President Trump announced that ‘a major federal investigation is now underway’ after suspected explosive devices were sent to CNN, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and other top Democrats. The FBI said their Joint Terrorism task force is part of the investigation. Trump said the safety of Americans is his ‘highest and absolute priority.’
Russian President Vladimir Putin announced on Wednesday that Russia will target any EU countries that host US nuclear missiles after the US decision to withdraw from the arms control treaty. Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) halted plans by US-based startup OneWeb to bring internet access to rural and remote parts of Russia.
China’s Defense Minister Wei Fenghe announced on Thursday that the country’s military will take action ‘at any cost’ to prevent the separation of self-ruled Taiwan. China is displeased with recent US gestures supporting Taiwan’s democratic functioning. Wei said China’s US military ties are important but it is ‘extremely dangerous to repeatedly challenge China’s bottom line.’
Stocks in Asia dropped on Thursday following a Wall Street sell-off overnight. Tokyo stocks fell more than 3% while the slump in Europe was less severe. Tesla shares increased more than 12% on a surprise third-quarter profit. The increase gave investors hope after an unsteady period. CEO Elon Musk called it an ‘incredibly historic quarter.’
Former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak was charged with six counts of criminal breach of trust involving government funds of more than $1.5 billion on Thursday adding to the 32 counts for money laundering and graft. Razak’s former treasury chief was also charged with breach of trust. Both pleaded guilty to all charges.
Italy will fine Apple €10 million and Samsung €5 million after an investigation launched in January confirmed ‘planned obsolescence’ of their smartphones. The investigation was launched after accusations that updates slowed down older smartphones. Following protests by anti-gentrification activists, Google has dropped plans to open a campus to facilitate the creation of startups in Berlin.