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Biden taps trusted figures to lead US climate fight; FDA says Moderna vaccine is highly protective; SolarWinds hack fallout spreads

US President-elect Joe Biden’s climate team is set to be announced this week, with key picks for energy, environment and transportation roles already named. The Food and Drug Administration released new data on Tuesday showing that the Moderna coronavirus vaccine is highly effective. And, a worldwide hacking campaign with links to Russia has caused data breaches at multiple federal agencies.

Hacking

US agencies hacked in monthslong global cyberspying campaign

Hackers broke into the networks of the Treasury and Commerce departments as part of a monthslong global cyberespionage campaign revealed Sunday, just days after the prominent cybersecurity firm FireEye said it had been breached in an attack that industry experts said bore the hallmarks of Russian tradecraft.

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Treasury, Commerce departments hacked; Canada receives first COVID-19 vaccine shipment; Hong Kong court denied bail for Jimmy Lai

Hackers have broken into the networks of the US Treasury and Commerce departments and experts suggest the attacks bore the hallmarks of Russian cyberespionage. And, Canada has received its first shipment of the COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer-BioNTech. Also, a court in Hong Kong has denied bail for Jimmy Lai, the 73-year-old media tycoon and pro-democracy advocate.

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Pfizer's coronavirus vaccine clears another hurdle; Facebook faces twin antitrust cases; Lebanon judge charges PM in port blast

Canadian health officials have approved the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, following its authorization by the United Kingdom last week. And, several dozen states and the US Federal Trade Commission sued Facebook on Wednesday in twin antitrust cases. Also, a judge in Lebanon investigating the Beirut port blast that killed 200 people and destroyed much of the city in August has charged caretaker prime minister, Hassan Diab, and three former ministers with negligence.

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UAE reports success with Sinopharm vaccine; Ethiopia rejects Tigray probes; EU plans to tighten Turkey sanctions

State media in the United Arab Emirates reported that the Chinese government-backed vaccine protected 86% of trial participants against COVID-19. Ethiopia’s government has rejected independent probes into the Tigray conflict. And, the European Union hopes to tighten sanctions on Turkey for drilling in the eastern Mediterranean, according to a draft statement prepared for EU leaders to give at a summit on Thursday.

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