World breaking news today (Feb 15): Prince Harry and Meghan 'overjoyed' to be expecting second child

World breaking news today (Feb 15): Prince Harry and Meghan's second pregnant child. Meanwhile, GOP senators voted to convict Trump faces backlash, powerful earthquake in Japan, COVID-19 and gold price updates also make headlines today.
February 15, 2021 | 08:07
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‘Archie is going to be a big brother,’ the couple’s spokesperson said. Photograph: Misan Harriman/Duke and Duchess of Sussex/PA

Prince Harry and Meghan 'overjoyed' to be expecting second child

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have confirmed that they are expecting a younger brother or sister for their one-year-old son, Archie.

A spokesperson for Prince Harry and Meghan said: “We can confirm that Archie is going to be a big brother. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are overjoyed to be expecting their second child.”

The couple shared a black and white picture of themselves under a tree with Harry resting his hand on Meghan’s head as she lies cradling her bump.

Responding to the news, Buckingham Palace said: “Her Majesty, Duke of Edinburgh, Prince of Wales and the entire family are delighted and wish them well.”

The Sussexes’ baby will be the Prince of Wales’ fifth grandchild and the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh’s 10th or 11th great-grandchild, depending on whether he or she arrives before or after Zara Tindall’s baby, which is also due in 2021. He or she will be eighth in line to the throne and entitled to be a Lord or Lady, but the duke and duchess are expected to again opt for Master, like Archie, or Miss, with the surname Mountbatten-Windsor, The Guardian said.

GOP senators who voted to convict Trump are now facing backlash in their home states

The seven Republican senators who joined all 50 Democrats in voting to convict former President Donald Trump of inciting the Jan. 6 riot in the Capitol are now facing heat from conservatives in their home states.

Party leaders and local GOP officials, many seeking to curry favor with the broad swath of conservative voters still loyal to Trump, have condemned the 7 lawmakers for breaking ranks with the rest of the party.

The critiques illustrate the strong hold that Trump continues to have over Republicans nationally in spite of his November loss and his subsequent refusal to concede defeat.

Polling conducted after the attack on Congress last month continues to show Trump holds a sky-high approval rating among Republicans, and that about half of the GOP is primarily loyal to the ex-president himself, rather than the party.

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(Photo: Yahoo News)

The Senate ultimately acquitted Trump on Saturday in a 57-43 vote after an unprecedented second impeachment trial.

While Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, was the lone member of the GOP to vote against Trump after his first trial, he was joined this time by six others: Richard Burr of North Carolina, Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Ben Sasse of Nebraska, and Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.

Some of the senators, including Cassidy, have already been hit with official rebukes from their state party, while many of the others are facing a chorus of criticism from local conservatives. Cassidy was censured by the Louisiana GOP just hours after his vote, as reported by CNBC.

WHO Wuhan mission finds possible signs of wider original outbreak in 2019

Investigators from the World Health Organization (WHO) looking into the origins of coronavirus in China have discovered signs the outbreak was much wider in Wuhan in December 2019 than previously thought, and are urgently seeking access to hundreds of thousands of blood samples from the city that China has not so far let them examine.

The lead investigator for the WHO mission, Peter Ben Embarek, told CNN in a wide-ranging interview that the mission had found several signs of the more wide-ranging 2019 spread, including establishing for the first time there were over a dozen strains of the virus in Wuhan already in December. The team also had a chance to speak to the first patient Chinese officials said had been infected, an office worker in his 40s, with no travel history of note, reported infected on December 8.

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(Photo: CNN)

Embarek, who has just returned to Switzerland from Wuhan, told CNN: "The virus was circulating widely in Wuhan in December, which is a new finding."

Embarek said it was possible this larger number -- of likely severe cases that had been noticed by Chinese doctors early on -- meant the disease could have hit an estimated 1,000-plus people in Wuhan that December, according to CNN.

Powerful magnitude 7.3 earthquake jolts Tohoku area

A powerful magnitude 7.3 earthquake struck late Saturday off the coast of Tohoku, leaving at least 100 people injured across six prefectures just weeks before the 10th anniversary of the March 2011 quake, tsunami and nuclear disaster.

The quake, which measured a strong 6 on the Japanese seismic intensity scale — the second-highest level — jolted Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures in the Tohoku region. No tsunami warning was issued, but the earthquake was the strongest to hit the region since April 7, 2011, the Meteorology Agency said.

People were reported hurt in Miyagi, Fukushima, Ibaraki, Tochigi, Saitama and Chiba prefectures, but no serious injuries were confirmed.

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The manager of a liquor store in the city of Fukushima cleans up after the earthquake on Saturday night. | KYODO

Nationwide, at least 950,000 homes temporarily lost power, but that was mostly resolved as of Sunday morning.

The quake, which was also felt in Tokyo, where it registered a 4 on the Japanese scale, struck at around 11:07 p.m., according to the Meteorological Agency. The epicenter was off the coast of Fukushima, about 220 kilometers (135 miles) north of Tokyo. Its focus was estimated to be at a depth of about 55 kilometers.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said during a meeting of Cabinet ministers Sunday morning that no deaths had been reported in the quake, but urged vigilance amid the prospect of continued aftershocks up to a strong 6 on the Japanese scale.

“We urge the people in the affected areas to continuously pay attention to information from entities such as municipalities, be on alert and be ready to act fast and consider weather changes after tomorrow,” Suga said.

Gold price forecast: XAU/ USD correction seems unstoppable as $1,780 beckons

Gold has recently been rejected at $1,850, paving the way for the ongoing declines. Before that, the precious metal had rebounded from support established at $1,780. However, after losing critical support, declines are most likely to carry on in the week starting Monday.

A short-term compressive analysis shows t5he Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD) on the 4-hour chart reinforcing the breakdown. The indicator follows the direction of the asset’s trend while measuring its momentum.

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(Photo: Proactive Investors)

The MACD can also identify local selling positions to sell the top and buy the bottom. If the MACD line (blue) crosses below the signal line, the asset is likely to correct from the uptrend. On the other hand, a buy the bottom signal occurs when the MACD line crosses above the signal line.

For now, XAU/USD is still a sell zone, as observed with the MACD indicator. Moreover, the price closed the week under the 50 Simple Moving Average, which adds credibility to the downtrend, FX Street said.

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Jasmine Le

Insider

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