Fri, Aug 10, 2018 - Page 6 News List

World News Quick Take



Aftershock levels buildings

A magnitude 6.2 earthquake rocked the island of Lombok yesterday, with witnesses reporting collapsed buildings. “Evacuees and people ran out of houses when they felt the strong shake of the 6.2 magnitude quake... People are still traumatized. Some buildings were damaged further because of this quake,” National Board for Disaster Management spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said on Twitter. Officials said the epicenter was on land, so there was no risk of a tsunami. The board’s official death toll from Sunday’s quake stood at 131 on Wednesday, although some officials put the number at 347. Sutopo did not give an updated toll, saying only that there was “a big increase.”


Li meets UN’s Espinosa

State media on Wednesday offered further evidence that a secretive annual conclave of senior leaders is being held at the seaside resort of Beidaihe, saying that Premier Li Keqiang (李克強) had met a UN official there. Li and President Xi Jinping (習近平) have not appeared on the main evening news since the start of the month, as opposed to almost daily appearances normally, suggesting that they might have been in Beidaihe. In a brief dispatch, state radio said that Li had met UN General Assembly President Maria Fernanda Espinosa in Beidaihe, where they discussed the need to promote free trade.


Rocket fire exchanged

Israel carried out a major wave of strikes overnight in response to about 150 rockets fired at its territory, leaving three Palestinians, including a toddler, dead, officials said yesterday. Most of the rockets fired by Palestinian militants landed in open areas, but at least two hit the Israeli town of Sderot. Sirens sounded throughout the night, sending residents to bomb shelters. Medics reported at least four wounded taken to Israeli hospitals, including a 30-year-old Thai woman in moderate to severe condition. A Hamas militant was also killed in the strikes and at least 12 others injured, the Israeli Ministry of Health said.


Ex-monk handed 114 years

A former Buddhist monk who provoked outrage with his lavish lifestyle was yesterday sentenced to 114 years in prison after a court found him guilty of fraud, money laundering and computer crimes. Wirapol Sukphol, who was seen in a 2013 YouTube video holding wads of cash on a private jet, returned to Thailand in July last year after being extradited from the US. Wirapol was expelled from the monkhood after the video surfaced. He was accused of having sexual intercourse with an underage girl, among other charges. Wirapol is only to serve 20 years of his sentence, because the law stipulates that is the maximum for someone found guilty of multiple counts of the same offense. Wirapol faces separate charges of child molestation and child abduction. A verdict in that case is expected in October.


Oscars add new category

The Oscars are adding a new category to honor popular films and promising a brisk three-hour ceremony and an earlier air date in 2020. The new “outstanding achievement in popular film” award is a response to accusations that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has honored art-house fare only seen by limited audiences. The academy did not offer specifics about how the category would be defined. The ceremony is also to be held earlier — in 2020, it is to shift to Feb. 9, compared with Feb. 24 next year.

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