December 19, 2018

Sydney seaplane crash: Passenger photos give clues to final moments

Sydney seaplane crash: Passenger photos give clues to final moments Image copyright PA and Facebook Image caption Victims (clockwise from top left) Richard Cousins, Emma Bowden, Will Cousins, Gareth Morgan, Heather Bowden, Ed Cousins Australian investigators have released the final pictures taken on board a seaplane which plunged into a river last year, killing six people. Five members of a British family and a Canadian pilot died in the incident north of Sydney on 31 December. Authorities are yet to release their findings on what caused the crash. But in an interim report released on Thursday, investigators said photos and witness accounts had helped them to reconstruct the flight's final moments. The DHC-2 Beaver was on a sightseeing flight when it nose-dived into the Hawkesbury River at Jerusalem Bay, about 50km (30 miles) from the city centre. Businessman Richard Cousins, 58, died alongside his 48-year-old fiancée, magazine editor Emma Bowden, her 11-year-old daughter Heather..
December 19, 2018

‘Alone in the world’: Canada squeezed by superpowers in Huawei dispute

'Alone in the world': Canada squeezed by superpowers in Huawei dispute Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (R) and Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau The arrest of Chinese telecoms executive Meng Wanzhou at the request of Washington sent the Chinese-Canada relationship spiralling into crisis. Caught between two superpowers, what are Canada's options? When Wenran Jiang heard the news that Canada had detained Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, he knew it spelled trouble. In an op-ed in a national Canadian newspaper he "called for all sides to cool down", the senior fellow at University of British Columbia's Institute of Asian Research told the BBC. "That was literally the second day the news broke, because I knew this was not easy to navigate." He predicted the 1 December arrest of the high-profile Chinese senior executive could "snowball out of control" and do "permanent damage to a delicate Canada-China-US relationship". ..
December 19, 2018

A third Canadian citizen has been detained in China

A third Canadian citizen has been detained in China Image copyright AFP Image caption Michael Spavor (L) and Michael Kovrig have been put under "compulsory measures" Canada has confirmed a third Canadian citizen has been detained in China. Canadian officials offered no further information on the individual detained, citing privacy laws. The news comes amid a growing dispute between both countries following the arrest of a senior Chinese telecom executive in Canada earlier this month. A government official said there is no reason to believe this latest case is linked to the cases of two other Canadians recently held in China. "Global Affairs Canada is aware of a Canadian citizen detained in China," spokesman Richard Walker said in a statement to the BBC. "Consular officials are providing assistance to the family." Former diplomat Michael Kovrig and businessman Michael Spavor were both detained in China shortly after the arrest of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, at the request of t..
December 19, 2018

Subtle Asian Traits: When memes become a diaspora phenomenon

Subtle Asian Traits: When memes become a diaspora phenomenon Image copyright SUBTLE ASIAN TRAITS Image caption Parents are often the target of humour on Subtle Asian Traits For many people of Asian descent living overseas, a Facebook group called Subtle Asian Traits has become a cultural phenomenon. Its jokes and memes - especially about life as a first-generation migrant - have made the page wildly popular. Almost a million people have joined the group since it began in September. The posts, which can be made by anyone, have also sparked conversations about cultural identity. Its rapid success has stunned the group's founders - nine Chinese-Australian high school students who live in Melbourne. "We were always sharing memes and jokes about Asian culture and growing up in a foreign country and kind of just wanted a place to share them together," co-founder Kathleen Xiao, 18, tells the BBC. Anne Gu, 18, another founder, says they were thrilled when the group hit 1,000 members but..
December 19, 2018

Korean Air ‘nut rage’ flight attendant awarded $18,000

Korean Air 'nut rage' flight attendant awarded $18,000 Image copyright Getty Images Image caption The Korean Air "nut rage" incident sparked a national debate about the Korean business system Korean Air has been ordered to pay nearly $18,000 (€16,000; £14,000) to a flight attendant who was subjected to abuse in a "nut rage" incident. Park Chang-jin was forced to apologise on his knees after he served nuts to the daughter of the airline's chairman in a bag rather than a bowl in 2014. He was then ejected from the plane, which was about to take off. Mr Park, who was also demoted over the incident, had sued Korean Air for "physical and psychological suffering". He also claimed that his demotion to an ordinary cabin crew position was unfair punishment for speaking out about the incident to the media. On Wednesday, he was awarded compensation by a court in Seoul for his treatment on the day of the delayed flight in December four years ago. However, the figure was less than Mr..
December 19, 2018

Sympathy for overworked Taiwan man who ploughed into Ferraris

Sympathy for overworked Taiwan man who ploughed into Ferraris Image copyright New Taipei City Police Department Image caption The damages are not covered by Lin Chin-hsiang's car insurance policy A young Taiwanese man who dozed off in his car and crashed into three Ferraris got the shock of his life when he was told it would cost 12 million Taiwan dollars ($390,000; £310,000) to pay for the repairs. But a public outpouring of support and donations to help him pay what at first seemed an insurmountable sum has stunned the 20 year old. Lin Chin-hsiang's predicament has gripped Taiwan and the response from the public reflects growing dissatisfaction with the island's widening wealth gap, which has left many low-income families like Mr Lin's struggling to make ends meet. The young man from a single parent family dropped out of college earlier this year to help his mother at the family's shop that sells incense and gold paper money (burned during worship) in New Ta..
December 19, 2018

Vanuatu uses drones to deliver vaccines to remote island

Vanuatu uses drones to deliver vaccines to remote island Image copyright unicef Image caption The drone carried the medicine in a small styrofoam box A baby on a small Pacific island has become the first person given a vaccine delivered by a commercial drone. Unicef arranged for the drone to be flown some 40km (25 miles) across rugged mountains in Vanuatu that otherwise take hours to cross. About 20% of children in Vanuatu don't receive important vaccinations because the supply is too difficult. The UN children's organisation hopes that drone delivery will in future be of vital importance in remote areas. "Today's small flight by drone is a big leap for global health," Unicef executive director Henrietta Fore said. "With the world still struggling to immunize the hardest to reach children, drone technologies can be a game changer for bridging that last mile to reach every child." Image copyright Unicef Image caption The first baby boy getting a vaccine delivered sho..
December 18, 2018

Six baby seals found decapitated in New Zealand bay

Six baby seals found decapitated in New Zealand bay Image copyright Getty Images Image caption The "cruel and senseless" killing of six baby seals took place at Scenery Nook The bodies of six fur seal pups have been found decapitated in a popular bay on New Zealand's South Island. The 11-month-old seals were discovered on Monday by a tourism operator in Scenery Nook in Christchurch, said the Department of Conservation (DOC). The seals' heads could not be found and the DOC believe the seals were killed elsewhere before being dumped from a boat. It has called the incident "cruel and senseless". "Due to the disturbing, brutal and violent nature of this crime against defenceless seal pups, it has been reported to the police," said DOC Mahaanui Operations Manager Andy Thompson in a statement. 'The night I found 145 stranded whales'He said the DOC had ruled out a shark attack, saying it was "incredibly unlikely sharks would have "bitten the heads off seals but left the ..
December 18, 2018

SoftBank shares down on Tokyo market debut

SoftBank shares down on Tokyo market debut Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionHow the Softbank IPO could change your life The mobile unit of Japanese tech giant SoftBank has had a disappointing debut on the Tokyo stock market. The firm aims to raise up to 2.6 trillion yen ($23bn; £18bn) by selling shares at 1,500 yen each in one of the world's largest ever stock offerings. But as markets opened in Tokyo on Wednesday, shares were trading down at 1,463 yen. Originally a telecoms firm SoftBank has become a vast conglomerate, covering robotics, chips and investments. The firm was founded by Japan's richest man Masayoshi Son. While you can already buy shares in SoftBank itself, it's now the telecommunications unit that will be listed and media reports suggest they were nearly double subscribed ahead of Wednesday. The initial public offering (IPO) is seen as cementing the company's move from domestic telecommunication provider to a global tech inv..
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