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Death in China zoo puts rarest turtle on cusp of oblivion

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The world’s rarest turtle has moved a step closer to extinction after a female specimen died in a Chinese zoo, leaving behind just three known members of the species.

The Yangtze giant softshell turtle, believed to be above 90 years of age, died in Suzhou Zoo on Saturday, according to the Suzhou Daily.

The female’s death came a day after zoo officials made a last-ditch effort at artificial insemination using semen from the Suzhou Zoo male, an animal estimated to be more than 100 years old, the newspaper said.

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The zoo had tried unsuccessfully for several years to get the pair to mate and reproduce naturally. It will now conduct an autopsy to determine what caused the animal’s death, the newspaper reported.

Besides the Suzhou Zoo male there are only two other known members of the species left, both living in the wild in Vietnam and of unknown gender, according to conservationists.

The Yangtze giant softshell turtle is the largest freshwater turtle in the world, growing to 100 cm (39 inches) long and weighing up to 100kg (220 pounds).

Its main habitat was the Yangtze River and other inland China waterways.

But aquatic life in China’s rivers has suffered severely from centuries of hunting and, more recently, decades of pollution, shipping traffic and ecological disruption wrought by hydroelectric dams.

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Trump blasted by former White House ethics chief for attacking his own FBI director

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On Tuesday, President Donald Trump lashed out at FBI director Christopher Wray on Twitter for endorsing DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz's report debunking the Republican claim that the FBI "spied" on Trump's 2016 campaign. "The current director," tweeted Trump, will "never be able to fix" the "badly broken" FBI.

Trump's remark, and possible threat to Wray's job, drew outrage from former White House ethics official Walter Shaub:

The history books will note that he fired not only an FBI Director but also an Attorney General for allowing an investigation of his campaign. Now he's attacking another FBI Director for not being supporting of conspiracy theories about that investigation. https://t.co/6pqjShuP8k

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Fox News hosts blasted for ‘cherry-picking’ IG report to spin it as a win for Trump: ‘They owe us an apology’

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On Tuesday morning, CNN host Alisyn Camerota dropped the hammer on Fox News for spinning the Justice Department inspector general report that absolved the department of any conspiracy against Donald Trump, instead saying that it was an indictment of the department.

Joined by CNN contributor, ex-Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA) and CNN host Brian Stelter, Camerota shared Fox clips from Monday night featuring hosts Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham and marveled at the obvious lies.

"Let's go back to reality-world instead of upside-down world right now," host Camerota smirked after rolling the clips, "which is what we just played a montage of. Charlie, when you hear, you know, the talking points from obviously the Trump cheerleaders as well as some of your former Republican colleagues on Capitol Hill, do they -- when Hannity says everything we've been reporting for years has been dead on accurate, we were right every step of the way, and the report completely negates that, do they believe that? Why are they saying that?"

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Did Trump just signal he may fire ‘current’ FBI director hours before meeting Russian foreign minister?

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President Donald Trump attacked his FBI director hours ahead of his White House meeting with Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, and other social media users noticed a big coincidence.

The president turned on Christopher Wray in an early morning Twitter rant after the FBI director broke with Attorney General William Barr and agreed the Justice Department's inspector general had found no evidence of wrongdoing at the start of the Russia probe.

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