Bombings toll rises to 33
The death toll from two suicide bombings in Volgograd has risen to 33 after two victims succumbed to their injuries, the emergency situations ministry said yesterday. “A victim of the explosion at the train station on Sunday died last night in the Volgograd hospital and the number of dead has risen to 18,” ministry spokesman Dmitry Ulanov told Interfax news agency. Another victim of Monday’s suicide bombing on a trolleybus had also died, raising the toll from that blast to 15, he said. About 5,200 police and interior troops were mobilized in “Operation Anti-terror Whirlwind,” the head on a emergency headquarters, Andrei Pilipchuk, said on state TV. He said 87 people had been detained after they resisted police or could not produce proper ID or registration documents, and that some had weapons. Itar-Tass news agency said police were focusing on migrant workers from the Caucasus and ex-Soviet states.
‘Selfie’ top ‘word to ban’
A Michigan university has issued its annual list of annoying words, and those flexible enough to take selfies of themselves twerking should take note. Since 1975, Lake Superior State University has announced a batch of words to banish due to overuse and other faults. Spokesman Tom Pink says there were more than 2,000 nominations this year. “Selfie” led the way. It means snapping a self-photo, usually with a smartphone. “Twerk” or “twerking,” a sexually provocative way of dancing, found a dominant place due to Miley Cyrus’ MTV Video Music Awards performance. And Lake Superior State says enough already with “Mr. Mom,” a reference to dads who take care of kids.
Abortion rights activist dies
Kenneth Edelin, 74, a Boston physician at the center of a landmark abortion case in the 1970s, died on Monday morning in Sarasota, Florida. His wife, Barbara, confirmed that he died after suffering from cancer. “He was a great advocate for the rights of women to have choice in their own reproductive freedom,” she said. “Particularly for women of color and other minorities… He became a doctor because that’s what he thought he needed to do to help women. Edelin made national headlines when he was convicted of manslaughter in 1975 for performing an abortion. That was two years after the US Supreme Court legalized the procedure with its decision on Roe versus Wade. The Massachusetts Supreme Court later overturned the verdict, in a case that helped legally define what an abortion is and when human life begins. Edelin went on to become an outspoken activist and spokesman for reproductive rights.
Driver wins name battle
A Hawaii woman whose last name is 36 characters long has finally gotten the whole thing to fit on her driver’s license and state identification card. Janice “Lokelani” has a surname that consists of 35 letters plus an okina, a mark used in the Hawaiian alphabet. She received her new license and ID after her campaign to get her full name on the cards prompted the state’s Department of Transportation to change its policy to expand the number of characters that can appear. Keihanaikukauakahihuliheekahaunaele, 54, said on Monday that she is happy she was able to help fix the problem. Hawaii driver’s licenses and ID cards previously had room for names totaling up to 35 characters. The new policy allows 40 characters for last names, 40 for first names and 35 for middle names.