Guantanamo strike grows
The military is sending additional medical personnel to the Guantanamo detention center in Cuba, where more than half the inmates have joined a hunger strike to protest their open-ended detention, a camp spokesman said on Monday. Less than 40 reinforcements will arrive by the end of this month, said Lieutenant Colonel Samuel House, a spokesman for the detention operation at the Guantanamo Bay US Naval Base. House said the new arrivals would include a doctor, nurses, corpsmen and medics, who will supplement the 100 medical personnel already on duty. The military counted 84 of the 166 prisoners as hunger strikers on Monday and was force-feeding 16 of them liquid meals through tubes inserted in their noses and down into their stomachs. Six were hospitalized for observation, House said.
Show seeks Mars tourists
Applications are now being accepted by the makers of a Dutch reality television show that says it will deliver the first humans to the Red Planet in 10 years. The main requirements are strong health, good people and survival skills, being 18 or older, and having a reasonable grasp of the English language. The non-profit company, called “Mars One,” aims to land its first four astronauts in 2023 to attempt to establish a colony on Mars. Mars One founder Bas Lansdorp told a New York press conference on Monday that organizers had received 10,000 messages from applicants in more than 100 countries in the past year. A range of potential pitfalls might prevent the project from becoming a reality, including the inability to return to Earth, the small living quarters and the lack of food and water on Mars.
Hagel gains new perspective
US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel met Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu yesterday at the end of a three-day trip which saw him touting strong backing for the nation despite differences over Iran’s nuclear project. With US-Israeli relations strained over questions about the imminence of the threat posed by Iran’s nuclear program and Hagel dogged by his past criticisms of Israel, the Pentagon chief has stressed his full support for the Jewish state in his first visit as the US’ defense secretary. Speaking on Monday, Hagel said he came away with a fresh perspective on the country’s situation after a 90 minute helicopter tour of the occupied Golan Heights in the north, accompanied by Minister of Defense Moshe Yaalon. “I had been in those areas in my many visits here, but I’d never seen it the way that the minister had it laid out for me, the north along the border,” Hagel told reporters.
Sinn Fein head testifies
Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams on Monday denied that he only went to police nine years after allegations of child abuse emerged against his younger brother to save his political career. The trial of Liam Adams heard that Gerry Adams did not tell police until 2009 that his brother had allegedly confessed to the abuse as they walked together in Dundalk in 2000. Gerry Adams was giving evidence against his brother in a Belfast court, where the latter faces 10 counts of alleged sex abuse against his daughter Aine, including rape. However, the former West Belfast MP denied that he told Liam Adams he would “hit him with a hammer” if the allegations made by Aine Adams were true or that he withheld the information because of his political career.
EVOLVING SITUATION: Of the latest cases, 23 percent were found to be asymptomatic, but the coronavirus strain in Da Nang is more contagious, authorities said A COVID-19 outbreak that began in the Vietnamese city of Da Nang more than a week ago has spread to at least four city factories with a combined workforce of about 3,700, state media reported yesterday. Four cases were found at the plants in different industrial parks in the central city that collectively employ 77,000 people, the Lao Dong newspaper said. Vietnam, praised widely for its decisive measures to combat the novel coronavirus since it first appeared in late January, is battling new clusters of infection having gone for more than three months without detecting any domestic transmissions. Authorities yesterday reported one new
‘COVIDIOTS’: Politicians condemned the protest that came amid surging infections in the country, while a marcher said government-induced fear weakened the body Loudly chanting their opposition to masks and vaccines, thousands of people on Saturday gathered in Berlin to protest against COVID-19 restrictions before being dispersed by police. Police put turnout at about 20,000 — well below the 500,000 organizers had announced as they urged a “day of freedom” from months of virus curbs. Despite Germany’s comparatively low toll, authorities are concerned at a rise in infections over the past few weeks and politicians took to social media to criticize the rally as irresponsible. “We are the second wave,” shouted the crowd, a mixture of hard left and right and conspiracy theorists, as they converged
Three Micronesian sailors stranded on a remote Pacific island have been found alive and well after a rescue team spotted their giant SOS message written into the sand on a beach. Australian and US military aircraft found the three men on tiny Pikelot island, nearly 200km west of where they had set off. Rescuers said that the men were “in good condition” with no significant injuries. The men had been missing for three days after their 7m skiff ran out of fuel and strayed off course. Authorities in the US territory of Guam raised the alarm on Saturday after the men failed to complete
A cat that went missing on a family holiday on the shores of Loch Lomond, Scotland, has been identified 12 years later. Tortoiseshell-and-white Georgie spent October half term in 2008 with her owners at the Rowardennan campsite, but vanished as they were due to return home to Greater Manchester, England. After a search of the site the Davies family departed without Georgie, hoping the three-year-old microchipped feline would be located by someone. Over the intervening 12 years, she remained close to the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park site, being fed and cared for by campsite staff and holidaymakers. After the COVID-19 pandemic hit and lockdown