Philippine volcano spews lava, ash for 3rd day, 30,000 flee

People watch from Tagaytay, south of Manila, Philippines, on Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020, as Taal Volcano continues to spew ash for the third day. 30,000 fled the area through heavy ash as experts warned that the eruption could get worse and plans were being made to evacuate more.

American troops were informed of an impending missile barrage hours before their air base in Iraq was struck by Iran, U.S. military officials said Monday, days after the attack that marked a major escalation between the longtime foes.

At 11 p.m. on Jan. 7, U.S. Lt. Col. Antoinette Chase gave the order for American troops at Ain al-Asad air base in western Iraq, to go on lockdown. Military movements froze . At 11:30 p.m., she gave the order to take cover in bunkers.

The first strike landed sometime after 1:35 a.m. on Jan. 8 and the barrage continued for nearly two hours. Half way through the attack, Chase learned the missiles were being launched from Iran. No American soldiers were killed or wounded, the U.S. has said

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The Trump administration is dropping its designation of China as a currency manipulator in advance of the signing Wednesday of a Phase 1 U.S.-China trade agreement.

The preliminary pact that the two sides are set to sign this week includes a section that’s intended to prevent China from manipulating its currency to gain trade advantages.

The action announced Monday comes five months after the Trump administration had branded China a currency manipulator — the first time that any country had been so named since 1994 .

A subtle design feature of the AR-15 rifle has raised a technical legal question that is derailing cases against people who are charged with illegally buying and selling the gun’s parts or building the weapon.

At issue is whether a key piece of one of America’s most popular firearms meets the definition of a gun that prosecutors have long relied on.

For decades, the federal government has treated a mechanism called the lower receiver as the essential piece of the semiautomatic rifle, which has been used in some of the nation’s deadliest mass shootings. Prosecutors regularly bring charges based on that specific part.

But some defense attorneys have recently argued that the part alone does not meet the definition in the law.

Britain’s pragmatic queen brokered a deal Monday to secure the future of the monarchy, charting a course for Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan, that allows them to live part time in Canada while still remaining firmly tied to the House of Windsor. The decision followed a summit that sought to resolve the conundrum of what to do with royals who only want the job part time.

The summit marked the first face-to-face talks with Harry since he and Meghan unveiled their controversial wish last week to step back from their royal roles, become financially independent and split their time between Britain and North America. The meeting reflected the queen’s desire to contain the fallout from the independence announcement, which prompted hurt feelings among senior family members not told in advance of the decision.

— Bulletin wire reports

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