International

Head of Opposition Benjamin Netanyahu and Israel Prime Minister Naftali Bennett gesture following the vote on the new coalition at the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, in Jerusalem June 13, 2021. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun

Netanyahu out, Bennett in as Israel marks end of an era

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Benjamin Netanyahu‘s record 12-year run as Israel‘s prime minister ended on Sunday with parliament approving a new “government of change” led by nationalist Naftali Bennett, an improbable scenario few Israelis once could…

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Italy’s Prime minister Mario Draghi (L) and France’s President Emmanuel Macron make their way through the resort in advance of the start of the G7 summit in Carbis bay, Cornwall on June 11, 2021. (Photo by Ludovic MARIN / AFP)

Aid groups say G7 one billion dose pledge falls short

Some of the world’s leading charities and health organisations say a pledge by G7 nations to donate one billion Covid vaccines to poorer countries does not go far enough. The…

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Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson meets with U.S. President Joe Biden, ahead of the G7 summit, at Carbis Bay, Cornwall, Britain June 10, 2021. REUTERS/Toby Melville/Pool

UK’s Johnson hails Biden as ‘a big breath of fresh air’

CARBIS BAY, England (Reuters) – British Prime Minister Boris Johnson hailed U.S. President Joe Biden as “a big breath of fresh air” on Thursday because he wanted to work with…

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Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson discusses the foreign aid cap with a member of an engagement group during a visit to Falmouth’s Maritime Museum, where he met and thanked volunteers hosting the media centre for the G7 Summit, in Falmouth, Cornwall on June 10, 2021, ahead of the three-day G7 summit being held from 11-13 June. – G7 leaders from Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the United States meet this weekend for the first time in nearly two years, for the three-day talks in Carbis Bay, Cornwall. (Photo by Leon Neal / POOL / AFP)

G7 to provide 1 bn Covid vaccine doses ‘to world’: UK

G7 leaders will agree to expand global Covid vaccine manufacturing to provide at least one billion doses to the world through sharing and financing schemes, Britain said Thursday. The announcement…

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(FILES) This file photo taken in Arlington, Virginia on April 7, 2021 shows a smart phone screen displaying the logo of Facebook on a Facebook website background. – The European Commission announced on June 4, 2021. (Photo by OLIVIER DOULIERY / AFP)

Facebook working on smartwatch

Facebook on Wednesday confirmed it is working on a smartwatch that might one day connect with augmented reality glasses being developed by the leading social network. Facebook Reality Labs is…

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U.S. President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden walk from Marine One to board Air Force One for return travel to Washington, DC at Dover Air Force Base in Dover, Delaware, U.S., June 4, 2021. REUTERS/Carlos Barria/File Photo

With G7 summit the first stop, Biden embarks on 8-day trip to Europe

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Joe Biden departs for Britain on Wednesday on his first trip abroad since taking office, an eight-day mission to rebuild trans-Atlantic ties strained during the Trump era and to reframe relations with…

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Tourists ride on elephants in Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary after it was reopened for tourists following its closure due to the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic in Morigaon district of Assam on November 10, 2020. (Photo by Biju BORO / AFP)

Elephants in India tested for coronavirus after rare lion’s death

Twenty-eight elephants have been tested for Covid-19 at a forest reserve in southern India, officials said Wednesday, after the reported death of a rare Asiatic lion from the virus. In…

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FILE – In this Thursday, May 6, 2021 file photo, a sign for The New York Times hangs above the entrance to its building, in New York. Numerous websites were unavailable on Tuesday June 8, 2021, after an apparent widespread outage at cloud service company Fastly. Dozens of high-traffic websites including the New York Times, CNN, Twitch and the U.K. government’s home page, could not be reached. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

Global glitch: Swaths of internet go down after cloud outage

LONDON (AP) — Multiple websites went offline briefly across the globe Tuesday after an outage at the cloud service company Fastly, revealing how critical a handful of companies running the…

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Photo by Handout / National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases / AFP

WHO official says can’t force China to give more information on COVID-19 origins

A top World Health Organization official said that the WHO cannot compel China to divulge more data on COVID-19’s origins while adding it will propose studies needed to take understanding…

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A man wearing a hazmat suit walks along a street in Wuhan in China’s central Hubei province on April 14, 2020. (Photo by NOEL CELIS / AFP)

COVID-19 may have leaked from Wuhan lab: US report

The hypothesis of a virus leak from a Chinese lab in Wuhan is plausible and deserves further investigation, according to a report on the origins of COVID-19 by a U.S….

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A sign marks a Biogen facility in Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S., March 9, 2020. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

U.S. regulators approve first new Alzheimer’s drug in nearly 20 years

June 7 (Reuters) – U.S. regulators on Monday approved Biogen Inc’s aducanumab as the first treatment to attack a likely cause of Alzheimer’s disease despite controversy over whether the clinical evidence proves…

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U.S. federal agents escort a suspect at Reforma border crossing bridge in Ciudad Juarez May 26, 2015. REUTERS/Jose Luis Gonzalez/File Photo

U.S. agents to start wearing body cameras when serving warrants

U.S. law-enforcement agents will be required to wear body cameras when serving search and arrest warrants, the Justice Department said on Monday, adding a measure of accountability already required of…

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FILE – In this May 9, 2021, file photo released by the San Sai District Administrative Office, a Thai officer checks the temperature of journalists working for Democratic Voice of Burma, at San Sai District in Chiang Mai province north of Thailand. The three journalists from military-ruled Myanmar who were convicted of illegal entry after they fled to Thailand have been sent to a third country where they are safe, their employer said Monday, June 7. (San Sai District Administrative Office via AP, File)

Journalists who fled Myanmar to Thailand find third-country refuge

BANGKOK (AP) — Three journalists from military-ruled Myanmar who were convicted of illegal entry after they fled to Thailand have been sent to a third country where they are safe,…

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FILE – In this Sept. 19, 2019, file photo, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos speaks during his news conference at the National Press Club in Washington. Bezos will be among the people on Blue Origin’s first human space flight next month. The company said in a post Monday, June 7, 2021, that Bezos will be joined on the New Shepard flight by his brother Mark and the winner of an online auction. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

Bezos plans to go to space aboard Blue Origin flight in July

Jeff Bezos will be aboard for Blue Origin’s first human space flight next month. In an Instagram post on Monday, Bezos said he, his brother, and the winner of an…

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A workshop of a company which produces medical protective equipment in Jishou, in central China’s Hunan province. (Photo by STR / AFP)

China reports its exports up 28% and imports hit decade-high

China’s exports rose 27.9 percent in May while imports grew at the fastest pace in more than a decade as the global economy powers back from the pandemic crisis, data…

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From left, EU’s Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni, Eurogroup President Paschal Donohoe, World Bank President David Malpass, Italy’s Finance Minister Daniele Franco, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire, Canada’s Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland, Britain’s Chancellor of the Exchequer Chancellor Rishi Sunak, Managing Director of the IMF Kristalina Georgieva, Germany’s Finance Minister Olaf Scholz, U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, Secretary-General of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Mathias Cormann, Japan’s Finance Minister Taro Aso pose for a family photo as finance ministers from across the G7 nations meet at Lancaster House in London, Saturday, June 5, 2021 ahead of the G7 leaders’ summit. (Henry Nicholls/Pool Photo via AP)

Hundreds of former leaders urge G7 to vaccinate poor against COVID-19

LONDON (Reuters) – One hundred former presidents, prime ministers and foreign ministers have urged the Group of Seven (G7) rich nations to pay for global coronavirus vaccinations to help stop…

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(FILES) In this file photo Britain’s Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex(R) and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex(L) leave the Youth Employment Services Hub in Tembisa township, Johannesburg, on October 2, 2019. – Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced on June 6, 2021 the birth of their daughter Lilibet Diana, who was born in California after a year of turmoil in Britain’s royal family. “Lili is named after her great-grandmother, Her Majesty The Queen, whose family nickname is Lilibet. Her middle name, Diana, was chosen to honor her beloved late grandmother, The Princess of Wales,” said a statement from the couple. (Photo by Michele Spatari / AFP)

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle announce daughter’s birth after tumultuous year

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced Sunday the birth of their daughter Lilibet Diana — named for Harry’s grandmother Queen Elizabeth II and his late mother — in a moment…

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US Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrives to meet with Costa Rica’s President Carlos Alvarado Quesada (not pictured) during a visit to San Jose, Costa Rica, June 1, 2021. (Photo by EVELYN HOCKSTEIN / POOL / AFP)

Blinken regrets missing meeting with ASEAN foreign ministers

US State Secretary Antony Blinken has expressed regrets for causing the cancellation of a scheduled virtual conference with ASEAN foreign ministers late last month, a highly informed diplomatic source told…

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The Olympic rings are seen at the Odaiba waterfront in Tokyo on June 3, 2021. (Photo by Kazuhiro NOGI / AFP)

Japan ‘cornered’ on Tokyo Olympics, says national committee member

Japan has been backed into a corner over the Tokyo Games, a member of the country’s Olympic committee said Friday, arguing the virus-postponed event has “lost meaning” — but adding…

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FILE – In this June 5, 1989, file photo, a man stands alone in front of a line of tanks heading east on Beijing’s Changan Blvd. in Tiananmen Square, Beijing. Hong Kong’s second ban on an annual vigil for victims of the bloody June 4, 1989, crackdown on Beijing’s Tiananmen Square protest movement and the closure of a museum dedicated to the event may be a further sign that the ruling Communist Party is extending its efforts to erase the event from the collective consciousness from the mainland to Hong Kong. (AP Photo/Jeff Widener, File)

China’s silencing of Tiananmen tributes extends to Hong Kong

HONG KONG (AP) — For years, China has quashed any discussion on the mainland of its bloody 1989 crackdown on pro-democracy protesters in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square, nearly erasing what happened…

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A motorcycle taxi driver leaving his home in Bangkok. (Photo by Romeo GACAD / AFP)

Pandemic plunges 100 million more workers into poverty: UN

The pandemic has pushed over 100 million more workers into poverty after working hours plummeted and access to good quality jobs evaporated, according to the annual World Employment and Social…

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Members of the Thai and Serbian volleyball teams. Facebook: Odbojkaški savez Srbije (The Serbian Volleyball Association)

Serbian volleyball player apologises to Thai team for alleged racist gesture

A Serbian volleyball player has apologised to the Thai team for making an alleged racist gesture during a game in the Nations League, hosted by Italy yesterday (Tuesday). The player,…

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Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas speaks about aviation security ahead of the summer travel season during a news conference at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Tuesday, May 25, 2021, in Arlington, Va. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

US formally ends policy for asylum-seekers to wait in Mexico

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration on Tuesday formally ended a Trump-era immigration policy that forced asylum-seekers to wait in Mexico for hearings in U.S. immigration court. A seven-page memo by…

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Counter protesters and surfers gather on the pier as a man holds a sign with an anti Ku Klux Klan (KKK) poster, during a demonstration for a “White Lives Matter” march and rally on April 11, 2021 in Huntington Beach, California. – The march was organized by Ultra-right groups that have called for April 11, to be a national day of “White Lives Matter”. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)

Remains of US Ku Klux Klan leader to be moved

A project to disinter a Ku Klux Klan leader and move his remains to a museum started Tuesday, local US media reported, adding the work would be funded by $200,000…

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FILE PHOTO: Children play at a waterfront in Shekou area of Shenzhen, Guangdong province, China / REUTERS

Three-child policy: China lifts cap on births per family

China said on Monday that married couples may have up to three children, a major policy shift from the existing limit of two after recent data showed a dramatic decline…

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A Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games decoration board bearing illustrations of Games logo and mascot in Tokyo. (Photo by Behrouz MEHRI / AFP)

Tokyo Olympics fans to need vaccination or virus test: report

Tokyo Olympics fans may have to be vaccinated or test negative for the coronavirus before being allowed into venues, a Japanese newspaper report said Monday. Cheering, eating, high-fives, and drinking…

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(FILES) In this file photo taken on November 8, 2020 Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson (R) and his parter Carrie Symonds (L) meet veterans at the Remembrance Sunday ceremony at the Cenotaph on Whitehall in central London. – Johnson married his fiancee Carrie Symonds married in a “secret ceremony” on May 29, 2021, UK media reports said. (Photo by Chris Jackson / POOL / AFP)

Boris Johnson weds fiancee in ‘secret’ weekend ceremony

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his fiancee Carrie Symonds married over the weekend, his office confirmed Sunday, in what media reports have described as a  “secret ceremony”.  He is…

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Myanmarese residents in Japan and supporters protest against the military takeover, outside the Fukuda Denshi Arena where the Asian qualification soccer match between Myanmar and Japan for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 is held, in Chiba, east of Tokyo, Friday, May 28, 2021. The placard reads “Myanmar soccer team does not represent the country.”(Kyodo News via AP)

Myanmar Journal: “The laws of an illegitimate government mean nothing”

(by David Tun in Yangon) The coverage on this live blog has ended — for up-to-date coverage on the Myanmar protest, visit the June Myanmar Journal. May 29 – As the…

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(Photo by JORGE GUERRERO / AFP)

COVID-19 vaccines update

Full coverage on COVID-19 vaccines reports. May 29, 2021: A closer look at Sinopharm, Thailand’s first alternative vaccine A closer look at Sinopharm, Thailand’s first alternative vaccine A vaccine developed…

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A man is inoculated with the first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine in Paso de Carrasco, Canelones department, Uruguay on May 26, 2021. (Photo by Eitan ABRAMOVICH / AFP)

Sinovac’s CoronaVac reduces mortality by 97 percent: Uruguay study

The CoronaVac vaccine, produced by Chinese firm Sinovac, reduces coronavirus mortality by 97 percent, according to early results of the immunization campaign in Uruguay, which relies heavily on the Chinese…

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Japan’s Naomi Osaka celebrates winning against Jennifer Brady of the US during their women’s singles final match of the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne on February 20, 2021. (Photo by William WEST / AFP)

French Tennis Federation says Osaka’s press conference boycott a ‘phenomenal error’

Naomi Osaka’s decision to boycott press conferences at Roland Garros was blasted as a “phenomenal error” by the head of French tennis on Thursday who said the Japanese star’s move…

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Jimmy Lai / AFP

Jimmy Lai among eight more Hong Kong democracy activists jailed

Jailed Hong Kong media tycoon Jimmy Lai was among eight democracy activists handed new prison sentences on Friday for attending protests on the 70th anniversary of the founding of communist…

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FBI agents approach a home, rear, being investigated in connection to a shooting at a Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) facility on Wednesday, May 26, 2021, in San Jose, Calif. A Santa Clara County sheriff’s spokesman said a shooting at the rail yard left at least eight people, including the gunman, dead. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

Gunman, 8 victims dead in San Jose, California shooting

San Jose (AP) – An employee opened fire Wednesday at a California rail yard serving Silicon Valley, killing eight people. The suspect was also dead, authorities said. Santa Clara County…

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Emergency responders gather at the scene of a shooting where several people were reported dead including the shooter on May 26, 2021 in San Jose, California

Nine killed by employee in California rail yard mass shooting

A public transit worker shot dead eight people at a California rail yard Wednesday before turning his gun on himself as police arrived, officials said after the latest mass shooting…

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FILE – In this April 26, 2021, file photo, people queue up for coronavirus vaccine in Mumbai, India. The disparities of the coronavirus pandemic were already stark in India, where access to health care is as stratified and unequal as other parts of its society. Now, the divide along the lines of wealth and technology are further widening that chasm, and many people are falling through the gaps as vaccines remain inaccessible to millions. (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool, File)

India’s Tata Steel will continue to pay salaries to families of COVID-19 victims

India’s giant Tata Steel has announced that it will keep paying salaries to the families of employees who die of COVID-19, until the deceased employee would have been 60 years…

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Covid lab origin theory gains traction in United States

Long dismissed as a kooky conspiracy theory favored by the far right, the idea that Covid emerged from a lab leak in Wuhan has been gaining increasing momentum in the…

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A medical staff wearing a face mask walks outside a vaccination center in Kepong on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. Malaysia unexpectedly imposed a one-month lockdown through June 7, spooked by a sharp rise in cases, more-infectious variants and weak public compliance with health measures. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)

Malaysia’s worsening COVID-19 outbreak sparks alarm

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — A worsening coronavirus outbreak in Malaysia has sparked alarm and is spilling over into neighboring Thailand, which recently discovered a more infectious variant in its…

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Rome’s Fiumicino airport. (Photo by Filippo MONTEFORTE / AFP)

EU summit embraces Covid certificate to unlock travel

EU leaders on Tuesday welcomed the introduction of a bloc-wide Covid-19 pass that they hope will unlock a tourist surge this summer.  The 27 member states would like the EU…

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This picture taken on May 24, 2021 shows rescue personnel tending to an injured passenger ooutside KLCC station after an accident involving two Light Rail Transit (LRT) trains in Kuala Lumpur. – More than 200 passengers were injured in the Malaysian capital on May 24 when two metro trains collided in a tunnel, police said. (Photo by STR / AFP) / Malaysia OUT

Over 200 injured in Malaysian train collision

Kuala Lumpur – Malaysian authorities have launched an investigation into a head-on collision involving two light rail transit (LRT) trains on Monday night that left 213 people injured, 47 of…

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A trolley carrying Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 coronavirus vaccines at Hong Kong International Airport in Hong Kong on February 27, 2021. (Photo by JEROME FAVRE / POOL / AFP)

Hong Kong could soon throw away millions of unused vaccine doses

Hong Kong may soon have to throw away millions of Coronavirus vaccine doses because they are approaching their expiry date and not enough people have signed up for the jabs,…

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A Belarusian dog handler checks luggages off a Ryanair Boeing 737-8AS (flight number FR4978) parked on Minsk International Airport’s apron in Minsk, on May 23, 2021. (Photo by – / ONLINER.BY / AFP)

EU leaders agree on new sanctions against Belarus, including ban on use of EU airspace, airports

The European Union agreed Monday to impose sanctions on Belarus, including banning its airlines from using the airspace and airports of the 27-nation bloc, amid fury over the forced diversion…

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(FILES) In this file photo taken on May 22, 2021, a Glock 17 pistol, or handgun, is displayed during a gun ‘buyback’ event held by the New York Police Department (NYPD) and the office of the Attorney General, in the New York borough of Brooklyn. – A dozen people were killed and about 50 injured in shootings across the United States over the weekend, after President Joe Biden last month branded the country’s gun violence an “epidemic.” (Photo by Ed JONES / AFP)

Gun homicides surge in US as Covid lockdowns end

The year-long surge in gun murders across the United States has shown no sign of easing as Covid lockdowns end, with a jump in shootings over the weekend that left…

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Moderna, Novavax to produce more COVID-19 vaccines in S.Korea

Moderna Inc and Novavax Inc entered into a deal with the South Korean government to manufacture their COVID-19 vaccines, as the country has been under pressure to secure more and faster deliveries…

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Icon award recipient Pink her daughter Willow perform together on a trapeze at the Billboard Music Awards, Friday, May 21, 2021, at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)

Pink joined onstage at the Billboard Music Awards by her 9-year-old daughter, showing off gymnastic skills

Showing off her signature aerial and acrobatic moves at the Billboard Music Awards, Pink was matched by her 9-year-old daughter, Willow Sage Hart, as “Cover Me In Sunshine” played in…

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Children gather around a tent that Nazmy al-Dahdouh, a 70-year-old Palestinian man has set up on top of the ruins of his home, destroyed in recent Israeli air strikes in Gaza city, on May 23, 2021.(Photo by MAHMUD HAMS / AFP)

UN urges ‘genuine political process’ between Israel and Hamas

A UN official in war-battered Gaza called for a “genuine political process” to avert further bloodshed, after the military conflict between Israel and Islamist group Hamas that ravaged the Palestinian…

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A Palestinian girl carries a boy amid the rubble of their houses which were destroyed by Israeli air strikes during the Israel-Hamas fighting in Gaza May 23, 2021. REUTERS/Mohammed Salem

Gaza truce holds as Israel admits Jewish visitors to flashpoint site

The Israel-Hamas ceasefire held into a third day on Sunday as Israeli police admitted Jewish visitors to a contested Jerusalem holy site where earlier confrontations with Palestinian protesters helped to ignite the…

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In this photo provided by China’s Xinhua News Agency, rescuers walk into the accident site to search for survivors in Jingtai County of Baiyin City, northwest China’s Gansu Province, Sunday, May 23, 2021. More than a dozen of people running a mountain marathon have died in northwestern China after hail, freezing rain and gale-force winds hit the high-altitude race, state media reported Sunday. (Fan Peishen/Xinhua via AP)

21 die in extreme weather in China ultramarathon

BEIJING (AP) — Twenty-one people running a mountain ultramarathon have died in northwestern China after hail, freezing rain and gale-force winds hit the high-altitude race, state media reported Sunday. After…

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People gather in Central Park in New York on May 22, 2021. – After 16 months of restrictions in place due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, New Yorkers can now enjoy a city where most restrictions have been lifted. But true to their caution since the beginning of the pandemic, many are still reluctant to party and go back to their pre-pandemic social lives. (Photo by Kena Betancur / AFP)

New Yorkers ready to party again — just not indoors

After 14 months of lockdown and restrictions, New Yorkers can now enjoy a city where most of these limitations have been lifted. But many have retained the cautious approach they…

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A man stands on a pedestal wearing a shirt reading “Palestine will live” as protesters shout slogans and wave Palestinian flags during a demonstration in solidarity with the Palestinian people on Republique square in Paris on May 22, 2021. – The ceasefire between Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza was holding on May 22, as humanitarian aid began to enter the Israeli-blockaded enclave ravaged by 11 days of bloodshed. As thousands of displaced Palestinians returned to their homes, and Israelis began to resume normal life the day before, international focus turned to the reconstruction of the bomb-shattered Gaza Strip. (Photo by GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELT / AFP)

Thousands rally in France in support of Palestinians

Several thousand people marched Saturday in Paris and other French cities in support of Palestinians after an 11-day conflict with Israel that killed 260 people, most of whom Palestinians. This…

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The Israeli Iron Dome missile defence system (L) intercepts rockets (R) fired by the Hamas movement towards southern Israel from Beit Lahia in the northern Gaza Strip as seen in the sky above the Gaza Strip overnight on May 14, 2021. – Israel bombarded Gaza with artillery and air strikes on Friday, May 14, in response to a new barrage of rocket fire from the Hamas-run enclave, but stopped short of a ground offensive in the conflict that has now claimed more than 100 Palestinian lives. As the violence intensified, Israel said it was carrying out an attack “in the Gaza Strip” although it later clarified there were no boots on the ground. (Photo by ANAS BABA / AFP)

Israel faces highest ever rate of rocket attacks: army

Israel has faced the highest ever rate of rocket attacks on its territory during its latest confrontation with the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas that controls Gaza, the army said Sunday….

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Photo by MICHAEL DANTAS / AFP

Brazil struggles to vaccinate as COVID-19 toll spirals

Four months into a Covid-19 vaccination campaign marred by shortages and delays, hard-hit Brazil is still struggling to find enough doses, as political and diplomatic blunders prolong its pandemic nightmare….

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In this Feb. 26, 2021, photo, Japanese journalist Yuki Kitazumi raises his hands as he is escorted by police upon arrival at the Myaynigone police station in Sanchaung township in Yangon, Myanmar. Japan’s government said Monday, April 19, 2021 it is asking Myanmar to release the Japanese journalist who was arrested by security forces in its largest city of Yangon the previous day. (AP Photo)

Myanmar’s climate of fear – media restricted and civilians intimidated

Press cards, cameras and all equipment set aside, news reporters in Myanmar go underground and carry on doing their jobs, amid the climate of fear, brought on by the military…

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Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa in September, 2018 in Hawthorne, California. (Photo by DAVID MCNEW / AFP)

Japanese billionaire Maezawa to travel to International Space Station in December

Japanese billionaire entrepreneur Yusaku Maezawa and his assistant Yozo Hirano will be the next tourists to travel to the International Space Station (ISS), Russia’s space agency Roscosmos said Thursday. Maezawa…

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Anti-coup protesters burn tires and chant slogans with banner read ”The Kamayut strike will be fight for to the end when we get victory” during the demonstration against the military coup in Kamayut township Yangon, Monday, May 3, 2021. (AP Photo)

Myanmar warns of regional crisis as international help is delayed

The Myanmar National Unity Government (NUG) is warning of a regional crisis, escalating from the current situation in Myanmar, as no meaningful action has been taken by ASEAN, or the…

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In this file photo taken on May 3, 2021 motorists make their way past a sign announcing “Pfizer Today” available at the Cal State Los Angeles Covid-19 vaccine site in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frederic J. BROWN / AFP)

US drug regulator authorized Pfizer vaccine for 12-15 year olds

The United States drug regulator authorized the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for children aged 12-15 as the country aims to speed up its Covid-19 recovery, while President Joe Biden said this is a promising development…

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Photo by THOMAS KIENZLE / AFP

Covid jab maker BioNTech to build SE Asia manufacturing site in Singapore

Covid jab maker BioNTech said Monday it would build a Southeast Asia headquarters and manufacturing site in Singapore to produce hundreds of millions of mRNA-based vaccines per year. Construction of…

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Samantha Amke traveled to Miami Beach from Mexico City hoping to find the Covid-19 vaccine. (Photo credit: AFP)

‘Vaccine tourists’ fly from abroad for injections on US beach

A long line of people snaked across the sand of Miami Beach, Florida, as dozens of travelers from Latin America waited their turn at a pop-up coronavirus vaccination booth. Sweating under the…

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Judges wearing face masks wait for the start of the men’s 3m springboard final at the FINA Diving World Cup and test event for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre on May 6, 2021. (Photo by Behrouz MEHRI / AFP)

Pfizer/BioNTech to supply vaccines for Olympic athletes

US drug giant Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech on Thursday announced a deal with the International Olympics Committee to provide vaccines to competitors and staff at the Tokyo games. In a…

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Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic holds a vial containing the Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine during his visit to Belgrade’s Torlak Institute, where the vaccine has been manufactured, on April 15, 2021. (Photo by Andrej ISAKOVIC / AFP)

Serbia to offer cash to those who get Covid vaccine

Serbia’s president said on Wednesday his country would pay each citizen who gets a Covid jab before the end of May, in what could be the world’s first cash-for-jabs scheme….

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File / AFP

UK grants Oscar winners fast-track immigration route

Winners of major prizes for film, theatre, science and technology — including Oscars — can now apply to live and work in Britain in a simpler process, the UK government…

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People visit the Forbidden City in Beijing during the Labour Day holidays, which take place from May 1 to May 5, on May 3, 2021. (Photo by Noel Celis / AFP)

Chinese tourists out in force as virus fears recede

Sipping bubble tea and dressed in their holiday finest, millions of Chinese travellers flocked to domestic tourist attractions over the May 1 long holiday with Covid-19 fears already a distant…

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A teenager receives a dose of the Pfizer-BioNtech COVID-19 coronavirus vaccine at Clalit Health Services, in Israel’s Mediterranean coastal city of Tel Aviv. (Photo by JACK GUEZ / AFP)

Pfizer/BioNTech seek Covid jab approval for 12-15-year-olds in EU

Pfizer/BioNTech said Friday they have asked European regulators to authorize their Covid-19 vaccine for 12- to 15-year-olds, a move seen as a crucial step toward achieving herd immunity. The companies…

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A pre-school boy uses a newly developed, lollipop-shaped Covid-19 test prior to the testing of pre-schoolers at the ‘City of Vienna Kindergarten’ in Vienna, Austria on April 28, 2021. (Photo by JOE KLAMAR / AFP)

Austria tests toddlers for virus with ‘lollipops’

A newly developed, lollipop-shaped coronavirus test is being rolled out in some of Austria’s kindergartens as an alternative for toddlers who don’t take well to throat or nose swabs. Students,…

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People use their mobile phones to check the connection an internet shop in Naypyidaw. (Photo by STR / AFP)

Myanmar Journal: The internet resumes to encourage more use of online banking services

(by David Tun in Yangon) The coverage on this live blog has ended — for up-to-date coverage on the Myanmar protest, visit the May Myanmar Journal. April 28 – Myanmar’s…

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Health workers wearing personal protective equipment (PPE kit) attends to Covid-19 coronavirus positive patients inside a banquet hall temporarily converted into a covid care centre in New Delhi on April 28, 2021 / AFP

India’s coronavirus infections cross 18 million; record number of daily deaths

India’s total COVID-19 cases passed 18 million on Thursday after another world record daily infection and as the government rejected reports of problems with its vaccine campaign. India reported 379,257…

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(Photo by Miguel SCHINCARIOL / AFP)

Brazil begin to produce homemade COVID-19 vaccine

Butantan Biomedical Institute in Brazil announced that they began to produce their very own COVID-19 vaccines, ButanVac. While local media reported that the institution lacks regulatory approval to hold clinical…

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US actress Regina King (R) presenting English director Emerald Fennell the Oscar for Original Screenplay for “Promising young woman” during the live ABC Telecast of the 93rd Oscars at Union Station in Los Angeles, on April 25, 2021. (Photo by Todd Wawrychuk / AMPAS / AFP)

A less than glittering Oscars ceremony

The coronavirus has had an immense impact on the Oscars and indeed, the entertainment industry in general COVID-19 overshadowed Oscars this year, but the lukewarm attention to what many consider…

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AFP

‘Nomadland’ wins big at pandemic Oscars as Zhao makes history

US road movie “Nomadland” emerged as the big winner at the Oscars on Sunday with three major prizes, including a history-making award for director Chloe Zhao, as Hollywood celebrated its…

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The Philippine Coast Guard conducts maritime exercise near Thitu island in the disputed South China Sea. (Photo by Handout / Philippine coast Guard (PCG) / AFP)

Philippine coast guard holds drills in disputed South China Sea

The Philippine coast guard is conducting drills in the South China Sea which an official said Sunday were part of efforts to secure “our maritime jurisdiction” over the disputed waters….

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Indigenous nurse of the Misak ethnic group Anselmo Tunubala, 49, inoculates an elderly indigenous woman with a Sinovac vaccine against COVID-19 in the Guambia indigenous reservation, rural area of Silvia, department of Cauca, Colombia, on April 15, 2021. (Photo by Luis ROBAYO / AFP)

Vaccine doses pass one billion mark as global cases top new record

The number of Covid-19 jabs administered globally surpassed the one billion mark on Saturday, offering hope even as the number of virus cases worldwide hit a new daily record mainly…

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In this picture taken on April 23, 2021, relatives wait next to a Covid-19 coronavirus patient laying on a stretcher in a hospital complex for admission in New Delhi. (Photo by Maude BRULARD / AFP)

Death and despair at the doors of stricken Delhi hospital

Barely breathing, Shyam Narayan arrived at the New Delhi hospital in a red rickshaw, his feet hanging over the side, but it soon became clear to his desperate family that…

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The Olympic rings are lit at the waterfront of Odaiba in Tokyo. (Photo by Philip FONG / AFP)

Japan declares virus emergency three months before Olympics

Japan announced a new virus state of emergency in Tokyo and three other regions on Friday, as the country battles surging infections just three months before the Olympic opening ceremony. The…

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(Photo by Christof STACHE / AFP)

AstraZeneca vaccine benefits increase with age: EMA

The EU’s drug watchdog said Friday that a review of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine found its benefits increase with age and still outweigh the risks for adults despite links to blood…

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The new virus emergencies come with just three months until the Tokyo Olympics open / AFP

Japan faces new virus emergencies, three months before Olympics

Japan’s government is to declare virus states of emergencies in Tokyo and three other regions on Friday, exactly three months before the Olympic opening ceremony, as new infections surge. The…

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A nurse prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine against COVID-19 at the vaccination center set up at the University City Exhibition Center and Congress in Coyoacan, Mexico City on March 24, 2021. (Photo by CLAUDIO CRUZ / AFP)

Fake Pfizer vaccine shots on sale in Mexico and Poland

US drugmaker Pfizer confirmed that suspect doses of its coronavirus vaccine that were seized in Mexico and Poland were indeed fake, with doses going for as much as $1,000 a…

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Journalists watch a screen showing China’s President Xi Jinping delivering a speech during the opening of the Boao Forum for Asia (BFA) Annual Conference 2021 in Boao, south China’s Hainan province on April 20, 2021. (Photo by STR / AFP)

China’s Xi to attend online Biden climate summit

China’s President Xi Jinping will attend US President Joe Biden’s virtual climate summit this week, Beijing said Wednesday, as the world’s top polluting nations seek rare common ground despite wider…

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Marijuana activists hand out free joints to vaccinated New Yorkers on April 20, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by Angela Weiss / AFP)

‘Joints for jabs’: free marijuana for vaccinated New Yorkers

New Yorkers who have been vaccinated against Covid-19 were able to get an unlikely freebie Tuesday: a marijuana joint. Activists celebrating the recent legalization of recreational pot in New York state handed…

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A Johnson & Johnson vaccine in a refrigerator at the Lynchburg Fire department in Lynchburg, Virginia. (Photo by ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS / AFP)

Blood clots should be listed as rare Johnson & Johnson side effect: EMA

Blood clots should be listed as a “very rare” side effect of the Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine but its benefits still outweigh the risks, the EU’s drug watchdog said…

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The COVID-19 testing center in Ottawa, Canada. (Photo by Dave Chan / AFP)

Canada to spend big to ‘punch way out of Covid recession’

Canada’s finance minister announced Can$101.4 billion (US$80.9 billion) in spending to help its battered economy recover from the pandemic and set a greener course with a new climate target. The…

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A health worker collects a sample from a young passenger for a Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test at a state transport bus station in Bangalore on April 5, 2021. (Photo by Manjunath Kiran / AFP)

Young and infected: Covid-19’s new patients as India battles huge surge

At the start of the year, India thought it had beaten the pandemic and had kicked off a mass vaccination drive. The nation of 1.3 billion people has been hit by…

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A health worker prepares a dose of the Chinese CoronaVac vaccine against COVID-19 at a vaccination centre in Santiago, on March 24, 2021. (Photo by Martin BERNETTI / AFP)

China’s Coronavac 80% effective at preventing Covid deaths: Chile results

China’s Coronavac vaccine was 67 percent effective at preventing symptomatic Covid-19 and 80 percent at preventing death, according to real-life results unveiled Friday from Chile’s inoculation campaign. “These figures should…

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This picture taken on April 15, 2021 released from North Korea’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on April 16 shows fireworks launched in Pyongyang to celebrate the country’s founder and Eternal President Kim Il Sung’s birthday. (Photo by STR / KCNA VIA KNS / AFP)

North Korea marks anniversary of founder’s birth

North Korea marked the anniversary of the birth of its founder Kim Il Sung Thursday, with mask-wearing citizens placing flowers before his statue in Pyongyang. The grandfather of the current leader Kim…

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(Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA / AFP)

Pfizer CEO: Vaccine third dose ‘likely’ needed within 12 months

The head of Pfizer said in an interview aired Thursday that people will “likely” need a third dose of his company’s Covid-19 shot within six to 12 months of vaccination,…

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Pro-democracy activists Martin Lee, center, and Albert Ho, left, arrive at a court in Hong Kong Friday, April 16, 2021./ AP

7 Hong Kong democracy leaders to be sentenced amid crackdown

Seven of Hong Kong’s leading pro-democracy advocates, including 82-year-old veteran activist Martin Lee and pro-democracy media tycoon Jimmy Lai, are expected to be sentenced Friday for organizing a march during…

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‘Mass casualty’ shooting in US city of Indianapolis, gunman dead: police

Multiple people were shot in an incident Thursday in the US city of Indianapolis, according to police, although the severity of the victims’ injuries was not immediately clear. Police spokeswoman…

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Patty Tavatanakit with the ANA Inspiration trophy. (Photo by LPGA)

The driving passion of Patty Tavatanakit – golf’s next global superstar     

As a young girl, Paphangkorn Tavatanakit watched golf legend Tiger Woods on TV and told her dad “That’s who I want to be.” Her dream of golf superstardom came true…

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A protester holds onto the shirt of a fallen comrade, during a crackdown by security forces on demonstrations against the military coup, in Hlaing Tharyar township in Yangon on March 14, 2021. (Photo by STR / AFP)

Exclusive: ASEAN summit on Myanmar crisis set for April 24

ASEAN leaders have agreed to meet and discuss the situation in Myanmar on April 24 at the grouping’s secretariat headquarters in Jakarta, according to a high-level source. Myanmar military junta…

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US soldiers from Second Platoon, Bravo Troop, 33rd Cavalry, 3rd Brigade Combat Team take position during a patrol in Ibrahim Khel village of Khost province on April 11, 2010.(Photo by MASSOUD HOSSAINI / AFP)

Biden to withdraw all US troops from Afghanistan by September 11

President Joe Biden will withdraw all US troops from Afghanistan before this year’s 20th anniversary of the September 11 attacks, finally ending America’s longest war despite mounting fears of a…

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Johnson & Johnson Janssen Covid-19 vaccine (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI / AFP)

US agencies recommend ‘pause’ in use of Johnson & Johnson vaccine over blood clot fears

US health authorities recommended a “pause” Tuesday in the use of the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine “out of an abundance of caution” over potential links to a rare type…

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In this file photo taken on March 31, 2021 this handout photo from the National Task Force-West Philippine Sea (NTF-WPS) via the Philippine Communications Operations Office (PCOO) shows Chinese vessels anchored at Whitsun Reef, some 320 kilometres (175 nautical miles) west of Palawan Island in the South China Sea. (Photo by Handout / various sources / AFP)

Philippines summons Beijing’s envoy over boats in South China Sea

The Philippine foreign ministry said Tuesday it had confronted Beijing’s envoy over the “illegal lingering” of Chinese boats at a contested reef in the South China Sea, stepping up the diplomatic row….

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In this file photo taken on March 12, 2021, protesters hold up the three-finger salute and placards with the image of detained civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi while using their mobile torches during a demonstration against the military coup in Yangon.(Photo by STR / AFP)

Myanmar Journal: Another charge for Suu Kyi, just before the annual Thingyan

(by David Tun in Yangon) The coverage on this live blog has ended — for up-to-date coverage on the Myanmar protest, visit the 16 -30 April Myanmar Journal. April 12…

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April 12, 2021 in Hyderabad. (Photo by NOAH SEELAM / AFP)

WHO warns pandemic at ‘critical point’ as South Asia cases surge

The Covid-19 pandemic has entered a critical phase as infections exponentially increase despite widespread measures aimed at stopping them, the WHO warned, with record case numbers in South Asia triggering…

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Children play with toy guns next to a banner put up by activists in protest against the military coup in Yangon on April 11, 2021. (Photo by STR / AFP)

Russia and China thwarting international response to Myanmar crisis: EU

Russia and China are frustrating the international response to the Myanmar crisis, a top European Union diplomat said Sunday, as the death toll from a military crackdown climbed past 700….

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Milk tea alliance
Screengrab from GIF emoji launched by Twitter

Twitter spotlights Asia democracy movements with #MilkTeaAlliance emoji

Twitter has launched an emoji to spotlight the “#MilkTeaAlliance” online protest movement that has forged links between pro-democracy activists across Asia, the social media giant said Thursday. The alliance —…

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Malaysia’s former prime minister Najib Razak / AFP

Malaysia ex-PM Najib served with bankruptcy notice over tax bill

Malaysia’s former prime minister Najib Razak has been served with a bankruptcy notice for failing to pay more than $400 million in unpaid taxes, a move that the ex-premier described…

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Putin signs law allowing him 2 more terms as Russia’s leader

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday signed a law allowing him to potentially hold onto power until 2036, a move that formalizes constitutional changes endorsed in a vote last year….

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(Photo by Kirill KUDRYAVTSEV / AFP)

Russia fines Twitter for not removing calls to protests

A Russian court on Friday fined Twitter nearly $117,000 for failing to remove calls to opposition protests, as Moscow ramps up pressure against the US tech giant. Authorities in January…

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Taiwan tourists line up for Covid-19 coronavirus tests at Taoyuan International Airport near Taipei on April 1, 2021, before heading to Palau as part of a travel bubble plan. (Photo by Sam Yeh / AFP)

Diplomatic allies Taiwan and Palau begin coronavirus travel bubble

Taiwan and Palau launched a rare holiday travel bubble on Thursday as the two diplomatic allies try to kickstart their battered tourist industries after successfully keeping infections at bay. Around…

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File photo of US President Joe Biden / AFP

Biden sets out ‘once-in-a-generation’ $2 tn infrastructure plan

President Joe Biden on Wednesday unveiled a $2 trillion infrastructure plan aimed at modernizing America’s crumbling transport network, creating millions of jobs and delivering a “once-in-a-generation” investment that will enable…

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(Photo by Brendan Smialowski / AFP)

BioNTech-Pfizer say Covid vaccine 100% effective on 12-15 year olds

BioNTech-Pfizer said Wednesday their vaccine showed 100 percent efficacy against the coronavirus in 12 to 15 year olds, as they eye approval for adolescents to get the jabs before the…

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