Wed, Dec 04, 2019 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take



Second missing hiker found

A second person missing in the outback for two weeks after going hiking has been found near Alice Springs, police said yesterday. Phu Tran, 40, was found by a farmer at a cattle station near Alice Springs. He survived soaring temperatures by drinking water meant for livestock, and was basically in good condition, although slightly disoriented, police said. Tran was found three days after his friend Tamra McBeath-Riley was found. The third member of the group, Claire Hockridge, is still missing.


Parliament suspension set

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has suspended parliament for a month ahead of snap elections he wants to call in March to consolidate his landslide victory in last month’s presidential elections. He issued a proclamation overnight proroguing the legislature and said a new session would begin from Jan. 3. The official announcement of a fresh session of the legislature will give his minority government more control over parliamentary oversight committees.


Nuisance calls bring arrest

A pensioner has been arrested after ringing a telephone company 24,000 times to complain they had violated his contract, Tokyo police and media reported yesterday. Akitoshi Okamoto, 71, was taken into custody last week after he made hundreds of toll-free calls over eight days to KDDI’s customer service section. However, media outlets reported that he made thousands more calls from public pay phones to voice his displeasure with the company and insult customer service staff. He has been arrested on suspicion of “fraudulent obstruction of business,” a police spokesman said.


NASA spots crashed lander

NASA has found the Vikram lander that crashed in September while attempting to land near the moon’s south pole. The agency released images showing an impact site and debris from the lander, which disappeared with a rover minutes before a scheduled touchdown that would have made the country just the fourth nation to achieve a soft landing on the moon. Local mechanical engineer Shanmuga Subramanian contacted NASA after studying images of the site released by its Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera team on Sept. 26. He identified the debris and the team confirmed the finding after checking images acquired in the following months, NASA said.


WFP sending food aid

The UN World Food Programme (WFP) yesterday announced it was procuring 240,000 tonnes of food assistance to deliver to 4.1 million people in the nation, where food shortages are being exacerbated by runaway inflation and drought induced by climate change. “We are very much concerned as the situation continues to deteriorate,” WFP country director Eddie Rowe said in Harare. “We believe if we do not reach out and assist these people then the situation would blow up into a major crisis.”


Mugabe’s estate listed

Former president Robert Mugabe left behind US$10 million in the bank and four houses in the capital, but there is no will naming his beneficiaries, a list of his estate published by state-owned Herald newspaper showed yesterday. The list included a farm, 10 cars and 11 hectares of land and the orchard where he is buried, but does not mention any overseas assets.


Blogger registration passed

President Vladimir Putin yesterday signed a bill into law that gives the government the right to register bloggers, journalists and social media users as foreign agents. The law can apply to anyone who distributes content produced by media firms registered as foreign agents and receives payments from abroad. Individuals registered as foreign agents will be subject to additional government scrutiny.

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