Developing Story: Several airlines and banks hit by online outage

Several airline websites in the US and Australia suffered an outage early on Thursday, according to the tracking site Downdetector. Those affected include the US carriers American Airlines, Southwest Airlines, United Airlines and Delta Air Lines, and Virgin Australia. Issues were also reported with the sites of several Australian banks, including ANZ, Westpac, St George, and the Commonwealth Bank. It’s unclear if the outages are linked. “We understand that some of our customers are currently experiencing issues accessing our services,” Commonwealth Bank told AFP. “This issue is affecting multiple organisations, including many of the major banks.” Virgin Australia tweeted that … Continue reading Developing Story: Several airlines and banks hit by online outage

German soldiers recalled from Lithuania over Hitler birthday song

Some 30 German soldiers are being recalled from service in Lithuania, with ringleaders facing immediate dismissal, after they were accused of making racist and anti-Semitic remarks and of sexual violence, a German military spokesperson said. The soldiers were in Lithuania as part of NATO’s Enhanced Forward Presence mission providing protection to Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia by deterring Russia. Der Spiegel earlier reported that some German soldiers had got so drunk in a hotel that military police had to be called. Further investigations found that soldiers had sung a birthday song for Nazi leader Adolf Hitler at an earlier gathering. Beyond … Continue reading German soldiers recalled from Lithuania over Hitler birthday song

End Of An Era: Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos to leave the club

Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos is to leave after a 16-year spell in which he won 22 trophies, the club said on Wednesday. Real said there would be an “act of tribute and farewell” to Ramos on Thursday in the presence of club president Florentino Perez. Ramos, 35, has struggled with injuries this season and has played just five times since the start of the year. His 21 appearances for Real Madrid in all competitions is his lowest in 15 seasons playing for the club. Ramos signed for Real from Sevilla in 2005 for 27 million euros at the time, … Continue reading End Of An Era: Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos to leave the club

Chinese mourn passing of heroic pig that survived 2008 quake

A pig that became an unlikely national icon in China after surviving 36 days under rubble from a powerful 2008 earthquake has died at the age of 14, sparking an outpouring of emotion on Thursday.The pig was purchased by a museum and became a popular tourist attraction, seen as an inspiring symbol of the will to survive“Zhu Jianqiang”, or “Strong Pig”, who survived the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, has died at the age of 14 “Zhu Jianqiang”, or “Strong Pig”, shot to fame after being discovered alive after the 7.9-magnitude earthquake in southwestern Sichuan province on May 12, 2008. The earthquake … Continue reading Chinese mourn passing of heroic pig that survived 2008 quake

Luxury cars and $100 bills recovered from the Police bust of ransomware gang in Ukraine

Police in Ukraine said they have arrested members of a major ransomware gang. The arrests mark the first time a law enforcement agency has announced a mass arrest of a prolific hacker group that had extorted Americans by either encrypting an organization’s files or threatening to leak them to the public.  The gang, known as Cl0p, has hacked a number of American targets, including the University of Miami, Florida, Stanford University, University of Maryland, and University of Colorado, demanding a payment to either keep their systems functional or to not publish material they were able to steal. The bust comes as … Continue reading Luxury cars and $100 bills recovered from the Police bust of ransomware gang in Ukraine

Yemen fishermen hit jackpot with million-dollar find in whale’s belly

For Yemeni fisherman Fares Abdulhakeem and his friends, the day was like any other as they headed out to sea to earn a living in the war-torn country until they hit the jackpot in the belly of a whale. Abdulhakeem related how he was among 35 fishermen who stumbled upon a floating sperm whale carcass in February, about 26 kilometres (16 miles) off the coast of the southern city of Aden. He said they dragged the dead mammal back to shore, where they sliced it open and struck “floating gold”, or ambergris, a rare substance formed in the whale’s digestive … Continue reading Yemen fishermen hit jackpot with million-dollar find in whale’s belly

Hong Kong sends 500 officers in pro-democracy paper raid

Some 500 policemen raided the offices of pro-democracy paper Apple Daily, alleging its reports breached a national security law. Police also arrested the editor-in-chief and four other executives at their homes. It also froze HK$18m ($2.3; £1.64) of assets owned by three companies linked to Apple Daily. The paper is owned by Jimmy Lai, who is in jail on a string of charges. Apple Daily is known to be critical of the mainland Chinese leadership. In a press briefing, police said that since 2019, Apple Daily had published more than 30 articles calling on countries to impose sanctions on Hong … Continue reading Hong Kong sends 500 officers in pro-democracy paper raid

World Bank rejects El Salvador request for Bitcoin help

The World Bank has rejected a request from El Salvador to help with the implementation of Bitcoin as legal tender. The international lender cited concerns over transparency and the environmental impact of Bitcoin mining. Earlier this month, the Central American country announced plans to become the first nation to formally adopt the digital currency. It aims to use Bitcoin as a parallel legal tender alongside the US dollar. The World Bank’s decision could mean the country faces problems in hitting its deadline to ensure that Bitcoin is accepted nationwide in the next three months. “We are committed to helping El … Continue reading World Bank rejects El Salvador request for Bitcoin help

China launches first crew to new space station

China has launched three astronauts into orbit to begin occupation of the country’s new space station. The three men – Nie Haisheng, Liu Boming and Tang Hongbo – are to spend three months aboard the Tianhe module some 380km (236 miles) above the Earth. It will be China’s longest crewed space mission to date and the first in nearly five years. On Thursday, their Shenzhou-12 capsule successfully took off atop its Long March 2F rocket. Lift-off from the Jiuquan satellite launch centre in the Gobi desert was at 09:22 Beijing time (01:22 GMT). The launch and subsequent mission are another … Continue reading China launches first crew to new space station

Botswana diamond could be world’s third largest

A diamond believed to be the third largest ever found has been put on display in Botswana. The stone, weighing 1,098 carats – was shown to President Mokgweetsi Masisi, two weeks after the diamond firm, Debswana, unearthed it. The huge gem is only slightly less heavy than the world’s second-largest diamond which was also found in Botswana in 2015. Botswana is Africa’s largest producer of diamonds. “This is the largest diamond to be recovered by Debswana in its history of over 50 years in operation,” said Lynette Armstrong, Debswana Diamond Company’s acting managing director. “From our preliminary analysis it could … Continue reading Botswana diamond could be world’s third largest

LOL: Indonesian officials give away live chickens to residents willing to get vaccinated

Live chickens are being given away by local authorities in rural Indonesia as an incentive for older residents to get vaccinated against Covid-19.Residents age over 45 in Cianjur regency, West Java are gifted live chickens if they get vaccinated. The program, in Cianjur regency, West Java, is part of the district’s effort to increase the number of vaccines administered to citizens age 45 and over. Galih Apria, assistant police commissioner in the sub-district of Pecat, said older residents had been very hesitant about getting the shots during the early rollout of the government’s vaccination program. “Early on, there was a lot … Continue reading LOL: Indonesian officials give away live chickens to residents willing to get vaccinated