06-22-2024  2:41 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather

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NORTHWEST NEWS

Seattle Police Officer Fired for off-Duty Racist Comments

The termination stemmed from an altercation with his neighbor, Zhen Jin, over the disposal of dog bones at the condominium complex where they lived in Kenmore. The Seattle Office of Police Accountability had recommended a range of disciplinary actions, from a 30-day suspension to termination of employment.

New Holgate Library to Open in July

Grand opening celebration begins July 13 with ribbon cutting, food, music, fun

Nurses in Oregon Take to the Picket Lines to Demand Better Staffing, Higher Pay

The Oregon Nurses Association says they're seeking a contract that includes competitive wages and sufficient staffing levels. The CEO of Providence Oregon says they’ve been preparing for the strike for months and have contracted with replacement workers to ensure patient care does not suffer. 

Black Leaders Urge County to Continue Funding Multnomah Mothers Trust

The program has been entirely funded by American Rescue Plan grants, which run out after this year.

NEWS BRIEFS

Tiffani Penson to Kick Off Her Campaign for Portland City Council, District 2

Host Committee Includes Former State Senators Margaret Carter and Avel Gordly ...

Calling All Nonfiction Media Makers: Real to Reel is June 29

Join Open Signal for a day of collaboration and opportunity with Portland's community of nonfiction media makers. ...

Governor Kotek Observes Juneteenth

Governor Kotek joins Oregon Black Pioneers, Just Walk Salem Keizer and the Willamette Heritage Center for In Freedom’s Footsteps...

University of Portland Honored with Carnegie Leadership for Public Purpose Classification

UP recognized as one of 25 institutions nationwide committed to advancing leadership in pursuit of justice, equity, diversity and...

The National Civil Rights Museum Announces 33rd Freedom Award Honorees

This is the museum's signature event, which pays tribute to individuals who have shown unwavering commitment to promoting equity and...

Parts of Washington state parental rights law criticized as a ‘forced outing’ placed on hold

SEATTLE (AP) — A judge has paused parts of a new Washington state parental rights law derided by critics as a “forced outing” measure. King County Superior Court Judge Michael Scott on Friday paused portions of the law while a lawsuit brought by civil liberties groups and...

Seattle police officer fired for off-duty racist comments

SEATTLE (AP) — A Seattle police officer was fired for calling his Chinese American neighbor racist and sexist slurs while off duty in 2022, according to a news report. Officer Burton Hill was fired in May, The Seattle Times reported. The termination stemmed from an...

Kansas governor signs bills enabling effort to entice Chiefs and Royals with new stadiums

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas' governor signed legislation Friday enabling the state to lure the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs and Major League Baseball's Royals away from neighboring Missouri by helping the teams pay for new stadiums. Gov. Laura Kelly's action came three days...

A Missouri mayor says a fight over jobs is back on. Things to know about Kansas wooing the Chiefs

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A plan in Kansas for luring the Kansas City's two major league sports franchises from Missouri has prompted their hometown's mayor to declare that the move ends a 5-year-old agreement by the states not to poach each other's jobs. The Kansas Legislature has...

OPINION

State of the Nation’s Housing 2024: The Cost of the American Dream Jumped 47 Percent Since 2020

Only 1 in 7 renters can afford homeownership, homelessness at an all-time high ...

Juneteenth is a Sacred American Holiday

Today, when our history is threatened by erasure, our communities are being dismantled by systemic disinvestment, Juneteenth can serve as a rallying cry for communal healing and collective action. ...

Supreme Court Says 'Yes” to Consumer Protection, "No" to Payday Lenders 7-2 Decision Upholds CFPB’s Funding

A recent 7-2 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court gave consumers a long-sought victory that ended more than a decade of challenges over the constitutionality of the agency created to be the nation’s financial cop on the beat. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

South Africa's new government brings Black and white together. It's also reviving racial tensions

CAPE TOWN, South Africa (AP) — In a country where racial segregation was once brutally enforced, South Africa's new coalition government has brought a Black president and a white opposition leader together in an image of unity. Yet the power-sharing agreement sealed a week ago...

Buttigieg tours Mississippi civil rights site and says transportation is key to equity in the US

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Friday toured the home of assassinated civil rights leader Medgar Evers in Mississippi's capital city, saying afterward that transportation is important to securing equity and justice in the United States. ...

Celebrations honor Willie Mays and Negro League players ahead of MLB game at Rickwood Field

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — As Ajay Stone strolled around historic Rickwood Field and gazed at tributes displayed in honor of Willie Mays and other Negro Leaguers, he clutched a cherished memory under his arm. It was a picture from 2004 of Mays holding Stone's then-10-month-old daughter...

ENTERTAINMENT

Book Review: 'Swole' explores what masculinity could be in a hyperconnected, TikTok-imaged world

Author Michael Brodeur takes the gym too seriously, and not seriously at all at the same time, in his book “Swole: The Making of Men and the Meaning of Muscles” in an effort to show the readers that the overly online world of hypermasculinity is an illusion and what a man can be is what you...

List of winners at the 2024 Tony Awards

NEW YORK (AP) — Winners at the 2024 Tony Awards, announced Sunday. Best Musical: “The Outsiders” Best Play: “Stereophonic” Best Revival of a Musical: “Merrily We Roll Along” Best Revival of a Play: “Appropriate” ...

Sony Pictures acquires Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, the dine-in movie theater chain

Sony Pictures Entertainment is getting into the exhibition business. The studio behind recent films like “Bad Boys: Ride or Die” and “The Garfield Movie” has acquired the distinctive theater chain Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, the companies said Wednesday. Included in the deal is the genre film...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Nigel Farage, leader of Reform UK, criticized for saying West provoked Putin to invade Ukraine

LONDON (AP) — Nigel Farage, leader of the right-wing Reform U.K party, is facing wide-ranging criticism across...

US aircraft carrier arrives in South Korea as a show of force against nuclear-armed North Korea

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — A nuclear-powered U.S. aircraft carrier arrived Saturday in South Korea for a...

A year ago, Russian mercenary chief Yevgeny Prigozhin challenged the Kremlin with a mutiny

On a lazy summer weekend a year ago, Russia was jolted by the stunning news of an armed uprising. The swaggering...

How does heat kill? It confuses your brain. It shuts down your organs. It overworks your heart.

As temperatures and humidity soar outside, what's happening inside the human body can become a life-or-death...

Italian coast guard recovers 14 more bodies of shipwreck victims off Calabria, dozens still missing

ROME (AP) — The Italian coast guard has recovered 14 more bodies from last week's shipwreck in the Ionian Sea...

As U.S.-supplied weapons show impact inside Russia, Ukrainian soldiers hope for deeper strikes

KHARKIV REGION, Ukraine (AP) — Weeks after the decision allowing Ukraine to use U.S.-supplied weapons for...

Nasser Karimi Associated Press Writer

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -- Iran said Monday a court will try three Americans who wandered across the border from Iraq last July and became ensnared in an increasingly bitter standoff with the West over Tehran's nuclear program.
Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki did not say when the trial would begin or even what the Americans were charged with, other than that they had ``suspicious aims.'' Last month, Iran's chief prosecutor said they were accused of spying.
``They will be tried by Iran's judiciary system and verdicts will be issued,'' Mottaki told a news conference. He said the three were still being interrogated.
In Washington, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said the Iranian move was ``totally unfounded'' and appealed anew to authorities to release the Americans.
``We consider this a totally unfounded charge,'' she told reporters. ``There is no basis for it. The three young people who were detained by the Iranians have absolutely no connection with any kind of action against the Iranian state or government.''
``In fact, they were out hiking and unfortunately, apparently, allegedly, walked across an unmarked boundary,'' she said. ``We appeal to the Iranian leadership to release these three young people and free them as soon as possible.''
The three, Shane Bauer, 27, Sarah Shourd, 31, and Josh Fattal, 27, -- all graduates of the University of California at Berkeley -- had been trekking in Iraq's northern Kurdistan region when they accidentally crossed into Iran, according to their relatives. The trio were arrested on July 31.
All three families declined to comment on Monday's announcement.
The case recalls that of American-Iranian journalist Roxanna Saberi, who was arrested in Iran in January and convicted of espionage and sentenced to eight years in prison. She was freed on appeal in May after heavy pressure from the U.S. -- and several months later, the U.S. military released five Iranians it had held for more than two years.
The accusations against the three Americans could be a first step in a similar move by Iran to put them on trial and convict them, then arrange their release, aiming to get concessions.
There is precedent, however, for the release of foreigners without any apparent conditions. Canadian-Iranian journalist Maziar Bahari of Newsweek was released on bail and allowed to leave the country in October after being detained in Iran's post-election crackdown and tried in televised court proceedings.
Iran also swiftly released five British sailors on Dec. 2 after their yacht strayed into Iranian waters in the Persian Gulf.
In an interview with The Associated Press in September, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad noted that while the Americans had broken the law by crossing into Iran, he would ask the judiciary to expedite the process and to ``look at the case with maximum leniency.''
The three Americans have been held in Iran's Evin prison, where Swiss diplomats have visited them twice and said they are healthy. Because the U.S. and Iran do not have direct diplomatic relations, the Swiss Embassy maintains an American interests section.
Bauer and Shourd had been living in Damascus, Syria, where he was studying Arabic and she was teaching English, and both did freelance journalism or writing online. Friends have described them as passionate adventurers interested in the Middle East and human rights.
Fattal, who spent three years with a group dedicated to sustainable farming near Cottage Grove, Ore., had been overseas since January as a teaching assistant with the International Honors Program.
Hoping to prove that they were simply vacationing, the families released videos taken just two days before their detention, showing the three backpackers dancing and joking in an unfinished cinder block building they came across in Kurdistan's mountains. In one video, Fattal performed an impromptu rap about Iraq.
The case came at a time of rising tension between Iran and the West over Iran's nuclear capabilities and whether it was developing an atomic weapon.
The U.S. and its allies have given Tehran until the end of the year to accept a U.N.-drafted plan under which Iran would send most of its low-enriched uranium abroad. Iran, which denies it intends to build a weapon, has countered with an alternate proposal to keep the material inside its territory -- a scenario deemed unacceptable to the U.S.
Ahmadinejad noted last month that the United States was holding several Iranian citizens, raising concern that his government might be seeking to use the Americans in a deal.
In particular, he drew a link to the trial in the U.S. of Amir Hossein Ardebili, an Iranian who was sentenced to five years in prison Monday after pleading guilty to plotting to ship sensitive U.S. military technology to Iran.
According to court papers, Ardebili worked as a procurement agent for the Iranian government and acquired thousands of components, including military aircraft parts, night vision devices, communications equipment and Kevlar body armor. U.S. authorities targeted him in 2004 after he contacted an undercover storefront set up in Philadelphia to investigate illegal arms trafficking.
Iran is also concerned about Shahram Amiri, a nuclear scientist who disappeared on a pilgrimage to Mecca and Ali Reza Asghari, a former Defense Ministry official who vanished while in Turkey.
Iran has accused U.S. and Western intelligence agencies of being involved in the disappearance of both men. There was speculation, however, that the two had defected and gave the West information on Iran's nuclear program.