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International News

EU, AstraZeneca reach deal to end vaccine delivery dispute

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union and drugmaker AstraZeneca said Friday that they reached a deal to end a damaging legal battle over the slow pace of deliveries of the company's COVID-19 vaccines. The European Commission, which is the EU's executive branch, said AstraZeneca made a "firm ...

GENEVA (AP) — The U.N. weather agency says the world — and especially urban areas — experienced a brief, sharp drop in emissions of air pollutants last year amid lockdown measures and related travel restrictions put in place over the coronavirus pandemic. The World Meteorological ...

South Africa to encourage vaccinations, but not force them

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — South African President Cyril Ramaphosa says his government will encourage people to get COVID-19 vaccinations but will not force them. Ramaphosa said that he believes employees may refuse vaccinations on medical and constitutional grounds. "No one should be forced to be ...

Excitement meets worry as European kids head back to school

LONDON (AP) — English educator Richard Sheriff watched this week as a group of energetic 11-year-olds entered their new secondary school for the first time — finding their classrooms, eating in the cafeteria, racing around the halls. The familiar rituals of a school sparking back to life ...

Young Africans struggle with jobs, education amid pandemic

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) — The future looked promising for Tinashe Mapuranga, an intern at a leading bank in Zimbabwe who appeared set to get a staff position as soon as he completed his college degree. Then the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Amid the lockdowns, the 24-year-old was one of the first to ...

US defends strike that Afghan family says killed innocents

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — It felt like hell itself had opened up, said Ramal Ahmadi, who was watching cartoons with his nephew when a U.S. drone slammed into his family's courtyard where just moments before there had been a noisy celebration to greet the family's oldest brother. The last ...

Russia urges Apple, Google to remove Navalny app from stores

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia's state communications watchdog warned Apple and Google on Thursday that they could face fines if they fail to remove an app created by allies of jailed Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny from their stores. The agency, Roskomnadzor, warned Apple and Google that ...

EU pushes for more autonomy amid Afghanistan fallout

BRDO CASTLE, Slovenia (AP) — Still reeling from the European Union's shortcomings in Afghanistan, officials from the 27-nation bloc on Thursday discussed ways to improve their response to future crises and not be so reliant on the U.S. "Afghanistan has shown that the deficiency in our ...

China bans men it sees as not masculine enough from TV

BEIJING (AP) — China's government banned effeminate men on TV and told broadcasters Thursday to promote "revolutionary culture," broadening a campaign to tighten control over business and society and enforce official morality. President Xi Jinping has called for a "national rejuvenation," ...

Vaccines made in South Africa to stay in Africa, says envoy

KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) — Vaccine doses produced by a plant in South Africa will no longer be exported to Europe following the intervention of South Africa's government, the African Union's COVID-19 vaccine envoy said Thursday. South African drug manufacturer Aspen Pharmacare, which has a ...

Greek health care workers protest compulsory vaccinations

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Hundreds of Greek health care workers, accompanied by ambulances with sirens blaring, marched through central Athens on Thursday to protest regulations mandating coronavirus vaccines for anyone working in their sector. Under the regulation, which went into effect ...

Britain sends Australia 4 million Pfizer doses in swap deal

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Britain is rushing 4 million Pfizer doses to Australia, where authorities are scrambling to bolster supplies of that COVID-19 vaccine and protect the population against a rapidly spreading outbreak of the delta variant. The swap deal announced Friday follows ...

Merkel prepares to step down with legacy of tackling crises

BERLIN (AP) — Angela Merkel will leave office as one of modern Germany's longest-serving leaders and a global diplomatic heavyweight, with a legacy defined by her management of a succession of crises that shook a fragile Europe rather than any grand visions for her own country. In 16 years ...

Kim orders tougher virus steps after N. Korea shuns vaccines

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korean leader Kim Jong Un ordered officials to wage a tougher epidemic prevention campaign in "our style" after he turned down some foreign COVID-19 vaccines offered via the U.N.-backed immunization program. During a Politburo meeting Thursday, Kim said ...

Suga bows out of party vote, paves way for new Japan PM

TOKYO (AP) — Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said Friday he won't run for leadership of the governing party at the end of this month, paving the way for a new Japanese leader after just a year in office. Suga told reporters he had originally planned to run in the Sept. 29 race to lead his ...

Pope inadvertently quotes Putin to chide West’s Afghan war

MADRID (AP) — Pope Francis has criticized the West's two-decade-long involvement in Afghanistan as an outsider's attempt to impose democracy — although he did it by citing Russian President Vladimir Putin while thinking he was quoting German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Asked during a radio ...

More than 30 California children still stuck in Afghanistan

SAN DIEGO (AP) — More than 30 California children are stuck in Afghanistan after they traveled to the country to see their relatives weeks before the Taliban seized power and were unable to get out before U.S. forces left, according to school districts where the kids are enrolled. Officials ...

Leader says Belarus expects big shipment of Russian weapons

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — The authoritarian leader of Belarus said Wednesday that the country will soon receive a large batch of Russian weapons, including dozens of combat jets, helicopters and top-of-the-line air defense missile systems. President Alexander Lukashenko announced the expected ...

Mexico sees easing in its third wave of COVID-19 cases

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Israel Buendía sat up in the bed closest to the window, a machine forcing oxygen into his nose. He'd been at the Hospital Ajusco Medio for two weeks and now he was marveling at the sound of his own voice. Just last Friday, Buendía had felt good too. He bathed, walked the ...

‘It looked apocalyptic’: Crew describes Afghan departure

WASHINGTON (AP) — It looked like a zombie apocalypse. For the U.S. military pilots and aircrew about to make their final takeoffs out of Afghanistan, the sky was lit up with fireworks and sporadic gunfire and the airfield littered with battered shells of airplanes and destroyed equipment. ...