March 21, 2019

Christchurch shootings: How the haka unifies New Zealand in mourning

Christchurch shootings: How the haka unifies New Zealand in mourning Image copyright Getty Images Image caption When the haka is used as a war dance, the idea is to threaten or warn your opponent - but this isn't its only theme As New Zealand mourns the victims of the Christchurch mosque shootings, the traditional Maori haka dance is reverberating around the country. It's a ceremonial dance many might associate with the famous New Zealand All Blacks rugby team. But what does the haka actually signify, and why have so many been performed across New Zealand this week? What is the haka?It's a ceremonial dance that comes from New Zealand's Maori people, and it's performed in a group with synchronised movements, lots of stomping, shouting and eye-rolling. Matthew Tukaki, executive director of the Maori Council of New Zealand, told the BBC that while it's often thought of as a war dance, "the central theme is actually one of respect". In fact, there isn&#03..
March 21, 2019

Kazakhs react to their capital city’s name change

Kazakhs react to their capital city's name change Image copyright Getty Images The capital city of Kazakhstan has had a name change - and some people in the country are not happy. At his swearing-in, on Wednesday, President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev announced the change, from Astana to Nursultan, "in honour of the first President", Nursultan Nazarbayev, who served in the role for nearly 30 years. Parliament then adopted a law making the renaming official. And on Thursday, at 11:00 local time (05:00 GMT), about 20 people attended a protest rally in the city, nearly all of whom, according to the Russian news agency Interfax, were then arrested. Meanwhile, an online petition asking the president, parliament and the ruling Nur Otan party not to rename the capital without "legitimate" discussions with its people followed by "fair and open voting" has been signed by more than 36,000 people in the past 24 hours. You may also be interested in: Kazakh capital renamed after ex-leader Kaza..
March 21, 2019

Leicester City chairman cremation held in Thailand

Leicester City chairman cremation held in Thailand Image copyright European Photopress Agency Image caption Mr Vichai's son Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha (centre) passes before King Maha Vajiralongkorn during the ceremony The Leicester City chairman who died in a helicopter crash has been honoured with a royal cremation in his native Thailand. Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha died along with four others when the helicopter crashed after taking off from the club's stadium on 27 October. King Maha Vajiralongkorn presided over the ceremony in Bangkok on Thursday. New Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers and striker Jamie Vardy were among those who attended the cremation. Nusara Suknamai, Kaveporn Punpare, and pilots and partners Eric Swaffer and Izabela Roza Lechowicz also died in the crash at the King Power Stadium. Image copyright AFP/Getty Images Image caption Jamie Vardy was among the Leicester City players who travelled to Thailand for the ceremony Image copyright AFP/Getty Images Image..
March 21, 2019

Kabul bombings: Nowruz celebrations hit by deadly blasts

Kabul bombings: Nowruz celebrations hit by deadly blasts Image copyright EPA Image caption The Islamic State group said it was behind the attacks At least six people have died in three bomb explosions in the Afghan capital Kabul during Persian New Year celebrations, officials say. The remote-controlled explosions, which also injured 23 people, happened on Thursday morning. AFP news agency said the devices were placed in the washroom of a mosque, a hospital and an electricity meter. The Islamic State group (IS), which has been behind a series of attacks in Kabul, said it was responsible. More than 30 people were killed in a suicide attack during the Nowruz festival last year. Nowruz is the ancient Persian New Year holiday but is deemed un-Islamic by many ultra-conservative Muslims. Why Afghanistan is more dangerous than ever"As we celebrate this auspicious day to bind us together, our fellow citizens witnessed another devastating day in #Kabul," President Ashraf Ghani wrote on Twitte..
March 21, 2019

Christchurch shootings: ‘Bad actors’ helped attack videos spread online

Christchurch shootings: 'Bad actors' helped attack videos spread online Image copyright AFP Image caption No reports about the video were made to Facebook while it was being broadcast Facebook has shared more details of the efforts it made to remove videos of the Christchurch attacks. Fifty people died and dozens more were injured by the twin shootings at two mosques on 15 March. No reports about the graphic content in the live stream were made until 12 minutes after it ended, said Facebook. The information comes as ISPs in Australia and New Zealand reveal they have blocked dozens of sites that shared videos of the attacks. New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has condemned the shootings as a "terrorist attack". Detect and deleteGuy Rosen, vice-president of integrity at Facebook, said in a blog that when users reported the video, they did not use terms or tags that would have prompted the social network to review it more quickly. "The video was reported for reaso..
March 21, 2019

India election 2019: Will fast broadband reach all villages?

India election 2019: Will fast broadband reach all villages? Image copyright Getty Images India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi wants to connect more than a billion Indians to the internet - and his BJP government is counting on a project taking cheap high-speed broadband to rural areas to achieve this. The project, to build a nationwide optical fibre network, was launched in 2014 and is the flagship scheme of the government's Digital India programme. In the run-up to the Indian election, which gets under way on 11 April, BBC Reality Check is examining claims and pledges made by the main political parties. So has the project been a success? Pledge: Indian Communications Minister Manoj Sinha promised to provide every village in the country with high speed broadband and that this would be achieved by March 2019. Verdict: The project to set up digital infrastructure in rural India has made substantial headway but has so far achieved less than 50% of its intended target. An am..
March 21, 2019

Christchurch attacks: NZ police admit error in naming murder charge victim

Christchurch attacks: NZ police admit error in naming murder charge victim Image copyright Getty Images Image caption The suspect flashed a hand sign as he appeared in court on Saturday charged with murder New Zealand police have admitted that the person named on a charge sheet as the murder victim of the alleged Christchurch mosques attacker is actually alive. They said the naming on the document for the first court appearance of Australian Brenton Tarrant, 28, was an administrative error. The attacks left 50 dead but only one charge of murder was initially brought. The error would not affect the legal case, police said. Police Minister Stuart Nash told New Zealand's RNZ: "It was an administrative error, it will have no impact whatsoever on the court process, I understand it's been rectified. Let's bring this guy to justice." Christchurch shootings: How the attacks unfolded 'A leader with love on full display' Christchurch and the new threat of far-right viol..
March 21, 2019

Mount Everest: Melting glaciers expose dead bodies

Mount Everest: Melting glaciers expose dead bodies Image copyright Frank Bienewald Image caption Most of the dead bodies of mountaineers have appeared on the Khumbu Glacier Expedition operators are concerned at the number of climbers' bodies that are becoming exposed on Mount Everest as its glaciers melt. Nearly 300 mountaineers have died on the peak since the first ascent attempt and two-thirds of bodies are thought still to be buried in the snow and ice. Bodies are being removed on the Chinese side of the mountain, to the north, as the spring climbing season starts. More than 4,800 climbers have scaled the highest peak on Earth. "Because of global warming, the ice sheet and glaciers are fast melting and the dead bodies that remained buried all these years are now becoming exposed," said Ang Tshering Sherpa, former president of Nepal Mountaineering Association. "We have brought down dead bodies of some mountaineers who died in recent years, but the old ones that remained buried..
March 20, 2019

Christchurch shootings: UK survivor ‘cradled young woman’ killed at mosque

Christchurch shootings: UK survivor 'cradled young woman' killed at mosque Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionThe British man who survived the NZ mosque attack: "The best ones are not coming home" A British survivor of the Christchurch shootings has described how he cradled the body of a young woman killed amid the gunfire. Nathan Smith, who converted to Islam after moving to New Zealand 13 years ago, found the woman after he escaped over a wall at the Al Noor mosque. The father of three, originally from Poole in Dorset, said he wants to find her husband to know that he survived. Fifty people died and dozens were hurt in the attack at two mosques on Friday. Australian Brenton Tarrant, 28, has been charged with murder. Image copyright EPA Image caption Floral tributes have been left outside the Al Noor Mosque Mr Smith, who has two daughters in New Zealand and a son who lives in the UK, described how the horror unfolded. At first, he thought he heard "f..
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