Daily briefing

10 things you need to know today: October 1, 2015

Russia starts controversial airstrikes in Syria, Congress approves bill to prevent a government shutdown, and more

1

Russia defends Syria airstrikes against claims it hit non-ISIS rebels

Russian warplanes launched their first airstrikes in Syria on Wednesday, hours after Russian lawmakers gave President Vladimir Putin authority to send forces into Syria. The move added to tensions between Russia and the U.S. over how to handle Syria's complex war. Russia insisted its 20 strikes targeted the Islamic State. U.S. officials said some of the strikes targeted an area held by CIA-backed rebels, not ISIS, and warned Moscow against attacking non-ISIS groups. Russia reportedly again hit a non-ISIS rebel group in Thursday airstrikes.

2

Congress passes short-term spending bill with hours to spare, avoiding shutdown

Congress on Wednesday approved a stopgap spending measure to keep federal agencies funded through Dec. 11 and avoid a government shutdown. The Senate approved the bill early Wednesday, giving the House time to vote and send the bill to President Obama for his signature before a midnight deadline. House Speaker John Boehner, who is resigning in late October, passed the bill with support from 186 Democrats and only 91 Republicans.

3

Strengthening Hurricane Joaquin possibly headed to U.S.

The 10th named storm of the season, Joaquin, continued strengthening after reaching hurricane status on Wednesday, threatening the central Bahamas with 120 mph winds. The storm could sit over parts of the Bahamas for two days, dumping as much as 20 inches of rain on some islands. Steering winds are expected to send Joaquin north toward the East Coast later in the week, although forecasters are divided over the likelihood it will strike the U.S.

4

Palestinian leader says Oslo peace accord no longer applies

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas told United Nations diplomats on Wednesday that Palestinians "cannot continue to be bound" by the Oslo peace accords. Abbas said Israel has violated the accords, which call for a two-state solution to the crisis between Israel and the Palestinians. "They leave us no choice," Abbas said. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office said Abbas was being "deceitful" and encouraging "incitement and lawlessness in the Middle East."

5

Oklahoma governor stays Glossip's execution at last minute

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin temporarily halted the execution of Richard Glossip minutes before he was scheduled to die for the 1997 murder of Barry Van Treese, the owner of the motel where he worked. The man who beat Van Treese to death said Glossip hired him, but Glossip denies it. Fallin ordered a 37-day stay after the state received the wrong drug for part of its three-drug lethal injection combination. Pope Francis had urged mercy for Glossip earlier in the day.

6

Afghan officials say their forces have retaken Kunduz

The Afghan government said Thursday its forces had retaken the center of the provincial capital of Kunduz from the Taliban in an overnight offensive. Taliban fighters seized the city three days earlier, igniting sharp criticism of the government's ability to provide security. "After we got reinforcements and started a massive operation inside Kunduz city, the Taliban could not resist and escaped," said acting provincial governor Hamdullah Danish. The Taliban denied it had lost the city.

7

Secret Service official suggested embarrassing congressional critic with leak

At least 45 Secret Service employees improperly accessed the unsuccessful 2003 job application of Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) while he was investigating a scandal involving drunken behavior by senior Secret Service agents, according to a report by the Homeland Security Department inspector general released Wednesday. One official suggested releasing something "embarrassing" about Chaffetz, "Just to be fair." Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson personally apologized to Chaffetz, and said Wednesday those responsible would be held accountable.

8

6,000 more pages of Clinton emails released

The State Department on Wednesday released another 6,000 pages of Hillary Clinton's emails from her time as secretary of state. The latest batch, from 2010 and 2011, was made to meet a court order to release 37 percent of the 55,000 pages Clinton handed over by the end of September. Portions of 215 of the newly released emails were retroactively deemed classified, and three were deemed "secret." The emails also showed Russia-linked hackers tried at least five times, apparently unsuccessfully, to infiltrate Clinton's computer with malicious software.

9

High school administrator tackles student with gun

A South Dakota high school assistant principal was hailed as a hero on Wednesday after he tackled a young gunman who shot the school's principal, Kevin Lein, in the arm. The gunman, reportedly a student, entered Harrisburg High School and got into a struggle with Lein, then pulled out a gun and fired. Assistant principal Ryan Rollinger tackled the suspect, and held him down with the help of athletic director Joey Struwe until police arrived.

10

Caitlyn Jenner won't face criminal charges for deadly accident

Los Angeles prosecutors announced Wednesday that they would not file criminal charges against Caitlyn Jenner in connection with a car crash that killed a California woman in February. An investigation did not find evidence of negligence or speeding to support a misdemeanor manslaughter charge. The former Olympic decathlon champion hit the brakes within 1.5 to 1.9 seconds of impact. Jenner's attorney said Jenner was confident of being cleared by "a thorough and objective investigation."

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