U.S.: Syrian forces likely fired tear gas on civilians
Washington — The U.S. is accusing forces backed by the Syrian government and Russia of firing tear gas at civilians and falsely claiming it was a rebel chemical weapons attack.
The incident occurred Nov. 24 amid fighting near the government-held city of Aleppo and reportedly left dozens injured.
A State Department spokesman says the government of President Bashar Assad and Russia had falsely accused opposition groups of a chlorine attack. Robert Palladino says the U.S. has “credible information” that progovernment forces likely fired tear gas.
He says Russian and Syrian personnel were involved and are using the attack as an opportunity to undermine confidence in a cease-fire in Idlib, an anti-government stronghold.
Lemur surprises trooper in DUI arrest
Sanford, Florida — A lemur surprised a Florida Highway Patrol trooper when it crawled from a trailer being pulled by a pickup truck that had been stopped for driving erratically and hitting other cars.
Dashcam video shows the lemur peeking out of the trailer before hopping to the ground and leaping around the trooper who was talking to the driver along Interstate 4 in Sanford on Saturday night.
Twenty-seven-year-old driver Shane Taylor warned troopers that the lemur named Miko “bites.” Taylor was arrested on several charges including DUI. State wildlife officers took custody of the lemur and other exotic animals including a tortoise, a goat, a parrot and a wallaby.
OSU adds bacon vending machine
Columbus, Ohio — Ohio State University students can fuel up on pork as they study for finals.
A bacon vending machine has been installed at the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences on the university’s Columbus campus. It offers cooked bacon strips and bacon bits for $1.
Proceeds from the machine will go toward Ohio State’s meat science program. Members of the program will be responsible for machine maintenance. The machine will remain on campus until Thursday.
May’s ministers try to sell Brexit deal
British Prime Minister Theresa May sent 30 members of her government around the country Friday to rally popular support to pressure lawmakers to approve her Brexit agreement on leaving the European Union.
The Brexit deal is proving a tough sell, and May is coming under increasing pressure to delay a parliamentary vote scheduled for next week in hopes of wringing concessions out of the EU. An analysis by Britain’s Press Association showed that just 27 of the 163 lawmakers who have spoken out indicated they would back the deal, compared with 122 who say they will vote against it. That latter number includes 29 members of May’s own Conservative Party.
12 dead in Brazil bank shootout
Rio de Janeiro — At least 12 people, including two children, were killed Friday when police engaged in a shootout with bank robbers, according to authorities in northeastern Brazil. News portal G1 reported that the robbers blocked off a road into downtown Milagres and took hostages as they began entering two banks on the same street. When police responded, a firefight ensued, leading to several deaths.
Forensic experts carry a corpse to be transported to the morgue Friday after an attempted bank robbery in Milagres, Brazil.
A patrolman pulls over a driver in Sanford, Florida, on Dec. 1, earning a close encounter with a lemur, bottom right.