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Tue, 30 May 2023
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Yemen forces shoot 15 protesters dead


Protesters carry an injured protester during clashes with police in the southern Yemeni city of Taiz on April 3.
Yemeni security forces have shot dead fifteen protesters and wounded 30 more in a new wave of protests in the southern Yemeni city of Taiz.

Witnesses said that Yemeni soldiers on Monday opened fire at tens of thousands of protesters demanding the ouster of decades-long President Ali Abdullah Saleh, AFP reported.

"Tens of thousands of demonstrators were marching on the governorate headquarters in Taiz," they said.

Bloody clashes in the city entered its second day after security forces clashed with anti-government protesters.

On Sunday, Yemeni security forces reportedly killed two demonstrators and injured more than 1,000 demonstrators during a crackdown on anti-government protesters in Taiz.

Witnesses also said that armed men in civilian clothes opened fire on protesters in the port city of Hudaida. There was no immediate word on casualties there.


Ivory Coast president on brink as top general deserts

Ivory Coast's main city of Abidjan saw forces loyal to Gbagbo patrolling as rebel forces approached.
Laurent Gbagbo faces bloody overthrow as he loses general and rebels advance on main city of Abidjan

Ivory Coast's president, Laurent Gbagbo, faces being overthrown after his top general deserted him and rebel forces advanced into Abidjan, his seat of power.

Heavy weapons and machine gun fire were heard in the centre of Ivory Coast's main city. French troops were deployed as the four-month political crisis appeared to near its endgame, with the opposition claiming Gbagbo had only hours left in power.

Presidential claimant Alassane Ouattara's government ordered the closure of Ivory Coast's land, air and sea borders, Reuters said.


Census reveals that 17% of the world is Indian

© David Sutherland
The Indian state of Uttar Pradesh has a population of 199,500,000, just under that of Britain, France and Germany combined.
Country closing gap with China by adding 181 million citizens in past decade - which is equivalent to population of Brazil

The first results from India's latest census - the second biggest in the world - were released on Thursday, revealing that the country has added 181 million new citizens in the last decade, making it home to 17% of the world's population.

China remains the most populous country on the planet, with 1.34 billion, but India is closing the gap with 1.21 billion. The additional Indians found by the census are roughly equivalent to the population of Brazil, the fifth largest country in the world. One Indian state alone - Uttar Pradesh - now has a population of 199,500,000 people, just under that of Britain, France and Germany combined.

However C Chandramouli, the census commissioner, told reporters in Delhi that the new count showed population growth in India had slowed. The 17.6% increase was down from 21.5% recorded in 2001.


UK: Hospitals 'are closing beds and axing jobs to balance the books'

Queen Alexandra Hospital

The Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth staff face being axed
Hospitals built under the Private Finance Initiative are closing beds and cutting jobs to balance their books, a campaign group claimed yesterday.

Health Emergency said it had also discovered "asset stripping" sales of land and property by NHS Trusts to help them meet the Government's public spending cuts.

Land is being sold by PFI-built hospitals in London and a growing number of nursing and other jobs are being axed.


UK Uncut arrests threaten future protests, lawyer warns

Matt Foot, solicitor at Birnberg Pierce, says the detention of 145 activists will 'threaten the right to peacefully protest'
Police and UK uncut activists
© Carl Court/AFP/Getty Images
UK Uncut activists took part in the Fortnum & Mason occupation during recent London protests.

A lawyer at a leading civil liberties firm has expressed fears for the future of direct action protest after the mass arrest of UK Uncut activists during last Saturday's anti-cuts demonstrations in London.

Matt Foot, a criminal defence solicitor at Birnberg Pierce, said the detention of 145 activists during an occupation of luxury food store Fortnum and Mason in Piccadilly was "unprecedented". He has questioned the police's motivation.

After being arrested for aggravated trespass and criminal damage, scores of Uncut campaigners were dispersed to police stations around London as far apart as Harrow, Ilford and Romford and were held for up to 24 hours. The next day, the accusation of criminal damage was dropped but 138 activists were bailed on the charge of aggravated trespass.


Air France wreckage found from 2009 crash

© The Associated Press / Eraldo Peres
Workers in Recife, Brazil, unload debris from the crashed Air France flight AF447 in June 2009. Airbus, which made the jet, is facing manslaughter charges in France in connection with the crash.
French investigators say they've found wreckage from an Air France jet that crashed off Brazil's coast almost two years ago with 228 people onboard.

This marks a fourth attempt at locating the flight and data recorders. As of late Sunday, French officials would only reveal that the wreckage had been found in the past 24 hours.

Flight 447 had been flying from Rio de Janeiro to Paris when it went down on June 1, 2009, in a thunderstorm. Parts of the plane have been recovered but not the wreckage containing the flight data recorder - or black box - with important technical and voice information.

Locating the main body of the plane has proven difficult because it crashed into deep waters, beyond the range of radar and sonar. To conduct the actual search, planes and ships rely on sonar signals from the black box.

The findings are crucial because a French judge recently handed down a decision allowing preliminary manslaughter charges against Airbus, which manufactured the plane. Airbus is the world's largest airplane producer.

The $12.5-million US search is jointly financed by the airline and by Airbus, which produced the plane. Airbus says the true cause of the crash will never be known until the flight and data recorders are found.

Comment: Airbus 330s don't fall out of the sky during thunderstorms. Sott.net strongly suspects that the reason this incident and its multiple subsequent investigations are shrouded in secrecy and vagueness is because it was downed by an overhead cometary airburst:

What are they hiding? Flight 447 and Tunguska Type Events

Bad Guys

Ivory Coast: French take control of Abidjan airport

© Rex
Fighting in Abidjan appeared to be reaching a bloody climax. Gun battles have left most of the city's five million residents too terrified to leave their homes
French troops have taken control of Abidjan airport as forces loyal to the country's rival presidents fight for control of Ivory Coast's main city, the French military said Sunday.

France has also boosted its Licorne (Unicorn) mission in the cocoa-rich nation by 300 to around 1,400 troops, where part of their mission is to protect foreigners from attacks and looting amid rising insecurity.

"Licorne, in coordination with UNOCI (United Nations Operation in Cote d'Ivoire), has taken control of Felix Houphouet-Boigny airport," chief of staff spokesman Colonel Thierry Burkhard told AFP.

"UNOCI and Licorne troops are ensuring security and air traffic control at the airport," Burkhard said.

This allows "civil and military aircraft to land at the airport so that foreigners wishing to leave Ivory Coast can do so," he said, adding that no decision had yet been taken to evacuate foreigners.

More than 1,650 foreigners, about half of them French, have taken shelter at a Licorne camp in Abidjan.

Eye 1

NISA: Stemming leak will take months


Japan's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency said a full-scale recovery of cooling systems at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant is needed to stem the leakage of radioactive substances, but that work will take several months.

A senior official of the agency, Hidehiko Nishiyama, made the comments at a news conference on Sunday.

Highly radioactive water was found inside turbine buildings and also in tunnels under the plant. The radioactive water is flowing directly into the sea.


Japan: More than 12,000 confirmed dead in quake

More than 12,000 people have been confirmed dead in the March 11th earthquake and tsunami that hit northeastern Japan.

Miyagi Prefecture has reported the highest number of deaths, 7,374. Neighboring Iwate Prefecture has reported 3,540, followed by Fukushima Prefecture, which has 1,113 confirmed dead.

Deaths have been reported in a wide area from the northernmost main island of Hokkaido to Kanagawa Prefecture in the Kanto region. Seven died in Tokyo.


Mounting alarm over US use of depleted uranium arms in Libya

The countries involved in air strikes on Colonel Gaddafi's forces in Libya are coming under pressure to ban the use of toxic depleted uranium (DU) weapons because of the dangers they could pose to civilians.

The US has refused to rule out the use of DU shells in Libya, though it claims not to have fired any so far.

"I don't want to speculate on what may or may not be used in the future," the US air force spokeswoman, Paula Kurtz, said yesterday.

The US admitted using A-10 tankbuster aircraft designed to destroy armoured cars and tanks, and which are capable of firing 3,900 armour-piercing DU-tipped shells per minute.