Top News Stories for Today – Aug 17, 2017
Additional CEOs leave Trump advisory board
Inge Thulin, 3M’s chairman of the board, president and CEO, and Campbell’s CEO Denise Morrison became the tenth and eleventh business leader — and the seventh and eighth since Monday — to resign from Trump’s Manufacturing Advisory Council, following the president’s controversial remarks on neo-Nazis and white supremacists. The most recent wave of defections followed the president’s controversial remarks equating neo-Nazis and white supremacists with anti-racist protesters. The Hill
Trump disbands economic councils as CEOs flee
President Donald Trump on Wednesday disbanded two of his economic councils after a wave of defections from high-profile CEOs. “Rather than putting pressure on the businesspeople of the Manufacturing Council & Strategy & Policy Forum, I am ending both. Thank you all!” Trump wrote in a tweet disbanding his Manufacturing Advisory Council and the Strategic and Policy Forum. Both councils were already facing the loss of multiple members.
In all, 11 business leaders and CEOs have quit Trump’s councils, eight of them this week alone in response to his controversial comments on race and white supremacy. The Hill
Baltimore removes Confederate monuments in the dead of night
Crews in Baltimore worked through the night to remove four Confederate monuments after the city council approved the plan Monday evening. “They needed to come down. My concern is for the safety and security of our people,” said Mayor Catherine Pugh. Her predecessor, former Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, had introduced a commission to review Baltimore’s Confederate statues in June 2015.
Although Maryland sided with the Union in the Civil War, 22,000 of its residents fought for the Confederacy. In addition to a statue of Robert E. Lee and Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson, the city removed its Confederate Soldiers and Sailors Monument, Confederate Women’s Monument, and Roger B. Taney Monument between 11:30 p.m. Tuesday and 5:30 a.m. Wednesday. Baltimore Sun, The Guardian, , The Week
Daniel Craig confirms he’s doing one more James Bond film
Daniel Craig announced on Tuesday’s Late Show that he is reprising his role as James Bond, and that he’d been sitting on the news for “several months.” “I couldn’t be happier,” Craig told Stephen Colbert, explaining that he’d always wanted to return as 007 though he “needed a break” first.
Colbert read him back a quote where he said he would rather slit his wrists than play Bond again, and Craig laughed, explaining he’d given a “really stupid answer” in an interview two days after he finished filming Spectre. Still, he said, this will probably be his last Bond film: “I just want to go out on a high note, and I can’t wait.” The Week, The Late Show
1 million South Sudan refugees now in Uganda
The number of South Sudanese refugees sheltering in Uganda has reached 1 million, the UN said Thursday, a grim milestone for what has become the world’s fastest-growing refugee crisis. Ugandan officials say they are overwhelmed by the flow of people fleeing South Sudan’s civil war, and the UN refugee agency urges the international community to donate more for humanitarian assistance.
An average of 1,800 South Sudanese citizens have been arriving daily in Uganda in the past 12 months, the UNHCR said in a statement. Another 1 million or more South Sudanese are sheltering in Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Congo and Central African Republic. The number of people fleeing jumped after fighting again erupted in South Sudan’s capital, Juba, in July 2016. VOA
Landmark UN mercury treaty takes effect
A landmark global treaty aimed at keeping millions safe from the horrors of mercury poisoning took effect Wednesday. The 2013 Minamata Convention was named for the Japanese bay from which mercury-tainted fish left thousands of people with severe brain damage in 1956. Industrial wastewater had been dumped into the bay for more than 20 years. So far, 128 countries have signed the treaty and 74 have ratified it.
Mercury was commonly used in batteries, fluorescent lights, felt production, thermometers and barometers. Mercury is an extremely poisonous metal that never breaks down. Contact with it attacks the nervous system and can cause brain damage, severe emotional problems, coma and even death. Children are especially at risk. “There is no safe level of exposure to mercury nor are there cures for mercury poisoning,” the UN says. VOA
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