China stutters back to work as virus deaths rise

AFP Millions of people in China returned to work Monday after an extended holiday aimed at slowing the spread of a coronavirus, with the extra travel deepening contagion concerns as the death toll climbed above 900. At least 40,000 have been infected by a new pathogen believed to have emerged late last year at a

US President Donald Trump

Trump fires two impeachment witnesses

BBC US President Donald Trump has dismissed two senior officials who testified against him at his impeachment trial. The US envoy to the EU, Gordon Sondland, said he “was advised today that the president intends to recall me effective immediately”. Just hours earlier, Lt Col Alexander Vindman, a top expert on Ukraine, was escorted from

Experts scramble, but new virus vaccine may not come in time

AP The flu-like virus that exploded from China has researchers worldwide once again scrambling to find a vaccine against a surprise health threat, with no guarantee one will arrive in time. Just days after Chinese scientists shared the genetic map of the culprit coronavirus, researchers at the U.S. National Institutes of Health had engineered a

With unfenced parks and wide-open spaces, Botswana has Africa's largest elephant population with more than 135,000

Botswana to start auctions of elephant hunting licences

AFP Botswana on Friday will hold its first major auction for trophy elephant hunting quotas since controversially scrapping a hunting ban last year, a wildlife official said. President Mokgweetsi Masisi’s government in May revoked a moratorium, just a year after he succeeded Ian Khama, an avid environmentalist, who introduced a blanket ban in 2014 to

Donald Trump

Trump takes impeachment victory lap over ‘vicious’ Democrats

AFP President Donald Trump celebrated his impeachment acquittal Thursday in a rambling, emotional speech raging against the investigations that have overshadowed his entire administration. Trump gathered scores of loyal Republican legislators, his legal team, wife Melania and White House aides in the ceremonial East Room and brandished the front page of The Washington Post reading:

China virus crisis deepens as whistleblower doctor dies

AFP A Chinese doctor who was punished after raising the alarm about China’s new coronavirus died from the pathogen on Friday, sparking an outpouring of grief and anger over a worsening crisis that has now killed more than 630 people. At least 31,000 people have now been infected by a virus that ophthalmologist Li Wenliang

Off the hook...US President Donald Trump

Trump survives impeachment

BBC President Donald Trump has been cleared in his impeachment trial, ending a congressional bid to remove him from office that bitterly divided the US. The Senate, run by the president’s fellow Republicans, voted to acquit him 52-48 on charges of abuse of power and 53-47 on obstruction of Congress. Democrats charged Trump in December

A passenger on the World Dream cruise ship in Hong Kong as health officials conduct tests for the coronavirus

Thousands quarantined on Asian cruise ships in virus fight

AFP Thousands of people were stranded aboard two cruise ships in Asia on Thursday, quarantined by officials desperate to stem the spread of a deadly virus that has killed hundreds in China and spread panic worldwide. At least 20 people on board one ocean liner off the Japanese coast have tested positive for the new

Clock is ticking for companies that depend on China imports

AP For companies bracing for losses from China’s viral outbreak, the damage has so far been delayed, thanks to a stroke of timing: The outbreak hit just when Chinese factories and many businesses were closed anyway to let workers travel home for the week-long Lunar New Year holiday . But the respite won’t last. If

Hong Kong reports virus death as workers strike at hospitals

AP Hong Kong hospitals cut services as medical workers were striking for a second day Tuesday to demand the border with mainland China be shut completely to ward off a virus that caused its first death in the semi-autonomous territory. All but two of Hong Kong’s land and sea crossings with the mainland were closed

Coronavirus: China admits ‘shortcomings and deficiencies’

BBC China’s top leadership has admitted “shortcomings and deficiencies” in the country’s response to the deadly coronavirus outbreak. The rare admission came from the Politburo Standing Committee, which called for an improvement in China’s emergency management system. It also ordered a “severe” crackdown on illegal wildlife markets where the virus is thought to have emerged.

Police forensic officers work on Streatham High Road in south London after Sudesh Amman, 20, who was wearing a fake suicide vest, was shot on the busy road packed with shoppers

UK vows action after police kill ‘convicted extremist’ in terror stabbing

AFP The British government promised sweeping changes to the system for dealing with convicted terrorists released from prison, after police shot dead an Islamist extremist who stabbed two people in a busy south London street on Sunday. Police said Sudesh Amman, 20, who was wearing a fake suicide vest, was shot on the busy Streatham

The coronavirus has spread to more than 24 countries, despite many governments imposing unprecedented travel bans on people coming from China

China’s virus death toll spikes, more than SARS

AFP China’s death toll from a new coronavirus jumped above 360 on Monday to surpass the number of fatalities of its SARS crisis two decades ago, with dozens of people dying in the epicentre’s quarantined ground-zero. The 57 confirmed new deaths was the single-biggest increase since the virus was detected late last year in the

US warns against China travel, as virus death toll hits 213

AFP The United States told its citizens to avoid China after the World Health Organization declared a global coronavirus emergency, as the Chinese death toll rose Friday to 213 and total infections surpassed the SARS epidemic of two decades ago. The State Department raised it warning alert to the highest level, telling Americans “do not

United Nations

Europe Leaked report shows United Nations suffered hack

AP Sophisticated hackers infiltrated U.N. networks in Geneva and Vienna last year in an apparent espionage operation that top officials at the world body kept largely quiet. The hackers’ identity and the extent of the data they obtained are not known. An internal confidential document from the United Nations, leaked to The New Humanitarian and