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Thu, 24 May 2018
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Attention

'At Least 11 Dead' in China Ferry Sinking

Shaoyang ferry sinking
© Reuters
A rescue team searches for missing people of a ferryboat sinking accident in Shaoyang, Hunan province.
At least 11 people, including nine schoolchildren, died when an apparently overloaded ferry capsized in a river in southern China, reports said Saturday.

Local authorities said 45 people, including two crew, were aboard the boat when it became ensnared in a cable and tipped over, CCTV reported.

But witnesses quoted by the Beijing News said there were 92 schoolchildren on the ferry, and one blogger claimed to have counted as many as 63 bodies in the river after the Friday afternoon incident.

Attention

At least 187 Dead in Tanzanian Ferry Disaster

Tanzaniz ferry disaster 2
© AP / Sultan Ali
Tanzanian police carry bodies of children from the sea in Zanzibar, Tanzania.
At least 187 people have died after an overloaded ferry sank off the Tanzanian island of Zanzibar with at least 800 people on board.

A government spokesman said 620 survivors had been rescued. Three days of mourning have been declared.

The MV Spice Islander was travelling between Zanzibar's main island, Unguja, and Pemba, the archipelago's other main island - popular tourist destinations.

It is thought to have capsized after losing engine power.

Rescue efforts were hampered by the fact that the overloaded boat had capsized at night.

Family

280 Arrested, 45 Wounded on Chile Coup Anniversary

Chile Coup
© RIA Novosti
The numbers are in from violence on the 38th anniversary of Chile's military coup: Police arrested 280 people and 45 people were injured, including a teenager who is in critical condition with a bullet in his chest.

The disturbances during the commemoration of Chile's Sept. 11 followed an otherwise peaceful march to Santiago's memorial for the more than 40,000 people who were killed, disappeared, or tortured and jailed during the military dictatorship.

Monday's disturbances left their mark around the capital Tuesday morning, with streetlights damaged and the smoldering remains of street blockades at various points around the city.

Source: The Associated Press

Eye 2

US: What We Lost: Remembrance As Narcotic

9/11 firefighters
© Unknown
There is much to grieve today. First, the act itself, and its losses. Legendary war photographer James Nachtwey happened to be there; his previously unpublished photos of the day capture the surreal horror, almost too beautifully. Then, the first responders, and what we have failed to give them. Next, the tchotchkes, the crap born of America's ceaseless need to trivialize, vulgarize, profit in the name of remembrance. Finally, and most grievously, there is the cost of that willed but so deeply flawed national remembering - the 10 years of wars, and lies, and numbing. We are, nonetheless, still here. Mother Jones: Pray for the dead, fight like hell for the living.

Che Guevara

Greece : Thousands turn out for anti-austerity protests

More than seven separate rallies held around the city, many marred by violence

Greece riot
© n/a
Some 25,000 demonstrators converged in Thessaloniki on Saturday night to protest the government's ongoing austerity drive.

More than seven separate demonstrations were held in different parts of the northern port but a record number of police officers - over 7,000 - prevented any of the groups from approaching the heavily guarded venue where Prime Minister George Papandreou was giving his annual speech on the state of the economy.

The most violent protests were those involving taxi drivers who are furious at government plans to liberalize their sector.

A group of around 3,000 protesters attempted to storm a police barrier and were pushed back by officers firing tear gas. Television coverage showed some of the cabbies hacking pieces of stone from sidewalks and hurling them at officers.

Arrow Down

Prepare for a £4,600-a-year fall in living standards by 2013, UK households warned

The average British household will experience by 2013 a fall in living standards equivalent to a £4,600 cut in annual income, a new study warned today.

The TUC said that a crippling combination of public service cuts, benefit changes and below-inflation pay rises will leave the typical UK family feeling worse-off by nearly £5,000 a year.

An average-income single parent living in London with two children will lose the most, according to the report, with their spending power reduced by 10%.

Meanwhile, a high income, two earner family, living in the South East with three children, will lose the least - 6% of effective income.

Image
© n/a
Tough choices: Many households may soon have to forgo luxuries like a bottle of wine with dinner

Comment: This is currently happening not only in UK, but France, Italy, Portugal, Spain, ...


Radar

Air Force One Flight Plan Blogged by Tokyo Air Traffic Controller

Image
© Reuters
Man could face charges of leaking national secrets after blogging private American flight information, including Air Force One flight plans

An air traffic controller from the Haneda Airport in Tokyo could face charges of leaking national secrets after blogging private American flight information, including Air Force One flight plans.

The air traffic controller, who was only identified as a man in his 50's who works at Haneda Airport in Tokyo, posted 12 pages of sensitive information regarding American flight plans, such as those of a Global Hawk drone that gathered radiation readings near the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

It also detailed flight plans of Air Force One during U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Asia in November 2010, providing numerical data and a flight route. The flight details of Air Force One are kept secret in order to protect the president.

According to the Transportation Ministry, the man didn't appear to have acted maliciously, but instead, just wanted to show his friends. He did not provide an explanation of the numbers or images on his blog, which would have been "largely incomprehensible to a layman." Nevertheless, the ministry said the man could face charges of leaking national secrets and is currently being questioned.

Japanese officials are reportedly embarrassed by the security breach, and are worried that the U.S. will now question Japan's ability to handle sensitive information. It reflects a similar episode in 2007 when a Japanese Navy officer was arrested for copying data about the U.S. Navy's Aegis combat radar system onto CDs and giving them to fellow classmates at a naval school.

Yomiuri Shimbun, a Japanese newspaper, said that Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda may apologize to President Obama during a meeting in New York this month.

Heart

I want to die with you, Jackie Kennedy told husband during Cuban missile crisis

In the early days of the Cuban missile crisis, before the world knew that the cold war seemed to be sliding toward nuclear conflict, President John F. Kennedy telephoned his wife, Jacqueline, at their weekend house in Virginia. From his voice, she would say later, she could tell that something was wrong.

Why don't you come back to Washington? he asked, without explanation.

"From then on, it seemed there was no waking or sleeping," Mrs. Kennedy recalls in an oral history scheduled to be released Wednesday, 47 years after the interviews were conducted.

When she learned that the Soviets were installing missiles in Cuba aimed at American cities, she begged her husband not to send her away.

"If anything happens, we're all going to stay right here with you," she says she told him in October 1962. "I just want to be with you, and I want to die with you, and the children do, too - than live without you."


Stormtrooper

Egypt commandos save 6 Israelis in embassy attack

Image
© AP/Khalil Hamra
Protesters gather as smoke of tear gas rises nearby during clashes with the Egyptian security forces next to a building housing the Israeli embassy in Cairo, Egypt, early Saturday, Sept. 10, 2011. Hundreds of Egyptian protesters, some swinging hammers and others using their bare hands, tore down parts of a graffiti-covered security wall outside the Israeli embassy in Cairo on Friday.
Jerusalem - The Israeli guards drew their handguns, convinced it was their final moments as they hid in a barricaded safe room from Egyptian rioters just outside the door, ransacking rooms of the embassy.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other Israeli officials depicted a tense stretch of hours as they watched on security cameras and listened in on conference calls with six Israeli embassy guards caught in the facility as protesters rioted on the streets outside - and broke in.

In the end, Egyptian commandos made their way in and rescued the six after flurried phone calls between Israeli, American and Egyptian officials to try to resolve the unrest.

In a speech late Saturday, Netanyahu said one of the six, the embassy security chief named Yonatan, spoke by phone to an operations room in Jerusalem from their hiding place.

"The rioters had penetrated the building, penetrated the office, and only one door separated between the rioters and Yonatan and his friends," Netanyahu said. Yonatan told the officials in the operations room, "If something happens to me I ask you tell my parents face to face and not over the phone."

Satellite

Al-Jazeera Egypt shut down for 'sowing dissent'

Image
© Unknown
Cairo, Egypt: The satellite channel Al-Jazeera Egypt said on Sunday the authorities had prevented it from broadcasting, after entering its offices and confiscating transmission equipment.

Ahmed Zain, the channel's chief in Cairo, told AFP that police, officers from the culture ministry and representatives of Egypt's public broadcaster had also seized materials and that one technician was arrested.

He said they cited the lack of an official licence to broadcast and a complaint from the neighbourhood. He said a lawyer also presented a complaint accusing the channel of "sowing dissent" and "calling for demonstrations."

Zain said Al-Jazeera Egypt had on March 20 requested official authorisation, and that it had been assured it could continue broadcasting in the interim.