Joe Biden

Pacific leaders to meet Joe Biden in Washington

The US deputy Secretary of State, Wendy Sherman - who is on a whirlwind Pacific tour - has confirmed President Biden is "looking forward to welcoming" Pacific leaders to the White House in September, which will coincide with the week of the United Nations' General Assembly.

Sherman said the exact date for the meeting will be announced "very soon".

She arrived in Samoa on Thursday for a brief visit and was in Tonga before flying to Solomon Islands for the 80th anniversary commemorations of the of the Battle of Guadalcanal.

Kentucky floods: Death toll rises to 37, hundreds still missing

At least six children - including four siblings, aged one to eight, who were reportedly swept from their parents' grip - are among the dead.

Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear said the death toll would continue to rise as "hundreds" remained unaccounted for.

More than 12,000 households remain without power, and hundreds of homes and businesses have been flooded.

The damage to roads, bridges and other infrastructure will cost millions to repair, the governor said on Monday.

US President Joe Biden tests positive for Covid after 'rebound' infection

The 79-year-old first contracted the virus on 21 July, when he was revealed to be experiencing mild symptoms.

On Saturday Mr Biden said he was not experiencing symptoms but would isolate "for the safety of everyone around me".

The president had tested negative for the virus four times between Tuesday and Friday last week.

In a letter describing the situation, Mr Biden's physician Dr Kevin O'Connor said there was no need to resume treatment but the president would remain under "close observation".

US President Joe Biden tests positive for Covid-19, has mild symptoms

Biden, 79, has a runny nose, fatigue and an occasional dry cough, symptoms which he began to experience late on Wednesday, White House physician Kevin O'Connor said in a note released on Thursday.

Biden has begun taking the antiviral treatment Paxlovid, O'Connor said.

"He is fully vaccinated and twice boosted and experiencing very mild symptoms," press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement.

Biden and Putin to hold call amid Ukraine invasion fears

It comes after Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the US had evidence that Russia had made plans for a "large scale" attack on Ukraine.

But he added it was unclear if Mr Putin had made a final decision to invade.

Russia has denied any such intention, and accused Ukraine of executing its own troop build-up.

Covid: Biden urges calm over Omicron fears

Cases have been found in Canada, and his speech from the White House comes as US travel bans on eight African countries takes effect.

Mr Biden also urged people to get a booster and to wear masks.

He said he does not anticipate any further US travel restrictions or lockdowns at this time.

In remarks on Monday, the president called it "almost inevitable" that the Omicron strain, first reported by South Africa, will be found in the US "at some point".

He added that said vaccine companies are creating "contingency plans" for new vaccines "if needed".

Biden advised to keep 2,500 troops - generals

Testimony by Gen Mark Milley and Gen Frank McKenzie to Congress seemed to contradict President Joe Biden, who said he did not recall any such advice.

The Taliban took power in August, after rapidly advancing through the country.

Gen Milley said the US had been taken by surprise by the speed of the Afghan government's collapse.

The two US generals were questioned by the Senate armed services committee along with Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin on Tuesday.

President sets out $6tn spending plan

The bumper proposal would include huge new social programmes and investment in the fight against climate change.

But it needs approval from Congress, where Republican Senator Lindsey Graham condemned it as "insanely expensive".

Under the plan, debt would reach 117% of GDP by 2031, surpassing levels during World War Two.

That would be in spite of at least $3tn in proposed tax increases on corporations, capital gains and the top income tax bracket.

Biden tells Israel: De-escalate Gaza conflict today

Biden wanted a "path to ceasefire", the White House said.

The US is a staunch ally of Israel and has so far opposed a joint UN Security Council statement on the conflict.

In response Netanyahu said he was "determined to carry on" until "calm and security are restored to Israeli citizens", according to Israeli media.

The conflict is in its 10th day, with a continuing exchange of rocket fire from Palestinian militants into Israel and Israeli air strikes on Gaza.

President Biden cancels funding for Trump border wall

 In a letter to Congress on Thursday, Mr Biden wrote that the order was "unwarranted" and said that no further tax dollars will be spent on the wall.

Mr Trump declared a state of emergency over the southern border in 2019, which allowed him to bypass Congress and use military funds for its construction.

When Mr Trump left office, about $25bn (£18bn) had been spent on the project.

The announcement from President Biden is the latest in a series of executive orders that have rolled back key parts of the former president's agenda.