Workers untangle trains
Railway workers yesterday untangled two trains that collided at a station 30km northeast of Dhaka, as the death toll from the crash reached 10, with at least 60 people injured. One train was stopped at the station when the second plowed into it from behind, leaving mangled carriages stacked on top of each other. Rescue workers and local people pulled survivors from the wreckage. More than 40 people remain in hospital, many with severe injuries. The accident occurred in Narshingdi on Wednesday afternoon. Amrito Baroi, Narshingdi chief administrator, said the brakes on the approaching train may have failed.
Corruption body rejected
President Benigno Aquino III lashed out on Wednesday at a Supreme Court decision rejecting an investigative body he created to look into alleged corruption during his predecessor’s administration, vowing his anti-graft battle would not be deterred by the setback. The Supreme Court declared on Tuesday that Aquino’s first executive order that created a “Truth Commission” was unconstitutional because it unfairly singled out his predecessor Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s government for a wide-ranging corruption investigation. A majority of the justices on the 15-member tribunal were appointed by Arroyo, who left office in June.
Noble arrested for drugs
A noble who was elected to the revamped parliament last month has been charged with drugs and firearms offenses, officials in Nuku’alofa said yesterday. Lord Tu’ilakepa faces four charges relating to illegal possession of firearms and ammunition and one of possessing an illegal drug, Solicitor General Aminiasi Kefu said. The nobleman appeared at a closed session of the Fasi Magistrates’ Court yesterday, meaning further details of the allegations against him were unavailable, the Mataingi Tonga online news Web site reported. He was arrested last week after a series of joint police raids in Tonga and Australia. Tu’ilakepa was one of nine nobles elected to the new-look 26-seat parliament late last month.
Rare elephants killed
Three endangered Sumatran elephants have been found dead after their herd rampaged through a village in Banda Aceh, a conservationist and officials said yesterday. The cause of the animals’ deaths is being investigated, but a local conservationist said they might have died after eating poison intended for wild boars as they scavenged for food at village stores. Bakhtiar, an activist with local environmental group Leuser International Foundation, said a herd of elephants had sent villagers fleeing. Bakhtiar said his group and the local authorities are planning to bring tame elephants to the area to help chase any straying herd back into the forest.
Video shows executions
An international human rights group says there is new video evidence linking the military to the summary execution of prisoners during the final stages of the civil war last year. Human Rights Watch said yesterday that contents of a five-minute video clip aired by Britain’s Channel 4 television last month warrants a UN investigation. The video was an extension of a short clip aired by the station last year showing blindfolded, naked men being shot at close range. The latest video shows the naked body of a young woman identified by Tamil media as “Isaippriya,” a news reader with the Tamil Tiger rebel television station.