Doctors acquitted of murder
A jury yesterday cleared three doctors accused of murder in a euthanasia case in a landmark trial in a country that legalized assisted dying nearly two decades ago. The prosecution said that the doctors had not respected the conditions for euthanasia in the case of Tine Nys, a 38-year-old woman who asserted her right to die in 2010 because of severe mental suffering. The Belga news agency reported that the jury at the court in Ghent acquitted the doctors of poisoning Nys, prompting members of the public present to burst into sustained applause, drawing a rebuke from the judge. The accused are the doctor who gave Nys the lethal drip, as well as a general practitioner and a psychiatrist whose green light was needed for the assisted suicide. The case followed the complaints of two of Nys’ sisters, who deplored what they said was a hasty decision and who accused the suspects of “poisoning” their sister. The sisters claimed that not all treatments were tried for Nys following her diagnosis for autism two months before her death.
Police kill hostage-taker
A man who held nearly two dozen children hostage at his daughter’s birthday party was shot dead by police before locals beat his wife to death as she tried to escape, authorities said yesterday. All 23 children — the youngest was six months old — were rescued as anxious parents gathered outside the house in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh late on Thursday. The man, identified as Subhash Batham, was demanding that murder charges against him be dropped, as well as a ransom of 10 million rupees (US$140,156) per child, police officer Amit Mishra told reporters. “He fired several rounds, injuring a few persons,” Mishra said. “We tried to negotiate with him, but to no avail. Concerned over safety of the children, we eventually broke open the rear door of the house and shot him.” The man, who was apparently celebrating his daughter’s first birthday, was out on bail over the murder charge. The wife was killed as she tried to run away.
One likely dead in avalanche
An avalanche at a ski resort on Hokkaido on Thursday hit a group of eight foreign skiers, likely killing at least one. The avalanche occurred when the group was skiing outside of a designated course near the Tomamu ski resort in central Hokkaido, the nearby Shimukappu village office said. One skier who escaped from the snow called police asking for help, village official Atsushi Tada said. The caller said that one of them, a Frenchman in his 40s, was feared dead, but six others survived, although further details of their conditions were not available. Rescuers from Hokkaido police were expected to head to the site to carry out a rescue operation.
French authorities yesterday said that they would close a Paris mosque as part of a clampdown on radical Islam that has yielded over a dozen arrests following the beheading of a teacher who had shown his pupils a cartoon of the Prophet Mohammed. The mosque in a densely populated suburb northeast of Paris had disseminated a video on its Facebook page days before Friday’s gruesome murder, railing against teacher Samuel Paty’s choice of material for a class discussion on freedom of expression, a source close to the investigation said. The French Ministry of the Interior said the mosque in Pantin, which has
LONGSTANDING NEUTRALITY: The US request came as it vied for influence in Southeast Asia with China, but Indonesia has never let foreign militaries operate there Indonesia this year rejected a proposal by the US to allow its P-8 Poseidon maritime surveillance planes to land and refuel there, four senior Indonesian officials familiar with the matter have said. US officials made multiple “high-level” approaches in July and August to Indonesia’s defense and foreign ministers before Indonesian President Joko Widodo rebuffed the request, the officials said. Representatives for Indonesia’s president and defense minister, the US Department of State’s Office of Press Relations and the US embassy in Jakarta did not respond to requests for comment. Representatives for the US Department of Defense and Indonesian Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi
COVID-19 UNDER CONTROL: The two prime ministers agreed to ease entry bans, and allow short-term business visits and reopen flights between Vietnam and Japan Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, in his first overseas summit since taking office last month, yesterday agreed with Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc to step up defense and security cooperation in the face of China’s expanding influence in the region. In talks in Hanoi, Suga and Phuc set up a basic agreement allowing Japan to export defense equipment and technology to Vietnam. Japan has been pursuing such agreements to bolster ties with Southeast Asian nations and sustain its own defense industry. Suga said that his four-day trip to Vietnam and Indonesia would be key to pursuing the “free and open Indo-Pacific” vision
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday night said that he has no problem with being held responsible for the many killings under his crackdown on drugs, and that he is ready to face charges that could land him in jail, but not charges of crimes against humanity. Duterte’s televised remarks were among his clearest acknowledgement of the prospects that he could face a deluge of criminal charges for the bloody campaign he launched after taking office in the middle of 2016. Police have reported that at least 5,856 drug suspects have been killed in raids and more than 256,000 others arrested since