Tuesday morning news: August 7, 2018

Iran sanctions officially reimposed » The United States has officially reimposed sanctions against Iran that were lifted under the 2015 nuclear deal.

President Trump signed an executive order on Monday reinstating multiple sanctions after pulling out of the nuclear deal back in May.

National Security Adviser John Bolton says Iran is already feeling the impacts.

BOLTON: The pressure on the Iranian economy is significant. The value of its currency is going through the floor. We’ve seen reporting on massive flights of capital out of Iran. We continue to see demonstrations and riots in cities and towns all around Iran. 

In a statement, President Trump said the sanctions cover Iran’s automotive sector and its trade in gold, precious metals, and the country’s currency.

All other sanctions on the country’s energy sector and its foreign transactions will resume in November.

He stated once again that the U.S. remains open to re-negotiating that deal.

North Korea says U.S. is ‘acting opposite’ to Singapore promises » Meanwhile, North Korean state media on Monday accused the United States of—quote “acting opposite” to pledges President Trump made at the June Singapore summit.

State media called returning the remains of American troops killed in the Korean War an act of good faith and said the U.S. should reward that move by dropping sanctions against North Korea.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who met with North Korea’s foreign minister over the weekend, stated once again that the U.S. will not lift sanctions until Pyongyang completely scraps its nuclear program. But many in Washington remain skeptical that Kim Jong Un’s regime has any intention of doing that. Florida Senator Marco Rubio.  

RUBIO: What I’m about to tell you I hope I’m wrong about, but I do not believe that he is ever going to give up his nuclear arsenal. What I do believe he will do is a series of unilateral concessions that do not undermine his capabilities in the long term. 

The renewed tough talk from North Korea came just days after a report by experts monitoring UN sanctions against the country. That report stated the North Korean regime has not stopped its nuclear weapons program, that it’s violating sanctions by transferring coal at sea, and is flouting an arms embargo and financial sanctions.

Trump Tower meeting latest » President Trump has once again defended Donald Trump Jr.’s 2016 meeting with Russians promising dirt on Hillary Clinton.

He tweeted “This was a meeting to get information on an opponent, totally legal and it went nowhere. I did not know about it!”

The Trump team has provided a series of conflicting explanations for the Trump Tower meeting. The president originally dictated a statement released by Donald Trump Jr. claiming the meeting was to discuss a program for Americans to adopt Russian children. Trump Jr. later admitted that the purpose of the meeting was to get political dirt on rivals.

But Trump attorney Jay Sekulow this week said that meeting has been overblown.

SEKULOW: The question is what law, statute or rule or regulation has been violated, and nobody’s pointed to one.

Some believe the meeting could have run afoul of campaign finance law, which makes it illegal for campaigns to accept anything of value from foreign entities.

Former business partner testifies against Paul Manafort » The government’s star witness in the financial fraud trial of Paul Manafort testified Monday that he and Manafort committed crimes together.

Rick Gates told jurors he siphoned hundreds of thousands of dollars without Manafort’s knowledge by filing false expense reports. But he also said he concealed millions of dollars in foreign bank accounts on Manafort’s behalf.

Gates already pleaded guilty to multiple crimes and is awaiting sentencing.

Manafort’s trial is the first resulting from special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe, though the alleged crimes occurred years before Manafort’s involvement with the Trump campaign.

Ebola outbreak grows in Congo » Health workers are scrambling to contain a new Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo. WORLD Africa reporter Onize Ohikere reports.

ONIZE OHIKERE, REPORTER: Congo’s health ministry first announced the latest outbreak in the North Kivu and Ituri provinces on Wednesday. That came a week after the ministry declared the end of a separate outbreak in the country’s northwest.

Health workers identified 13 confirmed cases of Ebola and three deaths tied to the latest outbreak. And officials are investigating another 33 suspected cases in the region.

The World Health Organization has expressed concern about the disease spreading since unrest in North Kivu has displaced thousands of people. And the province’s town of Beni also serves as a major hub for trade with neighboring countries.  

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Onize Ohikere.

Lombok earthquake update » The death toll continues to climb in Indonesia after Sunday’s earthquake on the resort island of Lombok. Officials now say at least 98 people died and more than 200 were wounded in the 6.9 magnitude quake.

That after a 6.4 earthquake struck the island just one week earlier.

Chaim Fetter runs a charity orphanage in Lombok. He says it’s not just those quakes but also constant tremors taking a major toll on the island.

FETTER: I have lived here for 15 years in Lombok and we have never experienced this activity like this. Usually it’s like one small earthquake a year and that’s it. Now suddenly it’s like every day we have a small earthquake. 

Sunday’s quake destroyed thousands of homes and buildings. Rescue workers are still trying to access some areas isolated by collapsed bridges and roads blocked with debris.

Hybels report » A lead pastor of a Chicago area megachurch has resigned, saying the church mishandled accusations of sexual misconduct against its former pastor. WORLD Radio’s Paul Butler has that story.

PAUL BUTLER, REPORTER: Steven Carter resigned this week as lead teaching pastor at Willow Creek Community Church. He cited a “fundamental difference in judgment” with how the church handled accusations against former pastor and church founder Bill Hybels.

The New York Times reported Sunday on new claims by a woman who served as Hybels’ assistant in the 1980s. She claimed Hybels groped her and engaged in sexual acts with her.

Hybels denied the accusations. He retired early from Willow Creek in April after reports that he inappropriately touched women and made remarks about their looks.

The church’s elders said after his resignation that they failed to “hold him accountable to specific boundaries.”

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Paul Butler.

I’m Kent Covington. Up next, Anna Johansen reports on how the Supreme Court vacancy is already affecting state abortion laws. And later, Cal Thomas on the growing power of technology. This is The World and Everything in It.

(Iranian Presidency Office via AP) In this photo released by official website of the office of the Iranian Presidency, President Hassan Rouhani addresses the nation in a televised speech in Tehran, Iran, Monday, Aug. 6, 2018. 

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