More than 1,000 migrants arrive on Italian island

More than 1,000 migrants landed on the Italian island of Lampedusa in the space of a few hours on Sunday, according to local media reports. One boat alone was carrying almost 400 men, women and children, Italian news agency Ansa said. The island’s Mayor Toto Martello said he believed the rise in arrivals coincided with the good weather. Lampedusa is one of the main arrival ports for people wanting to reach Europe. More boats were spotted off the coast of nearby Malta, with charity Alarm Phone saying they needed assistance. “One rescue operation could put a total of around 231 … Continue reading More than 1,000 migrants arrive on Italian island

Gunman shoots dead six people at Colorado Springs birthday party

A gunman shot dead six people and then himself at a birthday party in Colorado Springs on Sunday, US police said. The shootings took place at a mobile home park where families had gathered in one trailer to celebrate. “The suspect, a boyfriend of one of the female victims, drove to the residence, walked inside and began shooting people at the party before taking his own life,” the Colorado Springs Police Department said. The motive for the attack is not known. The victims were all adults, but a number of children were present in the trailer at the time. The … Continue reading Gunman shoots dead six people at Colorado Springs birthday party

US citizen in Thailand charged with murdering Thai wife

Police in Thailand said Friday they have charged a U.S. citizen from the state of Colorado with murdering his pregnant Thai wife. Jason Matthew Balzer, 32, was interrogated Friday in the northern city of Nan where he had lived with Pitchaporn Kidchob, said police Lt. Col. Somkiat Ruam-ngern. The murder charge carries a maximum penalty of death. Balzer was arrested Thursday in the northern city of Chiang Mai and confessed to killing his 32-year-old wife, said Maj. Gen. Weerachon Boontawee, chief of Provincial Police Region 5′s Detective Department. It was unclear if Balzer had a lawyer representing him. Balzer’s last … Continue reading US citizen in Thailand charged with murdering Thai wife

Political Privilege: Malaysia ex-PM Najib fined for breaking virus rules at an eatery

Former Malaysian leader Najib Razak, who has been convicted over the mammoth 1MDB scandal, is in trouble with the law again – this time for breaking coronavirus rules in a restaurant. He has been fined 3,000 Malaysian ringgit ($730) for failing to register at the eatery or have his temperature taken, police said. The penalty was announced late on Thursday. It came after footage circulated on social media showing the ex-prime minister flouting the rules in March at a Kuala Lumpur restaurant that sells a traditional chicken and rice dish. While Najib still denies any involvement in the 1MDB fraud, … Continue reading Political Privilege: Malaysia ex-PM Najib fined for breaking virus rules at an eatery

170 endangered seals found dead on Russia’s Caspian coast

At least 170 endangered seals have washed up dead over the course of several days on the shores of the Caspian Sea in Russia’s republic of Dagestan, according to researchers. “These are the dead animals that we saw, photographed and whose GPS coordinates we noted,” Viktor Nikiforov of the Moscow Marine Mammals research centre told the AFP news agency on Thursday. Images shared with the AFP showed several seal carcasses washed up on the beach. The deaths may have been caused by “industrial pollution, fishing or poaching when seals get caught in the nets”, Nikiforov said. “Maybe this is the … Continue reading 170 endangered seals found dead on Russia’s Caspian coast

Former Afghan TV host shot dead in Kandahar

Nemat Rawan, a former Afghan television journalist, was shot dead in southern Kandahar city on Thursday, officials said, becoming the fifth journalist to have been killed this year. Rawan hosted a popular talk show on the country’s leading broadcaster, Tolo News, before joining the ministry of finance as a communications specialist last month. He was “assassinated by unknown gunmen”, Kandahar city police spokesman Jamal Nasir Barekzai told AFP news agency. “Heartbreaking to hear that a friend and former colleague Nemat Rawan was shot dead in Kandahar city today,” Lotfullah Najafizada, head of Tolo News, posted on Twitter. There was no … Continue reading Former Afghan TV host shot dead in Kandahar

Teen girl wounds three in Idaho school shooting

A girl reported to be 11 or 12 years old shot and wounded two other students and a member of staff at a school in the US state of Idaho, police said. The unnamed pupil, who is in the sixth grade, brought a gun to Rigby Middle School in the city of the same name and opened fire. The three victims are expected to survive, officials said. A female teacher managed to disarm the girl and detained her until police took her into custody, authorities said. The motive for the shooting is not yet clear. The girl “retrieved a handgun … Continue reading Teen girl wounds three in Idaho school shooting

Qatar orders arrest of finance minister over misuse of funds

Qatar’s prosecutor ordered the arrest of Finance Minister Ali Sharif Al-Emadi to question him over alleged abuse of power and misuse of public funds, a state-run news agency said. The country’s ruling emir said he’d relieved Al-Emadi of his office and entrusted his duties to the current Minister of Commerce and Industry, Ali Al Kuwari, according to an announcement released hours after arrest was made public. Al-Emadi was named finance minister a day after Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani took over leadership of the country in June 2013, and has held the role since. The prosecutor has launched an … Continue reading Qatar orders arrest of finance minister over misuse of funds

Developing Story: Indonesia’s mount Sinabung erupts

Indonesia’s rumbling Mount Sinabung erupted Friday, spewing a thick column of volcanic ash 2.8 kilometers (1.7 miles) into the sky. Villages near the volcano in North Sumatra province have been relocated after past eruptions, and there were no further evacuations or casualties from the new blast. People have been advised to stay 5 kilometers (3.1 miles) from the crater’s mouth and to be aware of ashfall and avalanches of volcanic debris. Activity at the volcano was increasing, with at least 15 smaller eruptions recorded in the past week, said Armen Putra, an official at the Sinabung monitoring post. “The potential … Continue reading Developing Story: Indonesia’s mount Sinabung erupts

IBM creates the world’s smallest and most powerful microchip

The semi-conductor industry’s constant challenge is to make microchips that are smaller, faster, more powerful and more energy efficient, simultaneously.The new 2-nanometer chips developed by IBM. On Thursday, IBM announced it has created a 2-nanometer chip, the smallest, most powerful microchip yet developed. Most computer chips powering devices today use 10-nanometer or 7-nanometer process technology, with some manufacturers producing 5-nanometer chips. The lower numbers denote smaller, more advanced processors. IBM’s new chip uses 2-nanometer process technology, a huge leap forward for the components used to power everything from consumers’ smart phones and appliances to supercomputers and transportation equipment. “There are not many technologies or technological breakthroughs … Continue reading IBM creates the world’s smallest and most powerful microchip

China box office sets another record with $258M across May Day holiday

Chinese box office across the five-day May Day holiday which concluded Wednesday hit a record high of RMB 1.67B ($258M). This is up from the RMB 1.53B grossed during the similar 2019 frame which lasted four days. Contrary to previous years, the recent holiday did not see any significant Hollywood titles in the mix as Covid-19 has severely impacted release schedules. May Day is not typically a blackout period, rather, it would normally be a time that studio movies are in fresh holdover mode (think Avengers: Endgame in 2019, 2018’s Rampage and Ready Player One, or 2017’s The Fate Of The Furious). This year, … Continue reading China box office sets another record with $258M across May Day holiday

Biologists catch a 240-pound fish from the Detroit river that probably hatched a century ago

A member of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service survey crew lays beside a 240-pound lake sturgeon pulled from the Detroit River. Fischer, a biologist who works with a Michigan-based Fish and Wildlife Service office, was on the water late last month, putting out setlines with hooks to catch and survey the lake sturgeon population in the Detroit River. It was his first setline survey with this three-person crew, and until then his research had focused on egg and larval stages — “we’re talking about a fish less than an inch.” It was his teammates, fellow biologists Jenny Johnson and … Continue reading Biologists catch a 240-pound fish from the Detroit river that probably hatched a century ago