Toni Morrison

Nobel laureate Toni Morrison dead at 88

AFP Toni Morrison, the first African American woman to win the Nobel Prize for Literature, has died following a brief illness, her family said in a statement Tuesday. She was 88. “It is with profound sadness we share that, following a short illness, our adored mother and grandmother, Toni Morrison, passed away peacefully last night

Tensions high as Hong Kong pro-democracy protesters face court

AFP Dozens of Hong Kong pro-democracy protesters appeared in court Wednesday after being charged with rioting, setting the stage for further unrest in a weeks-long crisis that has rocked the global financial hub. The announcement on Tuesday night that 44 people had been charged with rioting  an offence that carries a jail term of up

At least 57 dead in Brazil prison riot

AFP At least 57 inmates were killed during a prison riot in northern Brazil on Monday as rival gang factions fought each other, an official said. Sixteen of the dead were decapitated in the second major eruption of violence to rock the country’s severely overpopulated and deadly prison system in as many months. Fighting broke

18 killed as Pakistan army plane crashes into residential area

AFP Eighteen people were killed when a small military plane crashed into a residential area in the Pakistani city of Rawalpindi early Tuesday, officials told AFP. The plane crashed into a poor village near an upscale neighborhood in the garrison city that is home to the army’s headquarters, creating a fireball that lit up the

Syria war: ‘World shrugs’ as 103 civilians killed in 10 days

BBC More than 100 people, including 26 children, have died in government attacks on hospitals, schools, markets and bakeries in the past 10 days, the UN’s human rights chief said. Michelle Bachelet said the deaths were part of a “relentless campaign of air strikes by the government and its allies”, including Russia. The civilian targets

Singapore makes its biggest ever illegal ivory seizure

AFP Singapore has made its largest ever seizure of smuggled ivory, impounding a haul of nearly nine tonnes of contraband tusks from an estimated 300 elephants, authorities said on Tuesday. The illegal cargo, discovered Sunday in a container from the Democratic Republic of the Congo being shipped to Vietnam via Singapore, also included a huge

Hong Kong protests: Police criticised over mob violence

BBC Hong Kong police are facing accusations of failing to protect pro-democracy activists who were attacked by unidentified assailants on Sunday. Opposition lawmakers say police inaction allowed criminals to beat up peaceful demonstrators after a rally. Dozens were injured when they were set upon by masked men wielding sticks. Police say their forces were stretched

Hong Kong police seize explosives on eve of protests

CNN Police in Hong Kong have seized what is thought to be the largest ever cache of high-powered explosives uncovered in the city, in a raid Friday night on a suspected bomb-making factory. The discovery comes on the eve of a series of high-profile protests planned over the weekend, amid high tensions in the semi-autonomous

33 dead in suspected arson attack on Japan animation studio

AFP A suspected arson attack at an animation production company in Japan killed 33 people and injured dozens more on Thursday, after a man reportedly doused the building with flammable liquid and shouted “drop dead.” A motive for the apparent attack remained unclear hours after the blaze. If arson is confirmed, the attack will be

Benjamin Netanyahu

Netanyahu makes history as Israel’s longest-serving leader

Associated Press Benjamin Netanyahu becomes Israel’s longest-serving prime minister, he is solidifying his place as the country’s greatest political survivor and the most dominant force in Israeli politics in his generation. He has persevered through scandals, crises and conflicts, winning election after election even as the country grows more bitterly polarized. His supporters credit him

Donald Trump

US House votes to condemn Trump’s ‘racist comments’

AFP The US House of Representatives formally condemned Donald Trump on Tuesday for xenophobic attacks on four minority Democratic lawmakers and hostile language targeting immigrants, as the president denied accusations of racism. Top Republican leaders rallied around Trump, but four members of the president’s party voted with the 235 Democrats to condemn him for “racist

Train collision in Pakistan kills 20

Associated Press A passenger train rammed into a freight train at a railway station in southern Pakistan on Thursday, killing at least 20 people and injuring 74 others, hospital officials said. The freight train was stationary when the speeding passenger train struck it at Walhar Railway Station in Rahim Yar Khan, in the eastern Punjab

British Ambassador Kim Darroch

Britain’s US ambassador resigns after Trump spat

AFP Britain’s ambassador to Washington resigned Wednesday after being targeted by US President Donald Trump following the leak of highly critical diplomatic cables. Outgoing Prime Minister Theresa May had offered her full support to Kim Darroch after he was revealed to have described the Trump administration as “inept”. But the man tipped to replace her

Hong Kong protesters to continue after bill declared ‘dead’

Associated Press Hong Kong protest leaders opposed to the administration of Chief Executive Carrie Lam said Tuesday that they will continue their demonstrations, even after Lam declared the effort to amend a highly contentious extradition bill “dead.” Protesters are persisting in their demands for the bill to be formally withdrawn and an investigation opened into

The finance hub has been rocked by huge protests over a proposed law that would allow extradition to mainland China

China and Britain wage war of words over Hong Kong

AFP London summoned Beijing’s ambassador for a dressing down Wednesday in a rapidly escalating diplomatic feud over protests in Hong Kong as China told Britain to keep its “hands off” the city and “show respect”. The demonstrations sweeping the former British colony have also revived tensions inherent in the two sides’ historic agreement on the

Wall collapse kills 18 as monsoon chaos hits Mumbai

AFP At least 18 people were killed in Mumbai on Tuesday when a wall collapsed as the heaviest monsoon rains in a decade brought chaos to India’s financial capital and surrounding areas. Scores more were injured when the structure came down around 02:00 (20:30 GMT Monday) in a slum, said Tanaji Kamble, a disaster management

European Parliament opens amid protest and discord

BBC The European Parliament has re-opened in Strasbourg with an anti-EU protest by the UK’s Brexit Party and a demonstration by Catalan nationalists whose MEPs are barred. The first session after Europe-wide elections in May began as EU leaders went into a third day of talks on who should fill the bloc’s top jobs. A