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Moderna vaccine results ‘stunningly impressive,’ Fauci tells AFPThe United States’ top infectious disease scientist on Monday hailed early results from Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine trial as “stunningly impressive,” calling the findings an emphatic validation of experimental mRNA technology that some had doubted.”I must admit that I would have been satisfied with 70 or at the most 75 percent efficacy,” he told AFP.”The idea that we have a 94.5 percent effective vaccine is stunningly impressive. It is really a spectacular result that I don’t think anybody had anticipated would be this good.”Air condition slightly improves in parts of Delhi. As per Central Pollution Control Board data, Air Quality Index in ITO area is at 176, in Moderate category.PM Narendra Modi to attend 12th BRICS Summit hosted by Russia, under the theme ‘Global Stability, Shared Security and Innovative Growth’ today. The meeting will be held in a virtual format.Goa Power Minister had challenged Kejriwal model of electricity & wished to conduct a public debate. I’ll be arriving in Goa by 2 pm today, he should let me know the time & venue for debate. I really hope & wish, he will come & participate in the debate
– AAP leader Raghav Chadha
Conservative group alleging voter fraud ends its lawsuitsA conservative group on Monday moved to dismiss voter fraud lawsuits it had filed in four states days after the group’s leader made baseless allegations questioning the integrity of the election.Lawyers for True the Vote filed notices to dismiss cases in Georgia, Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania less than a week after suing in all four states. Jim Bopp Jr., an attorney for the group, declined to say why they were ending their lawsuits, but confirmed there were no other cases pending from the group.The action highlighted the dwindling legal options that President Donald Trump has as he continues to insist — against overwhelming evidence to the contrary — that fraud cost him an election he claims to have won.Biden filling out top White House team with campaign vetsSources familiar with Biden’s initial decisions confirmed Monday that former campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon will serve as a deputy chief of staff, while campaign co-chair Louisiana Rep. Cedric Richmond and campaign adviser Steve Ricchetti will play senior roles in the new administration. Richmond will leave his Louisiana congressional seat to fill the White House job.The new hires represent an initial wave of what will ultimately be hundreds of new White House aides hired in the coming weeks as Biden builds out an administration to execute his governing vision. The Democrat will be inaugurated Jan. 20.Hurricane Iota, a climate ‘bomb’ terrorizing Central AmericaIota exploded into a catastrophic Category 5 hurricane bearing down on remote Central American coastal provinces on Monday, with the region’s leaders blaming climate change for destruction that has pushed millions closer to hungerIota was due to smack into northeastern Nicaragua overnight, packing maximum sustained winds of 160 miles (260 km) per hour, having reached Category 5 on the Saffir-Simpson scale, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.Central America and southern Mexico are still reeling from Hurricane Eta, which devastated crops and washed away hillsides two weeks ago, killing dozens. Many towns are still partially flooded, and the land is already waterlogged from the earlier storm.California pulls brake on reopeningCalifornia has decided to pull an “emergency brake” on loosening the coronavirus-related restrictions and is currently assessing imposing curfews amid a surge of cases across the state, Governor Gavin Newsom said at a press conference.”We are sounding the alarm. California is experiencing the fastest increase in cases we have seen yet… That is why we are pulling an emergency brake in the Blueprint for a Safer Economy,” Newsom said on Monday. “The notion of a curfew: we are assessing that as well.”Facebook, Twitter CEOs to be pressed on election handlingProminent Republican senators have refused to knock down President Donald Trump’s unfounded claims of voting irregularities and fraud, even as misinformation disputing Democrat Joe Biden’s victory has flourished online.Sen. Lindsey Graham, a close Trump ally who heads the Senate Judiciary Committee to which the CEOs will testify Tuesday, has publicly urged, “Do not concede, Mr. President. Fight hard.”Both Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter’s Jack Dorsey promised lawmakers last month that they would aggressively guard their platforms from being manipulated by foreign governments or used to incite violence around the election results _ and they followed through with high-profile steps that angered Trump and his supporters.Biden calls for US stimulus after meeting with business leadersPresident-elect Joe Biden on Monday called for a new stimulus package to help the United States recover from the damage caused by coronavirus pandemic.Biden renewed his plea for more aid following a meeting with business and labor leaders to lay out his plans for the world’s largest economy.The type of massive stimulus spending only Washington lawmakers can approve is regarded as key in getting the US back on its feet after the mass layoffs and sharp downturn in growth caused by Covid-19, but Republicans and Democrats have been unable to agree on a new package.New vaccine breakthrough lifts global hope against pandemicThe news from the US biotech firm Moderna comes after similar results were announced last week for a vaccine candidate developed by pharma giant Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech.Major stock markets surged Monday in response, building on a boom sparked by the Pfizer news one week ago.Moderna, whose results stem from a clinical trial of more than 30,000 participants, expects to have approximately 20 million doses ready to ship in the United States by year-end.Over 1 million children in US tested positiveMore than 1 million children in the United States have tested positive for the novel coronavirus since the beginning of the pandemic, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) said in a statement.”As of Nov. 12, a total of 1,039,464 children have tested positive for COVID-19 since the onset of the pandemic,” the AAP said on Monday. “In the one-week period ending November 12, there were 111,946 new cases in children, which is substantially larger than any previous week in the pandemic.”Trump asked for options for attacking Iran last week, but held offPresident Donald Trump asked for options on attacking Iran’s main nuclear site last week but ultimately decided against taking the dramatic step, a U.S. official said on Monday.Trump made the request during a meeting on Thursday with his top national security aides, including Vice President Mike Pence, his new acting defense secretary Christopher Miller, and General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the official said.