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News Wrap: Pakistan plans to release Indian pilot, with a warning

In our news wrap Thursday, Pakistan's prime minister, Imran Khan, said he will release a captured Indian pilot as a “peace gesture” but warned India against escalating the situation. Tensions over the disputed territory of Kashmir have reignited recently. Also, floodwaters in California are slowly receding after the Russian River burst its banks overnight, partly submerging homes and businesses.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    In the day's other news: President Trump's former personal attorney Michael Cohen was back on Capitol Hill for a third day. This time, he testified behind closed doors before the House Intelligence Committee.

    Earlier, before leaving the summit in Vietnam, President Trump blasted Cohen's public testimony from yesterday, with the exception of one part.

  • Donald Trump:

    I think having a fake hearing like that, and having it in the middle of this very important summit is really a terrible thing.

    He lied a lot, but it was very interesting because he didn't lie about one thing. He said no collusion with the Russian hoax.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Yesterday, Cohen testified that he was suspicious of coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia, but he acknowledged he didn't have any concrete proof.

    We will have more on Cohen's revelations later in the program.

    Israel's attorney general today took the highly unusual step of recommending an indictment of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on corruption charges. Netanyahu has denied wrongdoing, and called the move a — quote — "witch-hunt." We will take a close look at the allegations later in the program.

    In Pakistan, Prime Minister Imran Khan said that he will release a captured Indian pilot as a — quote — "peace gesture" toward India. Tensions between the two countries have reignited over the disputed territory of Kashmir. Khan made the announcement in an address to the Pakistani Parliament.

    But his peace overture didn't come without a warning.

  • Imran Khan:

    Today, I am telling India, don't take things further, because, whatever you will do, Pakistan will be compelled to retaliate. I also hope that the international community will play its part, so that the situation doesn't escalate.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Meanwhile, Indian officials welcomed Pakistan's announcement. But one Indian major general insisted that his forces will remain on guard for any further escalations along the international border, or I.B. Sector.

  • Maj. Gen. Surinder Singh Mahal:

    Our ground-based air defense weapons systems have been put on high alert. I wish to assure the nation that we are fully prepared and in a heightened state of readiness.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    This week's clashes between India and Pakistan were in retaliation for a suicide bombing earlier this month that killed 40 Indian soldiers in Indian-controlled Kashmir.

    Back in this country, floodwaters in California's wine country are slowly beginning to recede after days of heavy rainfall. Authorities discovered the body of a man in Ferndale who had been swept away in the deluge. Some 2,000 homes and businesses are partially underwater, after the Russian River burst its banks overnight. Local officials said the town of Guerneville has essentially become an island.

    New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft pled not guilty today to misdemeanor charges of soliciting prostitution. Kraft was among hundreds of men charged in a sting operation on a day spa in Jupiter, Florida. Law enforcement officials believe the facility was operating a sex-trafficking ring. The 77-year-old Kraft has requested a non-jury trial.

    Republican Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee today called for President Trump to reassess his national emergency declaration for a southern border wall. Alexander warned on the Senate floor that the act would weaken the separation of powers, and he suggested there are other ways to fund a wall. A yes-vote from Alexander would mean Democrats may have enough votes to block the declaration when it comes up for a Senate vote, but still not a large enough majority to override a presidential veto.

    The Senate today confirmed President Trump's nominee to run the Environmental Protection Agency, Andrew Wheeler. The vote was largely along party lines. Wheeler is a former coal lobbyist and had been serving as the agency's acting administrator. Former EPA head Scott Pruitt resigned in July over ethics concerns.

    Stocks were down on Wall Street today on word that the U.S. economy slowed at the end of last year and that jobless claims rose slightly last week. The Dow Jones industrial average lost 69 points to close at 25916. The Nasdaq fell 22 points, and the S&P 500 slipped eight.

    Still to come on the "NewsHour": a closer look at what went wrong at the second summit with the leader of North Korea; what Michael Cohen's testimony reveals about the Trump business organization; Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu faces criminal charges; the U.S. House passes the first major gun control legislation in decades; and much more.

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