February 26, 2020
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Iranian state television says 19 people have been killed by the new coronavirus amid 139 confirmed cases in the country so far. The announcement on Wednesday by a state TV anchor came as Health Ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour urged Iranians to avoid “nonessential travel,” particularly to the hard-hit provinces of the country such as Gilan and Qom. Iran’s president meanwhile says that Tehran has no immediate plans to quarantine cities over the new coronavirus rapidly spreading across the country, even as the Islamic Republic suffers the highest death toll outside of China.
CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — Democratic foes unleashed a torrent of attacks on presidential front-runner Bernie Sanders on the debate stage in Charleston, South Carolina. Just four days before the state’s primary, the Tuesday night debate may have been their final prime-time opportunity to change the direction of the 2020 nomination fight. Billionaire Mike Bloomberg took some shots, too, and the moderates in the middle strained to be the one survivor who might stick with Sanders through the spring. Sanders was not dismayed by the new attention, negative though it was. Now that Sanders is the front-runner, he mused that he was hearing his “name mentioned a little bit” Tuesday night.
CAIRO (AP) — Egypt is holding a full-honors military funeral for former autocratic President Hosni Mubarak, who was ousted from power in the 2011 Arab Spring uprising. The 91-year-old Mubarak died on Tuesday at a Cairo military hospital from heart and kidney complications. That’s according to medical documents obtained by The Associated Press. He ruled the most populous Arab country for nearly three decades, serving as a loyal U.S. ally against Islamic militancy and assisting regional peace efforts. But his autocratic rule grew increasingly unpopular in his later years, and he was forced to resign on Feb. 11, 2011, after 18 days of mass protests.
CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia’s prime minister and Israel’s president have discussed an extradition request for a former school principal whose alleged abuse of dozens of Australian schoolgirls has cast a shadow over the Israeli leader’s visit. Officials say Prime Minister Scott Morrison and President Reuven Rivlin discussed their “strong commitment to seeing justice” in the case of the former principal Malka Leifer. Leifer has been fighting extradition from Israel for six years and the legal wrangle to bring her before an Australian court has caused a diplomatic strain. Rivlin has been criticized for declining an invitation to meet three alleged victims.