Mon, Jul 24, 2006 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ New Zealand
Church group ripped off

Members of a church group in Wellington who donated money for heart surgery for the wife of a Tanzanian bishop were victims of an e-mail scam, it was revealed yesterday. Wellington Anglicans, who have helped fellow church projects in the Diocese of Kagera, Tanzania, for some years raised NZ$14,000 (about US$8,860) after their Bishop Tom Brown received an urgent e-mail appeal from his opposite number who said his wife would die without surgery in South Africa. The scam was uncovered last week when a Wellington church group visiting Tanzania asked the bishop's wife how she was recovering, to be told she had never been ill, had not had an operation and knew nothing of the appeal made in her name.

■ Japan

Four dead after rain

Record rainfall killed four people and left another person missing in the south, and about 100,000 people were advised to evacuate the region, officials said yesterday, as heavy rains continued to trigger mudslides and floods across the country. A man was killed Saturday in a mudslide in Kagoshima, on Kyushu, while he was driving, and a man and a woman were killed in two other mudslides, state official Ryuichi Fukubeppu said. A woman was killed after a levee on a river broke, he said. Officials were searching for a 76-year-old man who went missing, apparently after being swept away by a swollen river, police official Juniji Imamura said.

■ Philippines

Filipinos wary of Arroyo

Many people still distrust President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, who was expected to stay clear of politics in a key speech in Congress, according to a nationwide survey released yesterday. On the eve Arroyo's annual state of the nation SONA address today, Pulse Asia said its latest survey showed that "a big plurality of Filipinos remains critical of presidential performance and continues to express distrust" in her. Arroyo has been getting low public trust and approval ratings since last year when allegations she cheated in the May 2004 presidential election first broke out.

■ China

Quake death toll rises

The death toll rose to 22, with 106 injured, after an earthquake measuring 5.1 on the Richter scale hit Yunnan Province on Saturday, state media said yesterday. The earthquake triggered landslides and rockfalls, destroying 1,400 houses and damaging 38,000 others in Yunnan's Yanjin County, the provincial seismological bureau said. Eight of the injured people were in a serious condition, the official Xinhua news agency said. The epicenter was in Shizi Township, at a depth of 9km, and the main areas affected were Shizi, Dousha and Yanjing townships, the bureau said in a report posted on its Web site.

■ Hong Kong

Tsang to tackle pollution

Chief Executive Donald Tsang (曾蔭權) said yesterday that he will meet southern Chinese leaders next month to tackle rising pollution, which is deterring investment and harming health in the region. The talks are the latest effort from Tsang in his battle to clean up the territory's air. "Hong Kong's air is more polluted than it was 10 years ago, but I want you to know that I take this issue very seriously, and I am working with my colleagues in the government to deal with it as best and as quickly as possible," he told RTHK radio.

■ United States
Marriage proposal stalls

Romance almost killed them. Adam Sutton of Georgia had the idea of proposing to his high school sweetheart, Erica Brussee, midair in a chartered Cessna aircraft. Sutton had asked the pilot to fly low over the tarmac on the way back to the airport, where his friends and relatives had spread out a giant bed sheet saying, "Erica, will you marry me?" the Rome Tribune reported on Saturday. The pilot was circling over the airport so Brussee could read the marriage proposal, when the plane stalled and then hit the ground. Brussee broke a leg while Sutton and the pilot just had cuts. She said "yes" -- in the ambulance. The engagement ring, however, was lost in the wreckage.

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