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World


Petition against Brexit crashes UK govt website

London: A petition asking Britain to remain in the European Union has caused a government website that hosts petitions to crash. About 600,000 people backed a call to revoke Article 50, the mechanism that triggered Britain’s departure from the European Union, before the site crashed. That surpasses the 1,00,000 threshold needed for the petition to be debated in Parliament. Actors Hugh Grant and Jennifer Saunders, author Caitlin Moran and ex-Labour press chief Alastair Campbell urged their social media followers to sign the petition. Five hastags related to remaining in the European Union were trending on Twitter on Thursday. They included...
22/03/2019

Indonesia seeks answers as Ethiopian crash comparisons mount

JAKARTA/CHICAGO — Indonesian investigators described on Thursday the panic of pilots grappling with airspeed and altitude problems in the last moments of their doomed Lion Air flight, as comparisons mounted with a disaster in Ethiopia.The March 11 Ethiopian Airlines crash that killed all 157 on board has set off one of the widest inquiries in aviation history and cast a shadow over the Boeing 737 MAX model intended to be a standard for decades.Initial investigations show similarities between the Ethiopian crash and the Indonesian accident in October that killed all 189 crew and passengers.“At the end of the flight it...
21/03/2019

Cesar Sayoc: US mail bombs suspect pleads guilty

Cesar Sayoc, the Florida man suspected of a mail-bombing campaign targeting critics of President Donald Trump has pleaded guilty in federal court.Mr Sayoc, 56, could be jailed for life for his criminal charges, which include using weapons of mass destruction and mailing explosives with intent to kill.He had initially pleaded not guilty, but will now avoid going to trial.Mr Sayoc is accused of mailing 16 pipe bombs to 13 targets including ex-President Barack Obama last October.None of the devices detonated, but the incidents caused a national scare just weeks before the US mid-term elections. In November, Mr Sayoc had pleaded...

21/03/2019

Italy bus attack thwarted by 'hero' teenager who contacted police

One of the children caught up in an attack on a school bus in Italy is being hailed by his classmates for saving everyone on board.The bus driver allegedly hijacked the vehicle and its 51 schoolchildren near Milan, then set it on fire.Children interviewed by Italian media said 13-year-old Ramy Shehata hid his mobile phone when the driver confiscated them from other students.The police were then phoned. "He is our hero", one classmate said.The driver, named as 47-year-old Ousseynou Sy, allegedly told the children: "No-one will survive." 'Strength to save themselves'Italy's Ansa news agency reports that Ramy made the call...
21/03/2019

Former Brazil president arrested for corruption

Muscat: Former Brazil President Michel Temer was arrested on Thursday as a part of a sweeping anti-corruption investigation, according to local media reports.His arrest was made as part of Operation Car Wash, a massive anti-corruption investigation that has led to the convictions of numerous Brazilian politicians including ex-President Lula da Silva.Temer became President in August 2016 after the impeachment of Dilma Roussef. He was then succeeded by Jair Bolsonaro, who took over the presidency in January after the 2018 general elections.
21/03/2019

83 die as ferry sinks in Tigris river near Iraq's Mosul

A ferry overloaded with people celebrating the Kurdish new year and Mother's Day capsized in the Tigris River near the Iraqi city of Mosul on Thursday, killing at least 83 people, including families, officials said. Many of the dead were women and children who could be seen struggling to swim against a strong current, their heads bobbing in the water opposite restaurants and an amusement park where people had been celebrating minutes earlier. The death toll from the accident, which residents said was the worst in recent memory, was expected to rise as people waited on the banks of the...

21/03/2019

Brexit: EU leaders agree Brexit delay plan

EU leaders have agreed on a plan to delay the Article 50 process, postponing Brexit beyond 29 March.The UK will be offered a delay until 22 May, if MPs approve the withdrawal deal negotiated with the EU next week.If they do not, the EU will back a shorter delay until 12 April, allowing the UK time to get the deal through or to "indicate a way forward".The UK is due to leave the EU in eight days, with or without a deal, if no extension is agreed. European Council President Donald Tusk tweeted that a "unanimous" agreement had been reached:...
21/03/2019

River ferry sinks in Tigris near Iraq’s Mosul, killing 83

MOSUL, Iraq (AP) – A ferry overloaded with people celebrating the Kurdish new year and Mother’s Day capsized in the Tigris River near the Iraqi city of Mosul on Thursday, killing at least 83 people, including families, officials said. Many of the dead were women and children who could be seen struggling to swim against a strong current, their heads bobbing in the water opposite restaurants and an amusement park where people had been celebrating minutes earlier. The death toll from the accident, which residents said was the worst in recent memory, was expected to rise as people waited on...
21/03/2019

Zambia bans 'Viagra' energy drink

The Zambian authorities have banned an energy drink after a Ugandan man complained it had caused him to have a prolonged erection.Power Natural High Energy Drink SX, which is made in Zambia, is not marketed as a sexual aid.But an investigation by Ugandan health authorities in December found that the beverage contained sildenafil citrate - the active ingredient in Viagra.Since then, news of the drink's side-effects has boosted its popularity.Journalist Kennedy Gondwe in Lusaka says there has been increased demand for the soft drink, which is sold in supermarkets and by street vendors across the country.He says that despite the...

21/03/2019

UK military, businesses preparing for ‘no-deal’ Brexit as PM Theresa May meets with EU leaders

LONDON: Britain's defense ministry has started up a no-deal Brexit operations centre in a nuclear-bomb-proof bunker in central London, a spokesman said on Thursday. "It's a team that's ready to support any action if it becomes necessary," the spokesman said, adding that the new centre has "all the right infrastructure". "As we get closer to a theoretical or possible no-deal, this is the place where the response could be co-ordinated", the spokesman said. Britain is due to leave the European Union on March 29 without a deal, unless one can be agreed in time or an Brexit extension is implemented....
21/03/2019

Cyclone Idai: How the storm tore into southern Africa

Aid agencies are scrambling to reach survivors of Cyclone Idai, which swept through Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe last week, destroying towns and villages in its path.Hundreds of people have been killed and hundreds of thousands more have been affected by what the UN says could be "one of the worst weather-related disasters ever to hit the southern hemisphere".Here's what we know so far about the impact of the cyclone.The storm made landfall near the port city of Beira in Mozambique's Sofala province on 14 March, packing winds of up to 177 km/h (106 mph) and bringing torrential rain.Floods of up...
21/03/2019

China chemical plant explosion kills six in Yancheng

Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionSix killed in Yancheng chemical plant explosion Six people have been killed in a blast at a chemical plant in Yancheng, eastern China, local authorities say.Thirty people were also injured in the explosion, which took place at about 14:50 local time (06:50 GMT) at the plant run by Tianjiayi Chemical.The blast was caused by a fire at the factory, which makes fertiliser, officials told local press.China's earthquake administration reported a tremor equivalent to 2.2-magnitude at the time of the explosion. Images on social media showed a fireball exploding at the site, billowing...