South Korean finance minister made homeless due to his own rules

South Korea’s Finance Minister, the architect of rules aimed at protecting tenants and slowing deposit increases, has himself been forced to look for a new home as landlords react to the rules by quickly replacing tenants so they can bump up deposits. Hong Nam-ki is also faced with broadening his search as the average deposit where he lives 20 minutes from parliament has soared by a third since his housing rules took effect in July, with the irony of his predicament setting the internet alight. “Worse comes to worst, he can camp by the Presidential Blue House”, right?, one netizen … Continue reading South Korean finance minister made homeless due to his own rules

BREAKING NEWS: Saad Hariri renamed Lebanon PM a year after stepping down

Lebanon’s leading politician Saad Hariri has secured enough support in parliamentary talks to be named prime minister and try to form a government to tackle the worst crisis since the country’s 1975-1990 civil war. A tally of nominations declared by politicians after consultations with President Michel Aoun showed Hariri had won the backing of 47 parliamentarians, more than the number of MPs yet to formally declare their stance, Reuters news agency reported on Thursday. Hariri would still face major challenges to navigate Lebanon’s power-sharing politics and agree a cabinet, which must then address a mounting list of woes, a banking … Continue reading BREAKING NEWS: Saad Hariri renamed Lebanon PM a year after stepping down

Afghanistan conflict: Children among dead in air strike on school

At least 12 civilians have been killed in an air strike on a religious school in the northern Afghan province of Takhar, local officials say, they said the strike on the madrassa in the village of Hazara Qurluq killed 11 children and their prayer leader, the Afghan government disputed the account, saying it had killed 12 Taliban fighters in the village. The strike came after more than 30 security force members were killed in a major Taliban ambush in the province. Local officials said 14 others were wounded in the strike. The imam of the mosque attached to the seminary, … Continue reading Afghanistan conflict: Children among dead in air strike on school

Poland’s top court to rule on almost total ban

Poland’s constitutional court is due to rule on plans to introduce an almost total ban on abortion. Poland’s laws are already among the strictest in Europe, with abortion only allowed in cases of rape or incest, if the mother’s life is at risk, or if the foetus is seriously compromised, but the new legislation would ban terminations in cases of foetal defects. Human rights groups have urged politicians to reject the plans, almost all abortions carried out in Poland are carried out in cases where the foetus has severe disabilities the exact circumstances the court is due to decide on, … Continue reading Poland’s top court to rule on almost total ban

Two women stabbed at Eiffel Tower in apparent racist attack

French police have launched an investigation after two women were stabbed near the Eiffel Tower in an apparent racist incident, the victims were injured with a knife near the famous Paris monument on Sunday, after an altercation involving “an unleashed dog”. Police confirmed in a statement that they had intervened “following a police call for help for two women with stab wounds at the Champ-de-Mars” at approximately 8pm (18:00 GMT), two other women were in police custody on Tuesday, according to the Paris public prosecutor’s office, and an investigation for attempted intentional homicide has been opened. Paris firefighters confirmed on … Continue reading Two women stabbed at Eiffel Tower in apparent racist attack

Public gathering ban lifted in Thailand after days of protests

Thailand has lifted a ban on public gatherings, after an emergency decree failed to end mass anti-government protests in Bangkok, a government statement said it was revoking the measures as the “serious situation” had eased. The move comes after protesters gave Prime Minister Chan-ocha three-days to step down or face more rallies, Thailand has now faced months of large democracy protests targeting the premier and the king. The student-led movement is demanding the resignation of Mr Prayuth, a former general who seized power in a 2014 coup and last year became prime minister after a controversial vote, they want a … Continue reading Public gathering ban lifted in Thailand after days of protests

Update: Brazil’s President slams vaccine his health ministry plans to buy

Brazil’s health minister Eduardo Pazuello, the third person to hold the job this year during the coronavirus pandemic is in hot water with President Jair Bolsonaro. Bolsonaro took to social media to disavow his minister on Wednesday after a flurry of negative comments from his supporters opposing the purchase of the Coronavac vaccine being developed by China’s Sinovac Biotech Ltd. The deal to purchase the vaccine to be distributed nationwide was announced the previous day by the Health Ministry in conjunction with the state of Sao Paulo whose Butantan Institute is working with Sinovac. The Brazilian people WON’T BE ANYONE’S … Continue reading Update: Brazil’s President slams vaccine his health ministry plans to buy

South Korea launch investigation into 13 deaths after vaccine

South Korean authorities have sought to reassure people as the number who have died after being vaccinated against seasonal influenza rose to 13, the doctor leading an inquiry into the deaths has said he does not believe the vaccine and fatalities are connected, but public trust in the vaccine programme has been dented as the government tries to avoid a mass flu outbreak while it tackles Covid-19. So far around 13 million people in South Korea have received the flu jab. The country launched a free flu vaccination programme for 19 million eligible people last month. A 17-year-old boy who … Continue reading South Korea launch investigation into 13 deaths after vaccine

Japanese man invents ‘edible’ plastic bag to save Nara’s sacred deer

 A local entrepreneur in the Japanese tourist destination of Nara has developed an alternative to plastic shopping bags, to protect the town’s sacred deer, Hidetoshi Matsukawa, who works for Nara-ism, a souvenir wholesale agent, told reporters, he heard last year that the deer, which roam the city’s park, were dying after ingesting plastic bags. I wanted to do something to protect the deer, which is the symbol of Nara,” he said. The bags are made from rice bran and milk cartons. The city is home to around 1,000 sacred deer, which are officially designated as a national natural treasure in Japan, and many tourists feed them … Continue reading Japanese man invents ‘edible’ plastic bag to save Nara’s sacred deer

Ten people killed in Guinea’s post-election violence

Eight civilians and two policemen were killed in Guinea’s capital Conakry in clashes between security forces and opposition supporters after a tense presidential election with results showing President Alpha Conde in the lead. Guinea’s security ministry announced the death toll on Wednesday following last weekend’s vote, this strategy of chaos was orchestrated to jeopardise the elections of October 18, the ministry said in a statement, adding numerous people were wounded in the unrest, without providing a specific figure. Opposition supporters burned barricades in the streets on Wednesday after initial results showed Conde ahead in vote-counting, at least three people died … Continue reading Ten people killed in Guinea’s post-election violence

Pope endorses same-sex civil unions in new documentary film

Pope Francis became the first pontiff to endorse same-sex civil unions, sparking cheers from gay Catholics and demands for clarification from conservatives given the Vatican’s official teaching on the issue. The remarks came in a documentary called Francesco that was released on Wednesday. Homosexual people have a right to be in a family. They are children of God and have a right to a family, nobody should be thrown out or be made miserable over it, the pontiff said, as he reflected on pastoral care for those who identify as LGBTQ. What we have to create is a civil union … Continue reading Pope endorses same-sex civil unions in new documentary film

US State Dept approves $1.8bn in potential arms sales to Taiwan

The US State Department has approved the potential sale of three weapons systems to Taiwan, including sensors, missiles and artillery that could have a total value of $1.8bn, the Pentagon said on Wednesday, amid rising tension over the self-ruled island that China claims as its own, among other weapons systems, Wednesday’s formal notifications to Congress by the State Department were for 11 truck-based rocket launchers made by Lockheed Martin Corp called a High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS), for an estimated cost of $436.1m. The notifications also covered 135 AGM-84H Standoff Land Attack Missile Expanded Response (SLAM-ER) Missiles and related … Continue reading US State Dept approves $1.8bn in potential arms sales to Taiwan