News Wrap: U.S. presses Turkey to end assault on Kurdish forces


JUDY WOODRUFF: In the day’s other news: The
United States pressed Turkey to call off its assault on Kurdish forces in Southwest Syria. The Turks are targeting Kurds around the city
of Afrin, saying they’re allied with rebels inside Turkey. The U.S. supports the Syrian Kurds, and at
the Davos forum today, White House Homeland Security Adviser Tom Bossert urged restraint. TOM BOSSERT, White House Homeland Security
Adviser: I think that President Erdogan will make decisions to de-escalate violence in
Afrin and to normalize and stabilize pre-Afrin actions in that region, and I think that he
will make that decision here with the full support of the United States. President Erdogan, we understand your legitimate
security concerns on your southern border, and we are going to work with you very closely
to get through those concerns. JUDY WOODRUFF: The Turks shelled Afrin again
today, and they warned that some 2,000 U.S. troops in the region could become targets. Turkey also complained that the White House
gave a false account of yesterday’s phone call between Presidents Trump and Erdogan. China promised today to work with the U.S.
on cutting the flow of illegal opioids to American dealers. That’s after U.S. Senate investigators found
Chinese sellers are largely able to circumvent package checks by the U.S. Postal Service. The influx of opioids has fueled a wave of
overdose deaths in the U.S. The nation’s emergency alert system came under
scrutiny today, after Hawaii’s false warning about a missile launch. The incident touched off panic earlier this
month. At a Senate hearing today, Democrat Brian
Schatz of Hawaii suggested the responsibility for such alerts shouldn’t be left to the states. SEN. BRIAN SCHATZ (D), Hawaii: We have lively debates
about federalism, about the role of local vs. federal government. But a missile attack is federal. A missile attack is not a local responsibility. Confirmation and notification of something
like a missile attack should reside with the agency that knows first and knows for sure. JUDY WOODRUFF: Hawaiian officials have blamed
human error for the false alert. But the Federal Communications Commission
said today the person in question is refusing to cooperate with investigators. And on Wall Street, the Dow Jones industrial
average gained 140 points to close at 26392, another record. The Nasdaq fell about four points, and the
S&P 500 added a point.

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