Allies of jailed Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who faces years in prison, are calling for new protests next weekend to demand his release, following a wave of demonstrations that turned out thousands across the country in a defiant challenge to President Vladimir Putin. Mass rallies took place Saturday in over 100 cities in what observers said were the largest in years, and Navalny's supporters urged protesters to keep up the pressure.
Pfizer Inc will pursue its request for India to approve its COVID-19 vaccine if the government commits to buying shots, the U.S. drugmaker told Reuters on Monday, even as global supplies tighten. Pfizer was the first company to seek emergency-use authorisation (EUA) for a COVID-19 vaccine in India, but the government this month approved two much cheaper shots - one from Oxford University/AstraZeneca and another developed at home by Bharat Biotech with the Indian Council of Medical Research. India's Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) says Pfizer officials failed to turn up to meetings after the company's application was made in early December.
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear an appeal by Sheldon Silver, the once-powerful New York State Assembly Speaker, of his conviction on corruption charges that resulted in a 6-1/2-year prison sentence. Silver, 76, began serving his sentence in August despite being in poor health. Two conservative justices, Neil Gorsuch and Clarence Thomas, noted that they would have taken up the appeal.