National & World News

Coverage of national and world news from New England Public Radio, NPR, and other NPR stations.

Demonstrators and police clashed this weekend as anguish and rage swept through cities across the U.S. in response to the death of George Floyd. Protesters were tear-gassed, police cars destroyed, buildings vandalized and businesses looted in some of the nation's worst civil unrest in years.

Here's a look at some of the cities.

Lulu Garcia-Navarro speaks with Rep. Joyce Beatty (D-Ohio) about the recent protests surrounding the death of George Floyd.

Some members of Congress want to let tech startups access federal stimulus loans. But venture-capital-backed startups aren't like other small businesses — they fail even in good economic times.

Two NASA astronauts have arrived at the International Space Station, 19 hours after launching from Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Saturday. NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken made the trip on a private space vehicle designed, built and launched by SpaceX.

SpaceX's Crew Dragon capsule docked with the station at 10:17 a.m. ET while flying over the border of northern China and Mongolia.

There have been several high-profile stories recently involving African-Americans who have been killed — George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor — or caught up in racist incidents such as the

Earlier in this pandemic, the shortage of tests for the coronavirus was a major problem in fighting the spread of COVID-19. The shortage was such that many hospitals and clinics would test only someone who had traveled to a country with an outbreak, had a known exposure to a positive case or showed symptoms of the disease.

But access to tests has improved significantly, and in some places, people can now get tested without having to show any symptoms at all. So if you can get tested, should you?

Navajo Nation Loses Elders And Tradition To COVID-19

8 hours ago

In Navajo culture to speak of death is taboo. But since the tribe's coronavirus infection rate has become the highest in the country, they can't help but talk about it.

"It's killing every day," says medicine man Ty Davis, who knows at least five traditional practitioners who have died from COVID-19.

Weeks before the 2018 midterm, President Trump stood before a packed arena in Council Bluffs, Iowa, and singled out Rep. Steve King — then running for his ninth term.

"[King] may be the world's most conservative human being," Trump said to a crowd of cheering supporters.

Updated at 12:29 p.m.

Police and demonstrators clashed in dozens of cities across the U.S. on Saturday during another night of protests in response to the death of George Floyd.

At least one person is dead after being shot in Indianapolis. Police are investigating whether the incident was connected to demonstrations in the city.

In Los Angeles, protesters blocked the 110 freeway downtown and were seen breaking windows of stores at The Grove mall.

Shortly after NASA astronauts blasted off from U.S. soil for the first time since 2011, President Trump painted a dire picture of what the space agency had looked like when he first came to office.

"There was grass growing through the cracks of your concrete runways — not a pretty sight, not a pretty sight at all," he said at NASA's enormous Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center in Florida, where he had come to watch two astronauts launch to orbit in a vehicle owned and operated by SpaceX.

European Union Leaders Urge U.S. To Remain In WHO

19 hours ago

Officials with the European Union are urging President Trump to rethink his recently announced plans to pull the United States from the World Health Organization.

The Pentagon has ordered military police units to prepare to deploy to Minnesota after another night of protests over the death of George Floyd roiled Minneapolis.

In a statement Saturday, the Defense Department said U.S. Northern Command had been directed to increase the "alert status" of several units to be deployed at the request of Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz.

Updated at 4:41 p.m. ET

Faced with a fourth straight night of massive protests over the death of George Floyd, Minnesota on Friday deployed its largest law enforcement operation in state history, including more than 700 members of the National Guard.

"It was not enough," Maj. Gen. Jon A. Jensen said Saturday.

Now, with a fifth night of protests looming, Jensen, head of the state's National Guard, said authorities are drastically increasing the military presence in Minneapolis.

President Trump has a new rallying cry in his escalating crusade against Twitter. As he put it in a tweet Friday: "REVOKE 230!"

The Supreme Court has rejected a California church's attempt to overturn the state's coronavirus restrictions on in-person religious services.

In a 5-4 decision issued late Friday, Chief Justice John Roberts sided with the court's liberal bloc in upholding the state's right to impose limits on congregations in order to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Hero pay. Thank You pay. Service pay. Hazard pay.

These were the many names for temporary pay bumps that some stores, warehouses and factories gave to workers who risked their health to continue to show up on the job during the pandemic.

It's hard to say that an extra $3 an hour made a dramatic difference in Sammy Сonde's budget. Maybe a few more groceries — soup is a dinner favorite — or an occasional treat of a takeout meal after a particularly tiring workday.

Updated at 6:55 p.m. ET

NASA astronauts are heading to space from U.S. soil for the first time in nine years, aboard SpaceX's Dragon capsule, the maiden crewed flight of the innovative spacecraft.

The mission, which is sending Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken to the International Space Station, is a bold new venture for the space agency's plan to allow commercial companies to take its astronauts into low-Earth orbit.

Eight states and the District of Columbia are holding primary elections next week amid the coronavirus pandemic, and voters are expected to cast their ballots by mail in record numbers.

It is likely to be a preview of what's to come in the fall, and some worry whether the U.S. Postal Service is up to the challenge.

A lot of people like the Postal Service; according to a recent Pew poll, 91% of Americans had a positive view, higher than any other branch of government. But it's an agency with some big problems.

I need to take a trip that would be either a few hours flying or multiple days driving. Which is safer?

As lockdown orders are relaxed to some capacity in countries around the world, travel is starting to see an uptick for the first time since mid-March. But when it comes to taking a longer trip, is it better to travel by car or by plane?

With control of the U.S. Senate up for grabs in November, Republicans may have fights on their hands in states they have long taken for granted: Kansas, for example.

The GOP has held both of the state's Senate seats since the Great Depression. However, as they approach a Monday, June 1, filing deadline, party leaders are not confident that any of the candidates now in the field are a lock to hold onto retiring Sen. Pat Roberts's seat.

At 85, Margaret Sullivan felt that she had a comfortable life and was being well taken care of in a retirement home in Northern Virginia.

"Living in a bubble," she said.

But then she shared a piece of sad news: "My brother died about two weeks ago of the virus."

He lived a few states away.

"I'm the oldest and he's the youngest," she explained. "And that's outside the order of things."

For many, the pandemic has been long days of juggling kids and work. Worrying about money. Trying to schedule grocery deliveries.

In April, New Orleans health officials realized their drive-through testing strategy for the coronavirus wasn't working. The reason? Census tract data revealed hot spots for the virus were located in predominantly low-income African-American neighborhoods where many residents lacked cars.

Updated at 1:42 p.m. ET Saturday

Angry protests nationwide on Friday followed the death of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis. Clashes erupted between activists and law enforcement in many locations, and at least two people were dead by Saturday morning.

Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was charged today with third-degree murder and manslaughter in the death of George Floyd. Video of Chauvin, who is white, with his knee on the neck of Floyd, who is black, has caused days of protests and rioting in the Twin Cities and other communities across the country.

According to charging documents, an autopsy showed no evidence of strangulation or "traumatic asphyxia," but it says being restrained by police, combined with Floyd's underlying health problems, likely contributed to his death.

Updated at 8:13 p.m. ET

The U.S. Department of Justice is siding with campground and restaurant owners in Maine who sued the state over a two-week self-quarantine policy for out-of-state visitors.

Democratic Gov. Janet Mills imposed the restriction as part the state's response to the ongoing pandemic. Several other states have imposed similar measures.

President Trump has announced that he is immediately halting the decades-long U.S. membership in the World Health Organization over its response to China's handling of the coronavirus epidemic.

In a press briefing Friday at the White House, Trump said, "We will be today terminating our relationship with the World Health Organization and redirecting those funds to other worldwide and deserving urgent global public health needs."

Planned Parenthood scored a victory in Missouri on Friday in a ruling that allowed the state's only abortion provider to keep its doors open.

In a 97-page decision, a state administrative commission said the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services wrongfully denied the reproductive health organization a license renewal for a St. Louis clinic in 2019.

George Floyd and Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter in Floyd's death, worked together at a Minneapolis club as recently as last year, according to a report from local television station KSTP.

Over her decades-long career, Tracee Ellis Ross has starred in beloved shows such as Black-ish and Girlfriends. But as she sees it, her latest role is her most daunting one yet. In The High Note, available to stream on Apple TV on May 29, she plays a superstar singer named Grace Davis, who's facing career stagnancy. Meanwhile, Davis' personal assistant Maggie (played by Dakota Johnson) has musical ambitions of her own as an aspiring producer.

The head of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday that a new analysis shows the agency's delayed rollout of coronavirus testing did not hinder the nation's response to the pandemic.

The coronavirus didn't start spreading in the U.S. until late January or early February, the CDC analysis found, and it circulated at low levels for quite some time.

As a result, the availability of earlier widespread testing for the virus would not have been able to spot it, according to CDC Director Robert Redfield.

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