Volunteers rescue 900 dogs
The head of an animal rescue center says volunteers have rescued about 900 dogs that were being transported in a truck. Chen Mingcai (陳明才) of the Chongqing Small Animal Protection Association said yesterday that a citizen became suspicious of the truck and called police, who detained the truck driver on Friday night. Chen said he was later contacted by a netizen who had seen a photo of the dogs left in the truck on the entrance of an expressway in Chongqing. By Saturday afternoon, Chen said volunteers from the animal center and other animal lovers who had seen postings about the dogs on social media had arrived at the truck wanting to help the dogs. Chen said many of the dogs looked like pet dogs.
Voters head to the polls
Bangkok voters went to the polls yesterday to choose the city’s governor in an election overshadowed by political divisiveness that has wracked the country for much of the past eight years. The gubernatorial election is Bangkok’s first since the sprawling capital of 10 million was paralyzed for nine weeks by anti-government demonstrators in 2010, leaving at least 90 people dead and more than 1,700 injured. The Red Shirt protesters — mostly rural-based supporters of former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra — were demanding fresh elections from then-prime minister Abhisit Vejjajiva of the Democrat party. Bangkok is one of the few strongholds that the Democrats did not lose to the Pheu Thai party, led by Thaksin’s sister and current Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, in the 2011 general election, thanks to the capital’s pro-establishment middle class and elite voters.
Six die following blizzards
At least six people died in a spate of snow-related incidents as blizzards swept across Hokkaido at the weekend, police and news reports said yesterday. A 40-year-old woman and her three teenaged children were found dead late on Saturday in a car buried under snow in the town of Nakashibetsu, a local police spokesman said. They are believed to have died of carbon monoxide poisoning as the car’s exhaust pipe and was blocked by snow and the windows were up, Kyodo News said, adding that snowfalls of more than 2m were recorded in the area. A 23-year-old woman who went missing in the same town was found dead yesterday in snow about 300m from her car, Jiji Press news agency said. In Yubetsu, a 53-year-old man was found dead yesterday after he and his nine-year-old daughter became buried in snow on farmland, Jiji reported.
Allied forces kill two boys
International forces accidentally killed two Afghan boys during an operation in the south of the country, the US-led coalition said on Saturday. Marine General Joseph Dunford, the commander of US and allied forces in Afghanistan, offered his “personal apology and condolences to the family of the boys who were killed” and said the coalition takes full responsibility for the deaths. A statement issued by the coalition says the boys were killed on Thursday when coalition forces fired at what they thought were insurgent forces in the Shahid-e Hasas district of Uruzgan Province. It says a joint Afghan-NATO investigation team visited the location on Saturday and met with local leaders. The killing of civilians by foreign forces has been a major source of tension with the Afghan government throughout the nearly 12-year-old war.