Sep 12, 2018

Putin denies Skripal poisoning suspects are intelligence officers

Photo: Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday that Russia had identified the two suspects accused by the U.K. of poisoning former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury, England, and responded that they are "civilians" when asked if they work for Russia's military, reports the AP.

Why it matters: Russia has repeatedly denied culpability for last year's Novichok poisoning, which resulted in one of the largest diplomatic expulsions in history. But the U.S., Canada, France and Germany have all signed onto a statement supporting the conclusions by the British government that the operation was carried out by two Russian GRU officers — and that it was almost certainly approved at a senior level of the Kremlin.

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America's funeral homes buckle under the coronavirus

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Morgues, funeral homes and cemeteries in hot spots across America cannot keep up with the staggering death toll of the coronavirus pandemic.

Why it matters: The U.S. has seen more than 10,000 deaths from the virus, and at least tens of thousands more lives are projected to be lost. The numbers are creating unprecedented bottlenecks in the funeral industry — and social distancing is changing the way the families say goodbye to their loved ones.

Navarro memos warning of mass coronavirus death circulated in January

Image from a memo to President Trump

In late January, President Trump's economic adviser Peter Navarro warned his White House colleagues the novel coronavirus could take more than half a million American lives and cost close to $6 trillion, according to memos obtained by Axios.

The state of play: By late February, Navarro was even more alarmed, and he warned his colleagues, in another memo, that up to two million Americans could die of the virus.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health

Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index: The virus hits home

Data: Ipsos/Axios poll; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

The share of Americans who know someone who's tested positive has more than tripled in just a few weeks, to 14%, according to the latest installment of our Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index.

  • It's still highest in the Northeast, but last week alone it doubled in the South — and it's becoming most pronounced among people who still must leave home to work.
Go deeperArrow2 hours ago - Health