Trump bid to restore travel ban rejected

The US federal appeals court has rejected the Trump administration’s request to reinstate a travel ban blocked by a federal judge on Friday. The late night ruling means the travel ban will remain suspended until the full case has been heard. The court gave the White House and the states challenging it a deadline of Monday to present more arguments. Two states argued that the travel ban, affecting people from seven mainly-Muslim countries, was unconstitutional. In its appeal, the Justice Department said Judge James Robart had overreached by “second guessing”…

Read More

Trump fires Sally Yates after acting US attorney general contradicted travel ban

Donald Trump has fired the acting US attorney general after she told justice department lawyers not to defend his executive order banning entry for people from seven Muslim-majority countries. The White House said on Monday that Sally Yates had “betrayed” the department by refusing to enforce a legal order that was “designed to protect the citizens of the United States”. Trump drafted in Dana Boente, US attorney for the eastern district of Virginia, to replace Yates as acting attorney general. The president’s official appointee, anti-immigration hardliner Senator Jeff Sessions, is…

Read More

Trump Replaces Acting Director of Immigration Enforcement

President Donald Trump replaced the acting director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement on Monday night, shortly after he fired the acting attorney general, the Department of Homeland Security confirmed. Unlike the firing of Acting Attorney General Sally Yates, the replacement of Acting ICE Director Daniel Ragsdale came with no explanation. Ragsdale was replaced by Thomas Homan, ICE’s executive associate director of enforcement and removal operations since 2013. “I am confident that he will continue to serve as a strong, effective leader for the men and women of ICE,” John…

Read More

Trump sacks defiant acting attorney general Sally Yates

Donald Trump has fired the acting US attorney general after she questioned the legality of his immigration ban. Sally Yates, who was appointed by Barack Obama, ordered justice department lawyers not to enforce the president’s executive order. A White House statement accused Ms Yates of “betraying” the justice department and being “weak on borders”. Mr Trump replaced her with Dana Boente, US attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia. Mr Boente said he was “honoured to serve President Trump” and immediately directed his department to enforce the controversial order. Mr…

Read More

Rigopiano Hotel avalanche: Puppies raise rescuers’ hopes in Italy

Three puppies have been rescued alive from the ruins of a mountain hotel in Abruzzo, central Italy, which was engulfed by an avalanche five days ago. The number of confirmed deaths has risen to seven, with 22 people still missing, but there are hopes people may have survived in air pockets. Nine people were brought out alive while two were found outside the hotel. Rescuers using shovels and saws are considering whether to start using heavy equipment on the buried ruins. Details have emerged of the situation at the hotel…

Read More

White House vows to fight media ‘tooth and nail’ over Trump coverage

The White House vowed on Sunday to fight the news media “tooth and nail” over what it sees as unfair attacks, with a top adviser saying the Trump administration had presented “alternative facts” to counter low inauguration crowd estimates. On his first full day as president, Trump said he had a “running war” with the media and accused journalists of underestimating the number of people who turned out Friday for his swearing-in. White House officials made clear no truce was on the horizon on Sunday in television interviews that set…

Read More

Trump’s ‘alternative facts’: Why the row about inauguration ‘lies’?

He has only been president for a few days – but already Donald Trump and his team are locked in a new dispute with US news organisations. The row over the coverage of his inauguration has provided the first indication of what Mr Trump’s relationship with the media will be like. And it has amazed even some of the most seasoned political commentators. What is the argument about? Photos showed more people had attended the swearing-in ceremony of Barack Obama in 2009 than Mr Trump’s inauguration on Friday. The number…

Read More

George Soros: Trump is an imposter

“An imposter, a [political] conman and a would-be dictator,” is the verdict of billionaire investor George Soros on Donald Trump. Speaking to a packed audience at his annual dinner at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Mr Soros said he was confident Mr Trump’s powers would be limited by Congress. “He won’t be able to get away [with being a dictator],” he added. Ultimately, Mr Soros said he expected Mr Trump to fail. “The ideas that guide him are fundamentally contradictory. He has three chiefs of staff instead of one…

Read More

Larsen ice crack continues to open up

The crack that looks set to spawn a giant iceberg in the Antarctic has continued to spread. The rift in the Larsen C Ice Shelf has grown a further 10km since 1 January. If the fissure propagates just 20km more, it will free a tabular berg one-quarter the size of Wales. That would make it one of the biggest icebergs ever recorded, according to researchers at Swansea and Aberystwyth universities, and the British Antarctic Survey. News of the lengthening crack in the 350m-thick floating ice shelf on the eastern side…

Read More