump administration -- the president's order temporarily restricting travel, which even Trump has termed a "travel ban." Fox News
VOA VIEW: A big victory for Trump and the US.

Trump Demands Apology, Accuses Obama Of Having 'Colluded Or Obstructed'
President Donald Trump continued to criticize former President Barack Obama on Monday for his response to alleged Russian interference in the 2016 election -- blasting his predecessor in a series of tweets, then demanding an "apology." "The reason that President Obama did NOTHING about Russia after being notified by the CIA of meddling is that he expected Clinton would win ... and did not want to 'rock the boat.' He didn't 'choke,' he colluded or obstructed, and it did the Dems and Crooked Hillary no good," Trump wrote. CNN
VOA VIEW: No question that Obama thought Hillary would win.

Controversial Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak Is Leaving The US
The Russian Ambassador to the US at the center of a political firestorm over his encounters with associates of President Donald Trump is leaving his post, but Russia says the move is not unexpected. Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova is clarifying reports that Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak is leaving his post in Washington and returning to Moscow. "The changing of an ambassador, especially to a major country, is a question of at least a year. It is all planned in advance. Especially when an ambassador has worked for a long time. No unplanned replacement of Russian ambassadors is taking place," she told CNN. CNN

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LGBTs More Likely To Marry Opposite-Sex Partners Than Same-Sex Partners
According to Gallup polling done between June 2016 and June 2017, “LGBT” Americans are more likely to be married to a spouse of the opposite sex than one of the same sex. “An increasing percentage of LGBT adults now identify their marital status as single or never married,” said a recently published analysis by Gallup. “That has always been the dominant status among LGBT individuals, but has increased from 47.4% to 55.7% over the last two years. “LGBT Americans are still more likely to be married to an opposite-sex spouse (13.1%) than a same-sex spouse (10.2%), but the gap is narrowing,” said Gallup. CNS News
VOA VIEW: The truth hurts.

Trump: Obama 'Colluded Or Obstructed' On Russian Interference
In two tweets Monday morning, President Donald Trump said President Obama "didn't choke, he colluded or obstructed" after learning about Russia's attempts to interfere in the U.S. election. "The reason that President Obama did NOTHING about Russia after being notified by the CIA of meddling is that he expected Clinton would win.....and did not want to 'rock the boat.' He didn't 'choke,' he colluded or obstructed, and it did the Dems and Crooked Hillary no good." A few hours later, Trump issued two more tweets, saying:  "The real story is that President Obama did NOTHING after being informed in August about Russian meddling. With 4 months looking at Russia.....under a magnifying glass, they have zero "tapes" of T people colluding. There is no collusion & no obstruction. I should be given apology!" CNS

CNN Journalists Resign Over Russian Story Snafu
Three veteran CNN journalists with impressive investigative credentials have resigned after their story on Russian ties to Trump failed to meet reporting standards, CNN wrote in an unusual editor's note to the public. CNN said it has retracted the story, taken down online links to it, and accepted resignations from three men who wrote and edited the piece. They are reporter Thomas Frank, a former Pulitzer Prize finalist for USA TODAY; editor Eric Lichtblau, a Pulitzer Prize winner for the New York Times who joined CNN earlier this year; and Lex Haris, executive editor of "CNN Investigates." “In the aftermath of the retraction of a story published on CNN.com, CNN has accepted the resignations of the employees involved in the story’s publication," the news organization said in a statement Monday afternoon. The story, published Thursday, laid out the latest in the ongoing reporting saga of President Trump and hotly-contested ties to shadowy Russian officials. USA Today
VOA VIEW: CNN had no choice - they are left of liberal.

California To List Glyphosate As Cancer-Causing; Monsanto Vows Fight
Glyphosate, an herbicide and the active ingredient in Monsanto Co's popular Roundup weed killer, will be added to California's list of chemicals known to cause cancer effective July 7, the state's Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment said on Monday. The agency said the designation under a state law known as Proposition 65 will proceed following an unsuccessful attempt by seeds and chemicals company Monsanto to block the listing in trial court. Reuters

St. Louis Reaches Deal To Remove Confederate Monument
A controversial Confederate monument in St. Louis will be dismantled by the end of the week under an agreement announced on Monday, city officials said. The granite and bronze memorial was the latest Confederate monument to be targeted as U.S. cities remove the structures seen as reminders of slavery and the racism that underpinned it. St. Louis reached the agreement with the Missouri Civil War Museum and other groups after a lawsuit halted the city's effort to dismantle the 32-foot memorial earlier this month, according to the mayor's office. The museum will pay for the removal by June 30 and store it until a new location can be found at a museum, a battlefield or a cemetery that must be outside the city, according to a copy of the agreement. Reuters
VOA VIEW: A politically correct insult.

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Senate GOP Adds New Penalty For Uninsured To Health Care Bill
Senate Republicans made a significant change to their health care plan on Monday, adding a provision that requires people to maintain coverage or be barred from buying insurance for six months. The late addition effectively serves as a replacement for the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate, which requires people to maintain insurance coverage or pay a financial penalty. It applies to people who have a gap of coverage of more than 63 days. MSNBC
VOA VIEW: A major change.

Florida First Responders Rush From One Overdose To The Next
There were more than 4,600 overdoses in Palm Beach County last year. Delray Beach accounted for 600, even though its 66,000 residents make up less than 5 percent of the county's population. Delray's responders find people who have overdosed in restaurant bathrooms and on park benches, in private homes and while driving through busy intersections. Towns across the U.S. have been gripped by the opioid epidemic. In 2015, drug overdoses, most due to heroin or opioid pills, killed more than 52,000 Americans. And addiction has become more deadly as potent synthetic opioids like fentanyl have become widespread. The impact is being felt from wealthy Chicago suburbs to rural West Virginia to New York City. But officials in Delray Beach say the toll is especially heavy in their town because so many of the young people addicted in those faraway places come to Florida looking for help. MSNBC

After Obama’s Bad Deal, American Black Hawks Will Replace Russian Helicopters For Afghan Air Force
The Donald Trump Pentagon, in so many words, is saying that the Obama administration’s decision to waive punitive sanctions and buy combat helicopters from Russia was a bad deal. The Pentagon’s first congressionally required report on Afghanistan under President Trump says the Russian Mi-17 chopper has proved a failure in the long war and will be phased out in favor of American-made UH-60 Black Hawks. The Obama administration came to realize the failure in its last weeks in office and stopped the deal. The report this month on “Enhancing Security and Stability in Afghanistan” marks official confirmation that the Russian model broke down too often for the Afghan air force logistics system to keep up. Washington Times
VOA VIEW: Obama hurt the US - Trump made it right.

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Germany: Merkel's Challenger Sees Quick Vote On Gay Marriage
Chancellor Angela Merkel's center-left rivals said Tuesday they would seek a parliamentary vote this week on legalizing gay marriage after the German leader backed off her conservatives' long-standing refusal to budge on the issue. Germany has allowed same-sex couples to enter civil partnerships since 2001. Other European countries have since allowed full gay marriage, but much of Merkel's conservative bloc remained reluctant until now. Merkel said Monday that she could see lawmakers taking up the issue in the future as a "decision of conscience," deciding in a free vote rather than along party lines. That comment came ahead of a Sept. 24 election in which all of Merkel's potential coalition partners, including the center-left Social Democrats of her challenger, Martin Schulz, are calling for same-sex marriage to be legalized. Houston Chronicle

Obama Officials Hit Back At Trump, GOP Over Russia Claims
Former Obama White House officials accused President Trump Monday of trying to distract the public from Republicans’ “terrible” health-care bill by blaming President Obama for obstructing an investigation into Russian meddling in the presidential election. Further, Team Obama is claiming that Republicans prevented the Obama administration last year from responding more aggressively to Moscow’s interference in the election. They’re honestly nonsensical,” former Obama National Security Council spokesman Ned Price said of the claims of Mr. Trump and his advisers. “He’s attempting to pin on the Obama administration the very serious charges — namely collusion and obstruction — that federal investigators are examining in the context of his behavior and that of his associates.” Washington Times
VOA VIEW: The truth hurts - Obama is the bad guy.

Should People On Medicaid Be Required To Work?
Senate Republicans' plan to repeal and replace Obamacare has put Medicaid in the spotlight, thanks to proposals including a move to let states impose work requirements on low-income recipients. Medicaid "went way above the poverty line to many able-bodied Americans," White House counselor Kellyanne Conway told ABC News program "This Week" on Sunday. "If they are able-bodied and they want to work, then they'll have employer-sponsored benefits like you and I do." CBS
VOA VIEW: All able-bodied should not bet anything free.

Artificial Intelligence Positioned To Be A Game-Changer
The search to improve and eventually perfect artificial intelligence is driving the research labs of some of the most advanced and best-known American corporations. They are investing billions of dollars and many of their best scientific minds in pursuit of that goal. All that money and manpower has begun to pay off.In the past few years, artificial intelligence -- or A.I. -- has taken a big leap -- making important strides in areas like medicine and military technology.  What was once in the realm of science fiction has become day-to-day reality. You'll find A.I. routinely in your smart phone, in your car, in your household appliances and it is on the verge of changing everything. CBS

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Trump's Indonesian Business Partner Slapped With Travel Ban
Authorities in Indonesia have issued a travel ban against the Indonesian business partner of U.S. President Donald Trump after he was accused of threatening a deputy attorney general, officials said Monday. Billionaire Hary Tanoesoedibjo has been barred from leaving Indonesia from June 22 to July 12 due to the case, which is under investigation by the National Police's criminal investigation unit, said Agung Sampurno, the Indonesian Immigration Office spokesman. He said the travel ban could be extended upon a police request. ABC

Hurricane Dora Strengthens Off Mexico's Pacific Coast
Hurricane Dora strengthened off Mexico's Pacific coast on Monday, but posed little threat to land as it spun out into the ocean. The hurricane's maximum sustained winds early Monday were near 85 mph (140 kph) with some strengthening likely before weakening is expected to begin Tuesday. The hurricane was centered about 175 miles (285 kilometers) southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico, and was moving west-northwest near 13 mph (21 kph). The U.S. National Hurricane Center says Dora's forecast track shows its center staying offshore of Mexico's southwestern coast. But swells from the storm are affecting parts of Mexico's coast and are expected to cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions. ABC

EU Slaps Google With Record $2.7 B Fine For Breaching Competition Rules
The European Union’s competition watchdog slapped Google with a record-breaking $2.72 billion fine on Tuesday for breaching antitrust rules with its online shopping service. Regulators said Google "abused its market dominance as a search engine by giving an illegal advantage to another Google product, its comparison shopping service." The European Commission said the technology firm "gave prominent placement in its search results only to its own comparison shopping service, whilst demoting rival services. It stifled competition on the merits in comparison shopping markets." USA Today
VOA VIEW: Great!

Hackers Hit 75% Of Drillers As Sketchy Monitoring Is Blamed
Three out of four oil and natural gas companies fell victim to at least one cyber attack last year as hacking efforts against the industry become more frequent and sophisticated. That’s the finding from a report released Monday by industry consultant Deloitte LLP. Technology advances, such as Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s recent control of operations in Argentina from an operating center in Canada, offer new openings for hackers, the authors wrote. Bloomberg

The Trump Whisperer: Marco Rubio Has The President’s Ear On Latin America
Donald Trump has a distaste for the State Department and its legions of diplomats tasked with crafting the nation’s foreign policy. So when it comes to Latin America, the CEO-turned-president is listening to a man he derided on the campaign trail a year ago: Marco Rubio. It was Rubio who set up a White House meeting with Lilian Tintori, a human-rights activist married to jailed Venezuelan dissident Leopoldo Lopez. After the meeting Trump tweeted his support for Lopez, a public rebuke of embattled Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro. It was Rubio who helped draft a changed Cuba policy in recent weeks, culminating in Trump’s first presidential visit to Miami to fulfill a campaign promise to the conservative Cubans who helped him win the White House. Miami Herald
VOA VIEW: Trump listens to those he thinks have the best message.

National Retailers Are Struggling To Remain Open. Here Are The Companies That Have Taken A Hit
As e-commerce websites like Amazon lead in online sales, some traditional brick-and-mortar stores are losing the battle of relevance. This year, several retailers closed their doors and more closures are expected to follow. We’ve taken a look at national retailers that permanently closed, as well as companies that have downsized by closing many shops across the county since the start of 2017. Macy’s, Sears and J.C. Penney are just some of the chains that succumbed to store closures, but those stores certainly were in better shape than others. With the expansion of online shopping, it is estimated that 30% of malls will close during the next recession. You may recall teen chains American Apparel and Wet Seal struggled to remain open before both companies ultimately closed all operations earlier this year.
But fashion destinations weren’t the only victims. Store closures also included electronics and office supply stops like Radio Shack and Office Depot. SF Gate

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Gold Plunges After 1.8 Million Ounces Were Traded In One Minute
Gold traders shaken awake by Monday’s rapid price plunge said the move probably won’t mean an end to the sleepy pace that’s characterized the market in recent months. Bullion sank at 9 a.m. in London on Monday after a huge spike in volume in New York futures that traders said may have been the result of a “fat finger,” or erroneous order. Trading jumped to 1.8 million ounces of gold in just a minute, an amount that’s bigger than the gold reserves of Finland. The episode is unlikely to upend the broader trend in gold, where volatility has languished, analysts including George Gero at RBC Wealth Management said. A measure of price swings in the metal fell in April to the lowest in records going back to 2007. It’s since held near that level, even amid political discord in Europe, rising U.S. interest rates and mounting tensions between the U.S. and North Korea. Bloomberg

U.S. Imposes Additional Tariffs On Canadian Lumber As Dispute Escalates
Trade tensions rise between the world’s largest softwood lumber exporter and its biggest market, as U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross says he will “stand up for American companies and their workers.” The U.S. will impose further punitive tariffs on imports of softwood lumber from Canada, escalating a longstanding trade dispute that’s already led to higher timber prices. Preliminary anti-dumping duties of as much as 7.7 percent will be levied on Canadian producers, the U.S. Department of Commerce said Monday in a statement. Seattle Times
VOA VIEW: America first.

Democrats Aim To Blast Trump For Favoring Wealthy
Democrats are out to capitalize on what they believe is growing public sentiment that President Donald Trump, the richest man to call the White House home, is turning his back on the people who got him elected in favor of his wealthy peers. The party is hoping that pitch will pack extra oomph at a time when even some Republicans are raising concerns that the GOP health-care plan could hurt the poor. Though stung by a series of defeats in special congressional elections, Democrats believe they can make inroads with some of Trump's most loyal supporters by driving home the combined potential impact of proposed tax cuts that would largely benefit the wealthy and pending health care legislation that would fail to cover tens of millions of Americans enrolled in "Obamacare." SF Gate
VOA VIEW: Mems would rather listen to losers.
Trump Eager For Big Meeting With Putin; Some Advisers Wary
President Donald Trump is eager to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin with full diplomatic bells and whistles when the two are in Germany for a multinational summit next month. But the idea is exposing deep divisions within the administration on the best way to approach Moscow in the midst of an ongoing investigation into Russian meddling in the U.S. elections. Many administration officials believe the U.S. needs to maintain its distance from Russia at such a sensitive time — and interact only with great caution. But Trump and some others within his administration have been pressing for a full bilateral meeting. He's calling for media access and all the typical protocol associated with such sessions, even as officials within the State Department and National Security Council urge more restraint, according to a current and a former administration official. Las Vegas Sun

Former Trump Adviser Confirms FBI Interviews
A former foreign policy adviser to President Donald Trump's campaign has acknowledged being interviewed by the FBI several months ago. Carter Page confirmed in a text message to The Associated Press on Monday that he had "extensive discussions" with agents during several interviews in March concerning the investigation into possible coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia. He says the FBI acknowledged he is "a loyal American veteran" but FBI "management" was concerned he did not believe the conclusions of a January intelligence report that blamed Russia for interfering in the presidential election. Las Vegas Sun

British Government Says 75 Out Of 75 Buildings Failed Fire Safety Tests
Britain on Monday confronted a rapidly growing fire safety crisis after tests of the exterior cladding on dozens of public housing towers revealed a 100 percent failure rate, raising fears that this month’s deadly inferno in London could be replicated elsewhere. Out of 75 high-rise buildings tested since last week, communities minister Sajid Javid told Parliament late Monday afternoon, not one passed. That’s up from 60 failures out of 60 on Sunday – with hundreds more towers yet to be examined.
Javid said the government will immediately expand testing to include schools, hospitals and private residential buildings – suggesting that the scope of the problem could be far beyond what was suspected even days ago. Philadelphia Inquirer
VOA VIEW: Sad!

FBI Has Questioned Trump Campaign Adviser Carter Page At Length In Russia Probe
FBI agents have repeatedly questioned former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page about his contacts with Russians and his interactions with the Trump campaign, according to people familiar with the investigation. Over a series of five meetings in March, totaling about 10 hours of questioning, Page repeatedly denied wrongdoing when asked about allegations that he may have acted as a kind of go-between for Russia and the Trump campaign, according to a person familiar with Page’s account. Philadelphia Inquirer

White House Says Syria May Be Preparing Chemical Attack, Warns Of ‘Heavy’ Consequences
The White House accused the Syrian government Monday of preparing for another chemical attack against their own people — and threatened a “heavy price” if they went through with an atrocity. A statement from the office of the press secretary said that the purported attack could lead to the “mass murder of civilians” and warned Syrian president Bashar al Assad there would be consequences. “The United States had identified potential preparations for another chemical weapons attack by the Assad regime,” the statement read. “The activities are similar to preparations the regime made before its April 4, 2017.” The White House added that the main goal of US forces in the region are to eliminate ISIS from their Syrian strongholds. NY Post
VOA VIEW: Syria will pay a heavy price if they get more stupid.

Oil Prices Move Higher On Global Economic Expectations
Crude oil prices showed signs of recovery in early Monday trading after an international banker said there were clear signs of global economic growth. "The facts paint a brighter picture," the Bank for International Settlements said in a weekend statement. "There are clear signs that growth has gathered momentum." The BIS is an umbrella organization for central banks. Speaking at an event Monday in Austria, U.S. Central Bank Gov. Jerome Powell said there is "little doubt" the financial system in the United States, the world's largest economy, is stronger now than it was during the last major recession a decade ago. UPI

In Praise Of A Gas Price War — Just At The Peak Of Driving Season
Gasoline for $1.97 a gallon. On the Jersey side of the outbound Holland Tunnel last week. At a number of gas stations. It’s the beginning of a price war! And it’s happening during the peak driving season, when gasoline prices are supposed to be rising. This is the time of year that the gas distributors and service station owners live for, but this year — for the second straight year — it’s killing them. There are still some price gougers around who apparently don’t care if they sell any fuel. But most gas stations — including some national chains — have thrown in the towel and are selling gasoline at what many today would consider an attractive price.
AAA keeps track, and it says that regular gasoline is selling for an average of $2.28 a gallon throughout the US. That’s down from $2.30 a gallon a week ago and $2.36 a gallon in May. NY Post

France's New Lawmakers Open First Parliament Session
France's newly elected lawmakers, most of them from President Emmanuel Macron's centrist party, are gathering their first parliament session. Macron's 14-month-old party, Republic on the Move!, won 308 of the 577 seats at France's lower house of parliament in legislative elections earlier this month. His allies in Modem took 42 seats, giving the government a wide majority. During the opening session Tuesday afternoon, lawmakers are choosing the president of the National assembly, a key player in organizing legislative business and debates. Experienced lawmaker Francois de Rugy, a former Green who joined Macron earlier this year, is the favorite to win the vote. After Macron vigorously campaigned on a promise to renew France's political landscape, other parties also made efforts to promote new faces. Tampa Tribune

Ed Markey Demands Apology From Kellyanne Conway For Comment On Addiction
Senator Ed Markey issued a fiery statement Monday demanding an apology from White House adviser Kellyanne Conway, after she stated that persons suffering from drug addiction need “a four-letter word called ‘will’’’ in an interview about health care’s role in stemming the ongoing opioid crisis. Markey, in a statement, said Conway’s words are a “death sentence’’ for those suffering from opioid addiction. He said Conway also fails to recognize the consensus of the medical community, which often refers to opioid addiction as a disease — not a personality flaw. The White House has not responded to a request to comment. Conway has not answered Markey’s demands or responded to other people who have critiqued her comments. Boston Globe
VOA VIEW: Markey and the liberal media are losing.

Man Avoids DUI Charge After Police Administer Narcan
Police gave the man Narcan, but were unable to draw blood to test for a possible DUI. Roswell police said once they gave a driver Narcan to avoid a possible overdose, he could no longer be charged with DUI, even after witnesses say he hit several cars and forced at least one driver off the road. “My first thought was he was impaired or having some type of emergency that he probably shouldn't be driving,” Michael Willis told Channel 2 Action News. “I saw him start driving up on the sidewalk and he was driving on the wrong side of a narrow, two-lane road.” But any evidence of drugs or alcohol in the driver’s system was wiped out once he received medical treatment, according to a police report. Atlanta Journal

Syria Rejects US Chemical Attack Allegations
A Syrian minister has dismissed a White House statement alleging that President Bashar Assad's government is preparing a new chemical weapons attack, saying Damascus has not and will not use such arms. Ali Haidar, the minister for national reconciliation, told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the White House statement foreshadowed a "diplomatic battle" that would be waged against Syria in the halls of the U.N. The U.S. holds Assad's government responsible for two sarin gas attacks that together killed hundreds of civilians in 2013 and earlier this year. The White House statement on Monday night was made without forewarning and caught State Department officials by surprise. Tampa Tribune

Premature Infants At Greater Risk Of SIDS
A new study from Rutgers University researchers has found that premature infants are still at a greater risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, or SIDS. The greater risk of SIDS in premature infants compared to full-term infants remains despite recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics that Neonatal Intensive Care Units, or NICUs, in hospitals educate parents on safe infant sleep methods prior to discharge, according to researchers in a study published this month. UPI

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SHARANSKY: PM SHOULD NOT HAVE MADE WESTERN WALL PROMISE HE COULD NOT DELIVER
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should have considered whether he could deliver on pledges to change the status quo on conversion and at the Western Wall before making promises that he could, Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky said on Monday. Sharansky told The Jerusalem Post in an interview that over the past few years, Netanyahu had made many promises to the liberal streams of Judaism without “thinking deeper whether he could really deliver them,” and that the prime minister had promised things without “thinking out thoroughly whether they were possible.” Jerusalem Post

HEAD OF US REFORM MOVEMENT REJECTS NEW WESTERN WALL NEGOTIATIONS WITH PM
The head of the Reform Movement in the US Rabbi Rick Jacobs has rejected the idea proposed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to restart negotiations for a new agreement on an egalitarian prayer area at the Western Wall. Jacobs, the President of the Union of Reform Judaism, was reacting to statements made by the Prime Minister’s Office that Netanyahu has appointed Regional Cooperation Minister Tzachi Hanegbi and Cabinet Secretary Tzachi Braverman to begin a new round of negotiations with the Reform and Conservative Movements and the Women of the Wall. Jerusalem Post

US Senator To Block Arms Sales To Gulf Over Qatar Crisis
An influential US senator has said he will withhold consent for arms sales to Gulf Arab states until there is a "path forward" to resolving the Qatar crisis. Bob Corker, the chairman of the Senate foreign relations committee, warned that efforts to fight so-called Islamic State and counter Iran were being hurt. Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut air, sea and land links with Qatar three weeks ago. They accused Qatar of aiding terrorist groups and Iran - charges it denied. BBC

Cash 'Lives On' After 50 Years Of ATMs
Cash will remain a part of our day-to-day lives for decades, the Bank of England's chief cashier has said on the 50th anniversary of the ATM. Victoria Cleland said that although the use of notes and coins in transactions is falling, cash is part of all the Bank's future plans. She pointed out that 94% of UK adults use cash machines. It was 50 years ago today that the world's first ATM was unveiled at a Barclays branch in Enfield, London. As a tribute to the golden anniversary, Barclays has transformed the modern-day Enfield cash machine into gold. BBC

Koch Network 'Piggy Banks' Closed Until Republicans Pass Health And Tax Reform
At a weekend donor retreat attended by at least 18 elected officials, the Koch brothers warned that time is running out to push their agenda, most notably healthcare and tax reform, through Congress.One Texas-based donor warned Republican lawmakers that his “Dallas piggy bank” was now closed, until he saw legislative progress.
“Get Obamacare repealed and replaced, get tax reform passed,” said Doug Deason. “Get it done and we’ll open it back up.” Nonetheless, Koch officials said that the network’s midterm budget for policy and politics is between $300m and $400m. The Senate will this week seek to pass its version of healthcare reform – at present it does not have enough Republican support to overcome blanket Democratic opposition. Guardian
VOA VIEW: Money talks.

Ivanka Trump Says 'I Try To Stay Out Of Politics' Despite Assisting At White House
Ivanka Trump, special assistant to the president, told Fox News on Monday: “I try to stay out of politics.” Trump was speaking to Fox & Friends, the morning show which this weekend broadcast an interview with Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump. “I try to stay out of politics,” Ivanka Trump said in answer to a question about her father’s use of Twitter to bypass most normal channels of presidential communication. “His political instincts are phenomenal. He did something that no one could have imagined he’d be able to accomplish. Guardian

Rex Tillerson 'Increasingly At Odds With White House' As Beleaguered Secretary Of State Struggles To Find A Foreign Policy
Donald Trump’s administration is deeply at odds with the state department over its foreign policy, according to the New York Times, which paints a scathing picture of the secretary of state being undermined by both Mr Trump and his powerful son-in-law. Rex Tillerson, the former Exxon chairman, who admitted he was reluctant to accept the job, is described by the paper as being confounded at every turn by the mercurial president and Jared Kushner. Telegraph
VOA VIEW: The liberal media is not always right.

Thousands Of Asylum Seekers In Canada Who Fled Donald Trump Now Trapped In Legal Limbo
Thousands of people who fled to Canada to escape President Donald Trump's crackdown on illegal migrants have become trapped in legal limbo because of an overburdened refugee system, struggling to find work, permanent housing or enrol their children in schools. Refugee claims are taking longer to be completed than at any time in the past five years, according to previously unpublished Immigration and Refugee Board data provided to Reuters. Those wait times are set to grow longer after the IRB in April allocated 'up to half'? of its 127 tribunal members to focus on old cases. The number of delayed hearings more than doubled from 2015 to 2016 and is on track to increase again this year. Telegraph

On International Day Against Drug Abuse, UN Urges Collective Action To Realize Global Commitments
To mark the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, the United Nations is calling on all countries to honour their commitments to address the scourge and to ensure that steps to do so are consistent with human rights and promote equality, peace, security and sustainable development. “Despite the risks and challenges inherent in tackling this global problem, I hope and believe we are on the right path, and that together we can implement a coordinated, balanced and comprehensive approach that leads to sustainable solutions,” said UN Secretary-General António Guterres. UN News

Experts Head To Vienna To Discuss Advances In Monitoring, Verification Under UN Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty
Scientists and technical experts from all over the world are gathering this week in Vienna, Austria, for a meeting convened by the United Nations partner organization working to establish a verification regime to monitor global compliance with the comprehensive ban on nuclear testing. The Science and Technology 2017 Conference, which opens today and runs through Friday, 30 June in the Austrian capital, is the sixth in a series of meetings aimed at strengthening the relationship between the scientific community and authorities for compliance with the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT). The Conference was convened by the Preparatory Commission for the Treaty, widely known as the CTBTO. UN New

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