Wildfires follow dry spell
A fire was raging on Ogden moor, near Halifax, West Yorkshire, for a fifth day yesterday. It was one of many heathland fires raging across parts of the Scottish Highlands, Ireland, northern England, and Berkshire after the record-breaking dry spell of last month, with flames fanned by high winds over the holiday weekend. Six people and a dog were airlifted by helicopter in the Torridon mountains on Tuesday. The Environment Agency fears the continuing dry weather could have an adverse impact on wildlife, including fish and plants in and around rivers and lakes where water levels are low.
Vendor was killed: inquest
Newspaper vendor Ian Tomlinson, who died on the fringes of a G20 protest in London in April 2009, was illegally killed, an inquest jury ruled on Tuesday, potentially reopening a case which has crystallized concerns over how police manage violent demonstrations. Tomlinson was shoved to the ground by Police Constable Simon Harwood as he tried to find his way out of the cordon thrown up to contain protests. He collapsed and died moments afterward, and, even though he wasn’t a protester, his case became a cause celebre for those who alleged that police brutalized demonstrators. Officials initially ruled out pursuing a case against Harwood, saying that the conflicting accounts of how Tomlinson died meant that a successful prosecution was unlikely. The Crown Prosecution Service said it would now review the case.
US teen guilty in murder
A teenage boy from Pennsylvania has been convicted of murdering his mother by slitting her throat during a holiday in Rajasthan in August last year. The 16-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was sentenced on Monday to three years in an Indian juvenile detention center for killing Cynthia Iannarelli, 51. He attacked her with a knife, wrapped her body in a sheet and left it on a sand dune before being arrested when trying to board a flight back to the US, a court in the city of Jodhpur heard. Reports from the Reggies Camel Camp resort in Osian said the boy had been demanding that his mother, a business consultant, get back together with his father, a professor at the University of Pittsburgh. The teen’s lawyers said he would challenge the verdict.
Japanese held over drugs
Pyongyang said yesterday it was holding two Japanese on charges related to drug trafficking and the use of counterfeit currency in its free-trade zone, and had expelled a third. The three were detained in March and had admitted their criminal actions, the official Korean Central News Agency said without explaining why one was deported. The three had entered the free-trade zone to work for Japanese firms, the agency said. Japan’s Asahi Shimbun reported last month the trio were detained on charges that they hid drugs in canned goods to be exported to China.
Government mulls time shift
The government is reportedly considering switching timezones so the island nation falls to the west of the international dateline. Samoa sits to the east of the international dateline — which runs through the middle of the Pacific — meaning that it is 11 hours behind GMT and is one of the last places on Earth to see out the day. The time difference puts it 21 hours behind eastern Australia and 23 behind New Zealand, its two major trading partners.