In our news wrap Thursday, four Democratic governors from the Northeast have announced a coalition on gun control, dubbed States for Gun Safety. They say they want to intercept illegal guns and share intelligence. Also, former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort and aide Rick Gates face an updated indictment by the special counsel in the Russia probe.
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The bombing attacks have been relentless. The regime wants to keep bombing and gassing these 400,000 people, and the Assad regime is counting on Russia to make sure the Security Council is unable to stop their suffering.
Meanwhile, the Syrian army urged people to leave the eastern Ghouta suburbs outside Damascus, and demanded that rebels surrender.
In Nigeria, parents say an attack on a school has left more than 100 girls missing. That’s twice the official count. Boko Haram extremists attacked the school in Northern Yobe State on Monday evening. The girls haven’t been seen since. Four years ago, the militants kidnapped 276 schoolgirls from the town of Chibok.
North Korea today named a provocative leader named a provocative leader for its delegation to the Winter Olympics’ closing ceremonies in South Korea. Kim Yong-chol allegedly planned an attack on a South Korean warship that killed 46 sailors in 2010.
Meanwhile, Vice President Pence defended not standing for the North Korean anthem at the Olympics two weeks ago. He also declined to acknowledge the North Korean leader’s sister, who was seated behind him. Pence appeared at a conservative gathering outside Washington, and said he has no apologies.
Vice President Mike Pence:
The sister of Kim Jong-un is a central pillar of the most tyrannical and oppressive regime on the planet. So, for all those in the media who think I should have stood and cheered with the North Koreans, I say the United States of America doesn’t stand with murderous dictatorships. We stand up to murderous dictatorships.
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
Mr. Pence’s office said this week that he’d agreed to meet with North Korean officials during the Games, but that the North canceled. Pyongyang has denied that they agreed to a meeting.
Missouri’s Republican Governor Eric Greitens was indicted today for invasion of privacy. It stems from an extramarital affair in 2015 that he has admitted to having. Greitens alleged used a compromising photo of the woman and threatened to blackmail her if she talked about the relationship.
A third state lawmaker has resigned in California over sexual misconduct allegations. State Senator Tony Mendoza stepped down today before the legislature, controlled by fellow Democrats, could expel him. An investigation alleged that he made unwanted advances to six women. Mendoza charged he’d been sacrificed to appease the MeToo movement.
A Florida eye doctor was sentenced today to 17 years in federal prison for Medicare fraud totaling $73 million. Salomon Melgen has once been the nation’s highest-paid Medicare doctor. He had also been accused of bribing New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez, but a separate Menendez trial ended in a hung jury.
And on Wall Street, stocks were mostly higher despite a late-day sell-off. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 164 points to close at 24962. The Nasdaq fell eight points, and the S&P 500 added two.
And at the Winter Games today, a long drought ended for American women. The U.S. women’s hockey team defeated Canada for the gold medal, their first since 1998. American David Wise took the gold in men’s freestyle skiing half-pipe. And U.S. skier Mikaela Shiffrin was silver medalist in the women’s alpine combined.