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This is VOA news. I’m Joe Parker.

It’s going to be a historic week in Washington as the impeachment trial of U.S. President Donald Trump gets underway. AP’s Shelley Adler.

All sides are gearing up for the Senate impeachment trial which starts tomorrow.

One of the issues this week: the battle over witnesses with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer pushing for a vote.

“If the president is so sure that he’ll be vindicated, if McConnell is so sure the president will be vindicated, they want all the facts to come out in a series of trial.”

But President Trump’s counselor Kellyanne Conway argues the House didn’t have all the witnesses they wanted.

“They should go into court to argue that they were in a bid rush.”

As for the president who spoke last night, “We’re achieving what no administration has ever achieved before. And what do I get out of it? Tell me – I get impeached!”

Shelley Adler, Washington.

Chinese health experts confirmed Monday that a new coronavirus is contagious, raising fears that the virus could spread quickly among people.

China’s National Health Commission said the virus which causes a type of pneumonia can be transmitted person to person and not jut from animals to people.

Dr. Nathalie MacDermott is a physician from King’s College in London.

“I think it’s not surprising that it’s human to human. We know of other coronaviruses that spread from one person to another, such as MERS and SARS, previously. It just means that we have to address this in a different way from a public health perspective.”

Earlier Monday, Chinese health officials confirmed 136 new cases of the newly discovered virus.

Democratic presidential contenders celebrated Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy at a Baptist church Monday and linked arms with each other and civil rights leaders in a march of tens of thousands to the Statehouse.

In the closing days before the first votes in the Iowa primary, the candidates are splitting time between South Carolina and Iowa.

This is VOA news.

With his impeachment trial in the Senate about to go into high gear, President Trump is heading to Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum.

The president departed on Air Force One just a little while ago, the third anniversary of his inauguration as the 45th U.S. president.

In Davos on Tuesday morning, the president is to give a speech and before returning to Washington on Wednesday, he’ll be meeting on the sidelines with several world leaders.

On the president’s agenda are talks with Iraqi President Barham Salih and Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan. He’s also planning to chat with European Union Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, who spoke at today’s opening ceremony.

“For too long, humanity took away resources from the environment and in exchange produced waste and pollution. I believe as you do that we can reconcile our economy with our planet.”

The 3,000 participants at the invitation-only annual event will be outnumbered by nearly 5,000 military personnel and police.

European Union is considering restarting an operation to control migrant trafficking and enforce a U.N. arms embargo on Libya if a shaky truce in the North African country solidifies into a formal cease-fire. For VOA, Lisa Bryant has more on this operation from Paris.

Known as Sophia, the mission has mostly been known for combating migrant trafficking off Libya’s shores. Its maritime operation ended last March after Italy said it would no longer welcome migrants rescued at sea.

“We are not going to change but to refocus the mandate of operation Sophia to refocus especially on the issue of embargo. The arms embargo has to be controlled not only by sea, because most of the arms goes through the desert.”

Borrell said this means also enforcing the embargo by land and air.

Lisa Bryant, for VOA news, Paris.

France also hosted a summit last week to shore up military cooperation with West African countries against growing Islamist militants in the Sahel.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says the U.S. will start doing more to support Venezuela’s opposition leader and self-proclaimed president Juan Guaidó.

Pompeo and Guaidó met with reporters on the sidelines of a regional counterterrorism meeting in Bogota, Colombia, on Monday.

Guaidó, the head of the National Assembly, declared himself Venezuelan president one year ago after ruling that President Nicholás Maduro’s re-election was illegitimate.

The Trump administration and about 50 other countries recognize Guaidó as Venezuela’s true president.

For more on these stories, voanews.com. I’m Joe Parker, VOA news.

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