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Found 25 results

  1. LIMA: A strong earthquake struck the coast of southern Peru on Sunday morning, the US Geological Survey (USGS) said, leaving one dead and around 20 injured and causing homes and roads to collapse. The 7.1 magnitude quake hit at 4:18 a.m. local time (0918 GMT) at a depth of around 10 km (6 miles), the USGS said. Peru?s government Geophysical Institute said the earthquake was of magnitude 6.7 with its epicenter in Lomas, in the southern region of Arequipa. Arequipa Governor Yamila Osorio said on Twitter that one 55-year old man died in the town of Yauca after being crushed by rock, while 20 people were injured in the town of Chala. Several municipalities were without electricity, and many roads and adobe houses had collapsed, Osorio said. Many residents of Lomas were evacuated after feeling an aftershock, she said. Earthquakes are common in Peru, but many homes are built with precarious materials that cannot withstand them. In 2007 an earthquake killed hundreds in the region of Ica. Peruvian maritime authorities said the quake did not produce a tsunami on the Peruvian coast. Peru is the world?s No. 2 copper producer, although many of the mines in the south are located far inland from the coastal region where the quake struck. A representative of Southern Copper Corp said there were no reports of damage at its Cuajone and Toquepala mines in the regions of Moguegua and Tacna. Jesus Revilla, a union leader at the Cerro Verde copper mine in Arequipa, said there were no reports that operations had been affected. The quake was also felt in northern Chile, Peru?s southern neighbor. Chile?s National Emergency offices said there were no reports of injuries, damage to infrastructure, or interruption of basic services. Chile?s navy said the quake did not meet the conditions that would produce a tsunami off its coast.
  2. Thai police personnel inpects a torched bus in the southern province of Yala, Thailand December 17, 2017. REUTERS BANGKOK: Armed insurgents stopped and torched a Bangkok-bound passenger bus on a highway in southern Thailand on Sunday, police said. All 14 passengers, as well as the bus driver and his assistance, survived the attack, although their luggage were burned with the bus. The attack occurred in Yala, one of the predominantly ethnic Malay provinces in the south where a separatist insurgency has dragged on for more than a decade. More than 6,500 people have been killed since 2004. Police said at least 10 gunmen were involved in the latest attack. They all escaped, blocking the road with tree trunks and nails to thwart any pursuers. An army spokesman was not available for comment. As with most violence in Thailand?s deep south, there was no claim of responsibility. The insurgents are fighting for secession from predominantly Buddhist Thailand. Thailand?s military government has, since 2015, held talks brokered by Malaysia, aim at ending the violence. The process, which aim to established a ?safety-zone? as a confidence-building measure by early next year, has been stalled.
  3. A mudslide on Saturday tore through a small village in southern Chile near a popular national park, leaving five people dead and at least 15 missing after a night of torrential downpours, authorities said. A video taken from a helicopter by Chilean police showed a vast swath of the remote town of Villa Santa Lucia, near Chaiten in coastal Patagonia, buried beneath the mud as the landslide ploughed its way down a flooded river valley. Four Chileans and a male tourist whose name and nationality have not been disclosed have died in the mudslide, authorities said. Rescue workers were continuing to search through the debris for at least 15 people. The mudslide also destroyed a school and several homes and roadways as well as a voting centre ahead of Chile´s presidential election on Sunday. President Michelle Bachelet declared the area a disaster zone. ?I have ordered rescue workers to put all the necessary resources toward protecting the people of Villa Santa Lucia,? she said on social media. More than 4.5 inches (11.4 cm) of rain fell in 24 hours, the country?s Interior Ministry said, but weather conditions were expected to improve later in the day. Villa Santa Lucia borders Chile?s Corcovado National Park, a popular tourist region of volcanoes, fjords and vast forests. The nearby Chaiten volcano erupted in 2008, forcing the evacuation of thousands of residents.
  4. Indonesia experiences frequent seismic and volcanic activity due to its position on the Pacific "Ring of Fire", where tectonic plates collide. ? AFP FILE JAKARTA: A strong 6.5 earthquake rocked Indonesia?s main island of Java late Friday evening, the US Geological Survey said, shaking buildings in the capital Jakarta. The tremor was measured at a depth of 91 kilometres (56 miles) and struck less than a kilometre (mile) east-southeast of the coastal town of Cipatujah, USGS said. The earthquake was felt in the capital Jakarta, about 300 kilometres (190 miles) from the epicentre, as well as several other towns on Java. There was no immediate indication of a tsunami and authorities said there had been no casualties reported so far. National disaster mitigation agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said there were reports of homes damaged in the city of Tasikmalaya, some 50 kilometres (30 miles) from the epicentre. "We are still evaluating the impact of the quake and will give an update later," Nugroho said in a statement. Jakarta resident Web Warouw was on the 18th floor of a building in the capital when the quake struck. "Suddenly, we felt dizzy, but constantly... We then realized it was a quake and immediately ran downstairs," the 50-year-old told AFP. People in the coastal city of Cilacap evacuated as a precaution fearing a tsunami, although no alert had been issued for the area. Indonesia experiences frequent seismic and volcanic activity due to its position on the Pacific "Ring of Fire", where tectonic plates collide. An earthquake struck the country?s western Aceh province in December 2016, killing more than 100 people, injuring many more and leaving tens of thousands homeless.
  5. File photo/Reuters PARIS: A train collided with a school bus outside the town of Perpignan in southern France on Thursday and emergency services were at the scene, a local official said. ?All emergency services have been mobilized and a crisis coordination unit set up,? an official at the local Millas townhall told Reuters. There was no immediate word on casualties. The Pyrenees-Orientales prefect confirmed the accident in a statement on Twitter.
  6. File CAIRO: An Egyptian-European mission has discovered 27 fragmented statues of the lion-headed goddess Sekhmet across the Nile from Egypt?s southern city of Luxor, the antiquities ministry said on Sunday. The statues of the goddess, known as The Lady of War, were found in the ground at the Colossi of Memnon area on the city?s west bank, which used to be a capital for ancient Egypt, the ministry said in a statement. Sekhmet had the body of a woman and the head of a fierce lioness, with a headpiece featuring the sun disk and was one of the goddesses known as Eyes of Ra, the sun god. The newly found statues were about two meters (six and a half feet) high and carved in black granite, the ministry said citing Mostafa Waziri, secretary-general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities. The statues had the goddess?s head ?crowned by a sundisk? while a cobra ?adorns her forehead,? Waziri was cited as saying. Some were of Sekhmet ?sitting on the throne, holding the symbol of life in her left hand? while others were of her ?standing and holding the papyrus scepter,? he added. The excavation began on November 7 and lasted till the end of the month, said Hourig Sourouzian, who led the mission. The mission found additional statues at the end of November, bringing the total number to 39, Sourouzian told AFP. The statues that were found closer to the earth?s surface were in good condition, unlike the others found deeper in the ground, Sourouzian was cited as saying. The mission was preparing the discovered statues for display, she said. The mission has discovered 287 statues of Sekhmet since it began its excavation work in 1998, the ministry said, citing Fathi Yassin, director-general of the West Bank Antiquities in Luxor. Luxor, a city of half a million people on the banks of the Nile, a former Egyptian capital known as Thebes during ancient times, abounds with temples and tombs built by Egypt?s pharaohs.
  7. File SANTIAGO: A large iceberg broke off the Grey glacier in southern Chile, authorities said on Tuesday, adding that the cause of the rupture was unclear. Chile?s CONAF forestry service shared photos on social media of the enormous block of blue-white ice, which measured 350 meters (1,148 feet) long by 380 meters (1,247 feet) wide, as it floated free in waters of a glacial lagoon near the southern tip of the South American continent. Park officials at Chile?s Torres del Paine National Park, home to the glacier, said such ruptures were rare and had not occurred since the early 1990s. Torres del Paine is one of Chile?s most popular tourist attractions, famous for its mountain views and visited by more than 115,000 tourists annually, according to CONAF.
  8. MEXICO CITY: A 5.4 magnitude quake struck southern Mexico on Friday, according to the US Geological Survey, but there were no immediate reports of damage. It was not immediately clear if the tremor was an aftershock from a powerful series of quakes last month that destroyed buildings in Mexico City and killed nearly 500 people. The epicentre of Friday?s tremor was just off the coast of Oaxaca state, in Mexico?s southwest, and it struck at a depth of 59.5 kilometres (37 miles), according to the USGS. An 8.1 magnitude earthquake struck Oaxaca on Sept. 7 near the town of Juchitan, flattening thousands of buildings in the humid market town. Fausto Lugo, Mexico City?s emergency services chief, said on local television that Friday?s earthquake was felt lightly in the capital, but there were no reports of damages.
  9. RAWALPINDI: Army command on Thursday appointed Lieutenant General Asim Saleem Bajwa as the new commander of Southern Command, said a statement by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR). The current commander of Southern Command, Lieutenant General Aamer Riaz, was appointed Commander Lahore Corps. Lieutenant General Sadiq Ali was appointed Inspector General Arms at the General Head Quarters.
  10. source: Discovery KABUL: Work for building a 10-megawatt solar power plant has started in Afghanistan's southern province of Kandahar, Afghan power supply company the Afghanistan Breshna Sherkat said in a statement released on Monday. The project costs about 20 million US dollars, with 10 million dollars provided by United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the remaining by an Indian firm. The construction will take 12 months, the statement added. Afghanistan Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, during his one-day visit to Kandahar province inaugurating the project. According to the statement, the Indian firm, under the agreement, is committed to selling 1 Kilowatt for 3.7 US cents to the Breshna Sherkat, and after 15 years would hand over the solar power plant to Afghan government.
  11. A group of Taliban fighters are seen in Ghazni province, Afghanistan, April 2015. Photo: Reuters KANDAHAR: The Taliban has shut down dozens of clinics in the southern Afghan province of Uruzgan in the past few days, officials said, amid demands for special treatment for its fighters who control most of the embattled region. Dost Mohammad Nayab, a spokesman for the provincial governor, said authorities were talking to elders, asking them to intercede with the Taliban to allow the clinics to reopen. ?Hospitals are not places for politics and we are asking the Taliban to let our doctors and healthcare workers return,? Nayab said. Only three clinics, including the provincial hospital, were operating after the Taliban shut down 46 of the 49 treatment centres in Uruzgan since Friday, Nayab said. The Taliban were asking for special treatment for their fighters, he said. ?We have asked elders in the areas to talk to the Taliban to fix this problem,? he said. Uruzgan, which abuts the Taliban heartlands of Kandahar and Helmand, has been under intense pressure from the insurgents for years and the defences of the provincial capital Tarin Kot were briefly overrun last year. A Taliban spokesman confirmed that its fighters had closed down dozens of treatment centres but said it was done because of poor services, underlining its push to replace basic government services in many areas under its control. ?In most of these centres, there was no proper medication. There were no doctors or healthcare personnel,? the spokesman said. ?We asked repeatedly for better services but no one cared. Now if the local administration does not provide basics, we will.? The incident underlines the difficulty the Western-backed government in Kabul has in exerting control in provincial regions where the insurgency is strongest. US officials estimate that the Taliban, fighting to drive out foreign forces and impose strict Islamic law on Afghanistan, control or contest around 40 per cent of the country, although they have not taken any major provincial city. Uruzgan province was identified by US commanders as a major priority for 2017 and there has been a big focus on bolstering Afghan forces with on-the-ground US training teams.
  12. Mexican soldiers stand guard during a clash between members of drug gangs and the military in Acapulco, Mexico, June 6, 2009. AFP/Claudio Vargas/Files MEXICO CITY: The Mexican military fought back against an armed attack in the violent southwestern state of Guerrero on Saturday night, leaving eight suspected gang members and one soldier dead, authorities said on Sunday. At around 11 PM, troops were making their rounds in the city of Teloloapan, about 250 kilometres (155 miles) from Mexico City when they came under gunfire from suspected gang members dressed in fake military uniforms, Roberto Álvarez Heredia ? a spokesman for the Guerrero Coordinating Group ? said in a statement. The military secured two vans painted in camouflage, weapons, and uniforms, authorities said. A soldier was wounded in the confrontation and died afterwards from his injuries. The public prosecutor?s office in Guerrero ? home to the resort city of Acapulco on Mexico?s Pacific coast ? has begun an investigation into the attack, authorities said. Violence has spiked in Guerrero over the past decade as a growing number of criminal gangs vie for control of crops of opium poppies and for drug-trafficking routes.
  13. Damaged trees are seen in front of the Wynn Macau resort in Macau on August 24, 2017, after Typhoon Hato hit the territory the day before. Photo: AFP MACAU: The death toll from Severe Typhoon Hato rose to at least 16 Thursday after the storm left a trail of destruction across southern China, blacking out Macau´s mega-casinos and battering Hong Kong´s skyscrapers. Eight died in the gambling hub of Macau, where images showed cars underwater and people swimming along streets. The enclave´s famed mega-casinos were running on backup generators. Macau´s leader made a public apology after his government came under fire for its delayed storm warning, while the head of the weather bureau resigned. A man was killed by a wall that was blown down, another fell from a fourth-floor terrace and one was hit by a truck. The Macau government said two bodies were found in a flooded car park early Thursday, and that two more died when they were trapped in the basement of their shop. Details of the remaining death were not immediately available. People walk by piles of debris and trash along a street in Macau on August 24, 2017, after Typhoon Hato hit the territory the day before. Photo: file Footage published Thursday on the website of Apple Daily showed water gushing into an underground car park, with people wading through neck-deep water littered with debris as one man shouted in panic. It was not clear if it was the same car park where the bodies had been found. "I have never seen Macau like this since I came here in the 70s," a taxi driver aged in his 50s who gave his name as Lao told AFP. "It´s like they were trying to gamble with their luck," Lao said adding that authorities had reacted too slowly and did too little to alert residents of the coming storm. Blacked-out slot machines were seen at the largely empty Wynn Macau casino where there was no air conditioning and a musty atmosphere. However, a few dozen gamblers ignored the heat and tried their luck at four baccarat tables. A staff member at the enclave´s sprawling Venetian resort said its casino and shops were open, but there was no air conditioning. A source had said on Wednesday that the complex was running on back-up power. But at the Grand Lisboa Hotel in central Macau, an employee told AFP it was still without electricity and water and that its casino and restaurants were closed. The city´s gambling industry generated over 220 billion patacas ($27.29 billion) in revenue in 2016, over half of its annual GDP, as it hosted more than 30 million visitors. ´Tremendous damage´ Macau´s leader Fernando Chui and other government ministers bowed their heads during a minute´s silence at an evening press conference. "These two days, we have faced an extremely difficult test together. Hato is the strongest typhoon in 53 years and has brought tremendous damage to Macau," Chui told reporters. A fireman (C) is seen next to a fire truck in a cordoned off residential area in Macau on August 24, 2017, a day after Typhoon Hato hit the city. "In facing this disaster, we admit we have not done enough, there is space for improvement. Here I represent the Macau government in expressing our apologies to the residents," he said, adding that the city´s meteorological bureau chief had resigned. Debris was scattered on roads and a shipping container was washed up on its side in front of a temple after Wednesday´s storm. Streets were lined with trash and shattered glass and residents holding plastic buckets queued for water from fire hydrants. "We´ve been going without water and electricity for more than 24 hours. It´s so hot," May Lee, in her 40s, who was in line for water, told AFP, adding that there was not even water for flushing the toilet. Chunks of concrete from a damaged road are seen after they were washed away during a surge in the tide and heavy winds in Macau on August 24, 2017, after Typhoon Hato hit the territory the day before. Photo: file In Hong Kong, Hato -- whose name is Japanese for "pigeon" -- sparked the most severe Typhoon 10 warning, only the third time a storm of this power has pounded the financial hub in the past 20 years. The city could have suffered losses of HK$8 billion ($1.02 billion), Chinese University of Hong Kong economics professor Terence Chong told AFP, referring to the value of its daily GDP. More than 120 were injured as the city was lashed with hurricane winds and pounding rain. A sea of polystyrene is pictured in Heng Fa Chuen in Hong Kong on August 24, 2017, a day after Typhoon Hato created a sea surge which flooded the area leaving debris across the area. Photo: file In the neighbouring southern Chinese province of Guangdong, at least eight people have died, state broadcaster CCTV reported, while around 27,000 were evacuated to temporary shelters, the official Xinhua news agency said. Nearly two million households were briefly without power. CCTV said four of the mainland deaths had occurred in Zhuhai, three in Zhongshan and one in Jiangmen. Hato was downgraded to a tropical depression Thursday afternoon as it travelled further into China Hong Kong and the surrounding region is regularly battered by typhoons between July and October.
  14. About 60 forest fires broke out in central Portugal, killing at least 62 people. PHOTO: AFP File At least 10,000 people were evacuated overnight after a new wildfire was sparked in southern France, which is already battling massive forest fires, authorities said Wednesday. "The evacuations, at least 10,000, followed the progression of the fire. It's an area that doubles or triples its population in summer," said a fire service official of the blaze near Bormes-les-Mimosas. Earlier, France asked for Europe's help Tuesday in fighting wild fires that have consumed swathes of forest in the southeast, one of which is raging near the popular resort of Saint-Tropez. Over 4,000 firefighters and troops backed by 19 water bombers have been mobilised to extinguish the flames. At least 12 firefighters have been injured and 15 police officers affected by smoke inhalation since the fires broke out on Monday, according to the authorities. The blazes have devoured around 4,000 hectares (15 square miles) of land along the Mediterranean coast, in the mountainous interior and on the island of Corsica -- in the middle of the holiday season. With strong winds and tinder dry conditions creating a dangerous mix, the government asked its European Union partners to send two extra fire-fighting planes -- a request immediately fulfilled by Italy, according to the EU. But one union official denounced what he said was a lack of spare parts preventing all the aircraft required from being put into action. Interior Minister Gerard Collomb announced that France would be adding six more firefighting planes to its fleet during a visit to Corsica Tuesday. A fire in La Croix-Valmer near Saint-Tropez, a resort frequented by the rich and famous, had been contained, local fire chief Philippe Gambe de Vergnes said Tuesday. But the blaze had already gutted 400 hectares of coastal forest in an area dotted with homes, he said. More than 200 people had to be moved from the area. La Croix-Valmer's deputy mayor Rene Carandante described a desolate landscape of blackened headlands fringed by charred umbrella pines, where green forest had once framed the azure waters of the Mediterranean.
  15. Pakistani commuters travel on a street during a heavy rain shower in Karachi on June 28, 2017. Photo: AFP Monsoon currents are penetrating into southern and north eastern parts of the country on Tuesday. A westerly wave is affecting upper and central parts of the country and likely to persist during the next few days the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) said. Rain and thunderstorm are expected at scattered places in Mirpurkhas, Sukkur, and Bahawalpur divisions. Downpour is expected at isolated places in Hyderabad, Rawalpindi, Gujranwala, Lahore, Sargodha, D.G. Khan, Hazara, Kohat, Zhob divisions, Islamabad, and Kashmir in the next 24 hours. Hot and humid weather is likely in other parts of the country, the PMD said. Weather in the past 24 hours Rain and thunderstorm occurred at scattered places in Mirpurkhas, Hyderabad, Rawalpindi, Gujranwala, Sargodha, Sibbi, Quetta, Hazara divisions, Gilgit-Baltistan, and Kashmir on Monday. The weather remained hot and humid in other parts of the country. Total rainfall (mm) during last 24 hours Sindh: Diplo 40, Islamkot 15, Nagarparker 13, Chachro 10, Mithi, MirpurKhas, Chhor 04, Daheli 03, Kaloi 02, Punjab: Mangla 36, Gujrat 21, Sialkot (City 08, AP 01), Chakwal 02, Jhelum, Gujranwala 01, Balochistan: Sibbi 16, Barkhan 08, KP: Kakul 20, GB: Gupis 02, Kashmir: Kotli 01. Yesterday's highest maximum temperatures Nokkundi 44°C, Dalbandin 43°C, Padidan, Larkana, Chillas, Moenjodaro, Rohri 42°C. Date courtesy: Pakistan Meteorological Department
  16. Brown bear. AFP/Alexander Nemenov FOIX: More than 200 sheep have fallen to their deaths after apparently being chased down a gorge in the Pyrenees by a brown bear, officials said Monday. Bears were reintroduced along the Franco-Spanish border 20 years ago, and the latest incident in the French region of Couflens follows a spate of bear attacks last year. "The tragic deaths of 209 sheep following a bear attack? reminds us, even at the height of summer, that the presence of bears can cause significant damage to herds of sheep, cows and horses," said a statement from the prefecture. It added that an investigation into the attack was ongoing and that the owner of the sheep would be compensated. Across the border in Spain, the Catalan regional authorities told AFP that the bear in question originated in France, as all bears in northern Spain have been fitted with GPS tracking devices. Many of the sheep's bodies ended up at the bottom of the ravine on the Spanish side of the border. Last October, around 70 sheep farmers in the Pyrenees region held a protest after some flocks were attacked by bears. Brown bears can weigh up to 250 kilogrammes and reach two metres (6' 6") in height, but officials say there has been no significant rise in attacks in the region despite an increase in population.
  17. Monsoon clouds hovering over Islamabad. Photo: File The Pakistan Meteorological Department on Monday said strong monsoon currents are penetrating into southern and north eastern parts of the country. A westerly wave is affecting upper and central parts of the country and likely to persist during the next few days. Rain and thunderstorm (with isolated heavy falls) are expected at a number of places in Kashmir, Islamabad, upper Punjab (Rawalpindi, Gujranwala, Lahore, Sargodha, Faisalabad divisions), Hazara, Mirpurkhas, Hyderabad divisions, while at scattered places in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, FATA, D.G Khan, Multan, Sahiwal, Bahawalpur, Sukkur, Larkana, Shaheed Benazirabad, Karachi, Sibbi, Zhob, Naseerabad divisions and Gilgit Baltistan in the next 24 hours. Weather in the past 24 hours Rain and thunderstorm occurred at scattered places in Rawalpindi, Faisalabad, Malakand, Hazara, Quetta, Kalat, Mirpurkhas divisions, Mithi, Islamabad, Gilgit-Baltistan, and Kashmir on Sunday. The weather remained hot and humid in other parts of the country. Total rainfall (mm) during the last 24 hours Punjab: Kamra 79, Murree 19, Faisalabad 11, Islamabad (Z.P 06, Saidpur 06, Golra 03),Rawpndi (Shamsabad 03,Bokra 01),Kot Addu 01, Sindh: Islamkot 40, Diplo 39, Mithi 35, Nagarparker 33 , Chachoro 32, MirpurKhas 25, Dali 05, Balochistan: Khuzdar 30, Barkhan 08,KP: Dir 06, Kakul, Balakot 04,Kashmir: Rawalakot , Muzaffarabad, Kotli 01, G.B: Astore 02. Yesterday's highest maximum temperatures Sibbi 45°C, Dadu 44°C, Nokkundi 43°C. Data courtesy: Pakistan Meteorological Department
  18. File photo. Moderate monsoon currents are penetrating southern parts of the country, the Pakistan Meteorological Department said on Friday. Weak monsoon currents are penetrating upper parts of the country and likely to strengthen in the next 24 hours. A shallow westerly wave is still persisting over upper and central parts of the country and likely to persist during next few days, the PMD said. Rain and thunderstorm (with isolated heavy falls) are expected at scattered places in Kashmir, Punjab (Rawalpindi, Lahore, Gujranwala, Sargodha, Faisalabad, D.G. Khan), Islamabad, FATA, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Mirpurkhas, and Hyderabad divisions in the next 24 hours. Rain and thunderstorm are expected at isolated places in Gilgit-Baltistan. Weather in the past 24 hours Rain and thunderstorm occurred at scattered places in Sindh and isolated places in Malakand, Hazara, Lahore, Faisalabad, Sahiwal divisions, FATA, and Kashmir. The weather remained hot and humid in other parts of the country. Total Rainfall (mm) during Last 24 hrs: Sindh: Karachi (Landhi 56, Gulshan-e-Hadeed 52, PAF Faisal 22, Model Observatory 20, North Karachi 16, Nazimabad 10, Masroor 08, Saddar Saddar 07), Karachi A/P (New Observatory 28, Old Observatory 16), Thatta 23, Moenjodaro 09, Shaheed Benazirabad, Islamkot 07, Padidan 05, Nagarparkar, Sukrand 04, Rohri, Kaloi 01, KP: Parachinar 25, Kakul, Malamjabba 06, Saidu Sharif 03, Balakot, Pattan 01, Punjab: Shorkot 15, Jhang 14, Sahiwal 09, Okara, Murree 01, Kashmir: Kotli 08, Muzaffarabad, Garhi Dupatta 05, Rawalakot 01. Today's highest maximum temperatures Dalbandin 43°C, Chillas 42°C. Data Courtesy: Pakistan Meteorological Department
  19. Photo: File The Pakistan Meteorological Department on Thursday said monsoon currents are penetrating southern parts of the country. A shallow westerly wave is affecting central and upper parts of the country and likely to persist during the next few days. Seasonal low lies over north Balochistan and strong monsoon currents are likely to penetrate upper parts of the country on Friday, the PMD said. Rain-thunderstorm (with isolated heavy falls) is expected at scattered places in Sindh, eastern Balochistan (Zhob, Kalat, Sibbi, Naseerabad divisions) and south Punjab (Bahawalpur, Multan, Sahiwal, D.G.Khan divisions). Rain-thunderstorm is expected at isolated places in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, FATA, upper Punjab (Rawalpindi, Lahore, Gujranwala, Sargodha, Faisalabad divisions), Islamabad, Kashmir, and Gilgit-Baltistan in the next 24 hours. Past weather Rain-thunderstorm occurred at scattered places in Sindh and south Punjab and at isolated places in Faisalabad, Sargodha, Malakand, Hazara, Sibbi divisions and Gilgit-Baltistan on Wednesday. The weather remained hot and humid in other parts of the country. Total rainfall (mm) in the last 24 hours : Punjab: Khanpur 46, Bahawalpur (A/P 16, City 14), R.Y.Khan 08, Multan, Mianwali 05, T.T.Singh 03, Jhang 02, KP: Balakot 35, Kakul, Dir 01, Sindh: Larkana 17, Thatta 16, Mithi 14, Badin 12, Sukkur 10, Karachi (Gulshan-e-Hadeed 09, Landhi 05, PAF Faisal, A/P 02, Saddar 01), Shaheed Benazirabad, Moenjodaro 07, Chhor 05, Sakrund 04, Padidan 03, Jacobabad, Rohri 02, Dadu, Mirpurkhas, Tandojam 01, Balochistan: Sibbi 05, GB: Astore 03, Bagrote, 01. Today's highest maximum temperatures Dalbandin 43°C, Turbat 42°C, Nokkundi 41°C. Data Courtesy: Pakistan Meteorological Department
  20. Image courtesy: Voice of Europe Twitter account (@V_of_Europe) TOULOUSE: One person was shot dead and six others injured ? two seriously ? when a gunman opened fire in the southern French city of Toulouse late Monday, a local source said. Local press reported that a gunman on a scooter opened fire at around 9:00 PM (12:00 AM PST, Tuesday) in the La Reynerie district of Toulouse. "No possibilities are ruled out, but there is at this stage no indication of any terrorist element" connected to the incident, the official added. The favoured theory is that the shooting was some revenge killing, a source close to the enquiry said. Local officials, meanwhile, said extra security had been deployed to the area.
  21. Gregg Allman, whose soulful vocals made the Allman Brothers Band one of rock's top acts in the 1970s with songs such as Ramblin' Man in a career also marred by tragedy and drug abuse, died on Saturday at the age of 69, his official website said. "It is with deep sadness that we announce that Gregg Allman, a founding member of The Allman Brothers Band, passed away peacefully at his home in Savannah, Georgia," it said. Drummer Butch Trucks, another founding member of the band, died aged 60 on January 24. The Allman Brothers Band was started in Macon, Georgia, in the late 1960s by Gregg and older brother Duane, who became the band's guiding force and one of rock's most revered guitarists before he was killed in a motorcycle accident at age 24. In its heyday, the band was a staple on radio stations and released albums ranked among the best in rock history. Gregg was the band's lead singer, keyboardist and a key songwriter as it put out a string of hits. He wrote several of them ? Whipping Post, It's Not My Cross to Bear, Midnight Rider, Ain't Wastin' Time No More, and Melissa ? while others were renditions of old blues songs, including One Way Out and Statesboro Blues. The band was an early progenitor of what became known as Southern rock. In addition to blues, the band also was known for its crystal guitar harmonies between Duane and Dickey Betts, jazz influences and a free-wheeling approach that sometimes led to 20-minute songs. Rising above it all was Gregg's voice. "He sounded like he'd already lived a thousand lifetimes," singer Sheryl Crow told Rolling Stone magazine. $20 guitar Gregg and Duane spent their early childhood in their birthplace, Nashville, Tennessee, listening to a blues radio station. After their father was killed by a hitchhiker, their mother moved them to Daytona Beach, Florida. The brothers showed little interest in school but were passionate about music and often fought over the $20 guitar that Gregg had bought at Sears. "Duane and I caught it like an illness," Gregg told Southern Living magazine. "We didn't eat, we didn't sleep, we didn't think about anything except music." As teenagers, they began playing a series of bands, including racially integrated ones, a rarity at the time in the South. When they first went on the road in 1965 with a band named the Allman Joys, the name was borrowed from a popular candy bar called Almond Joy. After unfulfilling experiences with the music industry in Los Angeles, Gregg and Duane ended up in Macon, Georgia ? hometown of Little Richard and Otis Redding ? in 1969 and brought together the Allman Brothers Band. They were a scruffy-looking, denim-clad assemblage, and Gregg stood out with his long golden-blond hair. The band members developed a family-style relationship, bonding while hanging out at Macon's Rose Hill cemetery, with Duane in what Gregg said was the father role. The band's first three albums ? including At Fillmore East, considered a ground-breaking live recording at the time ? made them stars, but shortly after that, Duane had his fatal motorcycle crash in Macon in 1971. The rest of the band was stricken but carried on and put out another well-regarded album, Eat a Peach. Then 13 months after Duane's death, bassist Berry Oakley was killed in a similar motorcycle accident only a few blocks from where Duane had been killed. They were buried next to each other in Rose Hill. Cocaine on a bar The band carried on but fell into the trap of rock star excess. Drugs became so prevalent that the first time they entered their new private plane, they were greeted by the words "Welcome Allman Brothers" spelled out in cocaine on the bar, Gregg wrote in his memoir, "My Cross to Bear." By the mid-'70s, the cloud over the band grew darker as Gregg became a heroin addict and Betts assumed leadership. When Allman's valet, Scooter Herring, was arrested for drug dealing in 1976, Allman, then married to singer-actress Cher, accepted immunity and testified to a grand jury against the man who acquired drugs for him. What had once been a familial group split up over what was seen as Allman's betrayal. He would go on to a solo career, as well as taking part in reformations of the Allman Brothers before bringing down the curtain on the group in 2014 with a four-hour show in New York that included original members Butch Trucks and Jai Johanny Johanson. The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995 but Allman said in his book that he was too drunk to enjoy it.
  22. File photo: AFP KANDAHAR: At least 20 Afghan policemen were killed early Sunday when Taliban fighters stormed multiple security outposts in the volatile southern province of Zabul, officials said, as the insurgents escalate their annual spring offensive. Local officials made desperate calls to Afghan television stations to seek attention as they were unable to get hold of senior authorities for help, highlighting the disarray in security ranks. The coordinated attack is another stinging blow to NATO-backed Afghan forces. It comes just a month after the Taliban killed at least 135 security forces in northern Balkh province, in the deadliest insurgent attack on an Afghan military base. "This morning, a group of Taliban fighters armed with heavy and light weapons launched coordinated attacks on several police checkpoints in Shah Joy district of Zabul province, killing 20 policemen," provincial governor Bismillah Afghanmal told AFP. A district official told AFP that at least 15 others were wounded in the fighting. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack on their website. The raid, the latest in a series of brazen Taliban assaults, underscores the insurgents´ growing strength more than 15 years since they were ousted from power by the US invasion of 2001. Taliban militants launched their annual "spring offensive" in late April, heralding a surge in fighting as the US tries to craft a new Afghan strategy and NATO considers sending more troops to break the stalemate against the resurgent militants. The offensive normally marks the start of the fighting season, though this winter the Taliban continued to battle government forces. US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis last month warned of "another tough year" for security forces in Afghanistan. His comments came after Taliban fighters dressed in army uniforms and armed with suicide vests attacked a military base outside the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif last month, killing at least 135 policemen and soldiers. The brazen attack prompted fury in Afghanistan, leading to the resignations of defence minister Abdullah Habibi and army chief Qadam Shah Shaheem. The US State Department denounced the "barbaric, unconscionable" attack, but stressed that America has no intention of giving up on the country despite more than 15 years of brutal war. The Pentagon has asked the White House to send thousands more troops to Afghanistan to break the deadlocked fight against the Taliban. US troops in Afghanistan number about 8,400 today, and there are another 5,000 from NATO allies, who also mainly serve in an advisory capacity -- a far cry from the US presence of more than 100,000 six years ago. German and Afghan guard killed in Kabul guest house attack Gunmen attacked an international guest house in Kabul, killing a German woman and an Afghan guard, the interior ministry said on Sunday. A Finnish woman is missing and presumed to have been kidnapped in the raid late Saturday, officials added. The guest house was run by a Swedish NGO Operation Mercy, whose director Scott Breslin told local news agency TT that the organisation is holding a crisis meeting. "A Finnish lady was kidnapped from police district (three) last night at 11.30. A German lady and an Afghan guard were killed," interior ministry spokesman Najib Danish said on Twitter. A Finnish foreign ministry spokeswoman confirmed to AFP that a Finnish citizen has been kidnapped in Kabul. "We can confirm that we know about this but we are not giving details at the moment. The only thing we can say is it is not known who the kidnappers are," said spokeswoman Karoliina Romanoff. Operation Mercy´s Breslin told TT in a brief statement: "We know that she´s missing, we will send out a press release later." The kidnapping of foreigners has been on the rise in Afghanistan, with criminal gangs staging abductions for ransom or handing the victims over to militant groups. In August last year gunmen wearing military uniforms kidnapped two professors of the American University of Afghanistan in the heart of Kabul. The two, American Kevin King and Australian Timothy Weekes, appeared in a Taliban hostage video that surfaced in January, the first apparent proof that they were alive.
  23. File photo: AFP KANDAHAR: Around 25 Afghan policemen were killed early Sunday when Taliban fighters stormed multiple security outposts in the volatile southern province of Zabul, officials said, as the insurgents escalate their annual spring offensive. Local officials made desperate calls to Afghan television stations to seek attention as they were unable to get hold of senior authorities for help, highlighting the disarray in security ranks. The coordinated attack is another stinging blow to NATO-backed Afghan forces. It comes just a month after the Taliban killed at least 135 security forces in northern Balkh province, in the deadliest insurgent attack on an Afghan military base. "This morning, a group of Taliban fighters armed with heavy and light weapons launched coordinated attacks on several police checkpoints in Shah Joy district of Zabul province, killing 20 policemen," provincial governor Bismillah Afghanmal told AFP. A district official told AFP that at least 15 others were wounded in the fighting. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack on their website. The raid, the latest in a series of brazen Taliban assaults, underscores the insurgents´ growing strength more than 15 years since they were ousted from power by the US invasion of 2001. Taliban militants launched their annual "spring offensive" in late April, heralding a surge in fighting as the US tries to craft a new Afghan strategy and NATO considers sending more troops to break the stalemate against the resurgent militants. The offensive normally marks the start of the fighting season, though this winter the Taliban continued to battle government forces. US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis last month warned of "another tough year" for security forces in Afghanistan. His comments came after Taliban fighters dressed in army uniforms and armed with suicide vests attacked a military base outside the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif last month, killing at least 135 policemen and soldiers. The brazen attack prompted fury in Afghanistan, leading to the resignations of defence minister Abdullah Habibi and army chief Qadam Shah Shaheem. The US State Department denounced the "barbaric, unconscionable" attack, but stressed that America has no intention of giving up on the country despite more than 15 years of brutal war. The Pentagon has asked the White House to send thousands more troops to Afghanistan to break the deadlocked fight against the Taliban. US troops in Afghanistan number about 8,400 today, and there are another 5,000 from NATO allies, who also mainly serve in an advisory capacity -- a far cry from the US presence of more than 100,000 six years ago. German and Afghan guard killed in Kabul guest house attack Gunmen attacked an international guest house in Kabul, killing a German woman and an Afghan guard, the interior ministry said on Sunday. A Finnish woman is missing and presumed to have been kidnapped in the raid late Saturday, officials added. The guest house was run by a Swedish NGO Operation Mercy, whose director Scott Breslin told local news agency TT that the organisation is holding a crisis meeting. "A Finnish lady was kidnapped from police district (three) last night at 11.30. A German lady and an Afghan guard were killed," interior ministry spokesman Najib Danish said on Twitter. A Finnish foreign ministry spokeswoman confirmed to AFP that a Finnish citizen has been kidnapped in Kabul. "We can confirm that we know about this but we are not giving details at the moment. The only thing we can say is it is not known who the kidnappers are," said spokeswoman Karoliina Romanoff. Operation Mercy´s Breslin told TT in a brief statement: "We know that she´s missing, we will send out a press release later." The kidnapping of foreigners has been on the rise in Afghanistan, with criminal gangs staging abductions for ransom or handing the victims over to militant groups. In August last year gunmen wearing military uniforms kidnapped two professors of the American University of Afghanistan in the heart of Kabul. The two, American Kevin King and Australian Timothy Weekes, appeared in a Taliban hostage video that surfaced in January, the first apparent proof that they were alive.
  24. A tank belonging to the Libyan National Army, led by Khalifa Haftar, last year. Photograph: Abdullah Doma/AFP/Getty Images A spokesman for east Libyan armed forces said on Friday that as many as 141 people had been killed a day earlier in an attack on a southern air base. Ahmed al-Mismari, a spokesman for the eastern-based Libyan National Army (LNA), said 103 of those killed in the attack at Brak Al-Shati air base were LNA troops stationed in the area. Earlier, the mayor of Brak Al-Shati and a medical source in the town put the death toll at 89, though the medical official said some bodies had not been brought to the hospital. It was not possible to independently verify the number of casualties. Local and LNA officials have said that some of those killed were civilians who appeared to have been summarily executed.
  25. We might have advanced, made records in launching satellites and gained immense respect in the world, but one thing that hinders our progress , as a nation and as humans, is the fact that the women in our country still don’t feel safe. And sadly, we, as a society, are solely responsible. The recent kidnapping and molestation of South Indian actress Bhavana proves that even celebrities are not spared of this lechery. © Facebook The men who molested her took inappropriate pictures as well. Even though 3 of them have been arrested, we cannot fathom the scars these kinds of incidents leave in the victim’s mind. In this grave scenario, Southern superstar Prithviraj took to his official Facebook account and shared his thoughts in an open letter. He was scheduled to star in a movie with Bhavana, and, apparently, this incident has shocked him beyond words. His words highlight something that we all are aware of, but yet ignore. Be it a patriarchal society, or a matriarchal one, we cannot call ourselves an ‘evolved’ nation until we treat our women like human beings.