Flooding sparks water fears
Record flooding along the Missouri River has impaired treatment of drinking supplies in Kansas City, Missouri, raising health risks for infants, the elderly and other people with compromised immune systems, the KC Water utility said on Saturday. The advisory came as utility crews struggled to replace broken pumps at a wastewater treatment plant submerged by floodwaters about 48km upstream in Leavenworth, Kansas, a town of 35,000 on the river’s west bank. The crest of the flood-swollen Missouri inundating kilometers of farmland and wooded areas along both banks in murky brown water. It was expected to reach Kansas City yesterday. The utility said water drawn from the river had failed to meet “enhanced treatment technique standards.” It said the diminished water quality was not considered an emergency, but advised customers with compromised immune systems, the elderly and those with infants to seek advice from healthcare providers.
Noise triggers stampede
Crowds of holidaymakers stampeded for safety in Disneyland Paris on Saturday when they mistook the din from a broken escalator or elevator for the sound of weapons, officials and witnesses said. “There was an enormous panic,” said one witness, who identified herself as Alexia. “Everyone thought it was an attack. After a few minutes they made us leave through the back. There were police everywhere.” The Ministry of the Interior later tweeted that it had been a false alarm: “Security forces confirm there is no threat.”
Stabbing suspect charged
A man who allegedly stabbed a priest in front of his congregation live on television during a Mass on Friday at the nation’s biggest church was on Saturday charged on with attempted murder and assault with a weapon. Vlad Cristian Eremia, 26, appeared briefly by video link in a Montreal court on Saturday afternoon; his next hearing was scheduled for today. He is accused of attacking Claude Grou, the 77-year-old priest of St Joseph’s Oratory, who was left with minor injuries. Police have described the assault as an isolated incident committed by a man known to authorities, although the motive remains unclear. Grou was able to leave hospital on Friday and would rest for a few days before resuming his duties, the church said in a statement on Saturday.
Aircraft target Hamas sites
Military aircraft targeted Hamas positions in the Gaza Strip early yesterday after Palestinians there threw explosive devices at the border fence during “riots,” the army said. Palestinians in Gaza had thrown a number of explosive devices toward the border fence with Israel, one of which set off air raid sirens in the south of the country late on Saturday, the army said. There were no immediate reports of casualties in Gaza.
Famed spymaster dies
Former minister and veteran spy Rafi Eitan, who led the 1960 operation to capture fugitive Nazi mastermind Adolf Eichmann, died on Saturday at the age of 92. “We have lost a brave fighter whose contribution to Israel’s security will be taught for generations to come,” President Reuven Rivlin said. Eitan died after being hospitalized in Tel Aviv, YNET news Web site and other media reported. Eitan was also involved in the attack on Iraq’s Osirak nuclear reactor in 1981.
Reporters Without Borders has accused the Algerian government of taking advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to “settle scores” with independent journalists, including those covering long-running anti-government protests. In a statement signed with Algerian non-governmental organizations, the watchdog on Thursday called for the immediate release of its correspondent, Khaled Drareni, who has been in pretrial detention since Sunday after being charged with inciting an unarmed gathering and endangering national unity. Drareni has been arrested several times for covering the “Hirak” anti-government protests held in the capital, Algiers, every Friday since February last year. Imprisoning people during a pandemic is “an act of physical endangerment,”
Vietnam has lodged an official protest with China following the sinking of a Vietnamese fishing boat that it said had been rammed by a Chinese maritime surveillance vessel near islands in the South China Sea. The Vietnamese fishing vessel, with eight fishermen onboard, was fishing near the Paracel Islands (Xisha Islands, 西沙群島) on Thursday when it was rammed and sunk by the Chinese vessel, the Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement posted on a government Web site yesterday. All of the fishermen were picked up by the Chinese vessel alive and were transferred to two other Vietnamese fishing vessels
DIVIDED YOUTH: There is a belief that overseas students see themselves as superior, which is compounded by perceptions of their extreme wealth and multiple nationalities Chinese students flying home from overseas to escape the COVID-19 pandemic face a frosty reception from sections of the public who view them as wealthy, spoiled — and potentially contaminated. The number of officially reported cases in China has dwindled dramatically over the last month, but the country is now taking drastic steps to try and stem a second wave of infections brought in from abroad. With most international flights canceled and nearly all foreigners barred from entering the country, the vast majority of returnees are Chinese nationals, including many students. The situation has exposed animosities over class and privilege in Chinese society,
‘SHOW RESTRAINT’: Kismayo elder Adan Jama said that dead bodies were strewn in the battle zone and civilians were fleeing as the fighting had affected several villages At least 20 people have been killed in southern Somalia in clashes between militia from rival clans fighting over land, officials and witnesses said on Thursday. Tensions between fighters from the Owrmale and Majerten clans, which live about 30km outside the southern city of Kismayo, have been rising in recent weeks. “The fighting intensified today, and 20 people from the two sides were killed and dozen others including civilians wounded. This is a horrible situation that needs to be stopped,” local government official Abdikarin Mohamed said. “The dead bodies are strewn in the battle zone and civilians are fleeing as the fighting has