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Inside Daily Brief (Jun 18th, 2017)

According to a report from the UN Mission to Mali, shots have been fired at Le Campement, a luxury resort popular with Westerners. A spokesman for the UN Mission has further confirmed that "there is a situation ongoing at the location." Reuters is reporting that the resort has come under attack by gunmen. The resort is located in Bamako, Mali's capital. Earlier this month, the US Embassy issued a travel warning for the area, citing "a possible increased threat of attacks against Western diplomatic missions, places of worship, and other locations in Bamako where Westerners frequent." The Telegraph is reporting that at least two people have been killed by the suspected jihadists, and that the attackers have taken hostages. This is a developing story. – CNN

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Firefighters in Portugal continue to battle a forest fire that has killed at least 62 people so far, including a number of people who were trapped in their cars by the blaze. Prime Minister António Costa has called the fire "the worst tragedy in terms of human lives that we’ve known in recent years.” The fire, centered in the Pedrógão Grande area, killed at least 30 people who were trapped in their cars after being boxed in by the flames along a section of highway passing through the affected area. The country has declared three days of national mourning. The cause of the fire is not clear, although the nation has been hit regularly by forest fires in the summer over recent years, and the entire Iberian Peninsula is currently experiencing a heat wave. – NYC

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After finding several bodies, the Navy has called off their search for the sailors missing from the USS Fitzgerald, which collided with an enormous container ship off the coast of Japan. The bodies were found inside the flooded sections of the naval destroyer. The number of bodies found, as well as the identities of the dead sailors, is being withheld pending notice of next of kin. Vice Admiral Joseph Aucoin, the commander of the Navy’s 7th Fleet, said, "There wasn’t a lot of time in those spaces that were open to the sea. And as you can see now the ship is still listing, so they had to fight the ship to keep it above the surface. It was traumatic.” The cause of the collision is still unknown. – USAT

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18 have been arrested after thousands of people took to the streets of St. Paul to protest the acquittal of Minnesota police officer Jeronimo Yanez, who was accused of second-degree manslaughter in the shooting death of Philando Castile. Police say 2,000 marched peacefully on the Minnesota State Capitol. Some protesters later regrouped on a nearby interstate highway, blocking traffic in both directions. After failing to heed police orders to disperse, 18 of the protesters were arrested. The Castile case marked the first time in Minnesota's history that a police officer was charged with a fatal on-duty shooting. – PBS

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Milwaukee County Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. announced he has decided against taking the senior position he says he had been offered at the Department of Homeland Security. While the announcement of a job offer was never made officially public, Clarke mentioned on a radio show last month that he had been approached to join the agency as an assistant secretary. Craig Peterson, one of the sheriff's advisors, said Clarke met with President Trump last week to discuss taking on a "more aggressive role" to support Trump. Clarke, a polarizing figure, has said in the past that he believed the Islamic State and Black Lives Matter had formed an alliance with the goal of destroying the US. – NYT

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As part of the Queen's Birthday honors, Paul McCartney's knighthood was elevated with a Companion of Honor award. McCartney was initially knighted twenty years ago. The ex-Beatle is one of a small number of musicians to have received the award. "I'm very happy about this huge honor and with the news coming on my birthday weekend and Father's Day it makes it colossal!" McCartney said. The rocker turns 75 today. Also seeing her status similarly elevated by a Companion of Honor award was "Harry Potter" creator J.K. Rowling. Among many others honored was actress Olivia de Haviland ("Gone With The WInd"), who became a dame ahead of her 101st birthday next month. – RS

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Stephen Furst, the actor best known for playing fraternity pledge Kent Dorfman (aka "Flounder") in 1978's "National Lampoon's Animal House," has died from complications related to diabetes at the age of 63. Furst got his big break while working as a pizza delivery man. "Animal House" producer Matty Simmons found one of the headshots Furst snuck into the pizza boxes he was delivering and cast him in the role of "real zero" legacy pledge Dorfman in the hugely popular comedy. Furst later had a long-running role on the 1980's television hit "St. Elsewhere," and in the 90s appeared on the cult sci-fi series "Babylon 5" (three episodes of which he ended up directing). – SLATE

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TALK BLOCK

Jay Sekulow, a lawyer from President Donald Trump's legal team, told "State of the Union" host Jake Tapper that Trump is not currently under investigation, despite the President's own recent tweet saying otherwise. On June 16th, Trump tweeted, "I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director!" Sekulow says the tweet was not a confirmation of any investigation, but rather a response to a Washington Post story on the matter that cited five unnamed sources. "There's a limitation on Twitter, as we all know. The President's response was as it related to the Washington Post report. He cannot in a Twitter statement include all of that in there. ... That's it. Simple explanation." – CNN

Appearing on "Meet the Press," Sen. Marco Rubio said that no tweets or statements from President Trump would hinder the FBI or Senate Intelligence Committee probes into claims of Russian election interference. "The best thing that can happen for everybody, the president, the country, our institutions of government, is for a full and thorough and credible investigation that reveals everything,” Rubio said. "I think everybody just needs to keep watching this, but take a deep breath too, because the FBI's going to do its job. The FBI doesn't sit around all day and read tweets." Rubio added that, while the president has expressed his doubts about the legitimacy of the claims, he and "almost everybody else" believes the Russians interfered on some level with the election. – NBC

Interviewed for "Face the Nation," Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders said that Democrats need to do "everything they can" to oppose the House GOP-passed health care bill. Sanders called the bill the "worst piece of legislation" he can remember being leveled at the working during his time in Congress. "Throwing 23 million people off of health insurance is beyond belief. Now, in the Senate what you have is you have I believe it is 10 Republicans working behind closed doors to address 1/6th of the American economy," Sanders said. – CBS

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