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Government workers begin shutdown as Senate vote looms
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Hundreds of thousands of federal workers began shutting down operations on Monday with the U.S. government closed, as a bipartisan group of senators tried to negotiate a deal just hours before the full Senate planned another vote to restore funding.

Biotech M&A takes off as Sanofi and Celgene spend $20 billion
(Reuters) - Biotech deal activity exploded on Monday with French drugmaker Sanofi and U.S.-based Celgene spending a combined total of more than $20 billion to add new products for hemophilia and cancer to their medicine cabinets.

FDA's tobacco stance faces test with Philip Morris iQOS device
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - In a decision expected to test the Trump administration's approach to tobacco regulation, U.S. health advisers will vote this week on whether to allow Philip Morris International Inc to sell its novel iQOS tobacco device and claim it is less harmful than cigarettes.

Turkey expects swift campaign against U.S.-backed Kurds in Syria
HASSA, Turkey (Reuters) - Turkey shelled targets in northwest Syria on Monday and said it would swiftly crush the U.S.-backed Kurdish YPG fighters who control the Afrin region in an air and ground offensive that President Tayyip Erdogan said Russia had agreed to.

U.S. Embassy in Israel to move to Jerusalem by end of 2019: Pence
JERUSALEM (Reuters) - The U.S. Embassy in Israel will move to Jerusalem by the end of 2019, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said in a speech to the Israeli parliament on Monday that highlighted a policy shift that has stoked Palestinian anger and international concern.

Catalan crisis rekindled as parliament proposes Puigdemont as leader
MADRID/COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - Catalonia's parliament nominated former leader Carles Puigdemont, sacked by Spain for unilaterally declaring independence, as candidate to rule the region again in a sign of defiance to Madrid and Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's government.

Contrite pope apologises for sexual abuse comments that 'wounded many'
ABOARD THE PAPAL PLANE (Reuters) - Pope Francis, in an extremely rare act of self-criticism, apologised to victims of clerical sex abuse on Sunday, acknowledging he had "wounded many" in comments defending a Chilean bishop who is under scrutiny.

Senator says FBI lost crucial texts tied to Clinton probe
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Federal Bureau of Investigation has lost about five months worth of text messages between two staffers who worked on probes into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's emails and possible collusion between Russia and President Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign, according to a Republican lawmaker.

Trust in U.S. institutions plunges in Trump's first year
DAVOS, Switzerland (Reuters) - Trust in U.S. institutions, particularly the government, has plunged in President Donald Trump's first year in office, according to a leading survey released on the eve of the World Economic Forum in Davos.

China's top paper says U.S. forcing China to accelerate South China Sea deployments
BEIJING (Reuters) - China's top newspaper, decrying Washington as a trouble-maker, said on Monday U.S. moves in the South China Sea like last week's freedom of navigation operation will only cause China to strengthen its deployments in the disputed waterway.

 

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