May 30, 2018

A war of nerves between Pakistan’s military and Sharif

A war of nerves between Pakistan's military and Sharif Image copyright Reuters Image caption There have been protests for Mr Sharif... Pakistan's oldest and most prestigious newspaper, Dawn, is feeling the squeeze, weeks before a general election. Its distribution remains suspended across large parts of urban Pakistan that are controlled by the army's real estate giant, the Defence Housing Authority (DHA), as well as in military garrison areas where many civilians live. And Dawn is not alone. In March, the country's largest television news network, Geo, was widely blocked by cable providers in military-controlled areas, while elsewhere it was moved lower down the channels list. Both developments suggest an escalating war of nerves between deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif and the powerful military. What prompted the blockades? Pakistan's civilian authorities say they have not ordered them. So attention turned to the security establishment. Image copyright A..
May 30, 2018

The grassroots movement that shut down an Indian copper plant

The grassroots movement that shut down an Indian copper plant Image caption At least 13 people died amid protests in Tamil Nadu on May 22 On Monday, the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu ordered the shut down of a controversial copper plant that locals had been protesting against for more than 20 years. The order from the state government came days after police shot at a large crowd of protesters, killing at least 13 people. We take a look at the grassroots movement that mobilised tens of thousands of residents and led to the shut down of the factory. Who are the protesters?Residents of Tuticorin, a port city in the state, have alleged that the copper plant has caused significant environmental damage, including air pollution and groundwater contamination. Mining firm Vedanta, which owns the copper smelter, has consistently denied these charges. The company has called the closure of the plant, which it has operated for more than 22 years, an "unfortunate development". The 400,000 t..
May 30, 2018

Savita parents hail Ireland abortion vote

Savita Halappanavar's parents hail Irish abortion vote Image copyright The Irish Times Image caption Savita Halappanavar died after a miscarriage in a Galway hospital in October 2012 Her story was one that galvanised a movement; her face became a symbol of that movement. Savita Halappanavar died from infection after miscarrying her first child in an Irish hospital in October 2012. Her family said she pleaded for a termination during the miscarriage, but medical staff refused her requests because there was still a foetal heartbeat. Mrs Halappanavar's death caused international controversy and sparked a campaign to have Ireland's abortion law liberalised. Irish abortion result a seismic shift Timeline: Ireland and abortion Savita and abortion law confusion Her parents have now said she will "rest in peace" after Irish voters backed a referendum to overturn the country's ban on abortion. The death of the 31-year-old dentist, who was originally from India, became a ..
May 30, 2018

BTS become first K-pop band to top US album charts

BTS become first K-pop band to top US album charts Image copyright Getty Images Image caption The boy band have taken the global stage by storm South Korean boy band BTS have become the first K-pop artists to reach number one on the US album charts. The K-pop superstars are part of the so-called Korean Wave, the global rise of Korean music, drama and film. Known for their meticulously choreographed dance style and boyish good looks, the seven-member group is one of the country's best selling musical exports. They have developed a fiercely devoted fan base, who call themselves the ARMY. The new BTS new album, Love Yourself: Tear, topped the Billboard 200 music charts on Sunday, which are based sales, downloads and streams of albums. It had been released earlier in May. Its first single, Fake Love, premiered at the Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas. Sung in Korean, the album is "the first primarily foreign-language No. 1 album in over 12 years," according to Billboard. For the..
May 30, 2018

China Mao impersonator at blockchain conference causes furore

China Mao impersonator at blockchain conference causes furore Image copyright WeChat Image caption Mr Xu appeared on stage at a technology conference dressed as Chairman Mao A publicity stunt at a conference about blockchain technology in China, which saw an actor impersonate Mao Zedong, has sparked uproar on social media. Xu Guoxiang imitated Mao - by wearing a grey suit and speaking in his Hunan accent - at the Boao Blockchain Forum for Asia in Hainan Province. China's law prohibits using the names and images of party leaders for commercial purposes. The event's organisers were forced to apologise for the stunt. The Boao Forum for Asia has issued a statement saying it is not affiliated with the Boao Blockchain Forum for Asia. At the conference, Mr Xu said: "I sincerely hope this forum is a success. I thank you in the name of Mao Zedong!" He delivered a speech with "actor characteristics and personal opinion", according to China's Global Times news website. Blockcha..
May 30, 2018

Cornelia Frances: Home and Away’s ‘Morag’ actress dies aged 77

Cornelia Frances: Home and Away's 'Morag' actress dies aged 77 Image copyright AAP Image caption Cornelia Frances had several popular television roles in Australia Australian actress Cornelia Frances has died following a battle with cancer, local media have reported. Liverpool-born Frances, 77, was best-known for her role as Morag Bellingham on the long-running soap Home and Away. The veteran actress had several other iconic roles on Australia's small screen, including as host of the local version of game show The Weakest Link. She had endured a series of health struggles in recent times after being diagnosed with bladder cancer in 2017. Her death was announced on Home and Away's local broadcaster, Seven Network, on Tuesday. Her co-stars and other Australian celebrities have been paying tribute on social media. Image Copyright @lincolnyounes1 @lincolnyounes1 Report Image Copyright @lincolnyounes1 @lincolnyounes1 Report Image Copyright @joelcreasey @joelcreas..
May 30, 2018

MH370: Four-year hunt ends after private search is completed

MH370: Four-year hunt ends after private search is completed Image copyright Reuters Image caption Some items of debris have been found along the east African coast The four-year hunt for Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 has ended with the latest, privately funded search coming to a close. US-based Ocean Infinity had been using a deep-sea vessel to survey a vast area of the southern Indian Ocean. But it found nothing and Malaysia's government says it has no plans to begin any new searches. The plane disappeared on 8 March 2014 while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people on board. Official search efforts ended last year and there are still fierce debates about what happened to the flight. Grace Nathan, whose mother was on MH370, said she was opposed to ending the hunt. "People might think: 'Why are these people still harping on about this, it's been four years'. It's important for people to remember that MH370 is not history," she told the Guardia..
May 30, 2018

Papua New Guinea bans Facebook for a month

Facebook to be banned in Papua New Guinea for a month Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifying before Congress in America Papua New Guinea will ban Facebook for a month while it identifies fake profiles and considers the website's effect on the country. Communication minister Sam Basil said users posting pornography and false information would be identified. He also suggested the country could set up its own rival social network. Facebook has faced scrutiny following the Cambridge Analytica scandal and has been criticised over the way it has tried to tackle fake news. 'More conducive'Although only about 10% of people in Papua New Guinea have internet access, the country is proving proactive in its regulation of online services. The government aims to use the month-long ban to analyse how Facebook is being used and prosecute those breaching the country's 2016 cyber-crime law. Mr Basil told the country's Post-Courier: ..
May 30, 2018

Trump’s China tariffs could be imposed in June

Trump's China tariffs could be imposed in June Image copyright AFP/Getty Image caption If the US moves ahead with tariffs, China has threatened to retaliate with tariffs on US items such as soybeans The US has said it plans to impose 25% tariffs on $50bn worth of Chinese imports "shortly" after mid-June. Critics had accused the administration of going soft on China after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said tariffs were on hold while the two sides continue trade talks. But the White House said on Tuesday that a final list of imports slated for tariffs will be published by 15 June. China said it was both "surprised and unsurprised" by the move. In a statement, China's Commerce Ministry called on the US to act in the spirit of earlier joint comments. It said: "This is obviously contrary to the consensus reached between the two sides in Washington not long ago." The tougher line from the White House comes ahead of another round of negotiations. US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ro..
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