Here is the latest news from The Associated Press at 12:40 p.m. EST
WASHINGTON (AP) — Defense Secretary Jim Mattis says U.S. involvement in the Yemen conflict is central to American security interests. In prepared marks he’s expected to deliver to members of the Senate on Wednesday, Mattis makes a strong defense of the U.S. role in Yemen and continued close partnership with Saudi Arabia. Many in Congress are calling for the U.S. to take a tougher stance with the key Gulf ally over the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Ivanka Trump says the “Lock her up!” chant regularly aimed at Hillary Clinton because of her use of a private email server when she was secretary of state doesn’t apply to her, too. Trump is defending her use of a private email account as she was moving into an adviser’s position in her father’s White House. Trump tells ABC News in an interview broadcast Wednesday her situation cannot be compared to the flap over Clinton’s server and, “There’s no equivalency.”
HONG KONG (AP) — Another gene-edited baby may be on the way. A Chinese researcher who claims to have helped make the world’s first genetically edited babies says there is a second pregnancy at a very early stage. The researcher revealed the news Wednesday while defending his controversial work at an international conference in Hong Kong. Mainstream scientists have condemned the experiment, an attempt to make the children resistant to infection from the AIDS virus.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Ex-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort’s lawyers have been briefing Donald Trump’s attorneys on what their client has told investigators, an unusual arrangement that could give Trump ammunition in his feud against special counsel Robert Mueller. Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani says Manafort’s lawyers share “the things that pertain to” Trump’s part of the case. Giuliani said Tuesday that Trump has been enraged by the treatment of Manafort, who has denied lying to Mueller’s agents.
WASHINGTON (AP) — A rash of American combat deaths in Afghanistan puts a spotlight on a stalemated 17-year war that is testing President Donald Trump’s commitment to pursuing peace with the Taliban. Trump has acknowledged that his original instinct was to withdraw from Afghanistan, but last week he suggested that he is willing to stick it out. That was before four U.S. combat deaths in a four-day span.