Tuesday morning news: May 15, 2018

Embassy opening/protests » AUDIO: Oh say can you see by the dawn’s early light…

A historic moment in Jerusalem Monday— 

FRIEDMAN: The opening and dedication of the United States Embassy in Jerusalem, Israel…

U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman at ceremonies officially marking the U.S. Embassy’s move from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

FRIEDMAN: Today we extend to Israel the same right we extend to every other nation, the right to designate its capital city.

But the event was marred by violence as Palestinians who lay claim to part of Jerusalem rioted in Gaza.

AUDIO: Sound from Gaza, gunshot

Israeli security forces fired tear gas and eventually live rounds to hold back an estimated 35,000 protesters at the border, some of whom threw pipe bombs at Israeli soldiers. 

At least 55 protesters were killed and hundreds more injured. Israel blames Hamas for stoking the flames of violence against the embassy move.

Iraq elections » AUDIO: Election sound

An Iraqi election official announcing that the political alliance of Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr has emerged as the early front-runner in weekend elections.

Al-Sadr opposes international influence in Iraq and led a militia that fought U.S. forces after the 2003 overthrow of Saddam Hussein. 

His coalition had the lead in four provinces as of Sunday, while current Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi performed poorly amid record-low turnout.

Overall, Iranian-backed Shiite militias who played a key role in defeating ISIS in Iraq appear headed for significant electoral gains. 

Sessions “zero tolerance” policy already faltering » The Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” policy, a vow to prosecute all those entering the country illegally, is showing signs of cracking.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the policy last month as a migrant caravan neared the U.S.-Mexico border. He warned that children would be placed in protective custody while parents are prosecuted.

SESSIONS: We don’t want to separate families but we don’t want families to come to the border illegally and attempt to enter into this country improperly.

But now border patrol agents say prosecutors are turning down “a good number” of those entering illegally, mostly due to limited resources. 

Brandon Judd, president of the Border Patrol Council, said prosecutors declined to take cases against 13 people crossing illegally at one station alone in California Friday. He told the Washington Times— quote— “It’s a far cry from zero tolerance.” 

SCOTUS strikes down sports gambling law » A victory for states and sports bettors at the Supreme Court Monday. WORLD Radio’s Kent Covington has details.

KENT COVINGTON, REPORTER: The Justices struck down a 1992 federal law that prohibited states from authorizing sports betting. 

More than a dozen states sided with New Jersey in its legal battle to allow sports betting at its casinos and race tracks.

The law had loopholes, allowing limited sports betting in four states that had some form of it before the law went into effect. Now all states are free to legalize sports betting if they choose.

In the 6 to 3 majority opinion, Justice Samuel Alito wrote that Congress is free to regulate sports betting directly, but it can’t order states to do so. 

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Kent Covington.

Reid, Melania Trump undergo treatment » Doctors were busy Monday…

Former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid underwent surgery to remove a tumor from his pancreas, detected early by screening. He will undergo chemotherapy.

And the White House says first lady Melania Trump will likely remain at Walter Reed Medical Center for the rest of the week. She was successfully treated there yesterday for a benign kidney condition.

Forecasters say brace for more hurricanes » AUDIO: Sound of Irma

Hurricane Irma was just one of several major storms that blasted the U.S. mainland and Puerto Rico in 2017.

Now forecasters are warning that 2018 will likely be another big year for hurricanes. 

Separate models by North Carolina State and Colorado State Universities predict from 14 to 18 named storms will hit the Eastern Seaboard this year, and 7 to 11 of them will be hurricanes.

2017 had 17 named storms, 10 of them hurricanes.

The 2018 hurricane season doesn’t officially begin until June 1st, but a low-pressure system, that could become Tropical Storm Alberto, is already forming in the Gulf of Mexico.

I’m Jim Henry. Straight ahead: the Trump administration sets new priorities for sex-ed funding. This is The World and Everything in It.

(AP Photo/Ariel Schalit) Flowers decorated as an American flag are seen on a road leading to the US Embassy compound ahead the official opening in Jerusalem, Sunday, May 13, 2018. 

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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