Friday morning news: August 2, 2019


President Trump announces new tariffs on Chinese goods » President Trump announced an end to the ceasefire in the ongoing trade war with China on Thursday.

Beginning September 1st, the U.S. will impose 10 percent tariffs on the remaining $300 billion in Chinese imports not already taxed. The president briefed reporters on the White House lawn Thursday. 

TRUMP: When my people came home they said we’re talking. We have another meeting in early September. I said that’s fine. But in the meantime, until such time as there’s a deal, we’ll be taxing them. 

That announcement caught many by surprise. When the latest round of trade talks in Shanghai ended, the White House said Beijing planned to increase purchases of American farm products. 

The Trump administration is providing $16 billion in aid to American farmers—on top of $11 billion last year—to offset lost sales to China.

The president previously imposed 25 percent tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese products. Beijing hit back by taxing $110 billion in U.S. goods.


Senate approves budget bill » Lawmakers in the Senate on Thursday sent a budget bill to President Trump’s desk that allows Washington to keep borrowing and increase spending.  

AUDIO: They ayes are 67. The nays are 28, and the bill is passed. 

The House passed the bill last week, even though most Republicans in the chamber opposed it. The president urged GOP senators to get behind it, and most of them did. But 23 Republicans voted “no,” including Florida Senator Rick Scott. 

SCOTT: I can’t vote for it. I mean, we’ve got $22 trillion dollars worth of debt. We’re running trillion dollar deficits. We’ve got to figure out how to live within our means, make tough choices. We’ve got to run this country better than we’ve been running it. 

Wyoming Senator John Barrasso said the bill isn’t perfect, but it will keep the military strong… 

BARRASSO: It continues to protect the full faith and credit of the United States. It keeps the government open. It provides certainty, but absolutely, it spends more than any of us would like. 

Republican leaders said the bill reflects the reality of divided government with neither side getting the bill they really want. 

The measure props up the debt ceiling for two years and boosts spending on both military and domestic programs. 


Rescue crews searching for missing fighter pilot following crash » Rescue crews continued their search on Thursday for the pilot of a U.S. Navy fighter jet that crashed in California’s Death Valley National Park on Wednesday. 

The crash injured seven people who were watching the F-18 Super Hornet from a scenic overlook. The jet was on a routine mission when it slammed into a canyon wall.

U.S. and foreign militaries use the park’s Rainbow Canyon for tests and training, and aviation enthusiasts often come to watch jets fly through the steep, narrow gorge. It’s the only national park military jets are allowed to fly over. 


U.S. ready to restart nuclear talks despite North Korean missile launches » Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Thursday that the United States is ready to restart nuclear talks with North Korea. But he said that’s not likely to happen during an Asian security conference this week in Thailand.

POMPEO: I regret that it looks like I’m not going to have an opportunity to do that while I’m here in Bangkok, but we’re ready to go. 

Meantime, the UK, France, and Germany on Thursday condemned North Korea’s latest ballistic missile launches as violations of UN sanctions. The countries urged Pyongyang to engage in “meaningful negotiations” with the United States.

The three countries also urged North Korea to—quote—“take concrete steps toward its complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization.” And they said international sanctions should stay in place until Pyongyang abandons its nuclear weapons program. 


Iran blasts U.S. sanctions against foreign minister » Iran’s president blasted new U.S. sanctions against the country’s foreign minister. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Thursday called the move “childish” and a barrier to diplomacy.

The Trump administration announced one day earlier that it would impose sanctions on Mohammad Javad Zarif as part of its pressure campaign against Iran.

Rouhani said “Every day they claim: ‘We want to negotiate with Iran, without any pre-conditions’. and then they put sanctions on the country’s foreign minister.”

It’s unusual to sanction another nation’s top diplomat. But U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton had a simple explanation. 

BOLTON: He’s not a diplomat. He’s a conman. He’s a shill. He’s a grifter, and this is the kind of step by the United States that shows he’s illegitimate. 

The European Union, which is still trying to salvage the Iran nuclear deal absent the United States, expressed regret over sanctions against Zarif. The EU said it would continue to communicate with him.

In June the Trump administration announced sanctions against Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Khamenei.


At least 51 killed in two attacks in Yemen » At least 51 people died in Yemen on Thursday in two separate attacks. WORLD Radio’s Kristen Flavin has more. 

KRISTEN FLAVIN, REPORTER: Rebels fired a ballistic missile at a military parade in the southern port city of Aden. Forces connected to the Saudi-led coalition that has been fighting the Iran-backed Houthi rebels were marching in the parade. A health official said the missile attack killed at least 40 people. 

A short while earlier, a car, a bus, and three motorcycles laden with explosives targeted a police station in Aden during a morning police roll-call.

Four suicide bombers carried out the attack, which killed 11 and wounded at least 29 people. 

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Kristen Flavin. 


U.S. extends Temporary Protected Status for Syrian » The United States is extending Temporary Protected Status—or TPS—for thousands of Syrians now in the country. 

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan made the announcement on Thursday. About 7,000 Syrian TPS beneficiaries now live in the U.S. The 18-month extension allows them to stay through March of 2021.


(AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., joins Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., as she signs the budget package just passed in the Senate, at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Aug. 1, 2019. 

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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