Heart-wrenching messages of fear, love and despair, sent by high school students from a sinking South Korean ferry, added extra emotional weight Thursday to a tragedy that has stunned the nation. Nearly 300 people -- most of them students on a high school trip to a holiday island -- are still missing after the ferry capsized and sank on Wednesday morning. Mom, I love you," student Shin Young-Jin said in a text to his mother that was widely circulated in the South Korean media. …
By Matt Spetalnick and Manuel Mogato WASHINGTON/MANILA (Reuters) - (Corrects last para -- Chuck Hagel is U.S. Defense Secretary) When a Philippine government ship evaded a Chinese blockade in disputed waters of the South China Sea last month, a U.S. Navy plane swooped in to witness the dramatic encounter. The flyover was a vivid illustration of the expanding significance of one of Asia's most strategic regions and underscored a message that senior U.S. officials say President Barack Obama will make in Asia next week: The "pivot" of U.S. military and diplomatic assets toward the Asia-Pacific region is real. Washington's Asian allies, however, appear unconvinced. During Obama's four-nation tour of Asia that begins on April 23, his toughest challenge will be to reassure sceptical leaders that the United States intends to be more than just a casual observer and instead is genuinely committed to countering an increasingly assertive China in the region. More »Reuters - 44 minutes ago
DWORP, Belgium (AP) — The ruby lettering on the front of the old corner pub "In de Welkom" has peeled almost beyond recognition. Owner Leza Wauters, a tough 87-year-old, is holding on to her business but can't say how much longer. Sooner or later, yet another bar with a warm "Welcome" will be gone. More »Associated Press - 1 hour 10 minutes ago
By Anahi Rama MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the Colombian author whose beguiling stories of love and longing brought Latin America to life for millions of readers and put magical realism on the literary map, died on Thursday. A prolific writer who started out as a newspaper reporter, Garcia Marquez's masterpiece was "One Hundred Years of Solitude," a dream-like, dynastic epic that helped him win the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982. Garcia Marquez died at his home in Mexico City, where he had returned from hospital last week after a bout of pneumonia. Known affectionately to friends and fans as "Gabo," Garcia Marquez was Latin America's best-known and most beloved author and his books have sold in the tens of millions. More »Reuters - 1 hour 20 minutes ago
By Dan Levine SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Four large technology companies should not be allowed to limit evidence about Apple Inc co-founder Steve Jobs at an upcoming trial over no-hire agreements in Silicon Valley, according to a court document filed late on Thursday by employees suing the firms. Tech workers brought a class action lawsuit against Apple, Google Inc, Intel Inc and Adobe Systems Inc in 2011, alleging they conspired to avoid competing for each other's employees in order to avert a salary war. The case, which is closely watched in Silicon Valley, is largely built on emails among top executives, including Apple's late chief executive Jobs and former Google CEO Eric Schmidt. More »Reuters - 1 hour 25 minutes ago
By Jungmin Jang and Ju-min Park MOKPO/JINDO South Korea (Reuters) - The captain of a South Korean ferry that capsized two days ago rushed back to the bridge after it started listing severely and tried in vain to right the vessel, one of the helmsmen on the ship said on Friday. A junior officer was steering the Sewol ferry when it capsized on Wednesday, leaving 28 people officially declared dead and 268 missing, almost all of them high school students. More »Reuters - 1 hour 27 minutes ago
By Byron Kaye PERTH Australia (Reuters) - An underwater drone scouring the Indian Ocean floor for a missing Malaysian jetliner has dived to its deepest ever level, putting its equipment at unprecedented risk, as hopes dwindled that it might soon turn up some sign of wreckage.The U.S. Navy's Bluefin-21 and its "side scan" sonar has become the focal point of the search some 2,000 km (1,200 miles) west of the Australian city of Perth, where authorities believe Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 hit the ocean after disappearing from radars on March 8 with 239 people on board. The search has centred on a city-sized area where a series of "pings" led authorities to believe the plane's black box may be located. But the Bluefin-21's searches of the largely unmapped ocean floor have been frustrated by an automatic safety mechanism which sends it to the surface when it exceeds a depth of 4.5 km (14,763 feet). On Friday, as searchers waited for the remote-control submarine to return from its fifth mission, the U.S. Navy said the Bluefin-21 had gone to a record depth of 4,695 metres (15,403 feet) in its previous mission. More »Reuters - 1 hour 37 minutes ago
DWORP, Belgium (AP) — The ruby lettering on the front of the old corner pub "In de Welkom" has peeled almost beyond recognition. Owner Leza Wauters, a tough 87-year-old, is holding on to her business but can't say how much longer. Sooner or later, yet another bar with a warm "Welcome" will be gone. More »Associated Press - 3 hours ago
WASHINGTON (AP) — A surge of eleventh-hour enrollments has improved the outlook for President Barack Obama's health care law, with more people signing up overall and a much-needed spark of interest among young adults. More »Associated Press - 3 hours ago
By James Pearson and Sohee Kim ANSAN South Korea (Reuters) - "Change your thoughts and you change your world," reads a quotation hanging in the corridors of Danwon High School, where almost 250 students and teachers are still missing from a South Korean ferry that capsized on Wednesday. The short phrase from minister and author Norman Vincent Peale had been the school's quote of the week for early April, when 339 students and their teachers embarked on a regular school trip to the popular holiday island of Jeju. Fourteen students and teachers from the school have been found dead and 247 are still missing in what looks like being South Korea's worst maritime accident in 21 years in terms of lives lost. More »Reuters - 4 hours ago
When accountant Ariel Wang bought a new car a few weeks ago, environmental protection was far from her mind even though smog has reached crisis levels in China's commercial hub Shanghai. She settled on a sturdy sport utility vehicle, the Audi Q5, as the ideal family car for her husband's daily commute to work and transport for her young daughter at the weekends. "Look at it this way -- whether we use a car or a taxi, it's the same effect." Shanghai has long been considered more sheltered from the notorious smog that blankets large parts of northern China, but in December the city's air quality was so bad that flights were grounded and sales of face-masks rocketed. China's rapid economic growth has created huge wealth and a rising middle class, with 109 million people owning vehicles for personal use at the end of last year, up from 93 million in 2012. More »AFP News - 6 hours ago
By Jungmin Jang and Ju-min Park MOKPO/JINDO South Korea (Reuters) - South Korea's coastguard denied that divers had entered a capsized ferry on Friday in a bid to locate any survivors from an accident that appears to have claimed the lives of hundreds of passengers, many of them schoolchildren. YTN television, South Korea's main cable news station, had reported that eight divers were taking it in turns to search the vessel, but the coastguard said that divers had not yet been deployed inside the stricken vessel. Experts say it is now unlikely that any of the 268 missing passengers, many of them children from a school on the outskirts of the capital Seoul, will be found alive. So far, 28 of the 475 passengers and crew on the Sewol ferry have been officially declared dead and 179 have been rescued. More »Reuters - 6 hours ago
By Byron Kaye PERTH Australia (Reuters) - Hopes that a deep sea drone scouring the Indian Ocean floor might soon turn up a missing Malaysian jetliner were fading on Friday, as the remote-controlled submarine embarked on a fifth mission with still no sign of wreckage. Sonar footage by the U.S. Navy owned Bluefin-21 has become the focal point of the search some 2,000 kms (1,200 miles) west of the Australian city of Perth, where authorities believe Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 hit the ocean after disappearing from radars on March 8 with 239 people on board. The search has centred on a city-sized area where a series of "pings" led authorities to believe the plane's black box may be located. But after four missions to depths of about 4.5 kms (2.8 miles), two of those aborted early for technical reasons, Australian search authorities said on Friday that the drone had yet to turn up a meaningful lead. More »Reuters - 7 hours ago
The third officer was at the helm of a South Korean ferry when it capsized on Wednesday with 475 people on board, an investigating prosecutor told a news conference on Friday, and the captain may not even have been on the bridge at the time. "He may have been off the bridge ... and the person at the helm at the time was the third officer," the investigator said. More »Reuters - 8 hours ago
Miley Cyrus, who is suffering from a sinus infection, has postponed two more U.S. concerts on her "Bangerz" tour as the pop star remains hospitalized following an allergic reaction to antibiotics, her concert promoter said on Thursday. Cyrus, 21, called off upcoming shows in Nashville, Tennessee, on Friday and Louisville, Kentucky, on Saturday. The show in Nashville has been rescheduled for August 7 and Louisville on August 9, Live Nation Entertainment Inc said. More »Reuters - 10 hours ago
- Philippine leader apologises over 'world's worst airport'
Philippine President Benigno Aquino publicly apologised on Wednesday for failures in air conditioning at Manila airport, already named by an online travel guide as the world's worst. The fresh debacle at Terminal 1, used by foreign airlines, came as millions of Filipinos begin travelling for the Easter holidays during one of the hottest months of the year. The transportation ministry also issued a separate public apology Wednesday, on the eve of four-day Easter holidays in the Catholic …
- PH, China, Malaysia negotiating hostages’ release
The Philippines and China are now working with Malaysian authorities in negotiating with the kidnappers of the Chinese tourist and Filipina worker who were abducted from an island resort near Semporna in Sabah on April 2. Speaking at a press conference after the Putrajaya Forum 2014 in Kuala Lumpur where he delivered a speech on transnational and organized crime on Tuesday, Malaysian Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr. Ahmad Zahid Hamidi disclosed that Filipino authorities, in particular, are working …
- Pacquiao picks 17 as his PBA jersey number
Los Angeles — If everything falls into place, Manny Pacquiao might end up becoming not only as one of the shortest players to ever play hoops in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) but also as the oldest rookie. Pacquiao, 35, had told The Bulletin a few days before he faced Tim Bradley in Las Vegas that he will suit up for Kia Motors in the PBA in October. “Number 17,” said the hard-hitting Pacquiao. Kia is one of three new companies whose application was accepted as a member of the …
- Centipede Bursts from Snake's Stomach
A group of researchers stumbled upon a grisly scene during a field study in Macedonia last year: a dead nose-horned viper with a centipede's head sticking out of its ruptured abdomen. "All of us were astonished, as nobody has ever seen something like this," Ljiljana Tomovi?, a herpetologist at the University of Belgrade, told Live Science in an email. The remnants of the death match were discovered when one researcher, Dragan Arsovski, turned over a stone, Tomovi? The unfortunate nose-horned …
Currencies Name Price Change % Chg 44.3700 +0.035 +0.08% 35.4379 +0.0503 +0.14% 61.3171 +0.0747 +0.12% 74.4376 -0.0202 -0.03% 0.4332 +0.0002 +0.06% 5.7220 +0.0045 +0.08% 13.7029 +0.0108 +0.08% 257.4266 -1.1734 -0.45% 0.1402 0.00 -0.03% 41.4025 +0.0519 +0.13%
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- Ayungin dilemma - Parallaxis
China faces a dilemma in Ayungin Shoal and other contested areas. If it waits for the ITLOS—which may decide against it—it would have tacitly bound itself to UNCLOS and risk a rogue state reputation if it asserts its claim in the South China Sea. If its militarily acts now, it may face international isolation. …
- 48 nabbed in biggest anti-trafficking catch in Bongao - The Inbox
Like many African countries, Ghana’s economy may not actually be strong enough to support opening a McDonalds. Most of its citizens don’t make enough regular income to become regular customers. This reasoning, however, seems to stick in the maw a bit as it may be that Ghana doesn’t want it there either: Ghana is also known as the “Switzerland of Africa” with an economy that encompasses mining and oil, so McDonald’s would not be contributing to the country’s economic development either. As the country’s economy steadily grows, though, there have been rumors the food giant may be trying its hand in the capital city of Accra, where other food companies like KFC have been thriving for years.
Comprised of stewed fava beans, olive oil, herbs, spices, and lemons, this Egyptian dish was long considered to be a peasant food. Today, Egyptians of every economic standing eat what is considered to be the country’s national dish. Ful medames are typically cooked over a long period of time by street vendors or in restaurants where the dish is served as a snack or meze. Some versions come with hard-boiled eggs, tahini, tomato sauce, or cream sauce, and are often served with Egyptian pocket bread. For a fancier option, visit in Cairo.
From Dubai to Abu Dhabi to Oman, there are McDonald’s aplenty in the United Arab Emirates. Yemen, however, is not feasting on any Big Macs, due partly to the dilapidated economy (McDonald’s won’t open a franchise unless it’s economically viable in a territory, which is why the food giant is often used an economic indicator of a country’s wealth and financial stability), and partly because of the occasional threat by religious militants that they will target U.S. establishments in the area.
North Korea has never been a fan a big brands, especially U.S. brands, playing in its economic sandbox. In 2006, the United Nations imposed sanctions against the country for its nuclear and poor human rights policies. So McDonald’s, effectively, is banned and can’t do business there. Not that it’s stopped current leader Kim Jong-un (and other members of the official regime), who’ve been using the state airline to have to their homes.
FILE - Democratic strategist James Carville and then co-host of CNN's "Crossfire" speaks to the media in this Wednesday, July 28, 2004 file photo taken at the FleetCenter in Boston during the Democratic National Convention. An election-year memo to Democratic candidates: Don’t talk about the economic recovery. It’s a political loser. Carville and others wrote that in head-to-head polling tests the mere mention of the word `recovery’ is trumped by a Republican assertion that the Obama administration has had six years to get the economy moving and its policies haven’t worked.(AP Photo/Victoria Arocho, File)
Silvia Jacobs who lost her son Ariel L. Jacobs in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the World in the World Trade Center speakds to roperters during a press conference at the U.S. Guantanamo Naval base in Cuba, April 17, 2014. Mrs. Jacobs sought to honor his son's memory by joining a small group of family members at a pretrial hearing at the base in for the five men charged with orchestrating the attacks. (AP PHOTO/Stijn Hustinx)