• Gunmen ambush police convoy in Mexico; kill 13 and wound 9

    State police expected the worst when they ventured into the wild township of Aguililla to serve a single warrant. More than 30 suspected drug cartel gunmen were waiting for them Monday, some in vehicles that were apparently armored, prosecutors in Mexico's western state of Michoacan said. Authorities said the state police convoy was ambushed as it sought to enforce a judicial order at a home in El Aguaje, a town in the municipality of Aguililla, which is the reputed birthplace of Nemesio "Mencho" Oseguera, leader of the hyper-violent Jalisco New Generation cartel.

  • Texas Mom Who Subjected Her Healthy Son to 13 Surgeries Sentenced to 6 Years in Prison

    Texas Mom Subjected Healthy Son to 13 Surgeries, Sentenced to 6 Years

  • WRAPUP 1-Just hours left to secure a Brexit deal before EU summit

    The European Union gave Britain until the end of Tuesday to work out a Brexit deal that can be approved at a leaders' summit this week but said a delay to the Oct. 31 scheduled departure date and a breakdown of talks were also still on the cards. As the clock ticked, French President Emmanuel Macron spoke to British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, EU Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier updated the 27 remaining member states, and technical talks continued in a push to get an agreement. The main sticking point remains the border between EU-member Ireland and the British province of Northern Ireland.

  • Assad Seizes Key Border Town as U.S. Forces Leave: Syria Update

    (Bloomberg) -- Forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad took control of the strategic town of Manbij near the Turkish border as pressure mounted on Ankara to end an offensive that has drawn U.S. and European sanctions and accusations of war crimes.Washington’s decision to abandon its Kurdish partners in the face of Turkey’s attack has upended old alliances and opened up a new and unpredictable phase in Syria’s eight-year-old civil war.Kurdish-led forces, who fought with U.S. backing to defeat Islamic State, have been forced to turn to Assad for help, pulling back from the border area as Syrian government troops march in. The main Kurdish militia has warned they may not be able to secure camps and prisons holding thousands of Islamic State jihadists, including Europeans whose home countries don’t want them back.In its strongest comments yet, Russia said the offensive was “unacceptable” and it was opposed to the presence of Turkish forces inside Syria, where years of Russian aerial support helped turn the tide of the war in favor of Assad. A top aide to Vladimir Putin said Moscow was mediating between the two sides and would not allow them to clash.Turkey says its offensive aims to push back Kurdish militants it considers a national security threat and resettle refugees, but the costs of the operation could begin to mount.In the clearest sign that the offensive could have an economic fallout, Volkswagen AG delayed a final decision on a 1.3 billion-euro ($1.4 billion) car plant investment in Turkey.That followed Donald Trump’s announcement on Monday that the U.S. would impose sanctions on members of Turkey’s cabinet. European countries have also agreed to restrict arms sales to Turkey.The lira rallied on Tuesday, however, as markets were apparently bracing for stronger measures.Here’s a rundown of major events in Turkish local time.Key DevelopmentsU.S. imposes sanctions on Turkey and calls for cease-fire in northeast Syria.Volkswagen is having second-thoughts on its earlier plans for a major plant investment in Turkey amid the political chaos ensuing Ankara’s decision to send troops across the border.Russia says it is opposes to the presence of Turkish forces inside Syrian territory and won’t allow the two armies to clashU.S.-led coalition against Islamic State confirms its forces have left Manbij: Sky News ArabiaTurkish army penetrated 30-35 kilometers into Syria, reaching the southern most point set as target by policy makers.U.K. Blocks Arms Exports to Turkey for Syria Use During Revier (03:59 p.m.)The U.K. blocked licenses for the export of arms to Turkey that could be used in Syria pending a review of sales to the country, Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s spokesman James Slack tells reporters.Germany’s Merkel Calls on Turkey to End Its Offensive in Syria (03:36 p.m.)Chancellor Angela Merkel said Turkey‘s offensive in Syria needs to be stopped because it risks lives and destablizes the region.“This military action should be stopped, and there should be a return to negotiations,” Merkel said at a briefing alongside Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg.U.S.-Led Coalition Confirms its Forces Left Syrian Town of Manbij (03:14 p.m.)The U.S.-led coalition against Islamic State has left the Turkish border town of Manbij, Sky News Arabia reported, as Assad forces took control of the area.Russia Says Turkish Offensive is “Unacceptable” and Won’t Permit Clashes with Assad’s Forces (02:20 p.m.)Russia branded the Turkish offensive in Syria “unacceptable,” in its strongest criticism yet of the week-old military operation. The Kremlin’s special envoy for Syria, Alexander Lavrentiev, said that troops loyal to Damascus must control the country’s borders and the Kremlin opposes the presence of Turkish forces inside Syrian territory. Russia won’t permit any clashes between Turkish and Syrian forces, he told reporters in Abu Dhabi, where he’s n a visit with President Vladimir Putin.“We have always called on Turkey to exercise restraint and considered any military operation in Syria unacceptable,” Lavrentiev said. “Security along the Turkish-Syrian border must be ensured by the deployment of government troops along the whole length.”UN Urges Turkey to Investigate Allegations of War Crimes (12:18 p.m.)UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Rupert Colville called on Turkish authorities to launch an urgent investigation into videos that appeared to show Turkish-backed Syrian rebels carrying out executions during the offensive in Syria.Colville said in a statement that the UN had viewed two separate videos that appear to show fighters capturing and executing three Kurdish men near the M4 highway in northern Syria.“On the same day, we received reports indicating that a well-known Kurdish female politician, Hevrin Khalaf, was also executed on the same highway,” Colville said in a statement. “We are continuing to gather information about both these serious violations, and we urge the Turkish authorities to immediately launch an impartial, transparent and independent investigation into both incidents, and to apprehend those responsible, some of whom should be easily identifiable from the video footage they themselves shared on social media.”Syrian Government Forces Taking Over Manbij (12:14 p.m.)Syrian government forces expanded their hold over the city of Manbij and continues to deploy on the western bank of the Euphrates river in northern Syria as the U.S.-led coalition forces withdraw, according to the U.K.-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reports.Russia’s Defense Ministry said Tuesday the Syrian army had taken control of Manbij, official news agencies reported. They also said Syrian forces took Dadat and Umm-Miyal.Russian military police are patrolling the northeast border of Manbij province “along the line of contact between the armed forces of the Syrian Arab Republic and those of Turkey.”The U.S.-backed forces are still stationed on a bridge leading to the key Syrian town of Kobani near the Turkish border, preventing regime forces from advancing toward the area, the monitoring group said.Turkey’s Albayrak Not Attending IMF Annual Meetings in U.S. (10:27 a.m.)Treasury and Finance Minister Berat Albayrak won’t attend this year’s World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund meetings in Washington D.C., according to a Treasury official who spoke on condition of anonymity.Volkswagen Postpones Decision on $1.4 Billion Turkey Car Plant (10:19 a.m.)Volkswagen AG decided to delay a decision on a 1.3 billion-euro ($1.4 billion) car plant in Turkey due to the political upheaval caused by the country’s military action in northern Syria.“The decision on building a new plant was postponed by the board of management,” VW said Tuesday. “We’re closely monitoring the situation and are concerned about the current developments.”Kurdish Militants Regain Control of Key Areas in Syria, Monitoring Group Says (9:59 a.m.)Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) launched an offensive overnight Monday and regained control of Ras al-Ayn and Tal Haref, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. It was not possible to independently verify the statement.Qatar Defends Turkish Offensive in Syria (09:01 a.m.)Qatar defended Turkey’s military offensive in northern Syria, sticking up for an ally that’s helped the Gulf emirate weather the impact of a boycott by its neighbors.Turkey’s military incursion isn’t expansionist because it faced an “imminent threat” from Kurdish groups on its Syrian border, Qatar’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani said in Doha.The comments are Qatar’s first on Turkey’s controversial military operation to build what it called a “safe zone” within its neighbor and push back Kurdish groups at its southern border.U.S. Urges Immediate Cease-Fire in Syria as It Sanctions Turkey (03:04 a.m.)The Trump administration called on Turkey for “an immediate cease-fire” in Syria on Monday as it announced sanctions on three senior Turkish officials and sharply increased tariffs on steel in response to the military operation launched by Ankara last week.Vice President Mike Pence, speaking to reporters, said that he would lead a delegation to Turkey at Trump’s request in an effort to stop the military advance. Pence said the U.S. wanted the two sides to negotiate a long-term peace, but he didn’t call for Turkey to pull out of Syria.U.S. Sanctions Three Turkish Ministers, Mnuchin Says (01:10 a.m.)The U.S. has sanctioned Turkish ministers of defense, interior and energy over Turkey’s military operation in Syria, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said.To contact the reporters on this story: Onur Ant in Istanbul at oant@bloomberg.net;Andrey Biryukov in Moscow at abiryukov5@bloomberg.net;Dana Khraiche in Beirut at dkhraiche@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Lin Noueihed at lnoueihed@bloomberg.net, Paul AbelskyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • The Amelia Earhart Mystery Stays Down in the Deep

    For two weeks in August, a multimillion-dollar search from air, land and sea sought to solve the 80-year mystery of Amelia Earhart's disappearance.Robert Ballard, the ocean explorer famous for locating the wreck of the Titanic, led a team that discovered two hats in the depths. It found debris from an old shipwreck. It even spotted a soda can. What it did not find was a single piece of the Lockheed Electra airplane flown in 1937 by Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan, which vanished during their doomed voyage around the world.Ballard and his crew don't consider it a failure. For one thing, he says, they know where the plane isn't. And in the process, they may have dispensed with one clue that has driven years of speculation, while a team of collaborating archaeologists potentially turned up more hints at the aviator's fate."This plane exists," Ballard said. "It's not the Loch Ness monster, and it's going to be found."Ballard had avoided the Earhart mystery for decades, dismissing the search area as too large, until he was presented with a clue he found irresistible. Kurt Campbell, then a senior official in President Barack Obama's State Department, shared with him what is known as the Bevington image -- a photo taken by a British officer in 1940 at what is now known as Nikumaroro, an atoll in the Phoenix Islands in the Republic of Kiribati. American intelligence analysts had enhanced the image at Campbell's request and concluded a blurry object in it was consistent with landing gear from Earhart's plane.Motivated by this clue, and by 30 years of research on Nikumaroro by the International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery, Ballard and his crew set a course for the island in August. They were joined by archaeologists from the National Geographic Society, which sponsored and documented the journey for "Expedition Amelia," which will air on the National Geographic Channel on Sunday.Ballard and Allison Fundis, the Nautilus' chief operating officer, coordinated an elaborate plan of attack. First, they sent the ship five times around the island to map it with multibeam sonar and deployed a floating autonomous surface vehicle to map shallower areas off the island's shore. They also used four aerial drones for additional inspections of the surrounding reef.Nikumaroro and its reef are just the tip of a 16,000-foot underwater mountain, a series of 13 sheer escarpments that drop off onto ramps, eventually fanning out at the base for 6 nautical miles.If Earhart crashed there, they believe, rising tides would have dragged her plane over the reef and down the escarpments. Fragments should have collected on the ramps, especially heavier components like the engine and the radio.In deeper water the team deployed the Hercules and the Argus, remotely operated vehicles equipped with spotlights and high-definition cameras. These robots descended 650 feet around the entire island and found nothing.At that point, the crew focused on the northwest corner of the island near the S.S. Norwich City, a British freighter that ran aground on the island in 1929, eight years before Earhart's disappearance. That is the area where the Bevington photo was taken.While they searched there, crew members found so many beach rocks consistent in size and shape with the supposed landing gear in the Bevington image that it became a joke on the ship."Oh look," Ballard would chuckle, "another landing gear rock."Fundis said, "We felt like if her plane was there, we would have found it pretty early in the expedition." But she said they kept up their morale because Ballard reminded them that it took four missions to find the Titanic and that one of those expeditions missed the ship by just under 500 feet.The crew mapped the mountain's underwater drainage patterns and searched the gullies that might have carried plane fragments down slope, to a depth of 8,500 feet. Crew members even searched roughly 4 nautical miles out to sea in case the plane lifted off the reef intact and glided underwater as it sank.Each time a new search tactic yielded nothing, Ballard said, he felt he was adding "nail after nail after nail" to the coffin of the Nikumaroro hypothesis.Still, Ballard and Fundis confess that other clues pointing to Nikumaroro have left them with lingering curiosity about whether Earhart crashed there. For instance, Panamerican Airway radio direction finders on Wake Island; Midway Atoll; and Honolulu, Hawaii; each picked up distress signals from Earhart and took bearings, which triangulated in the cluster of islands that includes Nikumaroro.For years, many Earhart historians have been skeptical of the Nikumaroro theory. And Ballard, Fundis and their team's return to the island will now depend on whether the archaeologists from the National Geographic Society came up with evidence that Earhart's body was there.Fredrik Hiebert, the society's archaeologist in residence, has some leads. His team awaits DNA analysis on soil samples taken at a bivouac shelter found on the island.The camp, known as the Seven Site for its shape, was first noticed by a British officer in 1940. Thirteen bones were gathered then and sent to a colonial doctor in Fiji, who determined they belonged to a European man. The bones were subsequently lost.Decades later, the International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery, or TIGHAR, tracked down the doctor's analysis. Richard Jantz, director emeritus of the Forensic Anthropology Center at the University of Tennessee, determined that the bones most likely belonged to a woman and that Earhart's build was "more similar to the Nikumaroro bones than 99% of individuals in a large reference sample."Since the 1980s, Tighar has conducted 12 expeditions to Nikumaroro in an effort to find more skeletal remains. It turned up other items from a castaway's existence at the camp but never any bones or DNA.Hiebert's team is hoping to use new techniques to identify evidence of mitochondrial DNA with similarities to Earhart's living relatives in the 22 soil samples they collected.Before the expedition, Hiebert and Erin Kimmerle, a forensic anthropologist, visited the National Museum in Tarawa, Kiribati's capital. On an unmarked shelf, Kimmerle spotted remnants of a female skull. The team now awaits DNA analysis of the specimen.In 2021, the Nautilus will be in the South Pacific fulfilling a contract to map underwater U.S. territories. That will bring the ship to the area around Howland Island, Earhart's intended destination for refueling before her plane disappeared. Ballard and Fundis plan to make time to explore the alternate theory favored by some skeptics of the Nikumaroro hypothesis: that Earhart crashed at sea closer to Howland.Fundis considers Earhart a role model, which gives her the "fuel to keep going," she said.And Ballard explained his own motivation to continue the search."In many ways, I'm doing this for my mother," he said, describing her as a "brilliant woman" who grew up in Kansas, like Earhart, but dropped out of college to raise three children and care for her sister.His mother, Hariett Ballard, admired Earhart and hoped she might pave the way for her children, or perhaps grandchildren, to pursue adventurous careers. Robert Ballard's daughter, Emily Ballard, was among the crew of the Nautilus, hunting for Earhart's plane."I'm not giving up," he said.This article originally appeared in The New York Times.(C) 2019 The New York Times Company

  • California becomes 1st state to mandate later school start times

    California became the first state in the nation to require later start times at most schools. Senate Bill 328, signed by Governor Gavin Newsom on Sunday, requires most middle schools to begin no earlier than 8:00 a.m. and high schools at 8:30 a.m. A study from the American Academy of Pediatrics found that delayed school start times align more closely with the sleep-wake cycle of teenagers, leading to better overall health and school performance.

  • Man Drives To California Police Station With Dead Body In Car, Says He Killed 4 People

    The suspect told California's Mount Shasta Police Department on Monday that he'd killed four of his relatives, including the dead person in the car.