In our news wrap Thursday, Iran dismissed President Trump’s claim it is planning an attack on U.S. targets in Iraq. On Twitter, Foreign Minister Javad Zarif wrote “Iran starts no wars, but teaches lessons to those who do.” Also, a Pakistani court has rejected the murder conviction of the accused mastermind in the 2002 killing of Daniel Pearl. Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh has already served 18 years.
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In the day's other news: Iran dismissed President Trump's claim that it is planning an attack on U.S. targets in Iraq.
On Twitter, Foreign Minister Javad Zarif wrote: "Iran starts no wars, but teaches lessons to those who do."
Mr. Trump said Wednesday that U.S. intelligence believes Iran and its proxies mean to strike in Iraq, but he gave no details.
A court in Pakistan has rejected the murder conviction of the accused mastermind in the Daniel Pearl killing. The Wall Street Journal reporter was kidnapped and beheaded in Pakistan in 2002. Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh has already served 18 years in prison, and could now be released. Prosecutors say they will appeal.
The top Democrat in the U.S. Congress called today for strict oversight of some $2.2 trillion in economic emergency relief spending during the pandemic. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced plans for creating a bipartisan committee. She said it would have subpoena power to guard against waste and price-gouging.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.:
We think that it would be very important, with transparency, bipartisanship, accountability, that we proceed all together in a way that unifies our country, addresses the concerns that we all have about the health and well-being of the American people, the safety of our workers who are meeting their needs, as well as the impact on our economy.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said this evening he doesn't believe that a new oversight committee is necessary.
Polio eradication efforts are being halted globally amid the coronavirus pandemic. The World Health Organization and its partners announced today that they have suspended vaccination campaigns for the next six months. Polio remains a problem in about a dozen countries.
Videoconferencing on the technical app Zoom has mushroomed during the pandemic. But its CEO had to apologize today for a series of security lapses. The FBI has warned of hackers invading school sessions on Zoom, and NASA and SpaceX have now banned all use of the service.
Zoom says that daily usage has jumped from 10 million people in December to 200 million now.
And the COVID-19 crisis claimed three music figures of note in the last 24 hours.
New Orleans jazz pianist Ellis Marsalis died at 85. His sons Wynton and Branford are also acclaimed musicians.
Emmy and Grammy winner Adam Schlesinger was a musician and songwriter. He was 52.
And jazz guitarist Bucky Pizzarelli backed musical legends from Benny Goodman to Paul McCartney. He was 94.