May 3, 2018

CIA director Gina Haspel’s Thailand torture ties

CIA director Gina Haspel's Thailand torture ties Image copyright CIA Image caption Gina Haspel faces criticism over her past role in the CIA When Gina Haspel was nominated as the next head of the CIA in March, it re-opened debate on a murky period of recent US history - the use of secretive overseas prisons to torture terror suspects. As the BBC's South East Asia correspondent Jonathan Head reports, the spotlight has fallen on Thailand, and one such "black site" which Haspel once ran. In early April 2002, a plane took off from an undisclosed air base in Pakistan, en route to Thailand. On board was a special passenger. Abu Zubaydah, a 31-year-old Saudi-born Palestinian, believed to be one of Osama Bin Laden's top lieutenants, had been captured a few days earlier in a joint US-Pakistani raid on Al Qaeda safe houses in Faisalabad. He was now in the hands of CIA agents, who had decided to make him the first "high-value detainee" to be subjected to what they called "enhanced..
May 3, 2018

Afghan interpreters able to stay in UK – home secretary

Afghan interpreters able to stay in UK - home secretary Image copyright PA Image caption Afghan interpreters worked with the Army on the frontline in Helmand Province Afghan interpreters who served with British troops fighting against the Taliban will be able to stay in the UK for free, the home secretary has said. More than 150 Afghans given five-year residency permits said they faced being sent back to Afghanistan when they expire, unless they paid £2,389 to apply for indefinite leave to remain. Sajid Javid said the fees have been waived. He said the interpreters "had put their lives at risk" for the country. The home secretary said about 400 former Afghan interpreters have relocated to the UK as part of the government scheme. Mr Javid said: "The local Afghan interpreters worked in dangerous and challenging situations, regularly putting their lives at risk. 'Waiting for death'"We have always been clear that they will be able to stay in the UK with their families and today ..
May 3, 2018

The indigenous cricketers honouring Australia’s 1868 ‘heroes’

The indigenous cricketers honouring Australia's 1868 'heroes' Image copyright CRICKET AUSTRALIA Image caption Nick Boland will be part of a tour by two indigenous cricket teams to the UK next month When cricketer Nick Boland walks out on to The Oval in London next month he will be wearing the Aboriginal flag on his sleeve and the name of another player on his back. That player, Grongarrong, was a batsman in Australia's first international sporting side - an indigenous cricket team that toured England in 1868. The 13 Aboriginal players who went on the tour deserve to be better acknowledged today as pioneers, according to Australian cricketers and officials. "It's a story that hasn't been told enough," Mr Boland tells the BBC. He is part of an indigenous men's team that, along with a women's side, will travel to the UK in June to play in a commemorative tour 150 years on. "Our roles as players in the legacy of this tour is to become the next gener..
May 3, 2018

Sridevi Kapoor: Bollywood star wins posthumous acting gong

Sridevi Kapoor: Bollywood star wins posthumous acting gong Image copyright Reuters Image caption Sridevi, as she was simply known, died aged 54 Bollywood actress Sridevi Kapoor, who died in February, has been named Best Actress at India's National Film Awards for her last role. Her husband and daughters received the prize on her behalf. The superstar's death shocked the Indian film world. Sridevi, as she was known, was 54 when she died during a visit to Dubai to attend a family wedding. She was found unresponsive in her hotel bathtub. Initial reports said she had died of a heart attack but police later said it had been "due to accidental drowning following loss of consciousness". "Sridevi would have been very happy today," her widower Boney Kapoor told Indian media after the awards ceremony. "We miss her, it is a very proud moment at the same time." Sridevi death puts spotlight on Bollywood Crowds say goodbye to Bollywood’s Sridevi He accepted, alongside their daughters, t..
May 3, 2018

Afghan interpreters should be able to stay in UK – defence secretary

Afghan interpreters should be able to stay in UK - defence secretary Image copyright Reuters Image caption The defence secretary said he would be "amazed" if interpreters who helped the Army were deported Afghan interpreters who fought the Taliban alongside British troops should be able to stay in the UK, Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has said, after a group of them raised concerns. More than 150 Afghans given sanctuary after serving with the Army say they face being sent back as their five-year visas expire, unless they pay £2,389. Mr Williamson said he expected the Home Office to waive the visa fees. The UK owed them gratitude, he said, and they had "every right" to remain. Afghan interpreter 'will die if deported' BBC reporter killed in Afghanistan attack In a letter to the Home Office and Mr Williamson - which has been seen by the BBC - the interpreters said they had been left in "limbo" and urged the government to grant them and their families the right to live in ..
May 3, 2018

Chinese Nobel widow Liu Xia ready to ‘die at home’ in protest

Chinese Nobel widow Liu Xia ready to 'die at home' in protest Image copyright Reuters Image caption Chinese authorities insist that Liu Xia is a free citizen The widow of China's Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo has said she is ready to die in protest at being held under house arrest by Chinese authorities. Liu Xia, 57, has been under house arrest since 2010, after her husband was awarded the Nobel prize. She has never been charged with any crime. Liu Xiaobo was one of China's foremost pro-democracy campaigners and a fierce critic of the state. He died last year while serving an 11-year jail sentence for "subversion". There has been growing concern for Ms Liu since her husband's death. The poet is said to be suffering from depression after spending years under heavy surveillance, and her friends and lawyer say they believe she is being held "incommunicado". Journalists have been blocked from visiting her. Advocacy groups have for years called on Beijing to..
May 3, 2018

Deadly dust storms kill dozens in India

Deadly dust storms kill dozens in India Fierce dust storms and thundershowers kill at least 70 people in the north of India, injuring many more This breaking news story is being updated and more details will be published shortly. Please refresh the page for the fullest version. You can receive Breaking News on a smartphone or tablet via the BBC News App. You can also follow @BBCBreaking on Twitter to get the latest alerts.
May 3, 2018

Australia’s Commonwealth Bank lost data of 20m accounts

Australia's Commonwealth Bank lost data of 20m accounts Image copyright Getty Images Australia's Commonwealth Bank has admitted losing the bank records of almost 20 million people. Names, addresses, account numbers and statements were stored on two magnetic tapes which were meant to be destroyed by a subcontractor in 2016. But despite not receiving evidence the tapes had actually been destroyed, the bank did not tell customers there was a potential problem. The breach is the latest scandal involving Australia's largest lender. Commonwealth Bank 'to compensate customers' Bank admits failures in laundering case In a filing to the Australian Stock Exchange, the bank said it could not confirm that the tapes containing 15 years of data had been destroyed securely. But it said "an independent forensic investigation" by accounting firm KPMG had "determined the most likely scenario was the tapes had been disposed of." It added "the tapes did not contain passwords, P..
May 2, 2018

Xiaomi launches $10bn Hong Kong stock market listing

Xiaomi launches $10bn Hong Kong stock market listing Image copyright Getty Images Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has filed to list on Hong Kong stock market, in a move that is expected to raise up to $10bn (£7.5bn). The stock market flotation will be the world's biggest debut in 2018, and the largest since fellow China tech giant Alibaba's raised $25bn in 2014. Xiaomi has bounced back after admitting last year it had grown too quickly. As well as China, it is a major player in India where it rivals Samsung to be the most the popular handset maker. Last year the Xiaomi moved into the Spain market and reports suggest it is also looking to get into the US to take on Apple. Xiaomi: A beginner's guide to 'China's Apple'While it has not revealed how much it is hoping to raise in the initial public offering (IPO), the analyst estimate of $10bn would value the firm at just short of $100bn. The decision to choose to list in Hong Kong is a boost for the territo..
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