Gas traps 20 in mine
Poisonous gas has trapped 20 people in a coal mine in Shanxi Province, the heart of China's coal industry, the Xinhua news agency saidz yesterday. Workers were clearing a mine pit to investigate a previous accident when the gas leaked at dawn, trapping two rescue workers, two mine safety workers, and 16 miners, Xinhua said, citing the provincial mine safety administration. China's coal mining industry is the world's deadliest, claiming 4,746 lives last year or an average of 13 a day.
Man goes on rampage
An Australian man went on a rampage with a stolen armored personnel carrier yesterday, destroying several mobile phone towers and an electricity substation before he was arrested by police. The 45-year-old man, whose identity was not immediately released, led officers on a 90-minute chase as he crashed the privately owned vehicle into mobile phone towers and telecommunications buildings across six western Sydney suburbs. The pursuit ended when the vehicle stalled, New South Wales state police said in a statement. Police charged the man with predatory driving, possession of a prohibited drug and other crimes.
Aide under investigation
A top aide to Malaysia's former deputy prime minister Anwar Ibrahim has been arrested and is being investigated under a law protecting government secrets, a senior police officer said yesterday. "He [Nathaniel Tahn] is under investigation at the moment ... related to some government documents," the officer said on condition of anonymity. Anwar angrily criticized the arrest of Tahn who serves as secretary for his Foundation for the Future, an organization which promotes democracy. Anwar said Tahn, 27, is a graduate of Harvard University in the US and has been actively involved in humanitarian efforts in Indonesia and Sierra Leone. "I strongly condemn the detention," he said.
Typhoon injures 34
A powerful typhoon raced up the Japanese archipelago yesterday, injuring at least 34 people, cutting power and snarling transportation, officials said. By afternoon, Typhoon Man-Yi was bearing down on the city of Makurazaki on the southern tip of the southern main island of Kyushu after lashing the Okinawa island chain on Friday with heavy rain and fierce winds. As the storm approached Makurazaki, it was clocking sustained wind speeds of up to 162kph and gusts up to 216kph, the meteorological agency said. The agency warned of heavy rains, high waves and strong winds, predicting up to 1,000mm of rain in parts of the region. It wasn't clear if Tokyo would take a direct hit.
Landslide victims receive aid
Army helicopters dropped dozens of soldiers yesterday near a western Nepal village where a landslide killed at least 21 people and injured several others a day earlier, officials said. Surya Bhandari, Baglung District's chief administrator, said the soldiers would help rescuers who had already reached the village of Goulichaur. The injured people were being airlifted to hospitals, he said. The landslide hit Goulichaur, about 280km west of Katmandu, on Friday morning. Dozens of rescuers including army soldiers, police, Red Cross volunteers and local residents have been digging through the debris since Friday.
■ SOUTH AFRICA
It's not what you wear ...
A drug dealer who tried to peddle his wares to undercover police was arrested while wearing a T-shirt proclaiming "True Champions Don't Do Drugs and Crime," a newspaper said on Friday. The 27-year-old thought he had found new clients and led the officers straight to a stash of marijuana and Mandrax tablets, the Daily Sun reported. The pusher wept in frustration when he realized their identity before being hauled into the back of a police van.