Feb 19, 2018

Four countries could team up to counter Beijing's influence

Chinese President Xi Jinping speaks at the Belt and Road Forum in 2017. Photo: Mark Schiefelbein, Pool / Getty Images

The U.S., Japan, India and Australia could form an alliance as an answer to China's trillion dollar Belt and Road infrastructure project, the Australian Financial Review reports. China's project will involve dozens of countries across Asia, the Middle East, Africa and Europe in an effort to increase its global economic prowess.

The details: Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will reportedly discuss the idea with President Trump during his visit to Washington this week.

Go deeper: The staggering scale of Beijing's Belt and Road initiative

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Acting Navy head apologizes for calling fired captain "stupid"

Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly testifies on Capitol Hill in December. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly apologized Monday for calling Capt. Brett Crozier, the ousted commander of the USS Theodore Roosevelt "too naive or too stupid" over his letter pleading for help following a coronavirus outbreak onboard.

The big picture: His apology came after President Trump told a news briefing earlier Monday he would "get involved" following a leak of Modly's remarks on Crozier to the ship's crew, obtained by CNN. Modly said in a statement.

What he's saying: "Let me be clear, I do not think Captain Brett Crozier is naive nor stupid. I think, and always believed him to be the opposite," Modly said in his statement released to news outlets.

Go deeper: Acting Navy head called fired aircraft carrier captain "stupid" in address to crew

Editor's note: This is a developing news story. Please check back for updates.

Former Vatican treasurer George Pell's sexual abuse convictions overturned

Cardinal George Pell at the County Court in Melbourne, Australia, in 2019. Photo: Michael Dodge/Getty Images

George Pell, the former Vatican treasurer, has won his appeal and had his child sexual abuse convictions overturned by Australia's High Court.

Why it matters: The cardinal became last year the highest-ranking Catholic Church official to go to trial and be convicted for sex abuse. But the High Court's ruling means he can be immediately released from prison, where he was serving a six-year sentence.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 44 mins ago - World

U.S. coronavirus updates: Death toll tops 10,000

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Recorded deaths from the novel coronavirus surpassed 10,000 in the U.S. on Monday, per Johns Hopkins data. More than 1,000 people in the U.S. have died of coronavirus-related conditions each day since April 1.

Why it matters: U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams said on Sunday this week will be "the hardest and saddest week of most Americans' lives" — calling it our "our Pearl Harbor, our 9/11 moment."

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health