“I am sending my resignation letter to the Legislative Assembly of Bolivia,” the 60-year-old socialist leader said, portraying his departure as the culmination of a “coup d’etat.”
He added: “I ask you to stop attacking the brothers and sisters, stop burning and attacking.”
Before Morales had even finished his statement, people began honking their car horns in La Paz and other cities and took to the streets to celebrate, waving Bolivian flags and setting off fireworks.
AP: Thousands face life-threatening floods from aging dams
On a cold morning last March, Kenny Angel got a frantic knock on his door. Two workers from a utility company in northern Nebraska had come with a stark warning: Get out of your house.
Just a little over a quarter-mile upstream, the 92-year-old Spencer Dam was straining to contain the swollen, ice-covered Niobrara River after an unusually intense snow and rainstorm. The workers had tried but failed to force open the dam’s frozen wooden spillway gates. So, fearing the worst, they fled in their truck, stopping to warn Angel before driving away without him.
Minutes later, the dam came crashing down, unleashing a wave of water carrying ice chunks the size of cars. Angel’s home was wiped away; his body was never found.
“He had about a 5-minute notice, with no prior warning the day before,” Scott Angel, one of Kenny’s brothers, said.
State inspectors had given the dam a “fair” rating less than a year earlier. Until it failed, it looked little different from thousands of others across the U.S. — and that could portend a problem.
In memoir, Haley alleges disloyalty among some on Trump team
NEW YORK — President Donald Trump’s former U.N. ambassador, Nikki Haley , alleges in her upcoming memoir that two administration officials who were ultimately pushed out by Trump once tried to get her to join them in opposing some of his policies.
In “With All Due Respect,” Haley said then-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and then-White House chief of staff John Kelly told her that they were trying to “save the country.” Haley writes that she was “shocked” by the request, made during a closed-door meeting, and thought they were only trying to put their own imprint on his policies.
“Kelly and Tillerson confided in me that when they resisted the president, they weren’t being insubordinate, they were trying to save the country,” Haley wrote. “It was their decisions, not the president’s, that were in the best interests of America, they said. The president didn’t know what he was doing. ... Tillerson went on to tell me the reason he resisted the president’s decisions was because, if he didn’t, people would die.”
The former South Carolina governor said the meeting lasted more than an hour and that they never raised the issue to her again.
Haley’s book comes out Tuesday. The Associated Press purchased an early copy.
Far right surges amid Socialist win in Spain
MADRID — Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez’s Socialists won Spain’s national election on Sunday but large gains by the upstart far-right Vox party appear certain to widen the political deadlock in the European Union’s fifth-largest economy.
After a fourth national ballot in as many years and the second in less than seven months, the left-wing Socialists held on as the leading power in the national parliament. With 99.9% of the votes counted, the Socialists captured 120 seats, down three seats from the last election in April and still far from the absolute majority of 176 needed to form a government alone.
The big political shift came as right-wing voters flocked to Vox, which only had broken into Parliament in the spring for the first time. Sunday’s outcome means there will be no immediate end to the stalemate between forces on the right and the left in Spain, suggesting the country could go many more weeks or even months without a new government.
The far-right party led by 43-year-old Santiago Abascal, who speaks of “reconquering” Spain in terms that echo the medieval wars between Christian and Moorish forces, rocketed from 24 to 52 seats. That will make Vox the third leading party in the Congress of Deputies, giving it much more leverage in forming a government and crafting legislation.
The party has vowed to be much tougher on both Catalan separatists and migrants.
UN mission in Iraq proposes roadmap for ending upheaval
BAGHDAD — The United Nations’ mission for Iraq on Sunday proposed a roadmap out of the country’s social upheaval, while Amnesty International said Iraq’s crackdown on anti-government protests has descended into a “bloodbath.”
At least 319 protesters have been killed by security forces since the economically driven protests and unrest began last month, according to the latest figures from the Iraqi Human Rights Commission released Sunday.
Iraqi security forces put up concrete barriers in central Baghdad in an effort to hamper and block the movement of protesters. The measures come after security forces last Monday violently cleared demonstrators from three flashpoint bridges in central Baghdad. By the end of the day, six anti-government protesters were killed more than 100 wounded.
The widening security crackdown reflects government intransigence and narrowing options for protesters who have been on the streets of Baghdad and the mainly Shiite south’s cities for weeks. Authorities shut down internet access and blocked social media sites several times amid the demonstrations.
The leaderless protests are targeting Iraq’s entire political class and calling for the overhaul of the sectarian system established after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion. Security forces have used live ammunition, rubber bullets and tear gas in an effort to quell the protests.
Iran discovers new oil field with over 50 billion barrels
TEHRAN, Iran — Iran has discovered a new oil field in the country’s south with over 50 billion barrels of crude, its president said Sunday, a find that could boost the country’s proven reserves by a third as it struggles to sell energy abroad over U.S. sanctions.
The announcement by Hassan Rouhani comes as Iran faces crushing American sanctions after the U.S. pulled out of its nuclear deal with world powers last year.
Rouhani made the announcement in a speech in the desert city of Yazd. He said the field was located in Iran’s southern Khuzestan province, home to its crucial oil industry.
Some 53 billion barrels would be added to Iran’s proven reserves of roughly 150 billion, he said.
“I am telling the White House that in the days when you sanctioned the sale of Iranian oil and pressured our nation, the country’s dear workers and engineers were able to discover 53 billion barrels of oil in a big field,” Rouhani said.
Watergate redux? Trump impeachment inquiry heads for live TV
Back in 1973, tens of millions of Americans tuned in to what Variety called “the hottest daytime soap opera” — the Senate Watergate hearings that eventually led to President Richard Nixon’s resignation.
It was a communal experience, and by some estimates, more than 80% of Americans tuned in to at least part of the Watergate telecasts. They were offered by ABC, CBS and NBC, as well as PBS, which won acclaim and viewers by showing not only the live hearings but also the full-length replays in prime time.
Seeing the witnesses lay out the case against the president moved public opinion decidedly in favor of impeachment.
But this time may be different.
When the House impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump begins its public phase on Wednesday, people will be watching on screens large and small. Many, in fact, are likely to be watching the proceedings on more than one screen, with real-time reinforcement of their preexisting views of Trump on social media platforms and other venues that did not exist in Nixon’s time.
Justices take up high-profile case over young immigrants
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court is taking up the Trump administration’s plan to end legal protections that shield 660,000 immigrants from deportation, a case with strong political overtones amid the 2020 presidential election campaign.
All eyes will be on Chief Justice John Roberts when the court hears arguments Tuesday. Roberts is the conservative justice closest to the court’s center who also is keenly aware of public perceptions of an ideologically divided court.
It’s the third time in three years that the administration is asking the justices to rescue a controversial policy that has been blocked by several lower courts.
The court sided with President Donald Trump in allowing him to enforce the travel ban on visitors from some majority Muslim countries, but it blocked the administration from adding a citizenship question to the 2020 census.
Roberts was the only member of the court in the majority both times, siding with four conservatives on the travel ban and four liberals in the census case. His vote could be decisive a third time, as well.
Members of community attacked in Mexico doubt they’ll return
PHOENIX — A Utah man who helped get his mother and other family members safely out of northern Mexico after nine people were killed in an apparent ambush said Sunday that most fled to Arizona with whatever they could fit in their cars and trucks and they’ll likely never return.
More than 100 people left their rural community in northern Mexico on Saturday in an 18-vehicle caravan after the attack Monday in which nine women and children were killed by what authorities say were hit men from drug cartels.
“I went down there to get my mother and get my family out, my brothers and sisters and lots of kids,” Mike Hafen said Sunday in telephone interview from his sister’s home in Phoenix.
“They’ve been down there for 47 years. They left with the bare minimum, whatever they could fit in the back of my pickup,” Hafen added. “After 47 years of living, they almost had to walk away from everything.”
Hafen said many of his family and friends think they’ll never return to Mexico because of the drug cartels.
Pacific bird refuge struggles as ocean garbage patch grows
MIDWAY ATOLL, Northwestern Hawaiian Islands — Flying into the uninhabited Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, Midway Atoll appears out of the vast blue Pacific as a tiny oasis of coral-fringed land with pristine white sand beaches that are teeming with life.
But on the ground, there’s a different scene: plastic, pollution and death.
With virtually no predators, Midway is a haven for many species of seabirds and is home to the largest colony of albatross in the world.
But Midway is also at the center of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a vast area of floating plastic collected by circulating oceanic currents. The Hawaiian Islands act like a comb that gathers debris as it floats across the Pacific. A recent analysis found that the patch is accumulating debris at a faster rate than scientists previously thought.
Midway is littered with bird skeletons that have brightly colored plastic protruding from their decomposing bellies. Bottle caps, toothbrushes and cigarette lighters sit in the centers of their feathery carcasses.
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