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Thu, 21 Oct 2021
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Malaysia: Smoking Ape Taken from Zoo, Forced to Quit Cold Turkey

© The Associated Press/The Canadian Press
In this photo taken Monday, Jan. 25, 2010, an orangutan, called Shirley, smokes at Johor Zoo in Johor Bahru, Malaysia. The captive orangutan often spotted smoking cigarettes given to her by zoo visitors is being forced to kick the habit, a Malaysian wildlife official said Monday, Sept. 12, 2011.
A captive orangutan often spotted smoking cigarettes given to her by zoo visitors is being forced to kick the habit, a Malaysian wildlife official said Monday.

Government authorities seized the adult ape named Shirley from a state-run zoo in Malaysia's southern Johor state last week after she and several other animals there were deemed to be living in poor conditions.

Shirley is now being quarantined at another zoo in a neighbouring state and is expected to be sent to a Malaysian wildlife centre on Borneo island within weeks.

Melaka Zoo Director Ahmad Azhar Mohammed said Shirley is not being provided with any more cigarettes because "smoking is not normal behaviour for orangutans."

"I would say she is not addicted ... but she might have formed a habit after mimicking human beings who were smoking around her," Ahmad told The Associated Press.


Facebook Voted More Necessary to Britons than Having a Flushable Toilet

© unknown
Facebook's ever-growing popularity and pervasiveness seems to be changing our priorities in today's society, according to one British survey.

The Daily Mail reports that a survey of 3,000 adults found people prioritized Facebook above having a stove, a flushing toilet and a shower.

The survey, conducted by One Poll for London's Science Museum, was originally part of the museum's new exhibition on the necessity of fresh water. Each participant was asked what they couldn't live without. The results of the study were a bit of a shock, prompting the museum's Exhibition Manager, Sarah Richardson, to describe the results as 'crazy.'

"Brits are obsessed by the weather, so it's not surprising sunshine was rated as the top thing we couldn't live without," said Richardson in The Daily Mail. "But to say you can't live without material things over drinking water is crazy."

Heart - Black

Only Hockey Player to Survive Russian Plane Crash Dies of His Injuries in Moscow Hospital

© The Associated Press/The Canadian Press/Dmitry Brushko
Relatives of Belarusian ice hockey player Ruslan Salei, killed in Wednesday's plane crash near Yaroslavl, mourn during a funeral ceremony in Minsk, Belarus, Saturday, Sept. 10, 2011.
The only member of a top Russian hockey team to survive a plane crash that killed 44 people died Monday of his injuries in a Moscow hospital.

The Vishnevsky hospital said 26-year-old Alexander Galimov died of the severe burns that covered about 90 per cent of his body, despite the best efforts of doctors in its burn unit, considered one of the best in Russia.

The crash Wednesday of a chartered Yak-42 jet outside the western city of Yaroslavl took the lives of 37 players, coaches and staff of the local Lokomotiv Yaroslavl ice hockey club. The only other person to survive, flight crew member Alexander Sizov, remained in intensive care at Moscow's Sklifosovsky hospital.

Unlike many other members of Lokomotiv who were European Union citizens and once played in the NHL, Galimov was a native of Yaroslavl and a product of its youth program.


Fake Lottery Scams Running Rampant Across US

© Getty Images
Fake lottery scams are stronger than ever. Most of us have received a mysterious email offering millions of dollars as the recipient of some nebulous overseas jackpot. Often preying on seniors and others who are willing to believe that their luck has turned and fortune has finally smiled on them.

With a still struggling economy and most Americans now on-line, scammers are working hard to get you to part with your money. Many of these lottery scams center on a potential victim being contacted via email and told they have won a large cash prize. Then the scam artist informs the victim that they must pay a fee - often several thousand dollars - to secure release of the funds. It's usually described as taxes or a processing fee.

Some really bold scammers follow up those emails with repeated calls to their victims. Jamaican thieves recently targeted a West Virginia man, pressing him for taxes, bank charges and other fees in order for him to receive a purported $10 million lottery prize. Before he caught on, the rip off artists collected more than $40,000.00 from the victim over a 10-month period, as reported by WTOV9. The state's Attorney General is investigating.

How could this happen? "They convince people that the winnings are real, using personal information about you. But, most of that information is actually available on the internet for anyone to see," says seven time lottery game grand prize winner, Richard Lustig.


UN Recognition of a Palestinian State Receives Public Approval in Europe

© Darren Whiteside/Reuters
Portraits of youths pasted on the West Bank barrier show the flags of countries backing the Palestinian bid for statehood.
Polls in France, UK and Germany show the majority of people back recognition of a Palestinian state by the UN

The majority of people in the UK, France and Germany want their governments to vote in favor of recognizing a Palestinian state if a resolution is brought before the United Nations in the next few weeks, according to an opinion poll.

The three European countries are seen as crucial votes in the battle over the Palestinians' bid for statehood at the UN, which meets next week. All three are pressing for a return to peace negotiations as an alternative to pursuing the statehood strategy, but they have not declared their intentions if it comes to a UN vote.

Wall Street

At least 75 Kenyans dead after pipeline explosion

© AP Photo/Ben Curtis
Joseph Mwangi, 34, is aided by ambulance workers as he lies in a state of shock after discovering the charred remains of two of his children, one aged 6 the other of unknown age, at the scene of a fuel explosion in Nairobi, Kenya, Monday, Sept. 12, 2011.
Nairobi, Kenya - Joseph Mwangi hoped and prayed his children had escaped the inferno caused when a leaking gasoline pipeline exploded on Monday, sending flames racing through a Nairobi slum and killing at least 75 people.

Then he saw two small blackened bodies in the wreckage of his home.

"Those were my children," he sobbed, collapsing in anguish amid the charred corrugated iron sheets and twisted metal.

Mwangi had been feeding his cow when the call went out around 9 a.m. - a section of pipe had burst near the river that cuts through the slum and gasoline was pouring out. Men, women and children grabbed pails, jerry cans, anything they could find to collect the flowing fuel.

Mwangi had planned to get a bucket and join them - he'd done so before with earlier diesel leaks without any problem, he said, and a bucket of fuel could pay a month's rent. "Everybody knows that fuel is gold," the 34-year-old said.


'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.


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.


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.