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In our news wrap Wednesday, President Trump hosted Polish President Andrzej Duda and announced plans to send 1,000 more U.S. troops to the former Soviet bloc state as part of a growing alliance. That’s on top of 4,500 Americans already stationed there. Also, Congo's Ebola outbreak has now claimed a life in Uganda, in addition to the nearly 1,400 people in Congo who have died since August.
Protesters in Hong Kong are promising more mass demonstrations after a day of violence. Police battle crowds taking a stand against a law that would enable extradition to mainland China.
Debi Edward of Independent Television News reports from Hong Kong.
This was the moment today's protest in Hong Kong turned nasty, the protesters engulfed in tear gas, as the police moved to disperse a demonstration which had brought part of the city to a standstill.
Such is the strength of opposition to an extradition treaty with China. Thousands took to the streets this Wednesday to derail a council debate on the new law.
Man (through translator):
Many Hong Kong people have come out to the protest today. And I'm sure there will be more of us in the coming weeks showing our opposition to this bill.
Tensions have been running high here since a mass march on Sunday. This wasn't on the same scale, but the largely student crowd showed a dogged determination.
There is now a thick, stinging fog of tear gas in the air, but these still protesters are determined to surge forward, chanting: "Quit the bill. Quit the bill."
As the afternoon wore on, the violence escalated, the police forced to retreat at times, but then regrouping to charge at the protesters, firing rubber bullets. Two people were seriously injured.
Hong Kong's chief executive condemned the trouble.
Again, I make this plea. Any violence will not be tolerated by our enforcement authorities, because tolerance of violence also gives rise to very adverse consequences.
Tonight, more riot police were brought in as the standoff continued. They are under orders to use everything at their disposal to end this protest, and not allow another occupation to take hold.
Debi Edward, ITV News, Hong Kong.
Later, Hong Kong officials postponed a hearing on the extradition proposal. In Washington, President Trump said he hopes that — quote — "It all works out for China and for Hong Kong."
Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives moved today to cite Attorney General William Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross for contempt of Congress. The Oversight Committee voted after both men refused to hand over documents on adding a citizenship question to the 2020 census. Hours earlier, President Trump claimed executive privilege for the documents.
Secretary Ross, in turn, accused the committee of bad faith. We will get the details after the news summary.
The president's older son, Donald Trump Jr., testified again today about a 2016 meeting with a Russian lawyer who allegedly promised dirt on Hillary Clinton. He went behind closed doors with the Senate Intelligence Committee. But he said he had — quote — "nothing to change" from his previous testimony.
And former White House Communications Director Hope Hicks agreed to talk to the House Judiciary Committee. She is the first former presidential aide to do so.
The president announced today that he will send 1,000 more U.S. troops to Poland as part of a growing alliance. That's on top of 4,500 Americans already stationed in the former Soviet Bloc state. Mr. Trump hosted Polish President Andrzej Duda, and praised him for spending more on defense , including housing the U.S. forces.
President Donald Trump:
Poland will still provide basing and infrastructure to support military presence of about 1,000 American troops. The Polish government will build these projects at no cost to the United States. The Polish government will pay for this.
Earlier, the presidents and first ladies watched an F-35 fighter jet fly over, after announcing that Poland will buy more than 30 of the planes.
In Israel, the prime minister's wife, Sara Netanyahu, agreed today to a plea bargain involving allegations of overspending on lavish meals. She will pay a $15,000 fine to close the case. Netanyahu was accused of using state funds to spend some $100,000 at luxury restaurants.
An ongoing Ebola outbreak in Central Africa has now claimed its first life in Uganda. The World Health Organization says a 5-year-old boy died there today after crossing from Congo earlier in the week. The outbreak has killed nearly 1,400 people in Congo since August.
Back in this country, a North Carolina man pleaded guilty to killing three Muslim college students at a Chapel Hill condo back in 2015. Craig Hicks entered the plea after prosecutors dropped plans to seek the death penalty. Instead, he accepted three consecutive life sentences. The victims' relatives said that it was a hate crime born of bigotry against Muslims.
A former Michigan State University dean, William Strampel, was convicted today of neglect of duty and misconduct. He was acquitted of sexual assault. Strampel oversaw sports doctor Larry Nassar, who admitted to molesting female athletes for years and who is now in prison. Prosecutors said Strampel willfully failed to monitor Nassar, even after being ordered to do so.
Still, his attorney claimed a partial victory.
We're happy with the fact that he was acquitted of the most serious charge of sexual assault. We respect the jury's decision in this case. We're disappointed that he was found guilty of any of these charges, but we will address the rest of this case at sentencing.
Strampel could face five years in prison when he is sentenced in July. Later in the program, we will hear reaction to the verdict from one of Larry Nassar's most prominent accusers.
The first person sentenced in a college admissions scam will not go to prison after all. Former Stanford sailing coach John Vandemoer was sentenced today to six months of home confinement and a $10,000 fine. He admitted taking money for the Stanford sailing program to help children of rich parents gain admission.
There's word that U.S. nursing homes are failing to report thousands of cases of neglect and abuse of Medicare patients. The inspector general for the Department of Health and Human Services estimates 6,600 cases went unreported in 2016 alone. Nursing facilities are required to report any abuse to state inspectors.
On Wall Street today, the Dow Jones industrial average lost 43 points to close at 26004. The Nasdaq fell 29 points. And the S&P 500 slipped five.
And it turns out people have been getting high on pot for at least 2,500 years. Archaeologists in far Western China say they have found the earliest direct evidence of marijuana use. It includes 10 wooden bowls containing burnt residue of pot, apparently used in burial rituals.
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