While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Feb 23 edition

Donald Trump speaks alongside Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin (right) during a meeting about the federal budget, Feb 22, 2017.
Donald Trump speaks alongside Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin (right) during a meeting about the federal budget, Feb 22, 2017.PHOTO: AFP

Donald Trump to unveil first budget 'mid-March'

US President Donald Trump in mid-March will unveil his first government budget, a keystone statement of his priorities for the coming years, the White House said.

The nearly four trillion dollar annual federal budget is a declaration of intent that puts the President's policy goals down in black and white. It also separates affordable campaign promises from the fanciful and is the final arbitrator after turf wars between departments and powerful interest groups.

"We'll have something in mid-March," said White House spokesman Sean Spicer.

Trump huddled with budget advisors early on Wednesday to rake through the proposals. At the meeting, Trump repeated his campaign rhetoric about cutting waste and renegotiating federal contracts.


Vietnamese suspect in Kim Jong Nam murder was keen singer

The Vietnamese woman suspected of helping to kill the North Korean leader's half-brother was a keen singer whose Facebook pages featured pouting portraits and pictures of parties.

Four days before Kim Jong Nam was killed at a Malaysian airport, she appears to have posted a picture of herself wearing a shirt emblazoned with the acronym "LOL", similar to the one on the fleeing suspect caught on CCTV cameras.

Doan Thi Huong worked at an entertainment outlet, according to Malaysian police, who have arrested her over the murder of Kim Jong Nam. On a rice farm in northern Vietnam, the family whose daughter's details match those from Malaysian police said it rarely knew where she was since she left home a decade ago aged 18.


French artist is entombed in rock for a week

A French artist was entombed inside a 12-tonne boulder for a week, saying: "I think I can take it."

With the world's press looking on, the two halves of the limestone rock were closed on Abraham Poincheval by workmen in a Paris modern art museum.

The 44-year-old had hollowed out a hole in the rock just big enough for him to sit, with a niche to hold supplies of water, soup and dried meat. If he survives the ordeal, the artist will then attempt to hatch a dozen eggs by sitting on them for weeks on end.


Astronomers find seven Earth-size planets where life may be possible

Astronomers have found a nearby solar system with seven Earth-sized planets, three of which circle their parent star at the right distance for liquid surface water, raising the prospect of life, research published on Wednesday showed.

Noor Salman, 30, is being charged with obstruction of justice and aiding and abetting by providing material support to a terrorist organisation, Orlando Police Chief John Mina said in a statement.

Researchers said the proximity of the system, combined with the proportionally large size of its planets compared to the small star, make it a good target for follow-up studies. They hope to scan the planets' atmospheres for possible chemical fingerprints of life.


Football: Mkhitaryan secures United progress despite injury

Henrikh Mkhitaryan scored but was then forced off with a hamstring injury as Manchester United cruised into the Europa League last 16 with a 1-0 win at St Etienne.

That completed a 4-0 aggregate victory in the last 32 tie, although United finished the match with 10 men after Eric Bailly was dismissed for two yellow cards in quick succession.

Manager Jose Mourinho will face an anxious wait ahead of Sunday's English League Cup final against Southampton at Wembley to see if his Armenian playmaker is fit.