Mar 19, 2018

Russia in U.N. protest: Peace and security not linked to human rights

A Russian official during a 2017 Security Council hearing. Photo: EuropaNewswire/Gado/Getty Images

U.N. human rights chief Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein has been blocked from addressing the Security Council about atrocities being committed in Syria following a Russia-led protest backed by China. He will instead give an informal briefing.

  • The dispute: Per the AP, Russia "had argued that human rights have nothing to do with the council's mandate of ensuring international peace and security." Western diplomats countered that they're closely linked.
  • The backdrop: Russia has played an active role in the slaughter of civilians in Syria in its efforts to prop up the Assad regime. Hundreds have been killed in an ongoing offensive on the rebel-held suburb of Eastern Ghouta.

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Biden, Sanders work toward truce on big issues

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Joe Biden isn’t about to become Bernie Sanders, but he’s signaling that there’s potential for more common ground on issues such as health care, student debt, climate change and more in the weeks ahead.

What to watch: As Biden courts Sanders' endorsement, their teams will hold policy discussions in the next few weeks with the expectation that Biden will incorporate some elements of Sanders' agenda, a person familiar with those plans tells Axios.

Some Trump aides eye May 1 start to coronavirus reopening

President Trump was flanked at yesterday's briefing by HHS Secretary Alex Azar (far left), Vice President Pence and Dr. Deborah Birx. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

President Trump's aides, encouraged by virus data showing fewer deaths than once projected, are working behind the scenes to deliver on his vow to reopen America "sooner rather than later."

What to watch for: The official said there’s a lot of internal energy pushing for May 1, because that's the end of the White House's "30 days to slow the spread."

U.S. coronavirus updates: Death toll surpasses 14,800

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

The novel coronavirus has now killed more than 2,000 people for the second day in a row, and it's infected over 432,000 others, per Johns Hopkins data.

Where it stands: More than 14,800 people have died of COVID-19 in the U.S. — including over 4,500 in New York. The state's death toll surged to its highest one-day total on Wednesday — beating the previous day's record. 779 people died in New York in 24 hours. N.Y. has reported more cases than the most-affected countries in Europe.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health