In our news wrap Friday, the CDC has lifted a pause on Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine. Officials in India, meanwhile, reported nearly 333,000 new cases today, and more than 2,200 deaths. President Joe Biden's global climate summit ended today, with a focus on giving up fossil fuels. And, California Governor Gavin Newsom says he will halt all new permits for oil and gas fracking in 2024.
A CDC panel is urging an end to the pause on using Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine. The group says the shots should include a warning about rare blood clots. It found 15 cases, three of them fatal, out of nearly eight million vaccinations. The CDC usually follows the committee's recommendations.
Meanwhile, the agency's director warned of vaccination gaps in parts of the country. She also encouraged pregnant women to be immunized.
Dr. Rochelle Walensky:
No safety concerns were observed for people vaccinated in the third trimester or safety concerns for their babies. As such, CDC recommends that pregnant people receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
We will talk to infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci after the news summary.
An explosion of COVID infections in India forced urgent action today. Officials reported nearly 333,000 new cases in just 24 hours and more than 2,200 deaths. The government shipped oxygen tanks on special express trains, as hospitals appealed for help. Some threatened to halt new admissions.
President Biden's climate summit ended today with a focus on giving up fossil fuels. The virtual session included world leaders, as well as billionaires Bill Gates and Michael Bloomberg and others. They talked of major spending on innovation and renewable energy. Mr. Biden cast it as a way to generate jobs.
Pres. Joe Biden:
Today's final session is not about the threat that climate change poses. It's about the opportunity that addressing climate change provides, people working in the fields that we haven't even conceived of yet on forms — on farms and on factories and in laboratories and universities, the things we haven't even thought of so far.
The summit nations will meet again for formal negotiations in November.
California Governor Gavin Newsom says that he will halt all new permits for oil and gas fracking in 2024. The process involves hydraulic fracturing of underground rock, and environmental groups oppose it. Newsom also ordered regulators today to plan for ending all oil production in California by 2045.
Some 130 migrants bound for Europe are feared dead after capsizing off Libya. It happened Wednesday in the Mediterranean Sea northeast of Tripoli, the Libyan capital city. A French rescue ship found an overturned rubber boat on Thursday. Rescue groups say that 350 migrants have drowned off Libya since the year began.
In Jerusalem, Israeli police arrested 44 people overnight in clashes with Palestinians and Jewish extremists. Security forces fired stun grenades and water cannon at crowds protesting restrictions on their gathering during Ramadan. Nearby, far-right Jewish nationalists fought with police at an anti-Arab rally.
Russian dissident Alexei Navalny is ending a 24-day hunger strike in prison. In an online post today, he said that he has now received medical care from independent doctors, as he had demanded. His own doctors had warned that his health was failing, and they urged him to stop the hunger strike.
Back in this country, a Pentagon panel recommended that independent authorities take over decisions about prosecuting troops for sexual assault. Commanders have always made those decisions, and the military has opposed any change.
A spokesman says that Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin will sound out service leaders on the proposals.
He wants the services to have a chance to look at them and give him his feedback. He obviously will be taking all those inputs seriously as he weighs next steps.
Reports of sexual assaults have risen steadily since 2006.
President Biden has made plans for his first overseas trip since taking office. The White House says he will attend the Group of Seven summit in England in June. From there, he will go to Brussels to meet with leaders of the European Union and NATO.
And on Wall Street today, stocks made up some lost ground. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 227 points to close at 34043. The Nasdaq rose 198 points. The S&P 500 added 45.
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