NEW YORK - Diseased rat urine has killed at least one person and sickened two others in New York City in an outbreak of a rarely seen infection, prompting calls from city officials on Wednesday for a renewed effort to cull the rodent population. The outbreak of leptospiriosis began in December and all three cases were traced to a single-block area of the Bronx, New York's northernmost borough, the city's health department said in a statement on Tuesday, Feb. 14.
Highlights of the day for U.S. President Donald Trump's administration on Wednesday: RUSSIA Trump assails U.S. intelligence agencies and dismisses reports of contacts between members of his presidential campaign and Russian intelligence officials. The Kremlin says U.S. media reports about Russian intelligence connections to Trump's presidential campaign are groundless. Congress should start a bipartisan investigation if there were inappropriate contacts between Trump's campaign and Russia, Republican Senator Lindsey Graham says.
The New York Knicks are the NBA's most valuable team for the second consecutive year despite having been shut out of the playoffs since 2013, according to a Forbes poll released on Wednesday, Feb. 15, that showed the average team value rose 9 percent. The Knicks' value rose to $3.3 billion, up 10 percent from last year, as they continue reaping the rewards of a $1 billion renovation to Madison Square Garden, which produced new revenue opportunities from sponsorships and seating. The Minnesota Timberwolves were ranked 29th at $770 million with a revenue of $154 million.
NEW YORK—Phone records and intercepted calls show that members of Donald Trump's presidential campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election, the New York Times reported on Tuesday, citing four current and former U.S. officials.
Facebook is launching an app for smart TVs that will help the social network's users enjoy its videos on a bigger screen. The app will roll out soon from app stores for Apple TV, Samsung Smart TV and Amazon Fire TV, the company said in a blogpost on Tuesday. The blogpost also said users can scroll through their news feed and simultaneously watch videos on their timeline. Sound also fades in and out as one scrolls through videos in news feed now. Videos in news feed have previously played silently—one needed to tap on a video to hear its sound.
Highlights of the day for U.S. President Donald Trump's administration on Tuesday:
WASHINGTON - U.S. Secret Service Director Joseph Clancy plans to step down next month, the agency said on Tuesday, Feb. 14, two years after he took charge of the agency following high-profile security lapses by the service responsible for protecting the president. "Congratulations Dir Clancy on your retirement! The men & women of the @SecretService are grateful for your 29 years of service & leadership," the Secret Service said on Twitter. Clancy will leave on March 4, an agency spokesman said.
WASHINGTON—Congressional Democrats on Tuesday, Feb. 14, tried but failed to pressure Republicans into seeking President Donald Trump's tax returns, saying the scandal over Michael Flynn made it imperative to find out whether the president has business ties to Russia. A day after the Republican chairman of the House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee dismissed the idea, the panel's Democrats proposed an amendment demanding that the committee ask the Treasury Department for copies of Trump's returns by March 1.
GENEVA, Switzerland - North Korea said on Tuesday, Feb. 14, its missile launches were "self-defense measures," rejecting U.N. Security Council criticism of its weekend test, but the United States demanded international action against Pyongyang's weapons programs. North Korea's ballistic missile firing on Sunday was its first direct challenge to the international community since U.S. President Donald Trump took office on Jan. 20.
LOS ANGELES, Feb 13 - Playboy magazine is returning to its roots, bringing nudes back just a year after abandoning full frontal shots of women saying they had become outdated. Under the headline "Naked is Normal," the magazine will bring nude pictorials back in its March/April edition, the company said on Monday. “I’ll be the first to admit that the way in which the magazine portrayed nudity was dated, but nudity was never the problem because nudity isn’t a problem,” Playboy’s chief creative officer Cooper Hefner said in a statement on the magazine's website.