Fri, Apr 09, 2010 - Page 5 News List

World News Quick Take

AGENCIES

■CHINA

Child killer sentenced

A court on yesterday sentenced a former doctor to death for fatally stabbing eight children outside their school last month, state media said. Zheng Ming­sheng, 41, was given the death penalty after a half-day trial in the southeastern city of Nanping, where the grisly killings took place, Xinhua news agency said. Zheng admitted to “intentionally killing” the children on March 23 at the gate of the Nanping Experimental Elementary School after he was jilted by a woman, it said. During the trial, prosecutors played video clips showing the defendant stabbing the children with the knife as they arrived at the school. Zheng had no history of mental illness, Xinhua said, citing police.

■SINGAPORE

One in five believe in aliens

Aliens exist and they live in our midst disguised as humans — at least, that’s what 20 percent of people polled in a global survey believe. The Reuters Ipsos poll of 23,000 adults in 22 countries showed that more than 40 percent of people from India and China believe that aliens walk among us disguised as humans, while those least likely to believe in this are from Belgium, Sweden and the Netherlands (8 percent each). “It would appear that that there’s a modest correlation between the most populated countries and those more likely to indicate there may be aliens disguised amongst them compared with those countries with the smaller populations,” said John Wright, senior vice president of market research firm Ipsos.

■AUSTRALIA

Oil to be moved off ship

Oil that leaked from a coal-carrying ship stranded on the Great Barrier Reef has dispersed into the ocean, and crews prepared yesterday to transfer the ship’s remaining oil to eliminate any further environmental risk to the world’s largest coral reef. The water surface no longer has an oil sheen around the Shen Neng 1 and the leak from the hull had stopped, said Patrick Quirk, general manager of Maritime Safety Queensland. Officials aim to refloat the ship and escort it from coastal waters, but first they must transfer nearly 950 tonnes of heavy fuel oil off the boat to prevent more spills.

■PAKISTAN

Three girls’ schools bombed

Militants bombed three girls’ schools on the outskirts of Peshawar, the latest in a wave of Islamist attacks on educational institutions, a provincial minister said yesterday. Nobody was hurt in the pre-dawn attacks in the northwestern capital, the gateway to the troubled tribal regions, where the military is battling Taliban and al-Qaeda-linked militants. The attacks were blamed the attacks on the Taliban. Islamist militants oppose co-education and have destroyed hundreds of schools, mostly for girls, in the country’s northwest.

■CHINA

KFC stores mobbed

Angry customers mobbed Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) outlets this week, turning over tables at a Beijing restaurant, in anger over a coupon promotion gone awry, state media reported yesterday. The trouble flared on Tuesday as the US restaurant chain launched a promotion in which coupons downloaded from the Internet could be exchanged for food at KFC outlets, the Global Times newspaper said. Customers became angry after staff refused to accept some coupons for the “Super Tuesday” promotion, saying they were fake.

■FRANCE

Spies probed Sarkozy rumors

Spies tried to track down the source of rumors about the stability of President Nicolas Sarkozy’s marriage, the head of the domestic intelligence agency said on Wednesday. Asked about the rumors — which became headlines in the European press after surfacing on blogs — intelligence chief Bernard Squarcini confirmed that specialists had been asked to identify their source. Longstanding rumors about the stability of the presidential marriage went mainstream last month when a blogger working for a firm subcontracted to the the Sunday newspaper Journal du Dimanche published the rumors, since denied.

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