Associated Press

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Associated Press

An estimated 2.3 million Venezuelans had fled the crisis-wracked country as of June, mainly to Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Brazil, the United Nations said Tuesday.

U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric told reporters that those fleeing — about 7 percent of Venezuela’s 32.8 million people — cite lack of food as the main reason for leaving. U.N. humanitarian officials report that 1.3 million of those who fled were “suffering from malnourishment,” he said.

Tim Padget / WLRN.org

 Florida Gov. Rick Scott is traveling to Colombia to attend the inauguration of the nation's next president.

Scott's office announced late Sunday that the governor will fly to the Latin American nation to attend the swearing in of President-elect Ivan Duque. The governor will return on Wednesday.

Other American officials are also expected to attend the inauguration in Bogota. U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley is leading a presidential delegation.

Cathy Carter / WUSF

Florida Democratic legislators are using an obscure state law to try to force the Republican-controlled Legislature to repeal the state's contentious "stand your ground law."

Democrats asked Secretary of State Ken Detzner to officially poll legislators on whether they would support holding a special session to amend or repeal the law. The law allows people to use deadly force without retreating if they believe they are in imminent danger of death or great bodily harm.

Pedro Portal / El Nuevo Herald

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro abruptly cut short a televised speech and soldiers present broke ranks and scattered after hearing several explosions Saturday in what the government called an attempted attack on the socialist leader.

Information Minister Jorge Rodriguez said in a live broadcast that several drone-like devices with explosives detonated near the Maduro.

He said Maduro is safe and unharmed but that seven people were injured. Firefighters near the scene are disputing the government's version of events.

Ross Elliott / Flickr Creative Commons

Thousands of blacktip sharks ordinarily swim languidly off the South Florida coast. But this year the shark count is down substantially and warmer water temperatures may be the reason.

A researcher at Florida Atlantic University says a recent tally he did off Palm Beach County during the sharks' annual migration had a high of only 2,800 blacktip sharks. That's down substantially from the high of more than 12,000 sharks in 2011, according to Florida Atlantic University researcher Stephen Kajiura.

The drop is dramatic, Kajiura said.

Associated Press

The unarmed security monitor who first spotted the suspect before a shooting that killed 17 at a Florida high school is being dismissed from his job.

The South Florida SunSentinel reports the Broward County school district announced Tuesday that Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School monitor Andrew Medina and another monitor, David Taylor, won't be rehired for the 2018-19 school year.

  

Associated Press

The United States has extradited former Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli to face political espionage and embezzlement charges in his home country.

U.S. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said Monday that it will be for Panamanian courts to determine Martinelli's guilt.

Martinelli had been jailed in Miami since his arrest at his home in June 2017.

The 66-year-old Martinelli was Panama's president from 2009 to 2014. He is accused of embezzlement and illegally monitoring phone calls and other communications.

The Centers for Disease Control reported this month that the number of births in the U.S. is down 2 percent – “the lowest number in 30 years.”

These reports were met with surprise and alarm. ScienceAlert, for example, led with the headline “U.S. Fertility Rates Have Plummeted Into Uncharted Territory, and Nobody Knows Why.”

Michael Seeley / Courtesy

Flanked by sea turtle nests, the vandalized Key West "ghost ship" that mysteriously washed ashore in Melbourne after Hurricane Irma will likely remain beached until at least November.

Because endangered turtles recently laid eggs there, officials in Brevard, on Florida's Atlantic coast, say they'll leave the boat alone for now.

Cuki, the beached 45-foot sailboat won't be removed until nesting season ends on Oct. 31 — at the earliest.

Miami Herald File

An Alaska man pleaded guilty Wednesday in exchange for a life prison sentence in the Florida airport shooting that killed five people and wounded six, blaming his rampage on severe mental illness a psychologist said is now under control.

Associated Press

President Nicolas Maduro on Tuesday expelled the top U.S. diplomat in Venezuela and his deputy for allegedly conspiring against his government and trying to sabotage the country's recent presidential election.

"The empire doesn't dominate us here," Maduro said in a televised address, giving charge d'affaires Todd Robinson and his deputy Brian Naranjo 48 hours to leave the country. "We've had enough of your conspiring."

South Florida Water Management District

Florida is marking a milestone in its attempt to control an infestation of Burmese pythons in the Everglades.

 

The state has been paying a select group of hunters to kill the invasive snakes on state lands in South Florida since March 2017. On Tuesday, the 1,000th Burmese python collected in that program will be weighed in at the South Florida Water Management District's field office in Homestead.

AP

Survivors of the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, took to social media to express outrage and heartbreak in the aftermath of the Friday school shooting in Texas, where authorities say a gunman opened fire, killing 10 people.

Associated Press

The new head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has gotten a big salary reduction.

A spokeswoman for the Department of Health and Human Services said Tuesday that Dr. Robert Redfield Jr.'s new salary will be $209,700, down from $375,000.

The previous figure was at least $150,000 more than any previous CDC director had received.

Associated Press

An opulent Florida hotel is spending tens of thousands of dollars to ship its two large generators to Puerto Rico.

The decision comes nearly a week after a blackout caused power outages for much of the fragile island still struggling to rebuild after Hurricane Maria.

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