“I love it,” Gwyneth Paltrow says of married life, as she shares details about her “‘Modern Family’ honeymoon”

Entertainment News  "I love it," Gwyneth Paltrow says of married life, as she shares details about her "'Modern Family' honeymoon" https://linewsradio.com/i-love-it-gwyneth-paltrow-says-of-married-life-as-she-shares-details-about-her-modern-family-honeymoon/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/entertainment-news/

 

ABC(NEW YORK) — Oscar-winner and lifestyle guru Gwyneth Paltrow made the media rounds Wednesday morning to promote her fourth cookbook, The Clean Plate: Eat, Reset, Heal.  Her publicity tour means she’s back to work after a delayed holiday honeymoon in the Maldives. 

Paltrow, 46, and producer Brad Falchuk, who she met on the set of Glee, tied the knot on Sept. 29, 2018, in Amagansett, New York. Their wedding was a glamorous affair, as seen in photos Paltrow shared on her Goop website. But the actress said it was the guests who really made her big day memorable.

“We had a very small wedding,” she said. “We both have really old friends from elementary school and high school and that was really the bulk of our friends that were there. It was really special.”

Celebrity guests at Paltrow and Falchuk’s wedding included Jerry Seinfeld, Paltrow’s Iron Man co-star Robert Downey Jr., Rob Lowe, Steven Spielberg and wife Kate Capshaw and, of course, Paltrow’s mother, Blythe Danner, People magazine reported at the time.

It was Paltrow’s second marriage, but first actual wedding. She and her ex-husband, Coldplay singer Chris Martin, eloped.  Though the pair famously “consciously uncoupled,” eventually divorcing in 2016, they remains close. In fact, Falchuk’s kids, Paltrow’s two children with Martin, family friends and Martin himself all joined the newlyweds in the Maldives.

On Live with Kelly and Ryan, Paltrow called it a “Modern Family honeymoon.”

“We just wanted to minimize the pain for the kids,” Paltrow said Wednesday, referring to her two children with Martin, Apple and Moses. “And they just want to see their parents around the dinner table, basically, so we try to keep that.”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 09 Jan 2019

Pompeo makes surprise visit to Baghdad and Erbil to reassure Iraqi officials on US Syria withdrawal

WORLD NEWS Pompeo makes surprise visit to Baghdad and Erbil to reassure Iraqi officials on US Syria withdrawal  https://linewsradio.com/pompeo-makes-surprise-visit-to-baghdad-and-erbil-to-reassure-iraqi-officials-on-us-syria-withdrawal/  http://abcnewsradioonline.com/world-news/

Jordan Pix/Getty Images(BAGHDAD) — Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made an unannounced stop in Iraq on Wednesday as part of a larger tour of the Middle East in which he is reassuring partners of America’s presence in the region following President Donald Trump’s surprise decision to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria.

Pompeo met with top Iraqi officials in Baghdad, including Prime Minister Adil Abd al-Mahdi and President Barham Salih, before stopping in Erbil, the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan.

“We certainly talked about the president’s decision to withdraw from Syria, but we focused more importantly on the enormous important impact of the Iraqi government formation process,” Pompeo told reporters before departing Erbil, referring to the new Iraqi government which took over this past fall.

“Real progress has been made since the elections in Iraq which I think will put this country and this region in a far better place,” he said, adding that Washington and Baghdad share a common understanding about the fight against ISIS and the importance of countering Iran.

Pompeo was adamant that the growing rift between the U.S. and Turkey over the protection of the Kurds would have no effect on the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Syria and that America’s Kurdish allies in Syria would be protected.

On Tuesday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan refused a meeting with National Security Adviser John Bolton and said publicly that his December phone call with Trump did not address the Kurds — who have been valuable U.S. partners in the fight against ISIS, but are viewed as terrorists by Ankara, which has routinely threatened to target them.

Meanwhile, U.S. officials, including Pompeo, have insisted that protection for the Kurds is one of the conditions that must be met for withdrawal.

“What I said last week is that these are folks that have fought with us, and that it’s important that we do everything we can to make sure that those folks that fought with us are protected,” Pompeo told reporters in Erbil. “And Erdogan has made commitments, he understands that — I think he uses the language that he has no beef with the Kurds. We want to make sure that that’s the case.”

“[Erdogan] talked about terrorists being an existential threat,” Pompeo continued. “We acknowledged that there is a threat to Turkey from terrorists, and we will be very supportive. Any place where we find extremists and terrorists, we’re prepared to support whatever country.”

Pompeo’s tour of the Middle East includes planned stops in Jordan, Egypt, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Oman, and Kuwait.

Trump visited a U.S. air base in Iraq for several hours on the day after Christmas but did not meet with Iraqi officials.

During that visit, the president said the U.S. could still use bases in Iraq for its operations against ISIS in Syria. And officials have said the U.S. does not intend to pull its approximately 5,200 troops from Iraq, which have largely been focused on training and advising Iraqi Security Forces in their fight against terrorism.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 09 Jan 2019

Sen. Bernie Sanders, potential 2020 candidate, to introduce bills on prescription drug costs

Sezeryadigar/iStock(WASHINGTON) — Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., who says he is still considering a second presidential run in 2020, is teaming up with Democratic leaders in the House to put forward a series of bills that address one of the most talked about issues among voters: the rising cost of prescription drugs.

The tactic of introducing bills to outline an aspirational agenda is one the progressive senator mastered in the in the past with measures on health care, equitable wages and climate change.

On this topic, though, President Trump and his Cabinet have generally agreed that prescription drug prices are too high, leaving open the possibility that some of these Democratic bills could enjoy bipartisan support. Many of the principles outlined in Sanders’ bills ring similar to other ideas proposed by this White House.

Sanders will hold a press conference Thursday with Reps. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., and Ro Khanna, D-Calif., to introduce three new bills aimed at bringing down the price of prescription drugs. The issue was central to Sanders’ first presidential bid in 2016, and Democratic leaders have often cited it as a top priority for the party this year, too.

According to a preview sent to ABC News from Sanders’ congressional staff, the new legislative package from Sanders and the group of House Democrats includes:

– The Prescription Drug Price Relief Act, which would “peg the price of prescription drugs in the United States to the median price in five major countries: Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Japan;

– The Medicare Drug Price Negotiation Act, to “direct the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) to negotiate lower prices for prescription drugs under Medicare Part D;” and

– The Affordable and Safe Prescription Drug Importation Act, which to “allow Americans to import safe, low-cost medicine from Canada and other major countries.”

“The United States pays by far the highest prices in the world for prescription drugs. This has created a health care crisis in which 1 in 5 American adults cannot afford to get the medicine they need,” Senator Sanders told ABC News in a statement. “That is why I am introducing legislation to drastically bring down the cost of prescription drugs.

“If the pharmaceutical industry will not end its greed, which is literally killing Americans, then we will end it for them,” he continued. Sanders’ staff says there will be over a dozen members co-sponsoring the bills.

Last fall, President Trump, alongside his Secretary of Department of Health and Human Services, Alex Azar, also put forward an idea about establishing an “international pricing index” to guide pricing negotiations for drugs covered. The White House though focused mostly on negotiating on behalf of Medicare Part B enrollees.

Part B covers doctors’ visits and a limited amount of prescription drug costs.

A government report at the time concluded that drug manufacturers and distributors charged Medicare nearly double the prices seen in other countries. Experts say those proposals from the White House are in very nascent stages.

Sanders’ proposals would expand the authority of the Secretary of HHS to negotiate on behalf of Part D enrollees, e.g. recipients with outpatient prescription drug coverage.

Under current law, the HHS secretary is barred from negotiating directly with drug manufacturers on behalf of Medicare Part D enrollees.

Tricia Neuman, senior vice president at the Kaiser Family Foundation, told ABC News that considering both the broad public enthusiasm for any new tools or ideas that would allow the government to negotiate lower drug prices as well as both parties’ stated concern on this issue, it is possible Congress and the White House could reach some bipartisan consensus in this space in the coming years. “But, who knows,” she quibbled on the phone.

Neuman said that experts are currently debating and researching a variety of ways to lower drug prices, including methods for driving drug manufacturers to the negotiating table or emboldening the government to zero in on and set prices for specific types of drugs.

The vast majority of the public support allowing the federal government to negotiate down drug prices for Medicare recipients, according to polling from the Kaiser Family Foundation.

During a town hall on MSNBC last week, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., told the audience: “Most of the things in our agenda are about bipartisan issues. The president says he wants to lower the cost of prescription drugs, so do we. That’s one of our first items on the agenda.”

At the start of the year, “more than three dozen drugmakers raised the prices on hundreds of medicines in the U.S.,” according to an analysis from Rx Savings Solutions and the Wall Street Journal.

Last year, two other senators eying possible 2020 runs, Sens. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., each unveiled their own legislation on the topic, too.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Saudi teen in Thailand granted refugee status by the UN after calls for help and claims of family threats

WORLD NEWS Saudi teen in Thailand granted refugee status by the UN after calls for help and claims of family threats  https://linewsradio.com/saudi-teen-in-thailand-granted-refugee-status-by-the-un-after-calls-for-help-and-claims-of-family-threats/  http://abcnewsradioonline.com/world-news/

STR/AFP/Getty Images(LONDON) — The United Nations granted refugee status to a Saudi woman on Wednesday who was publicly pleading for help in Thailand.

Eighteen-year-old Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun started calling for support on Monday via Twitter. She said Thai authorities took her passport as she was trying to fly to Australia, where she planned to apply for asylum. She claimed her family abused her.

“Please help,” al-Qunun posted on Twitter, “I am in Bangkok about to be forced on a flight back to Saudi where my life is in danger.”

Al-Qunun barricaded herself in her hotel room in the Bangkok airport after authorities tried to remove her from her room. She said they were attempting to force her to board a flight to Kuwait, where she had flown to Thailand from.

She uploaded videos to Twitter of her interactions with Thai authorities and pleas for help, writing, “I want UN!” and “I want UNHCR.”

Hours later, Melissa Fleming, chief communications spokesperson for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) wrote on Twitter that Thai authorities granted the agency access to al-Qunun.

“UNHCR has been following developments closely and immediately sought access from the Thai authorities to meet with Ms. Mohammed Al-qunun, 18, to assess her need for international protection,” the agency said in a statement.

On Wednesday, the UNHCR officially gave her refugee status after reviewing her case. Thai officials then agreed to let al-Qunun leave the airport with UNHCR officials.

On Wednesday, 48 hours after her ordeal began, al-Qunun posted a photo of herself on Twitter. “Hey… I’m happy,” she wrote.

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Posted On 09 Jan 2019

Ahead of season two on Netflix, ‘Friends from College’ stars talk real-life bonding

Entertainment News  Ahead of season two on Netflix, 'Friends from College' stars talk real-life bonding https://linewsradio.com/ahead-of-season-two-on-netflix-friends-from-college-stars-talk-real-life-bonding/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/entertainment-news/

 

ABC(NEW YORK) — Keegan-Michael Key and Cobie Smulders are back as Netflix’s Friends From College returns for a second season Friday.

As the title suggests, the show centers on a group of friends from Harvard who reconnect twenty years after they’ve graduated. In season one, Smulders and Key played a married couple, but we learn that Key’s Ethan was having on an affair with one of their group.

For season two, which jumps ahead in time, the affair takes a back seat, as Smulders’ Lisa moves on with “a new fella” just in time for the pals to attend the wedding of one of their friends, played by Fred Savage.

To get a feel for each other in season one, the cast tried to bond after hours, Key and Smulders told Good Morning America Wednesday.

“Fred Savage would not do anything with us and we thought he was joking,” Key recalled. “We were like, ‘We’re all going out to dinner!’ [And he’d say] ‘You guys have a good time, I’m gonna watch Designated Survivor.‘”

But Key says things have now changed.

“Fred said…’I’m going to say yes to everything you say.’ ‘You want to go on a boat with a friend sailing?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Do you want to go to Shabbat with my wife?’ ‘Yes!'”

And the whole gang got together for Key’s real-life wedding in June.

“It was really that surreal thing to have the Friends from College commingling with actual friends from college,” he joked.

Some of the action this season was shot in Atlantic City, standing in for Las Vegas.

“You’re shooting until about 4 or 5 a.m. and that didn’t stop us,” Smulders laughed. “…[W]e went back to the hotel, which is of course attached to a casino, and would gamble for a few hours.”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 09 Jan 2019

“I’m over it”: Kevin Hart’s done apologizing, doesn’t want to host the 2019 Oscars

Entertainment News  "I'm over it": Kevin Hart's done apologizing, doesn't want to host the 2019 Oscars https://linewsradio.com/im-over-it-kevin-harts-done-apologizing-doesnt-want-to-host-the-2019-oscars/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/entertainment-news/

 

ABC(NEW YORK) — On ABC’s Good Morning America Wednesday, Kevin Hart had a direct response for people who wanted to hear more from him about his Oscar-hosting controversy.

“I’m over it,” Hart said multiple times on GMA when asked about the controversy, which saw him stepping down from the Oscar job after homophobic tweets he sent in the past resurfaced.

“There’s no more conversation about it…I’m over that, I’m over the moment,” he said.

Hart added that he apologized back in the late 2000s when he first wrote the comments, and multiple times after.

“I’m not giving no more explanation of who I am,” the comic told his friend and GMA co-host Michael Strahan, insisting, “I’m just done…I’ve said everything I can possibly say.”

He continued, “If you didn’t [hear the apology], I don’t know what you’re looking for…I’m a good person, I love to love, if you don’t see that, then it’s a problem with you.”

When asked if he is hosting the Oscars this year, he simply said, “No,” adding that as a “perfectionist,” he wouldn’t ave enough time to prepare at this point.

But would he ever host the telecast in the future?

“It’s hard to predict what can happen,” he said. “I don’t want people to think there’s a thing about me and the Academy. There isn’t. The Academy are amazing people.”

His comments come two days after a mea culpa on his SiriusXM show Straight from The Hart, during which he apologized yet again, but complained that he hadn’t gotten any credit for having done so.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 09 Jan 2019

Former North Korean diplomat urges international community to help ex-colleague

WORLD NEWS Former North Korean diplomat urges international community to help ex-colleague  https://linewsradio.com/former-north-korean-diplomat-urges-international-community-to-help-ex-colleague/  http://abcnewsradioonline.com/world-news/

JUNG YEON-JE/AFP/Getty Images(SEOUL, South Korea) — A former North Korean diplomat who defected to South Korea in 2016 put out a call to the governments of Italy, South Korea and the United States to help facilitate his former colleague’s reported attempt to leave the country.

“I urge the Italian government to follow international law and the spirit of humanity to guarantee every condition is met so that political asylum seeker Jo Song Gil and his family can go to the country of their choice,” Thae Yong Ho, who served as the North Korean deputy ambassador to the United Kingdom before defecting, said at a press conference in Seoul on Wednesday.

Thae also had a message for Jo Song Gil, the acting North Korean ambassador to Italy, who is reportedly seeking political asylum in the U.S. after leaving the embassy last November.

“I am telling you as a friend. Song Gil, do not worry. If you feel unsafe we will actively make an effort to urge the Italian embassy and [authorities] there. So we could at the least help you gain peace of mind. We respect your choice [of which country to seek asylum], but you have a home country, the Republic of Korea,” Thae said.

Jo, 44, and his family are reportedly under the protection of Italian intelligence, Italy’s La Repubblica newspaper reported last Friday, citing an unidentified diplomatic source.

Italy had not received a request for political asylum from Jo as of last week, a spokesperson for the Italian foreign minister in Rome confirmed to ABC News.

Jo and his wife are from a politically powerful family of diplomats and have maintained a luxurious lifestyle in Pyongyang, according to Thae, who went to the same university with Jo and knew the family “quite well.” Jo also guided Thae’s family to sites in Vatican City in 2008 while he was a student in Italy.

“As parents, they probably could not force their children, who already are aware of democracy and human rights from living in Europe, back to hell like North Korea. They must have thought that the last thing they could do for the children is to give them freedom,” said Thae, recalling his own defection with his two sons.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 09 Jan 2019

Kremlin rejects suggestion it arrested American as a diplomatic pawn

WORLD NEWS Kremlin rejects suggestion it arrested American as a diplomatic pawn  https://linewsradio.com/kremlin-rejects-suggestion-it-arrested-american-as-a-diplomatic-pawn/  http://abcnewsradioonline.com/world-news/

Whelan family(MOSCOW) — The Kremlin has rejected suggestions it could have seized the former United States Marine arrested in Moscow on spying charges as a political hostage.

“Russia never uses people as pawns in a diplomatic game,” the press secretary for Russian President Vladimir Putin told reporters Wednesday, the Kremlin’s first comments on the case of Paul Whelan, who is currently in a Moscow prison and accused of espionage by Russia’s domestic intelligence agency.

Russia’s Federal Security Service or FSB detained Whelan in his hotel room on Dec. 28, accusing him of conducting “spying activity” but has provided no more details on the allegations against him. His family has said that Whelan, a global security director for an American car parts supplier, was in Moscow for an old friend’s wedding and that it is impossible he is a spy.

The Kremlin was responding to comments from Britain and Canada, which have both expressed concern that Whelan, who also holds Canadian and British citizenship, could have been arrested as a political bargaining chip.

Britain, Canada and Ireland are all offering consular assistance to Whelan in addition to the U.S.

Britain’s foreign secretary, Jeremy Hunt, last week warned Russia against using “individuals as pawns in diplomatic leverage.”

“Our position is very, very clear,” Hunt said in a television interview on Sky News. “Individuals should not be used as pawns of diplomatic leverage, used in diplomatic chess games. We need to see what those charges are against him to understand whether there is a case or not.”

Hunt’s position was echoed by Canada’s foreign ministry, which in a statement said it was “extremely concerned” by Whelan’s detention and noted “detention should not be used as a political tool.”

The Kremlin on Wednesday though denied it ever used individuals in diplomatic bargaining.

“It’s true that Russia engages in counterintelligence with respect to those suspected of spying. This is done on an ongoing basis but Russia never uses anyone as a pawn,” Peskov said.

The U.S. is taking the lead on providing consular assistance to Whelan, and the U.S. ambassador, Jon Huntsman, visited him in Moscow’s Lefortovo prison last week. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has also called on Russia to provide more details of the charges and warned that if they inappropriate, the U.S. will demand Whelan’s release.

Some former U.S. intelligence officers have speculated Whelan may have been taken in retaliation over the jailing of Maria Butina, the Russian gun rights activist who last month pleaded guilty in a U.S. court to acting as a foreign agent. She has admitted to trying to infiltrate American conservative political circles.

Whelan’s Russian lawyer has suggested that Whelan could later be exchanged for Russians held in U.S. jails, including Butina.

Peskov declined to comment on the suggestion that Whelan could be traded, referring reporters to statements by Russia’s foreign ministry that it was too early to discuss any exchange.

Whelan’s lawyer, Vladimir Zherebenkov, told ABC News that any trade in any case could only occur once Whelan has been convicted, which he said would likely take six months to a year.

Russia has raised its own suggestions that the U.S. has taken its own hostage after the FBI arrested a Russian man on arms smuggling charges. Dmitry Makarenko was detained in the Northern Marianas Islands, a U.S. territory in the Pacific a day after the FSB said Whelan was arrested in Moscow. Makarenko is now being tried in Florida, accused of trying to smuggle night-vision equipment to Russia.

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Posted On 09 Jan 2019

Harvey Weinstein sexual assault trial tentatively set for May

Entertainment News  Harvey Weinstein sexual assault trial tentatively set for May https://linewsradio.com/harvey-weinstein-sexual-assault-trial-tentatively-set-for-may/ http://abcnewsradioonline.com/entertainment-news/

 

Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Harvey Weinstein is scheduled to stand trial on sexual assault charges on May 6, two sources familiar with the case tell ABC News.

The tentative date was agreed to by Weinstein’s attorneys and the Manhattan District Attorney’s office, add the sources. Neither party offered a comment.

Weinstein’s facing five criminal counts of rape and sexual assault, all of which he’s denied. A sixth count against the film producer was dismissed in October after prosecutors revealed to the defense that they’d discovered a written account from Weinstein’s accuser that suggested the encounter that prompted the count against him was consensual.

The disgraced movie mogul due in court for a pre-trial hearing on March 7.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 09 Jan 2019