An 18-year-old man has been arrested in connection with Friday's shooting deaths of two people at a mall in California's capital, police said.
- ScienceThe Telegraph
It turns out the shiny monolith that was spotted in a remote southeastern Utah desert two weeks ago was not the only such object to mysteriously appear. The alien-looking object was discovered in the US on November 18 before disappearing in equally baffling fashion on Friday evening. Now it transpires a similar looking object has been found in Romania. The four-metre tall upturned triangular prism appeared on Thursday on a hillside outside Piatra Neamt in the north of Romania, close to an important archaeological site. A dark metallic structure that appears covered in concentric circles, it was spotted a few metres away from the well-known archaeological landmark the Petrodava Dacian Fortress, an fort built by the ancient Dacian people between 82 BC and AD 106. "There is no reason to panic for those who think there is still life in the universe," local mayor Andrei Carabelea wrote on Facebook. "My guess is that some alien, cheeky and terrible teenagers left home with their parents' UFO and started planting metal monoliths around the world. First in Utah and then at Piatra Neamt. I am honoured that they chose our city."
- U.S.Popular Mechanics
Whatever it is, we know it's going to be insanely loud.
- PoliticsThe Telegraph
Republicans indicated they would try to block one of Joe Biden's proposed key economic advisers in what could be the first major confirmation battle of his administration. Mr Biden on Monday nominated Neera Tanden, 50, as the first woman of colour to be director of the Office of Management and Budget. Ms Tanden has for the last decade headed a liberal think tank, and is a former close aide to Hillary Clinton. She has been a vocal critic of Republican senators including leader Mitch McConnell, accusing him of "breaking our democracy". A spokesman for Republican senator John Cornyn accused her of "an endless stream of disparaging comments," and said she "stands zero chance of being confirmed". Mr McConnell's former chief of staff said Ms Tanden would be a "sacrifice to the confirmation gods". It came as Mr Biden received the Presidential Daily Brief for the first time, giving him an update on classified intelligence. That would be expected to include the latest US intelligence assessments of the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. The president-elect also revealed his economic team, including confirmation that he was nominating Janet Yellen, the former Federal Reserve chair, as treasury secretary. He also named an all-female senior White House communications team with Jen Psaki as press secretary. Ms Psaki worked in Barack Obama's administration, and has been a contributor to CNN. The confirmation of Ms Tanden looked set to depend on who wins two Senate run-off races in Georgia on January 5. If Democrats win both races they will take control of the Senate from Republicans, easing the confirmation process for Biden officials. As the battle in Georgia heated up its secretary of state Brad Raffensperger opened investigations into left-wing groups trying to sign up new voters. He said some groups had been encouraging people who lived outside Georgia to register to vote in the state. Ms Tanden is also unpopular with some on the left wing of the Democratic party. Last year Bernie Sanders accused her of "maligning my staff and supporters and belittling progressive ideas".
- CelebrityThe Independent
The ‘dance-off’ would have been filmed as a part of Beyoncé's recently released Black is King visual album
Justin responded as well as he could to the invasive personal question.
- WorldThe Telegraph
Switzerland is emerging as a model for how the coronavirus can be contained without a national lockdown, after daily new infections halved since the start of November despite pubs, restaurants, gyms and sports remaining open in much of the country. The figures were hailed as a triumph for the “Swiss special way” by Swiss government doctors last week, and will be seen as evidence that regional tiers can work in the UK. Rather than ordering a general lockdown, Switzerland allowed regions to decide their own measures and only the worst-hit imposed tough restrictions. But critics have charged that the success came at too high a price, after the country experienced some of the highest death rates in Europe. Switzerland has been described as the “new Sweden” after it refused to follow the UK and other countries into a second lockdown this month. The Swiss government imposed only minimal restrictions at a national level, including a limit of ten on private gatherings, an 11pm curfew for restaurants and the compulsory use of facemasks in crowded areas.