Receive Breaking News updates as they occur
Transgender personnel will no longer be barred from serving openly in the US military, the Pentagon announced Thursday -- a major milestone that immediately attracted criticism. Lifting the ban on transgender service members is "the right thing to do, and it's another step in ensuring that we continue to recruit and retain the most qualified people," Defense Secretary Ashton Carter told reporters. Up until five years ago, the US military still banned gay troops from openly discussing their sexuality under a "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.
Three more babies have been born in the United States with birth defects likely linked to Zika virus infections, while another lost pregnancy was linked to the virus, according to figures updated by health officials on Thursday. The figures were listed in a U.S. Zika pregnancy registry created earlier this month by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).