Category Archives: World

A top Spanish bullfighter was gored to death when he tripped over his own cape

A top Spanish bullfighter died at a festival in France when he tripped over his cape and was gored by the bull, according to a Yahoo7 report.

A video of the incident can be seen below.

In the video, Ivan Fandiño can be seen retreating from the bull when he tripped over his cape and momentarily lost his balance. The 36-year-old from the northern Basque region was then knocked to the ground by the bull before others interceded and distracted the bull.

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According to the report, the bull’s horn punctured Fandiño’s lung and he could be heard yelling “hurry up, I’m dying,” as other matadors carried him out of the ring. He later died at a hospital.

The royal family of Spain issued a short statement on Twitter in honor of Fandiño, whom they referred to as a “great bullfighting figure.”

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Ex-Green Beret run through ISIS gunfire to save a little girl

A dramatic rescue of a little girl trapped by ISIS gunfire was captured Friday on video.

David Eubank, a Special Forces soldier turned aid worker, was filmed as he ran out in the open amid ISIS sniper fire to rescue the girl as two other men covered him with rifle fire.

“I thought, ‘If I die doing this, my wife and kids would understand,'” Eubank told the Los Angeles Times.

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According to the Times, Eubank’s dramatic rescue played out on a street in the Iraqi city of Mosul, where ISIS snipers were firing at civilians who were attempting to flee. Wearing only a T-shirt, a bulletproof vest, and a helmet, Eubank is seen running out into the street approximately 150 yards before picking up the girl and bringing her back safely behind a tank.

Eubank, 56, served for a decade with the US Army Special Forces. After leaving the military, he founded an aid group called the Free Burma Rangers, which seeks to bring “hope and love to people in the conflict zones of Burma, Iraq, and Sudan,” according to its website.

Watch the dramatic video:

London Fire: 6 Dead, 74 Hurt in High-Rise Apartment Blaze

LONDON — At least six deaths were confirmed early Wednesday after a blaze ripped through a high-rise apartment block in the British capital as residents slept. At least 74 people were injured, according to authorities.

More than 250 firefighters battled the west London inferno through the night.

Local resident Tim Downie told NBC News he saw “people dangling children out the windows to try and get them to safety” as flames spread upward.

Witness Samira Lamrani said one woman wrapped a baby up “in some sort of thick blanket” and dropped the tot from around the 9th floor. “Miraculously the baby just sort of dropped in a straight line, and a guy just ran forward and the baby fell into his arms,” she added.

Local officials believe that several hundred people were in the building, which dates back to the 1970s. The high-rise had a “stay put” policy in the event of a fire — with residents urged to shut their windows and doors and await rescue.

London Fire Brigade Commissioner Dany Cotton called it an “unprecedented incident,” adding that a “number of fatalities” had been confirmed. Police later put the death toll at 6, but warned that figure was likely to grow.

“In my 29 years of being a firefighter, I have never, ever seen anything of this scale,” Cotton said. “This is a major fire that’s affected all floors of the 24-story structure from the second floor upwards.”

She highlighted that “very large numbers” were rescued by emergency crews early on. But almost nine hours after the blaze broke out, Cotton admitted “we have absolutely no idea” how many people remained unaccounted for.

Michael Paramasivan was wearing only underwear and a robe when he fled the seventh floor about 35 minutes after the blaze was reported.

He described the scene in the stairwell as an “absolute horror story.”

 

Source:

http://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/london-apartment-tower-erupts-flames-residents-scream-help-n772011

Puerto Rico Votes in Favor of US Statehood

Puerto Rico on Sunday overwhelmingly voted for statehood. But Congress, the only body that can approve new states, will ultimately decide whether the status of the US commonwealth changes.

Ninety-seven percent of the votes in the nonbinding referendum favored statehood, an increase over the results of a 2012 referendum, official results from the State Electoral Commission show. It was the fifth such vote on statehood.

“Today, we the people of Puerto Rico are sending a strong and clear message to the US Congress … and to the world … claiming our equal rights as American citizens, Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló said in a news release.

What do we really know about Puerto Rico?

When outsiders think of Puerto Rico, a couple of things probably come to mind: It’s a small island in the Caribbean. People mostly speak Spanish there. It’s not a US state but has American ties. They were the Sharks in “West Side Story.” (Wait, maybe they were the Jets?) But there’s so much more to know.

Some Puerto Ricans are raring to cozy up with America to jump-start a flagging economy; meanwhile, some residents would just as soon maintain the status quo, and others would prefer to break ties altogether.

Momentum has been building for the island shaped like a postage stamp to join the union as the 51st state, so it’s probably smart to start reading up about America’s cousin to the south — its background, economic status and heritage.

Step back in time

The Taíno Indians already called the island home when Christopher Columbus landed there in 1493, and it was settled around 1508 by Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León.

It was eventually named Puerto Rico, which means “rich port” and became a Spanish colony for about 400 years.

The Spanish mined for gold and established agricultural plantations with slave labor, but the colony eventually became more valuable as a military outpost.

The island came under US control in 1898 after the Spanish-American War.

What’s a commonwealth?

A 1950 federal law helped clarify the relationship between the United States and Puerto Rico, paving the way for a public vote on its new constitution. After it was approved in 1952 by the people of Puerto Rico, President Harry Truman, Congress and the Puerto Rican governor, the island became an official US commonwealth.

What’s the difference between a commonwealth and a territory? Not too much, except that commonwealths have their own constitutions. Puerto Rican residents have been US citizens since 1917 (thanks to the Jones Act), so they receive many of the same benefits and protections, with just a few differences.

For one, they can truthfully say, “Don’t blame me, I didn’t vote for them,” when discussing the US presidency. While voters can participate in primary elections, they can’t vote for president in the general election. In 2016, 75% of Puerto Ricans voted for Marco Rubio in the Republican primary (and nearly 14% for Donald Trump) versus Hillary Clinton’s 61% of the Democratic vote.

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Puerto Rico has a nonvoting delegate in Washington, called a resident commissioner. Back home, Puerto Rico has its own governor and legislative body.

A definite plus to living on the island and one reason some might prefer things as they are: Puerto Ricans only have to pay federal income taxes on work they’ve done in the States, and not at home.

As a commonwealth, Puerto Rico gets US military protection and receives federal funding from the government for highways and social programs, just not as much as an official state gets.

Citizens pay into Social Security and have access to Medicare and Medicaid, but instead of being eligible for Supplemental Security Income assistance, low-income, elderly and blind or disabled people can get help from a similar program run by the US Department of Health and Human Services.

There could be a lot of changes in federal programs if Puerto Rico joins Team USA as a state, such as those for student loans, the GI Bill, Pell Grants and assistance programs for families and children.

Statehood, independence or somewhere in between

Options on the weekend referendum included remaining a commonwealth, becoming a state, entering “free association” or becoming an independent nation. Free association is an official affiliation with the United States where Puerto Rico would still receive military assistance and funding.

Four plebiscites, or popular votes, have been held to decide the commonwealth’s status in relation to America. Three of four times, Puerto Rico residents voted against statehood (in 1967, 1993 and 1998).

In a 2012 referendum the majority of voters for the first time chose statehood, but it didn’t go anywhere. (Some argued the results should have been considered a “no” since more than one-third of voters left the part about alternative status blank.)

Jorge Benitez, a political scientist at the University of Puerto Rico-Rio Piedras, said the only definite takeaway from the 2012 vote results at the time was that the people of Puerto Rico wanted a change in status. “It isn’t clear what change we want, but we want change,” he said.

“I think people just came to realize that the current relationship simply does not create the number of jobs that we need,” Puerto Rico Secretary of State Kenneth McClintock said after that vote nearly five years ago.

In 2012, 6% of voters opted to cut ties with the United States.

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Source:

http://ktla.com/2017/06/11/puerto-rico-votes-in-favor-of-us-statehood/

Obama, Trudeau have dinner in Montreal

The duo dined at trendy Liverpool House on Tuesday when the former US president was in town for a speaking engagement.

The pair have a storied bromance, which began when Mr Trudeau visited the White House for a state dinner last year.

Mr Trudeau, who once called Mr Obama his “sibling”, tweeted that they discussed getting young people “to take action in their communities”.

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The Obama Foundation also tweeted that the two had discussed their “shared commitment” to youth leadership.

Mr Obama was in town to give a speech at the Palais des congrès hosted by the Montreal Chamber of Commerce. The event was sold out, with reports of tickets being resold online for hundreds of dollars.

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During his speech, Mr Obama commended the Paris climate agreement and expressed disappointment that the US has withdrawn.

“In Paris, we came together around the most ambitious agreement in history to fight climate change,” he said. “An agreement that even with the temporary absence of American leadership will still give our children a fighting chance.”

But it wasn’t all business for the busy former president, who took time to have dinner with the Canadian prime minister.

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Restaurant owner David McMillan told the CBC that the pair seemed jovial at dinner, which included oysters, shrimp, halibut, steak, spaghetti lobster and strawberry shortcake. The restaurant is a favorite of Mr Trudeau’s, who is from Montreal and represents the district of Papineau.

But while the pair were cool and collected inside, outside it was mayhem with about 200 security guards and a street packed with onlookers.

Source:

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-40190393

UN chief warns oceans are ‘under threat as never before’

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres opened the first-ever UN conference on oceans with a warning that the seas are “under threat as never before” with one recent study warning discarded plastic rubbish could outweigh fish by 2050 if nothing is done.

The UN chief told presidents, ministers, diplomats and environmental activists from nearly 200 countries on Monday that oceans – “the lifeblood of our planet” – are being severely damaged by pollution, over fishing, and the effects of climate change as well as refuse.

The five-day conference, which began on World Environment Day, is the first major event to focus on climate since President Donald Trump announced last Thursday that the United States will withdraw from the landmark 2015 Paris Climate Agreement – a decision criticized by Bolivia’s President Evo Morales and other speakers.

Guterres said the aim of the conference is “to turn the tide” and solve the problems that “we created”.

He said competing interests over territory and natural resources have blocked progress for far too long in cleaning up and restoring to health the world’s oceans, which cover two-thirds of the planet.

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“We must put aside short-term national gain to prevent long-term global catastrophe,” Guterres said. “Conserving our oceans and using them sustainably is preserving life itself.”

General Assembly President Peter Thomson, a Fijian diplomat, said: “the time has come for us to correct our wrongful ways”.

“We have unleashed a plague of plastic upon the ocean that is defiling nature in so many tragic ways,” he said. “It is inexcusable that humanity tips the equivalent of a large garbage truck of plastic into the ocean every minute of every day.”

Thomson also warned that illegal and destructive fishing practices and harmful subsidies for fisheries “are driving our fish stocks to tipping points of collapse”. And he said increasing human-caused carbon emissions are not only driving climate change but causing rising sea levels by warming the oceans and making them more acidic with less oxygen, which harms marine life.

Thomson said the conference probably represents the best opportunity ever “to reverse the cycle of decline that human activity has brought upon the ocean”, and to spur action to meet the UN goal for 2030 to conserve and manage the ocean’s resources.

The conference asked governments, UN bodies, and civil society groups to make voluntary commitments to take action to improve the health of the oceans. So far, more than 730 commitments have been received, most on managing protected areas, according to conference spokesman Damian Cardona.

At the end of the conference on Friday, nearly 200 countries will issue a Call for Action addressing marine issues that Cardona said have already been agreed.

Source:

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/06/chief-warns-oceans-threat-170605205005263.html

 

More Than 1,000 People Injured During Stampede at Soccer Game Viewing in Italy

Panic spread through a throng viewing the Champions League soccer final in a Turin square on Saturday and prompted a stampede that injured more than 1,000, authorities said.

Fans in the northern Italian city gathered in San Carlo Square to view the match on a big screen. Their beloved local team, Juventus, competed against Real Madrid in the match, in Cardiff, Wales.

But chaos ensued during the outdoor party, sparking the crush.

Italian news agency ANSA is now reporting 1,527 people, three of whom were in serious condition.

“The underlying cause was panic, what unleashed the panic has to be understood,” said the prefect of Turin, Renato Saccone, who arrived to Piazza San Carlo to see what had happened.

The prosecutor’s office has kicked off a probe into the incident, which occurred in a continent edgy over the threat of terror.

It was not known what caused the stampede.

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Monica Viscovo, press officer of the Turin state police, said some eyewitnesses reported an explosion. There was also speculation of a fireworks explosion or a firecracker.

Authorities said people were injured when a railing fell.

Antonio Scarmozzino, director of the Molinette Hospital in Turin, said around 350 people were treated, with three of them badly hurt. Two women and a boy were in serious condition after they were “crushed by the people trying to escape,” he said.

“I’m shocked at what happened in San Carlo Square, #Torino, and close to the people involved. We’re watching the situation minute by minute,” Turin Mayor Chiara Appendino said on Twitter.

The square was littered with debris and people who came to watch the match left behind shoes and other belongings.

Real Madrid won the match 4-1. The win was a milestone in the Champions League, a popular yearly competition for the top European teams.

The Spanish team won its 12th European Cup and become the first team in 27 years to retain the trophy.

Real Madrid is the first team to win back-to-back titles since the competition morphed into the Champions League.

Source:

http://ktla.com/2017/06/04/more-than-1000-people-injured-during-stampede-at-soccer-game-in-italy/

Scientists discover a giant black worm monster in the Philippines

Scientists have discovered a hellish, sulfur-eating, worm-like relative of clams living in a Philippines bay, a new study reports. At more than five feet long and two inches wide, these creatures are the longest members in this family of shellfish that exist today — and they look like massive, ink-black, alien boogers.

Known as the giant shipworm (Kuphus polythalamia), even though they aren’t worms, they’ve never before been described in the scientific literature. But scientists knew that they had to exist, because of the massive, elephant tusk-like shells that stick around even when their horrifying denizens are gone. The shells were first described in the 1700s, and continue to be sold to collectors, but scientists were previously unable to find ones that still contained living shipworms to study, Popular Science reports.

In fact, Margo Haygood, a medicinal chemistry professor at the University of Utah, and her colleagues only knew where to look for them because a cluster of the shells had been caught on camera. The calcified tusks were spotted in a documentary film, poking out of the muddy seafloor in a shallow Filipino bay that had once been used to store logs. Researchers retrieved five specimens from the area, and published their findings today in the journalPNAS.

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The scientists painstakingly chipped the giant shipworms out of their shells and dissected them, but the creatures still didn’t give up their secrets easily. The scientists were particularly stumped as to exactly how the worms grow so big. The cap of the giant shipworm’s shell seals over its mouth, presumably stopping it from directly consuming the sediment it lives in, and there were only “trace quantities of fecal matter” in their digestive systems. So, what were these worms eating?

Relatives of the giant shipworm are known to bore into soggy, submerged wood — digesting the wood particles they churn up with the help of symbiotic bacteria that live in their gills. The giant shipworm, though, is less picky — shacking up in muddy seafloor sediments or rotting wood. So clearly, wood isn’t its only, or even its main, food source.

 

Haywood and her colleagues suspected the giant shipworms might instead be consuming hydrogen sulfide released by decaying vegetation or rotting animal carcasses at the bottom of the bay. But hydrogen sulfide, which gives swamp gas its eau de rotten eggs, isn’t all that nutritious.

The worms would need symbiotic bacteria to digest down the inorganic compound and release more nutritious carbon for them to eat. Fortunately for the worms, scientists used electron microscopes to discover microbes that could do just that, living in the giant shipworms’ gills.

Source:

http://www.theverge.com/2017/4/17/15334178/giant-shipworm-mollusk-sulfur-eating-shellfish-science

Japan zoo kills 57 monkeys carrying ‘invasive alien’ genes

A Japanese zoo has killed 57 snow monkeys, nearly one-third of the species in the facility, for carrying “invasive alien” genes, zoo officials said, adding that the animals were all crossbreeds and culling them is legally allowed.

The incident took place in Takagoyama Nature Zoo in the city of Futtsu, Chiba Prefecture, some 45km from Tokyo.

Zoo officials discovered that of 164 Japanese macaques (also known as snow monkeys), at least 57 were crossbreeds with rhesus macaques.

The monkeys were killed by lethal injection, a Futtsu official told AFP, adding that the zoo operator held a memorial service for the macaques at a nearby Buddhist temple.  

Snow monkey-rhesus macaque crossbreeds are considered an “invasive alien species” in Japan, the zoo operator and local officials said.

“They have to be killed to protect the indigenous environment,” another official with the Chiba prefectural government told AFP.
The zoo said that the culling was “unavoidable” and decided to take measures to prevent crossbreeding in the future, Japanese broadcaster NHK reported.  

The remaining 107 Japanese macaques will be kept in the zoo, which also promised to submit all new-born monkeys to DNA testing, Chiba Nippo newspaper reported.  

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According to Junkichi Mima, spokesman for conservation group WWF Japan, invasive species like rhesus macaques cause problems “because they get mixed in with indigenous animals and threaten the natural environment and ecosystem.”

“Preventing exposures to foreign animals is very important,” Tomoko Shimura of the Nature Conservation Society of Japan added.

Japan’s Environment Ministry currently allows zoos to keep such crossbreeds.

“There are many zoos in the country which rear animals that became classified as invasive species after the law was created,” a ministry official said, as cited by AFP.

Source:

https://www.rt.com/news/378137-japan-kills-alien-monkeys/