The German government has brought home three women and 12 children from refugee camps in northeastern Syria. The camps hold families of Islamic State fighters. Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said on Sunday, "The repatriation was based on humanitarian grounds and involved orphans and sick children." German news media reported that all three women face terror charges for their connection with the Islamic State.
Moderna Inc. and its partners have started distributing their COVID-19 vaccine in the U.S. It's the second vaccine approved for emergency use in the country. Shipments began leaving warehouses early Sunday for health care facilities. The U.S. leads the world with 17.6 million cases and more than 316,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data. The head of Operation Warp Speed, (mo...) Moncef Slaoui, told CNN that the first shots of Moderna's vaccine are "most likely" going to happen on Monday morning. Operation Warp Speed is the Trump administration's vaccine program. （The U.S. and Food and Drug...） The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, rather, on Friday approved Moderna for emergency use.
The travel and tourism industry around the world has been hit particularly hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. The U.S. city of Las Vegas, Nevada, a major tourist destination, is now turning to individual dining tents, food trucks and contactless takeout to try to survive the latest restrictions that limit indoor dining. Amid a surge of reported coronavirus cases hospitalizations and deaths in Nevada, Governor Steve Sisolak tightened restrictions on casinos and restaurants in late November. The governor ordered them to reduce capacity to 25 percent or 50 people, and extended the limits until after mid-January. The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports some （restauran...） restaurants are getting creative like setting up individual dining tents that have floor coverings, lighting, a sound system and a heater.
A human rights group in Belarus says security forces have detained dozens of people during the latest protests. The Vyasna rights group says at least 42 people have been detained in the capital city, Minsk, as well as several other cities.
Belarus has been roiled by nearly daily protests since early August (when the) when Alexander Lukashenko was declared victor of a presidential election that opposition leaders say was flawed. Police have violently cracked down on the postelection protests, with more than 27,000 detentions, according to the United Nations. Via remote, I'm Liz Parker, VOA news.