January 21, 2019

Afghanistan: Deadly Taliban attack on military compound

Afghanistan: Deadly Taliban attack on military compound Image copyright Reuters Image caption The military intelligence base in Wardak province following Monday's bomb attack A Taliban attack on a military compound in central Afghanistan has killed at least 20 security personnel and injured many more, local officials say. Militants rammed a vehicle laden with explosives through a military checkpoint in Wardak province, before detonating it. Some media reports put the death toll much higher. The Taliban's power and reach has surged since foreign combat troops left Afghanistan in 2014. That year US-led combat operations against the Taliban, the main insurgent group in Afghanistan, officially ended, but some American troops remain in the country to provide training and assistance to Afghan forces, which do most of the fighting. Why Afghanistan is more dangerous than ever Can Afghan military turn the tide in Taliban fight? Who are the Taliban? Some media reports say the attack, ..
January 21, 2019

WhatsApp restricts message-sharing to fight fake news

WhatsApp restricts message-sharing to fight fake news Image copyright Getty Images WhatsApp is limiting all its members to forwarding any single message up to five times in an effort to tackle the spread of false information on the platform. The Facebook-owned business had already introduced the policy in India six months ago. The move followed a number of mob lynchings that were blamed on fake reports spread via the service. Until now, users elsewhere could forward messages up to 20 times. The update to the app's rules was announced at an event in Jakarta, Indonesia. The country is holding its general election in April. Reports in the Indian press state that a company blog - that has not been shared elsewhere yet - said the firm had made its decision after "carefully" evaluating the results of its half-year-long test in the country. "The forward limit significantly reduced forwarded messages around the world," it added. Up to 256 users can be enrolled in a WhatsApp group. So, ..
January 21, 2019

Philippines holds referendum for Muslim-majority Mindanao

Philippines holds referendum for Muslim-majority Mindanao Image copyright AFP Image caption The vote could end decades of violence Nearly three million people in the volatile Muslim-majority region of Mindanao in the Philippines are voting in a referendum which could see the region given greater autonomy. They have been asked whether they back a plan by separatists to create a self-administered area known as Bangsamoro. The vote is a political solution to decades of fighting between Islamist separatists and the Philippine army More than 120,000 people have died in the years of violence. Final results are expected by Friday, and a "yes" vote is widely expected. Why is this significant?The vote is the result of a peace deal between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) - which has for decades been fighting for independence. Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Mindanao has been wrecked by violence over the years The Philippines government has so far failed ..
January 21, 2019

The struggling farmer who planned his own funeral

The struggling farmer who planned his own funeral Image copyright Umesh Image caption Mallappa bought everything needed for his funeral as he didn't want to "further burden his family" When Mallappa, a farmer in India's southern state of Andhra Pradesh, left his home in August last year, he told his family he was going to "buy groceries". They never dreamed he had decided to take his own life and was actually buying all the things they would need for his funeral. BBC Telugu's Hrudaya Vihari reports. Among the things Mallappa bought that day last August were a white cloth to cover his body, bangles for his wife, incense, a garland and a laminated photograph of himself to be displayed in his house after his death. Upon returning to his village, he placed them all on top of his father's grave, located on his farm. Along with the items was a note explaining that he had decided to end his life because he could not afford to repay his loans - some 285,000 rupees ($4,000;..
January 20, 2019

Dingoes attack young boy on Australia’s Fraser Island

Dingoes attack young boy on Australia's Fraser Island Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Dingo attacks are rare but can be deadly A young boy has been attacked by a group of dingoes on Australia's popular tourist spot of Fraser Island. One of the wild dogs bit the six-year old at a beach after he'd been swimming with his parents. He was airlifted to a nearby hospital and is in a stable condition. Australia's dingoes are protected in some national parks but there have been rare instances where they have attacked people. "The family had finished swimming when the young boy said he wanted to race up a sand dune," Dan Leggat of the Royal Automobile Club of Queensland Lifeflight rescue told local media. "Unfortunately, when he got to the top, there was a pack of four dingoes. One of the dingoes attacked the boy and bit him on the leg." How dangerous are dingoes? Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Fraser Island is home to the purest dingo population in..
January 20, 2019

China economy: Fourth quarter growth slips to 6.4%

China economy: Fourth quarter growth slips to 6.4% Image copyright Getty Images China's economy continued to slow in the last quarter of 2018, official figures showed, stoking fears about the impact on the global economy. In the three months to December, the economy grew 6.4% from a year earlier, down from 6.5% in the previous quarter. For the full year China expanded at 6.6%, its slowest rate since 1990. The data was in line with forecasts but underlines recent concern about weakening growth in the world's second largest economy. China's rate of expansion has raised worries about the potential knock-on effect on the global economy. The trade war with the US has added to the gloomy outlook. The official figures out Monday showed the weakest quarterly growth rate since the global financial crisis. What does China's slowdown mean for the UK? China's trade figures should concern us China mulls longer weekend to boost shopping Why are the Chinese buying fewe..
January 20, 2019

‘Baby formula ring’ leads to six arrests in Australia

'Baby formula ring' leads to six arrests in Australia Image copyright NSW Police Image caption Australian police have seized thousands of tins of baby formula Australian police say they have arrested six members of an "expansive" criminal gang which has been stealing baby formula for illegal sale in China. Stolen formula valued at more than A$1m (£550,000; $720,000) had been sold in the past 12 months alone, police said. But they said the syndicate had been operating for "a number of years". Australian formula has been nicknamed "white gold" in China because it is perceived to be safer and of better quality than locally produced products. A man, 31, was arrested at Sydney International Airport on Saturday after stepping off a flight from China, New South Wales Police said. Another three men and two women were arrested in recent months. Five of the six arrested had been charged. Australian supermarkets lock up baby milk Why is Asia demanding so much formula? Detective Supt D..
January 19, 2019

Men’s Fashion Week: Jeenu Mahadevan calls out colourism

Men's Fashion Week: Jeenu Mahadevan calls out colourism Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Jeenu Mahadevan modelling for Givenchy as part of Paris Fashion Week London, Paris, Milan, New York... it has been a frantic January for model Jeenu Mahadevan, as he flies around the world for Men's Fashion Week. "There's no such thing as downtime in Fashion Week, it's just chaos for three weeks straight," he tells the BBC. Since the 20-year old made his international debut in 2017 in Paris, his profile has skyrocketed. He's modelled for fashion powerhouses including Versace, Givenchy Alexander McQueen and Burberry. Not bad for someone who was discovered on a bus home in Oslo in March 2016. "It was weird because this lady was just staring at me for like three stops straight - I had no idea what was going on, and I thought it was a joke to begin with." He says that modelling had never been an option for him - he was planning a career in computer science or astro..
January 19, 2019

Would you share make-up with a stranger?

Would you share make-up with a stranger? Image copyright Pear Video Image caption People in China can pay with their phones to enter make-up rooms, complete with cosmetics A new trend of "shareable make-up rooms" aimed at urban women is igniting debate in China, as companies try new ways to grab a slice of the world's largest market for beauty products. The rooms represent a new frontier in China's vast sharing economy. Some think they are an affordable way to get to use expensive make-up, while others shudder at the thought of sharing a lipstick with a stranger. Although they have been springing up in many Chinese cities since late last year, a recent opening in eastern Wuhan has prompted a flood of discussion online. But how do you use one, and are they likely to take off elsewhere? How do they work?Using their phones, customers scan a Quick Response (QR) code to pay a small fee, and enter a room with a chair and dressing table. An array of beauty products is spread out..
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