Sun, Jul 13, 2003 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take


■ Singapore

Singaporeans can now undertake bungee jumping without having to travel overseas after Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong yesterday said the adrenalin-pumping activity will be permitted. "It is not an activity that I would do," Goh said in an afternoon speech to formally receive a report from a government-appointed committee tasked with reviewing social, political and cultural practices. "But I accept that some of you may want a rush of adrenaline from jumping off a high bridge, suspended from a rope. So we will now allow bungee jumping in Singapore," the 62-year-old premier said.

■ Thailand

Nurses fume about cigars

Thailand's nurses were fuming yesterday over the local outlet of an international cigar company naming itself The Nurse and outfitting its staff in nurse uniforms. "Nurses take care of sick people and promote good health, but cigars and wine are not merchandise relating to good health at all," Thailand's Nursing Council said. "It is not appropriate for the shop's presenters to dress in nurse uniforms," it added. The council, which represents around 140,000 nurses nationwide, said that allowing the shop to continue using its name would tarnish the professional image of nurses.

■ China

One size fits all?

A condom big enough to cover a hotel 80m tall has gone on show in the southern Chinese city of Guilin to mark UN World Population Day in the most populous nation on the globe, the Xinhua news agency said. The Guilin Latex Company has applied to the publishers of the Guinness Book of World Records to recognize their giant yellow condom, nearly 100m in perimeter and big enough to swathe the local Fragrant River Hotel, as the world's largest, Xinhua said. The company joined local birth control officials in Guilin on Friday to promote contraception, distributing free condoms and brochures to passers-by.

■ India

Marriage lasts two hours

An Indian bride ended her marriage after just two hours after her husband allegedly demanded dowry at the wedding reception, Indian television reported yesterday. Kanta, 18, was enraged when her police officer husband Prakash asked for 51,000 rupees (US$1,109) "as the price for being married to him," New Delhi Television (NDTV) reported. Kanta told NDTV, "He told me that my parents had cheated him. He then told me to ask my parents to pay him 51,000 rupees in cash or else he would not take me with him. My parents asked for his forgiveness even though they were not at fault. How can I spend the rest of my life with a person like this?"

■ Australia

White whale is `special'

Fear that the rare white humpback swimming up Australia's east coast will be loved to death by over eager animal lovers yesterday prompted the Queensland state government to declare it a "special interest whale." Those following the albino's progress up the Queensland coast were warned by Queensland Environment Minister Dean Wells to keep their distance or risk a hefty fine. The 12m humpback was first sighted in 1991 and has been seen regularly in the last four years making its way north from the Antarctic to breed in the tropical waters off the Great Barrier Reef.

■ Russia
Police track down lost nose

A giant statue of a nose, inspired by Nikolai Gogol's story of a man's pursuit for his runaway nose, was tracked down by Russian police on Friday, 10 months after it vanished. Life imitated art when the marble sculpture, erected in Russia's second city eight years ago to honor the tale, went walk-about last September from the house where the story's hero is supposed to have lived. The head of St Petersburg's sculpture museum said the 100kg proboscis was found in a city apartment block. "Both the residents and the police, who found the nose, treated it with affection," Vladimir Timofeyev said.

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