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Russian Made Secret Push to Sway Policy, Charges Say

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Russian Made Secret Push to Sway Policy, Charges Say

A Russian woman who tried to broker a secret meeting between Donald Trump and Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin, during the 2016 presidential campaign was charged Monday and accused of working with Americans to carry out a secret Russian effort to influence U.S. politics. At the behest of a Russian government official, the woman, Mariia Butina, made connections through the National Rifle Association and religious organizations to try to steer the Republican Party toward pro-Russia policies. Privately comparing herself to a Soviet Cold War propagandist, she worked to infiltrate U.S. organizations and establish “back channel” lines of communication with American politicians.

Putin Says Democrats Are to Blame for ‘Manipulations’ of Their Party

When Fox News host Chris Wallace asked President Vladimir Putin of Russia whether Russian hackers had tried to influence the 2016 U.S. election, he gave an unusual answer: The hacks had exposed some Democrats who put their thumbs on the scale to help Hillary Clinton. Putin made the comments in an interview Monday after his summit with President Donald Trump. Wallace tried to press Putin on the indictment of 12 Russian intelligence officers. "Do you really believe that someone acting from the Russian territory could have influenced the United States and influenced the choice of millions of Americans?” Putin said.

Putin Accuses Browder, Kremlin Foe Who Fought Corruption, of Tax Evasion

President Vladimir Putin of Russia made a surprise offer to Robert Mueller, the special prosecutor investigating Moscow’s meddling in the 2016 presidential election. The Kremlin, Putin said, would allow Mueller and his team to come to Russia and be present at the questioning of 12 Russian military intelligence officers the special counsel indicted last week. In exchange, the United States would have to permit Russian law enforcement officials to interrogate Bill Browder. Browder, a London-based financier who has led a human rights crusade against the Kremlin that has resulted in sanctions, he is a source of deep frustration for the Kremlin.

Deported From U.S., and Picking Up Pieces of a Shattered Dream

For most of the two months she was held in immigration detention centers in the United States, Donelda Pulex Castellanos feared she might never see her 6-year-old daughter again. The two had been caught after unlawfully crossing the Mexican border and were separated as part of President Donald Trump’s effort to thwart illegal immigration. Their ordeal ended last week when the two were suddenly reunited moments before they were put on a plane and deported back to Guatemala. "It never occurred to us that we were going to be imprisoned,” Pulex, 35, said.

Obama Visits Kenya, Land of His Father, to Promote Local Charity

Former President Barack Obama has arrived in Kenya, his father’s home country, in what was expected to be a lower-profile visit than the ones he made to the country as senator and president. Obama traveled to Kenya on Sunday to promote the opening of a sports and training center that his half sister, Auma Obama, founded through her charitable foundation, The Associated Press reported. Auma Obama grew up in Kenya and returned there, setting up a foundation, Sauti Kuu, which serves children and young people, particularly from urban slums and rural communities.

Jailed Reporter in Myanmar Challenges Prosecution’s Version of His Arrest

A Reuters reporter jailed for months by Myanmar’s government has challenged the prosecution’s account of how he and a colleague were arrested, the latest twist in a closely watched trial that highlights the government’s tense relationship with the news media. The testimony Monday by the journalist, U Wa Lone, came more than half a year after he and a Reuters colleague were arrested in Yangon, Myanmar’s major city, while investigating violence against the persecuted Rohingya ethnic minority, Reuters reported. It was the first time the defense had a chance to present its case to the court.

‘I Can’t Breathe’: Video of Indigenous Australian’s Prison Death Stirs Outrage

David Dungay Jr., a prisoner at a Sydney jail, told the guards pinning him to his bed that he couldn’t breathe, according to a video recording. He said it at least 12 times. Minutes later, Dungay, a 26-year-old Indigenous Australian whose family’s lawyer says he had schizophrenia, diabetes and asthma, was unresponsive. He was declared dead about an hour after officers entered his cell. On Monday, the graphic video footage was shown on the first day of Dungay’s inquest, reigniting long-simmering anger about the deaths of Indigenous Australians in custody, which are a flash point of race relations in Australia.