Tuesday morning news: September 25, 2018

Kavanaugh: I will not be intimidated into withdrawing » Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee Monday, calling allegations of sexual misconduct in the early 1980’s “grotesque and obvious character assassination.” And he added that he will “not be intimidated into withdrawing” his nomination.

Judge Kavanaugh also spoke out publicly on Monday about claims by Christine Ford that he assaulted her at a high school house party. Kavanaugh told Fox News…

KAVANAUGH: The truth is I’ve never sexually assaulted anyone in high school or otherwise. I’m not questioning that perhaps Dr. Ford at some point in  her life was assaulted by someone in some place, but what I know is that I’ve never sexually assaulted anyone. 

In a report published Sunday by The New Yorker, a second accuser, Deborah Ramirez, claimed Kavanaugh exposed himself to her at a dormitory party at Yale.

But The New York Times reports that it “interviewed several dozen people over the past week in an attempt to corroborate her story, and could find no one with firsthand knowledge.” The Times also reports Ms. Ramirez herself told Yale classmates should couldn’t be certain Mr. Kavanaugh was the one who exposed himself.”

World leaders gather for U.N. General Assembly » World leaders gathered in New York Monday for the start of the UN General Assembly. And U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley said the Trump administration wants to make the most of it. 

HALEY: This year we’re here with a bang. Not only is the president doing a speech; he’s going to be doing a Security Council meeting. Secretary Pompeo’s also doing a Security Council meeting. The vice president’s doing an event on Venezuela. And so it’s all hands on deck by the United States. 

President Trump will deliver a speech to the General Assembly today. And tomorrow he’ll chair a special Security Council meeting about reducing nuclear threats around the world.

But at the UN on Monday the president took aim at a different threat: the global drug problem.

TRUMP: The scourge of drug addiction continues to claim too many lives in the United States and in nations around the world. Today we commit to fighting the drug epidemic together.

The president has pushed for harsher penalties for drug dealers in the U.S., saying more of them should get the death penalty

Trump says second NoKo summit soon » President Trump said Monday he will likely hold a second summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un “quite soon.”

But Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said as talks with Pyongyang continue, the United States will call on the rest of the world to keep the pressure on North Korea. 

POMPEO: The entire UN Security Council remains committed to enforcing the UN Security Council resolutions. I’m confident that we’ll renew that and renew the commitments to that in the week ahead. It’s one of the things we’ll talk a great deal about. 

The secretary also answered critics who say President Trump should not meet again with Kim Jong Un until North Korea shows concrete progress on denuclearization. Pompeo said, “We’ve been at this the other way an awfully long time and failed.” He added, “We’re bringing the two senior leaders, the individuals who can actually make the decisions that will move this process forward.”

Russia sending advanced missile defense system to Syrian » Russia says it is sending advanced missile defense systems to the Syrian government, even as the U.S. warns that would be a “major mistake.” WORLD Radio’s Kristen Flavin has more.

KRISTEN FLAVIN, REPORTER: The Russian Defense Ministry says it will deliver sophisticated S-300 air defense systems to Syria within the next two weeks.

Earlier in the Syrian war, Russia suspended a supply of S-300s after Israel expressed concern. But Moscow will now go ahead with the shipment because, quote—“the situation has changed, and it’s not our fault.”

The Monday announcement came after a Russian military plane was shot down in Syria last week, caught in the crossfire as the Syrian military responded to an Israeli airstrike. Moscow blamed Israel for the incident.

The U.S. says Russia is making a “major mistake.” National security adviser John Bolton called the delivery of S-300s a “significant escalation” of already high tensions in the region.

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Kristen Flavin. 

Rosenstein’s fate uncertain » Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein faces an uncertain future at the Justice Department this week. Conflicting media reports suggested Rosenstein verbally resigned on Monday or that he expected to be fired as he headed for the White House for what was later described as a pre-scheduled meeting.

Instead, President Trump said he’ll meet with Rosenstein when he returns to Washington on Thursday. 

TRUMP: We’ll be meeting at the White House and we’ll be determining what’s going on. 

The Justice Department’s second in command came under a cloud of controversy last week after The New York Times reported Rosenstein once suggested secretly recording Trump and using the 25th Amendment to the Constitution to declare him unfit and remove him from office. Rosenstein called the report “absolutely false.”

Dallas Police fires officer who shot man in his home » A white police officer who awaits trial for fatally shooting her African-American neighbor inside his own apartment was fired Monday. WORLD Radio’s Leigh Jones has that story. 

LEIGH JONES, NEWS EDITOR: The Dallas Police Department terminated Amber Guyger for “adverse conduct.” She’s been charged with manslaughter in the fatal shooting of 26-year-old Botham Jean.

Guyger entered Jean’s apartment on September 6, thinking it was her own. She told investigators that when she saw a figure moving in the dark, she drew her weapon and, after Jean refused her verbal commands she fired twice. Guyger said she didn’t realize she had entered the wrong apartment until she turned on the lights.

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Leigh Jones.

I’m Kent Covington. Up next—Are the midterm elections secure? Sarah Schweinsberg reports. And Cal Thomas on the judicial confirmation process. This is The World and Everything in It.

(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin) Brett Kavanaugh, with his wife Ashley Estes Kavanaugh, answers questions during a FOX News interview, Monday, Sept. 24, 2018, in Washington, about allegations of sexual misconduct against the Supreme Court nominee.

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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