Oldest woman dies
An official said a woman in his town near Tokyo who became world’s oldest living female just last month has died at 115. Koto Okubo died on Saturday at a nursing home in Kawasaki City, city official Mitsuhiro Kozuka said. He said her relatives declined to release the cause of her death and family details. Born Dec. 24, 1897, Okubo held her title for less than a month following the death of Dina Manfredini of the US.
Drunk US sailor arrested
Police have arrested a US sailor for alleged trespassing near Tokyo during a nighttime curfew imposed after recent crimes linked to US servicemen. Kanagawa police said Richard Lawton, 24, is suspected of having entered a home near his base in Yokosuka early yesterday. Lawton, a petty officer 2nd class, was reportedly drunk when arrested after a resident called the police. Since an alleged rape of a woman in Okinawa by two sailors in October last year, an 11pm to 5am curfew has been in place for all US servicemen in the country, banning off-base alcohol purchase or consumption. Several US servicemen have been arrested since, raising questions over the effectiveness of the curfew.
Muslims seek blessings
Millions of Muslim devotees have raised their hands to seek divine blessings, world peace and revival of Islamic values at one of the world’s largest Islamic gatherings near the country’s capital.
The first phase of the three-day World Congregation of Muslims, or Biswa Ijtema, ended yesterday through a final prayer on the banks of the River Turag at Tongi, police official Faruk Hossain said. The gathering aims to revive the tenets of Islam and promote peace through prayer.
Mubarak to face new trial
The Court of Cassation yesterday accepted an appeal against the life sentence handed down to former president Hosni Mubarak for his involvement in the deaths of protesters in 2011 and ordered a retrial. Mubarak, his two sons Alaa and Gamal, his former interior minister and top security chiefs will now face a new trial, the court said after a very brief hearing. The ruling was met with cries of “Long live justice!” by Mubarak supporters who held up the former strongman’s picture and hugged each other in the courtroom, with dozens more outside shouting “We love you, president!” However, Mubarak, his sons and former interior minister Habib al-Adly will remain in jail as they still face separate cases.
Boy drives car across Europe
A 13-year-old boy ran away from his adoptive parents in Italy, taking his father’s Mercedes and driving 1,000km toward his native Poland before being stopped in Germany. The boy — a go-kart enthusiast — managed to pass motorway toll booths and cross two international borders in his two-day drive across northern Italy, Austria and half of Germany. “He looks like a 16-year-old, but still! He managed to fuel up and pass two borders. It’s just incredible,” Eleonora Spadati, head of Carabinieri police in Montebelluna where the boy took flight from, said on Saturday. Spadati said the boy missed Poland and wanted to see his biological sister. Just before leaving on Thursday with just 200 euros (about US$270) in his pocket and a passport, he had also argued with his parents after they confiscated his mobile phone as a punishment for topping up its credit without their consent.
Kinski accuses father
Actress Nastassja Kinski yesterday accused her father, late film icon Klaus, of attempting to abuse her, following allegations by her half-sister Pola that he raped her throughout her childhood. Nastassja Kinski, 51, who achieved Hollywood fame with films such as Cat People and Tess, told the Bild am Sonntag weekly that her father did not actually rape her, but that “he tried to.” “He always touched me far too much, held me so tightly against him that I thought I could not escape. At the time I was four or five years old and we were living in Munich,” Kinski said. “Instinctively I recognized that this could not be the loving embrace of a father, but that it was more than that.” The accusations against Klaus Kinski came after Pola Kinski’s allegations that he began abusing her at the age of five and raped her for the first time when she was nine. The assaults continued until she was 19, she alleged in an interview with Stern magazine.
Civilians take up arms
Several hundred civilians have taken up arms in two towns in a southwestern state and are arresting people suspected of crimes and imposing a curfew, leading authorities to promise to reinforce security forces in the area. People wearing ski masks or bandanas and carrying small arms last week began manning checkpoints on roads into the municipalities of Ayutla de los Libres and Teconoapa in the state of Guerrero’s Costa Chica area, about 120km southeast of the Pacific resort of Acapulco. People in the area said about 800 residents were participating in the armed groups acting as unofficial police. The vigilantes ordered a 10pm curfew for the two towns and are looking for suspected criminals.
‘LIKE A CASSANDRA’: Chinese residents of Prato went into self-imposed lockdown and warned their Italian neighbors about what was coming, but were ignored In the storm of infection and death sweeping Italy, one big community stands out to health officials as remarkably unscathed — the 50,000 ethnic Chinese who live in the town of Prato. Two months ago, the country’s Chinese residents were the target of what Amnesty International described as shameful discrimination, the butt of insults and violent attacks by people who feared that they would spread the coronavirus through Italy. However, in the Tuscan town of Prato, home to Italy’s single biggest Chinese community, the opposite has been true. Once scapegoats, they are now held up by authorities as a model for early,
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,