December 26, 2018

Miley Cyrus confirms marriage to Liam Hemsworth

Miley Cyrus confirms marriage to Liam Hemsworth Image copyright Getty Images Image caption The couple met on the set of the 2010 film The Last Song US pop star Miley Cyrus has confirmed her marriage to Australian actor and long-standing partner Liam Hemsworth. She shared images from the ceremony, reported to have been held on Sunday, on social media. The couple met nearly a decade ago on the set of the film The Last Song. In November, they lost their home in California in the state's devastating wildfires. The wedding is reported to have taken place at another property owned by Cyrus, in Franklin, Tennessee. It was a small ceremony attended by family and close friends, reports said. Pictures shared on Cyrus's Twitter account showed the couple embracing. Skip Twitter post by @MileyCyrus 10 years later ..... pic.twitter.com/Lm8VD5AVxa — Miley Ray Cyrus (@MileyCyrus) December 26, 2018 Report End of Twitter post by @MileyCyrus The couple became engaged in 2012 but then broke..
December 26, 2018

Afghan presidential election delayed by three months

Afghan presidential election delayed by three months Image copyright Reuters Image caption Final results from October's parliamentary elections have not yet been declared Next year's presidential election in Afghanistan has been postponed by three months, election authority sources say. It was initially due in April. A new date in mid-July or early August is to be announced on Thursday. Many potential candidates had been unable to meet registration requirements and extreme weather meant their teams could not organise for a spring date, the sources told the BBC. It comes days after reports that the US was to withdraw thousands of troops. About 7,000 troops - roughly half the remaining US military presence in the country - could go home within months, the US media reports said. On Monday 43 people died in a suicide and gun attack on the Afghan ministry of public works in Kabul, officials said. Meanwhile Iran has held talks with the Afghan Taliban, a senior Iranian security of..
December 26, 2018

UK couple die within hours of each other in Australia

UK couple die within hours of each other in Australia Image copyright Facebook Image caption More than £16,000 has been raised for the families of Jason Francis and Alice Robinson Thousands of pounds has been raised to help the families of a British couple who died within hours of each other in Australia. Former Market Drayton Town footballer Jason Francis, 29, was hit by a car near the home he shared with partner Alice Robinson in Scarborough, Perth. Ms Robinson, who was said to have been "heartbroken", was later found dead. More than 29,000 Australian dollars (£16,000) has been donated since Christmas Eve. Mr Francis had been on a day out with friends from Cottesloe Rugby Club, before getting a taxi home on Saturday evening. Western Australia Police said a white VW Jetta, driven by an 18-year-old man, hit a male pedestrian. The force confirmed it was also investigating the death of a woman, and was preparing a report for the coroner. Skip Twitter post by @MDTFC It Is With Immense S..
December 26, 2018

Taiwan: 152 Vietnam tourists ‘disappear’ during holiday

Taiwan: 152 Vietnam tourists 'disappear' during holiday Image copyright Getty Images Image caption The visitors arrived in Kaohsiung, population 2.7 million, over the weekend The Taiwanese authorities are searching for 152 Vietnamese people who arrived on tourist visas last week and have since gone missing. The tourists arrived in the southern city of Kaohsiung on 21 and 23 December, but all but one appear to have absconded, officials say. Local media reports suggest they may intend to work illegally in Taiwan. Taiwan has waived visa fees for certain visitors from Asian countries including Vietnam, in a bid to boost tourism. This is believed to be the largest case of tourists disappearing ever since the visa programme began in 2015. The National Immigration Agency said it had set up a taskforce to investigate the tourists and "the group behind them". If caught, the tourists would be deported and banned from the island for between three and five years, the agency added. Vietn..
December 26, 2018

Pakistani politician Syed Ali Raza Abidi shot dead

Pakistani politician Syed Ali Raza Abidi shot dead Image copyright EPA Image caption Mr Abidi's was killed outside his home late on Christmas Day A senior member of a major Pakistani political party has been shot dead. Syed Ali Raza Abidi, 46, was targeted by attackers outside his home in Karachi on Christmas day, police say. Mr Abidi previously led the secular Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P), but resigned from the party in September for "personal reasons." The murder comes after a drive-by shooting which killed two members of the Pak Sarzameen Party (PSP) in Karachi on Sunday. Unidentified gunmen opened fire on Mr Abidi's car as he arrived home. The assailants fled on a motorbike. Mr Abidi later died in hospital. "It's hard to tell what the motive behind the attack is," a Karachi police spokesperson told Dawn.com. "Whether it is a personal, political or religious issue. It is being investigated from all angles." In a statement, the MQM said Mr Abidi's "..
December 26, 2018

Wang Quanzhang: China human rights lawyer trial begins

Wang Quanzhang: China human rights lawyer trial begins Image copyright Reuters Image caption Some of Mr Wang's supporters gathered outside the court before being bundled into police cars China has placed a prominent human rights lawyer on trial for subversion. Wang Quanzhang went missing in a government crackdown on hundreds of lawyers in 2015, and is one of the last to be tried or released. He defended political campaigners and followers of the banned spiritual movement Falun Gong, and worked with a Swedish human rights activist. There is a tight security outside the court, with several supporters being bundled away by police. Mr Wang's wife Li Wenzu, who has not seen him since he disappeared in 2015, says police have surrounded her home in Beijing, preventing her from attending the trial. Wife marches for 'vanished' husband The lawyer who simply vanished Journalists and foreign diplomats have also been barred from entering the courthouse in the northern city of T..
December 25, 2018

Japan whale hunting: Commercial whaling to restart in July

Japan whale hunting: Commercial whaling to restart in July Image copyright AFP/Getty Images Image caption Japan will be free to hunt whales like the minke for commercial purposes from July onwards Japan says it is to restart commercial whaling in July in a move that is likely to draw international criticism. It said it would withdraw from the International Whaling Commission (IWC), the body tasked with whale conservation. Commercial whaling was banned by the IWC in 1986 after some species were driven almost to extinction. Officials in Japan, an IWC member since 1951, say eating whales is part of the country's culture. For many years Japan has hunted whales for what it calls "scientific research" and to sell the meat, a programme widely criticised by conservationists. Wednesday's announcement had been expected, but conservation groups warn the move will have serious consequences. It means Japan will be able to freely hunt species currently protected by the IWC, like minke wha..
December 25, 2018

Finding God in the anguish of violence

Finding God in the anguish of violence Image copyright Azan Shah As violence has intensified in Indian-administered Kashmir, people have been flocking to the region's fabled Sufi shrines in search of solace. Sameer Yasir speaks to photographer Azan Shah, who has been documenting the anguish of the devotees. Bakhti Begam is a regular at Khanqah-e-Moula, a Muslim Sufi shrine located on the banks of river Jhelum, which careens through the heart of Srinagar city. She arrives quietly, holding a framed photograph of her missing son in a torn plastic bag. She places it on the stairs leading to the sanctum sanctorum and prays to be united with him. "Please listen to me, my peer [saint]. I am broken, my peer," the 75-year-old cries with folded hands. Her son, Manzoor Ahmad Wani, who was 25 at the time, disappeared on 22 December, 2001, a few days after he got married. Image copyright Azan Shah Bakhti Begam regularly makes the 80km (50-mile) trip to the shrine from her home. But her pra..
December 25, 2018

The Thai cave rescue: What happened next?

The Thai cave rescue: What happened next? Throughout this week, we will be looking back at some of the BBC website's most-read stories of the year and asking: what happened after the news moved on? Today, the BBC's South East Asia correspondent Jonathan Head returns to Mae Sai in northern Thailand, where members of the Wild Boars football team were rescued from a cave in July. Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionHow the Thai cave boys were rescued For three weeks in June and July, the fate of 12 young footballers and their coach, and their sensational rescue, made Tham Luang caves the most reported place on Earth. Five months later, it is now one of the most visited spots in northern Thailand. Back in July, a massive pumping operation to lower the water levels inside the caves was sucking out millions of litres an hour, water which cascaded down the hill, flooding the surrounding fruit and vegetable fields. One of them was used by Archawin Mopoaku, an ..
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