Cruise ship rescues 68 migrants, finds 5 bodies in boat adrift in Atlantic

MADRID — A cruise ship rescued 68 migrants and found five bodies in a traditional fishing boat that was drifting off the Canary Islands in the Atlantic Ocean, Spain’s maritime rescue agency said Thursday. It said an oil tanker traveling from northwestern Spain to Brazil spotted the drifting boat on Wednesday afternoon about 815 kilometers south of Tenerife, one of the seven islands in the Canaries archipelago. Spanish authorities diverted the Insignia, a cruise ship, to rescue the migrants. The Insignia crew also recovered three of the five bodies on the fishing boat. The remains of two people were left at sea because of bad weather hampering their recovery. The canoe-shaped boats, known as pirogues, are used by fishermen in Mauritania and Senegal. It is unusual for cruise ships to make rescues of migrants on the Atlantic route, but the pirogue “was a long way out and they could be in danger,” said a maritime rescue’s spokesperson, speaking on condition of anonymity under departmental rules. One of the passengers on the cruise ship, Steve Dilbeck from Huntington Beach, California, said they were not told about the dead. “They did say the boat had been at sea for 20 days,” Dilbeck told The Associated Press in a text message. “We were diverted in the evening and took us two hours to reach them. They were brought on board and placed in the Insignia Lounge, which is where they have all their shows.” “The area has been closed off to passengers. Told they had them remove their clothes and put on jumpsuits. Then they asked passengers if they had shoes and clothes they could donate, particularly for men. Their announcement said 62 were men, with the rest women and children,” he added. The Marshall Islands-flagged Insignia had left Mindelo, a port city in Cape Verde, on Tuesday. Its operator, Miami-based Oceania Cruises, did not immediately comment on the rescue. The Spanish rescue agency emailed a statement saying the Insignia is expected to arrive on Friday at the port of Santa Cruz, Tenerife. The Canary Islands is a destination for boats packed with migrants departing from northwestern Africa on a perilous Atlantic route in search of a better life in Europe. Spain’s Interior Ministry says a record 55,618 migrants arrived by boat — most of them in the Canary Islands — last year, almost double the number of the previous year. More than 23,000 … “Cruise ship rescues 68 migrants, finds 5 bodies in boat adrift in Atlantic”

Russia-North Korea defense pact moves military cooperation out of shadows

washington — A new defense pact signed between Russia and North Korea this week publicly laid out Moscow’s willingness to engage in full-fledged military cooperation with Pyongyang, in contrast to their denials prior to the summit, analysts said. Before Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Pyongyang for a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Wednesday, it was already widely believed that Moscow was transferring military technology to Pyongyang for weapons upgrades. In 2023, North Korea launched the solid-fuel Hwasong-18 missile for the first time. After analyzing the shape and color of the smoke at the tail of the missile, experts said these technologies appeared to have come from Russia. At the same time, U.S. and other officials have accused North Korea of providing Russia with large quantities of conventional munitions for its war in Ukraine. In September, Kim showed an interest in various military assets during his tour of Russia’s satellite launch site, fighter jet factory, and Pacific Fleet equipped with nuclear-capable bombers and hypersonic missiles. Both Russia and North Korea denied any arms dealings between them prior to Putin’s visit to Pyongyang. It is still uncertain exactly what types of military technology Moscow could provide Pyongyang. But at the summit, Moscow made explicit its willingness to prop up Pyongyang’s military in return for continued flow of munitions to use against Ukraine, according to Bruce Bechtol Jr., a former intelligence officer at the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency and now a professor at Angelo State University in Texas. In the Treaty of Comprehensive Strategic Partnership signed between Putin and Kim at their summit, the two agreed to set up “mechanisms” for undertaking “measures” for “strengthening the defense capabilities.” They also agreed to develop and cooperate in the areas of science and technology, including space. At a joint press conference following their summit, Putin said Moscow “does not rule out developing military and technical cooperation” with Pyongyang as agreed on in the pact in response to the U.S. and other NATO countries’ allowing weapons that they supplied to Ukraine being used against targets inside Russia. Kim and Putin also agreed in the treaty to intervene militarily if either North Korea or Russia is invaded. But Bechtol said the most significant part of the treaty “is military cooperation.” “We’re not going to invade North Korea. We’re not going to invade Russia. It’s all about the military cooperation, the arms deals” that have … “Russia-North Korea defense pact moves military cooperation out of shadows”

Fire kills 11 in southeastern Turkey

ANKARA, Turkey — A fire that apparently started in crop stubble spread through settlements in southeast Turkey overnight, killing 11 people and leaving dozens of others requiring medical treatment, officials and news reports said Friday. In neighboring Greece, authorities evacuated several villages in the southern Peloponnese region because of wildfires. The blaze in Turkey broke out in an area between the provinces of Diyarbakir and Mardin. Fanned by winds, it moved quickly through the villages of Koksalan, Yazcicegi and Bagacik, Diyarbakir Gov. Ali Ihsan Su said. The fire was brought under control early Friday. Health Minister Fahrettin Koca posted on X that 11 people were killed. Around 80 others required treatment, including six who were in serious condition. Justice Minister Yilmaz Tunc said that authorities have launched an investigation into the cause of the fire, which lit up the night sky. Residents believe the blaze was caused by sparks from a power line that set crop residue ablaze, according to independent news website Gazete Duvar. Some of the hospitalized people were villagers who tried to extinguish the fire, it said. Hundreds of farm animals also perished in the fire, according to news channel HaberTurk. Across the country in northwest Turkey, meanwhile, firefighters were battling a wildfire near the town of Ayvacik in Canakkale province, the state-run Anadolu Agency said. No one was hurt, but authorities evacuated the small village of Camkoy as a precaution, the agency reported. It was one of several wildfires that have erupted in the province of Canakkale in the past week amid high winds and scorching summer temperatures. Wildfires also erupted in Greece amid very windy, hot and dry conditions. About a dozen villages or settlements were ordered evacuated as a precaution because of wildfires in the southern Peloponnese region. There were no immediate reports of injuries. State-run ERT television reported at least six homes burned in one southern village that had been safely evacuated in advance. Firefighters on the ground were assisted by water-dropping aircraft. The greater Athens region was on the top wildfire emergency footing Friday because of the weather forecast, with bans on entering forests and parks. A fire in Saronida, south of the Greek capital, was brought under control in the evening. The fire service said late Friday that 64 wildfires had broken out around the country in the previous 24 hours.  …

UK’s richest family convicted of exploiting staff at Swiss villa 

geneva — A Swiss court handed jail sentences Friday to four members of Britain’s richest family, the Hindujas, branding them “selfish” for exploiting Indian staff at their Geneva mansion. Lawyers for the members of the Swiss-Indian family — who were not present in court — said they would appeal the verdict. The defendants were acquitted of human trafficking but convicted on other charges in a stunning verdict for the family, whose fortune is estimated at 37 billion pounds ($47 billion) by The Sunday Times of London. Prakash Hinduja, 78, and his wife, Kamal Hinduja, 75, each got four years, six months, while their son, Ajay, 56, and his wife, Namrata, 50, received four-year terms, the presiding judge in Geneva ruled. They were convicted of “usury” for having taken advantage of their vulnerable immigrant staff to pay them a pittance. “The employees’ inexperience was exploited,” Judge Sabina Mascotto said in her judgment. “They had little education or none at all and had no knowledge of their rights. “The defendants’ motives were selfish,” she said, adding that the Hindujas were motivated “by the desire for gain.” The court acquitted them of the more serious charge of human trafficking, on the ground that the workers had traveled to Switzerland willingly. $363 salary During the trial, the Hindujas were accused of bringing servants from their native India and confiscating their passports once they got to Switzerland.  Prosecutor Yves Bertossa accused the Hindujas of spending “more on their dog than on their domestic employees.” The family paid the household staff about 325 francs ($363) a month, up to 90 percent less than the going rate, the judge said. “The four Hinduja defendants knew the weak position their employees were in and knew the law in Switzerland,” Mascotto said. The family denied the allegations, claiming the prosecutors wanted to “do in the Hindujas.” They had reached a confidential out-of-court settlement with the three employees who made the accusations against them, leading them to drop their legal action, said the defense. Despite this, the prosecution decided to pursue the case because of the seriousness of the charges. Following the verdict, Bertossa requested an immediate detention order for Ajay and Namrata Hinduja, claiming they were flight risks. The judged denied it, accepting the defense argument that the family had ties to Switzerland. It noted that Kamal Hinduja was hospitalized in Monaco and the three other family members were at … “UK’s richest family convicted of exploiting staff at Swiss villa “

Trump departs from anti-immigrant rhetoric with green card proposal

Miami, florida — Former President Donald Trump said in an interview posted Thursday he wants to give automatic green cards to foreign students who graduate from U.S. colleges, a sharp departure from the anti-immigrant rhetoric he typically uses on the campaign trail. Trump was asked about plans for companies to be able to import the “best and brightest” in a podcast taped Wednesday with venture capitalists and tech investors called the “All-In.” “What I want to do, and what I will do is, you graduate from a college, I think you should get automatically as part of your diploma a green card to be able to stay in this country. And that includes junior colleges, too, anybody graduates from a college. You go there for two years or four years,” he said, vowing to address this concern on day one if he is elected president in November. Immigration has been Trump’s signature issue during his 2024 bid to return to the White House. His suggestion that he would offer green cards — documents that confer a pathway to U.S. citizenship — to potentially hundreds of thousands of foreign graduates would represent a sweeping expansion of America’s immigration system that sharply diverges from his most common messages on foreigners. Trump often says during his rallies that immigrants who are in the country illegally endanger public safety and steal jobs and government resources. He once suggested that they are “poisoning the blood of our country.” He has promised to carry out the largest deportation operation in U.S. history if elected. Trump and his allies often say they distinguish between people entering illegally versus legally. But during his administration, Trump also proposed curbs on legal immigration such as family-based visas and the visa lottery program. Right after taking office in 2017, he issued his “Buy American and Hire American” executive order, directing Cabinet members to suggest reforms to ensure that business visas were awarded only to the highest-paid or most-skilled applicants to protect American workers. He has previously said the H1-B program commonly used by companies to hire foreign workers temporarily — a program he has used in the past — was “very bad” and used by tech companies to get foreign workers for lower pay. During the conversation with “All-In,” Trump blamed the coronavirus pandemic for being unable to implement these measures while he was president. He said he knew of stories of … “Trump departs from anti-immigrant rhetoric with green card proposal”

Judge dismisses Nevada fake elector case over venue question

las vegas, nevada — A Nevada judge dismissed an indictment Friday against six Republicans accused of submitting certificates to the U.S. Congress falsely declaring Donald Trump the winner of the state’s 2020 presidential election. Nevada was one of four states with criminal charges pending against so-called fake electors. Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford stood after Clark County District Judge Mary Kay Holthus ruled that Las Vegas was the wrong venue for the case and said he’d take the case to the state Supreme Court. “The judge got it wrong, and we’ll be appealing immediately,” Ford, a Democrat, told reporters, declining additional comment. Defense attorneys bluntly declared the case dead, saying that to bring it now before another grand jury in another venue such as Nevada’s capital of Carson City would violate a three-year statute of limitations that expired last December. “They’re done,” said Margaret McLetchie, attorney for Clark County Republican Party chairman Jesse Law, one of the defendants in the case. ‘Society is the victim’ The judge called off the trial, which had been scheduled for January, for defendants who included state GOP chairman Michael McDonald; national party committee member Jim DeGraffenreid; national and Douglas County committee member Shawn Meehan; Storey County clerk Jim Hindle; and Eileen Rice, a party member from the Lake Tahoe area. Each was accused of offering a false instrument for filing and uttering a forged instrument — felonies carrying a penalty of up to four or five years in prison. Defense attorneys led by McDonald’s lawyer, Richard Wright, contended that Ford improperly brought the case before a grand jury in Las Vegas — Nevada’s largest and most Democratic-leaning city — instead of Carson City or Reno, northern Nevada cities in a more Republican region where the alleged crimes occurred. Challenged by Holthus to respond, Deputy State Attorney General Matthew Rashbrook argued that “no one county contains the entirety of these crimes.” “Society is the victim of these crimes,” the prosecutor said. “Voters who would have been disenfranchised by these acts … would have been victims of these crimes.” But the judge decided that even though McDonald and Law live in Las Vegas, “everything took place up north.” After the court hearing, Hindle’s attorney, Brian Hardy, declined to comment on calls from advocacy groups for his client to resign from his elected position as overseer of elections in Story County. Meehan is the only defendant not to … “Judge dismisses Nevada fake elector case over venue question”

Georgia tries to reconcile contested Soviet history with Western future

Georgians are preparing for elections this year amid fears in the West that the government is straying from the country’s ambition to join the European Union. The nation appears to be caught in a struggle to reconcile its turbulent past with its West-aligned future. Henry Ridgwell reports. …

Half a million Ukrainians in frontline city of Mykolaiv suffer through 3rd year without clean water

Going into a third year of war, life without clean water has become routine for nearly half a million residents of Ukraine’s frontline city of Mykolaiv. At the beginning of Russia’s full-scale invasion, Russian forces destroyed the water distribution system. As Lesia Bakalets reports, the city has been looking for ways to restore it since then. Video: Vladyslav Smilianets …

US charity sends medical help to Ukraine’s frontline towns

Since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, U.S. humanitarian group Project HOPE has provided aid to Ukrainian health clinics and residents of the country’s frontline towns and villages. Yaroslava Movchan has the story, narrated by Anna Rice. Videographer: Dmytro Hlushko. …

Ukraine to receive new Swedish combat vehicles by 2026

The Netherlands is investing more than 420 million dollars to build Swedish-designed combat vehicles for Ukraine. The Dutch expect to deliver the tanks by 2026, according to Defense News, to add to those already proving effective on the front lines. Anna Kosstutschenko has the story. Cameras and edit: Pavel Suhodolskiy …

China’s top prosecutor urges officials to focus on illicit drug trafficking

BEIJING — China’s top prosecutor urged law enforcement officials across the country on Friday to focus efforts on combating drug trafficking, capping a week in which Beijing and Washington announced a rare joint counternarcotics investigation. The Supreme People’s Procuratorate published “six typical cases,” involving actions ranging from postal fraud to medical professionals selling illicit drugs on the side, and clarified the legal application standards to handle such cases. The prosecutor said in a statement that the release was meant to show its “determination and attitude to intensify efforts to crack down on related crimes, while hoping that this batch of typical cases will serve as a warning to the society.” The United States and China held high-level counternarcotics talks on Thursday following a breakthrough in bilateral cooperation this week in which both sides went after a major drug-linked money laundering operation. The United States, where fentanyl abuse has been a major cause of death, has pushed China for deeper law enforcement cooperation, including tackling illicit finance and further controls on the chemicals that can be used to make fentanyl. These chemicals are often shipped to the U.S. and other destinations from China using mail packages that have unverifiable addresses or are mislabeled, experts say. The U.S. Postal Service has for years struggled with the problem. One of the examples highlighted in the prosecutor’s note on Friday involved a case of a Chinese buyer, surnamed Yan, purchasing date-rape drug triazolam from overseas and then selling it in China by mail using mislabeled packaging. As a result, “the procuratorate issued a procuratorial suggestion to the postal administration department…urging the regulatory department to fulfill its main responsibility and perform its duties conscientiously.” The postal administration then “urged the company to make timely rectifications,” the prosecutor said. The note said “the procuratorate invited nearly 100 couriers and college students to attend the trial, focusing on the new characteristics and new forms of new drug cases to carry out anti-drug law publicity.” Postal fraud was briefly mentioned in the opening remarks by Rahul Gupta, director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, who on Thursday held talks in Beijing with China’s minister of public security, Wang Xiaohong. Gupta said it was among the “areas where we’re both being negatively impacted,” listing it alongside illicit finance, “illegal drug trafficking and use, and the emergence of new and more dangerous drugs.” …

US and China hold first informal nuclear talks in 5 years, eyeing Taiwan

HONG KONG — The United States and China resumed semi-official nuclear arms talks in March for the first time in five years, with Beijing’s representatives telling U.S. counterparts that they would not resort to atomic threats over Taiwan, according to two American delegates who attended. The Chinese representatives offered reassurances after their U.S. interlocutors raised concerns that China might use, or threaten to use, nuclear weapons if it faced defeat in a conflict over Taiwan. Beijing views the democratically governed island as its territory, a claim rejected by the government in Taipei. “They told the U.S. side that they were absolutely convinced that they are able to prevail in a conventional fight over Taiwan without using nuclear weapons,” said scholar David Santoro, the U.S. organizer of the Track Two talks, the details of which are being reported by Reuters for the first time. Participants in Track Two talks are generally former officials and academics who can speak with authority on their government’s position, even if they are not directly involved with setting it. Government-to-government negotiations are known as Track One.   Washington was represented by about half a dozen delegates, including former officials and scholars at the two-day discussions, which took place in a Shanghai hotel conference room.   Beijing sent a delegation of scholars and analysts, which included several former People’s Liberation Army officers. A State Department spokesperson said in response to Reuters’ questions that Track Two talks could be “beneficial.” The department did not participate in the March meeting though it was aware of it, the spokesperson said.   Such discussions cannot replace formal negotiations “that require participants to speak authoritatively on issues that are often highly compartmentalized within (Chinese) government circles,” the spokesperson said. Members of the Chinese delegation and Beijing’s defense ministry did not respond to requests for comment.   The informal discussions between the nuclear-armed powers took place with the U.S. and China at odds over major economic and geopolitical issues, with leaders in Washington and Beijing accusing each other of dealing in bad faith.   The two countries briefly resumed Track One talks over nuclear arms in November but those negotiations have since stalled, with a top U.S. official publicly expressing frustration at China’s responsiveness. The Pentagon, which estimates that Beijing’s nuclear arsenal increased by more than 20% between 2021 and 2023, said in October that China “would also consider nuclear use to restore deterrence … “US and China hold first informal nuclear talks in 5 years, eyeing Taiwan”

Africa defense chiefs to gather in Botswana for US military conference

Gaborone, Botswana — Defense chiefs from 30 African countries will gather in Botswana next week for a two-day military conference to discuss the continent’s security and stability challenges. The meeting, organized by the United States Africa Command, or AFRICOM, will be the first to be held in Africa since the inaugural conference in 2017  “The aim [is] to tackle the pressing security challenges on the African continent and to find ways to work together for a safer, more secure Africa,” said Lt. Commander Bobby Dixon, a spokesman at AFRICOM.  “From counterterrorism efforts to cyber threats and peacekeeping missions, this conference will cover it all. Experts and military leaders will share insights, strategies, and forge partnerships that will strengthen the collective defense capabilities for all of Africa. This is more than just a conference — it’s a significant step towards a unified approach in safeguarding the African continent.” AFRICOM says the meeting will build on the success of previous conferences. Last year’s meeting held in Rome, Italy, attracted the highest turnout, with 43 countries in attendance. “It is evident that Africa faces a series of challenges,” said Jakkie Cilliers, a political scientist at the Institute for Security Studies in Pretoria. “It is not always clear that the model that the U.S. presents is appropriate for Africa. In recent years, we have seen a variety of coups in Africa, sometimes executed by African forces that have been trained in the U.S., the U.K. and France. And it is also evident that a number of U.N. peacekeeping missions, such as that in the DR Congo and Mali, are withdrawing from Africa. “On the other hand, the role of Russia and the so-called Africa Group [pls check the audio; it is usually called the Africa Corps] is expanding. So, it’s clear that Africa is facing a security challenge, and partners can and should do as much as possible to help.” Cilliers added that there is a need for the Gaborone conference to come up with effective solutions to the continent’s security challenges.  “Are we seeing a new model developing where African governments are considering alternative security arrangements, mostly by other African countries?” he said. “And of course, the role of private companies is also increasing. These events occur at a time of significant shifts in the global balance of power, and Africa again is an area of competition. One hopes all these issues will be … “Africa defense chiefs to gather in Botswana for US military conference”

As thousands visit Mayan ruins, memory of groundbreaking Ukrainian academic largely forgotten

June 20th marked the start of the summer solstice, a moment that draws thousands of people from around the world to the ancient Mayan ruins at Chichen Itza, Mexico, to see a phenomenon that appears each year – a sun shadow of a serpent descending from top of the site’s main period. What many visitors don’t know is that much of the modern understanding of the ancient Mayans is rooted in the work of a Ukrainian-born academic from the Soviet era. Marcus Harton narrates this report from Olga Pavlova in Moscow. Camera: Ricardo Marquina Montanana and Luis Ramirez …

South Korea summons Russian ambassador as tensions rise with North Korea

SEOUL, South Korea — South Korea summoned the Russian ambassador to protest the country’s new defense pact with North Korea on Friday, as border tensions continued to rise with vague threats and brief, seemingly accidental incursions by North Korean troops. Earlier Friday, the powerful sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un issued a vague threat of retaliation after South Korean activists flew balloons carrying anti-Pyongyang propaganda leaflets across the border, and South Korea’s military said it had fired warning shots the previous day to repel North Korean soldiers who briefly crossed the rivals’ land border for the third time this month. That came two days after Moscow and Pyongyang reached a pact vowing mutual defense assistance if either is attacked, and a day after Seoul responded by saying it would consider providing arms to Ukraine to fight Russia’s invasion. South Korean Vice Foreign Minister Kim Hong Kyun summoned Russian Ambassador Georgy Zinoviev to protest the deal between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong Un and called for Moscow to immediately halt its alleged military cooperation with Pyongyang. Kim, the South Korean diplomat, stressed that any cooperation that directly or indirectly helps the North build up its military capabilities would violate U.N. Security Council resolutions and pose a threat to the South’s security, and warned of consequences for Seoul’s relations with Moscow. Zinoviev replied that he would convey Seoul’s concerns to his superiors in Moscow, the ministry said. Leafletting campaigns by South Korean civilian activists in recent weeks have prompted a resumption of Cold War-style psychological warfare along the inter-Korean border. The South Korean civilian activists, led by North Korean defector Park Sang-hak, said it sent 20 balloons carrying 300,000 propaganda leaflets, 5,000 USB sticks with South Korean pop songs and TV dramas, and 3,000 U.S. dollar bills from the South Korean border town of Paju on Thursday night. Pyongyang resents such material and fears it could demoralize front-line troops and residents and eventually weaken Kim Jong Un’s grip on power, analysts say. In a statement carried by North Korea’s official Korean Central News Agency, Kim Yo Jong, one of her brother’s top foreign policy officials, called the activists “defector scum” and issued what appeared to be a threat of retaliation. “When you do something you were clearly warned not to do, it’s only natural that you will find yourself dealing with something you didn’t have to,” she said, without … “South Korea summons Russian ambassador as tensions rise with North Korea”

US bans Russia’s Kaspersky antivirus software

Washington — U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration on Thursday banned Russia-based cybersecurity firm Kaspersky from providing its popular antivirus products in the United States over national security concerns, the U.S. Commerce Department said. “Kaspersky will generally no longer be able to, among other activities, sell its software within the United States or provide updates to software already in use,” the agency said in a statement. The announcement came after a lengthy investigation found Kaspersky’s “continued operations in the United States presented a national security risk due to the Russian Government’s offensive cyber capabilities and capacity to influence or direct Kaspersky’s operations,” it said. U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said, “Russia has shown time and again they have the capability and intent to exploit Russian companies, like Kaspersky Lab, to collect and weaponize sensitive U.S. information.” Kaspersky, in a statement to AFP, said the Commerce Department “made its decision based on the present geopolitical climate and theoretical concerns,” and vowed to “pursue all legally available options to preserve its current operations and relationships.” “Kaspersky does not engage in activities which threaten U.S. national security and, in fact, has made significant contributions with its reporting and protection from a variety of threat actors that targeted U.S. interests and allies,” the company said. The move is the first such action taken since an executive order issued under Donald Trump’s presidency gave the Commerce Department the power to investigate whether certain companies pose a national security risk. Raimondo said the Commerce Department’s actions demonstrated to America’s adversaries that it would not hesitate to act when “their technology poses a risk to the United States and its citizens.” While Kaspersky is headquartered in Moscow, it has offices in 31 countries around the world, servicing more than 400 million users and 270,000 corporate clients in more than 200 countries, the Commerce Department said. As well as banning the sale of Kaspersky’s antivirus software, the Commerce Department also added three entities linked to the firm to a list of companies deemed to be a national security concern, “for their cooperation with Russian military and intelligence authorities in support of the Russian government’s cyber intelligence objectives.” The Commerce Department said it “strongly encouraged” users to switch to new vendors, although its decision does not ban them from using the software should they choose to do so. Kaspersky is allowed to continue certain operations in the United States, including providing … “US bans Russia’s Kaspersky antivirus software”

Border Patrol reports arrests down 25% since Biden announced asylum restrictions 

washington — The number of arrests by Border Patrol agents of people crossing illegally into the United States fell in May to the third lowest of any month during the Biden presidency, while preliminary figures released Thursday show encounters with migrants falling even more in the roughly two weeks since the president announced new rules restricting asylum.  The figures are likely welcome news for a White House that has been struggling to show to voters concerned about immigration that it has control of the southern border. But the number of people coming to the border is often in flux, dependent on conditions in countries far from the U.S. and on smugglers who profit from global migration.  The Border Patrol made 117,900 arrests of people entering the country between the official border crossing points in May, Customs and Border Protection said in a news release. That’s 9% lower than during April, the agency said. The agency said preliminary data since President Joe Biden’s June 4 announcement restricting asylum access show arrests have fallen by 25%.  “Our enforcement efforts are continuing to reduce Southwest border encounters. But the fact remains that our immigration system is not resourced for what we are seeing,” said Troy A. Miller, the acting head of CBP.  The U.S. has also benefited from aggressive enforcement on the Mexican side of the border, where Mexican authorities have been working to prevent migrants from making their way to the U.S.-Mexico border.  The figures are part of a range of data related to immigration, trade and drug seizures that the CBP releases monthly. The immigration-related figures are closely watched at a time of intense political scrutiny over who is entering the country and whether the Biden administration has a handle on the situation.  Immigration is a top concern for voters, with many saying Biden hasn’t been doing enough to secure the country’s borders. Former President Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee for president, has made immigration a cornerstone of his campaign by saying he’s going to deport people in the country illegally en masse and take other measures to crack down on immigration.  After Biden announced his plan to restrict asylum access at the southern border, opponents sued, saying it was no different from a similar effort under Trump. …