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Donald Trump. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

Trump said he is not considering a U.S. troop reduction in South Korea Friday following the NYT report that he ordered the Pentagon to consider a drawdown. Trump’s National Security Advisor John Bolton denied it in a statement on Friday as well.

Why it matters: As Trump's planned talks with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un edges closer, concerns remain over what the U.S. will concede in negotiations to get North Korea to fully, verifiably, and permanently denuclearize. If troop reductions are on the table, U.S. relations with South Korea and Japan could strain, and the move could threaten their safety if North Korea isn’t truly on the path to peace and denuclearization.

  • To be sure: Last week Mattis suggested that U.S. troop presence is "part of the issues that we’ll be discussing in negotiations with our allies first, and of course with North Korea."
  • The backdrop: North Korea in the past has put up a drawdown of U.S. troops as a precondition for denuclearization.

Go deeper

8 mins ago - Health

Johnson & Johnson says booster shot increases efficacy of COVID vaccine

Syringes and a vial of the Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine in French Polynesia on Sept. 8. Photo: Jerome Brouillet/AFP via Getty Images

Johnson & Johnson said in a press release Tuesday a global study showed that the protection offered by its coronavirus vaccine was strengthened by a booster shot.

Why it matters: While J&J has not formally applied for authorization to offer booster shots to the general public, it said it has shared the results of the study with the Food and Drug Administration and plans to share it with the World Health Organization and other health regulators.

1 hour ago - World

U.K. prosecutors charge third person in poisoning of former Russian spy

Emergency services members in biohazard encapsulated suits encasing the poisoning scene in a tent in Salisbury, England, in March 2018. Ben Stansall/AFP via Getty Images

U.K. prosecutors said they had enough evidence to charge Denis Sergeev, a member of the Russian military intelligence service, in the 2018 Salisbury nerve agent attack against a former Russian spy, according to AP.

Why it matters: Sergeev is the third person to face charges for the nerve agent attack against Sergei Skripal and his daughter, Yulia, both of whom survived.

2 hours ago - Technology

Scoop: More boycotts coming for Facebook

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Leaders of the Stop Hate For Profit social media boycott group are discussing whether to organize another campaign against Facebook in light of an explosive investigative series from the Wall Street Journal, Common Sense CEO Jim Steyer tells Axios.

The intrigue: Sources tell Axios that another group, separate from the Stop Hate For Profit organization, is expected to launch its own ad boycott campaign this week.

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