Lebanon

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Mourning and anger amid devastation after Beirut explosion; One-third of Afghanistan may have had COVID-19; 75-years since Hiroshima bombing

Many Lebanese are turning toward anger and frustration over corrupt Lebanese officials for the presence of a warehouse full of ammonium nitrate at the center of a massive explosion. And, in Afghanistan, the country’s health minister said an antibody survey revealed almost one-third of the nation may have been infected with the coronavirus. Also, with Hiroshima marking the 75th anniversary of the 1945 nuclear blast on Thursday, the survivors were a diminished presence due to the threat of the coronavirus and their old age.

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Trump denies knowledge of Russian bounties in Afghanistan; pandemic death toll reaches half a million; attack in Karachi

US President Donald Trump accused The New York Times of a possible "fabricated Russia Hoax" regarding a report that a Russian military intelligence unit offered Taliban-linked militants bounties for killing US service members in Afghanistan. Congress has demanded answers. The pandemic has infected more than 10 million people worldwide, as deaths surpass 500,000.

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Twitter purges state-backed disinformation accounts; US sanctions ICC staff, Syria

Twitter has purged more than 32,000 accounts linked to state-backed disinformation operations. The Trump administration has authorized sanctions and visa restrictions on International Criminal Court personnel, in an attempt to undermine investigations into possible US war crimes. In Lebanon, there are increased calls for the government to resign after the currency plunged 25% in two days.

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Pompeo visits Israel; Europe wants a summer travel season; Lebanon counters second virus wave

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is in Israel, where Iran, China and the annexation of occupied Palestinian territories is on the agenda. Europe is optimistic about a summer travel season. But Lebanon, facing a potential resurgence of the novel coronavirus, has locked down. And Malaysia is applying lessons from its experience with the Nipah virus. In Shanghai, Disneyland is reopened — but pandemic precautions are making their mark on the magical place.

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75 years since WWII Victory in Europe; DOJ drops charges against Flynn; LGBT helplines see surge

The world commemorates the 75th anniversary of WWII Victory in Europe Day, or V-E Day, as the UN chief warns of the "tsunami of hate" the pandemic has engendered around the globe. How has Vietnam managed so successfully against the coronavirus? And as Lebanon protests call out corruption, in the US, the Justice Department has dropped the case against Michael Flynn. Who is the woman who identified the first human coronavirus? Meet Scottish virologist June Almeida.

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