Indonesia flood death toll tops 100, dozens still missing

  SENTANI, Indonesia (AFP) — The death toll from flash floods and landslides that tore through Indonesia’s Papua region has topped 100 with dozens more still missing, the disaster agency said Wednesday. Nearly 10,000 people have moved to shelters while at least 104 victims are confirmed to have died and 79 are unaccounted for in the aftermath of the disaster, triggered by heavy rain on Saturday. Scores have suffered injuries, including cuts and broken bones, […]

Indonesia flood death toll rises to 89, dozens missing

  SENTANI, Indonesia (AFP) — At least 89 people are known to have died after flash floods and landslides tore through Indonesia’s Papua region, with the toll expected to rise further as rescuers hunt for dozens still missing, the national disaster agency said Tuesday. Scores have also been injured in the disaster, triggered by torrential rain on Saturday, with some 6,800 people evacuated to temporary shelters. The military has taken up the grim task of […]

Time for N. Korea to take concrete steps: Moon adviser

by Sebastien Berger / Kang Jin-kyu SEOUL, South Korea (AFP) — North Korea should take “actual action” towards giving up its nuclear weapons to break the deadlock in talks with Washington, a top security adviser to the South’s president said, suggesting Seoul’s patience with Pyongyang may be wearing thin. President Moon Jae-in was instrumental in brokering the negotiations between Pyongyang and Washington, seizing on the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea to catalyse a rapid […]

China hits out at ‘abnormal, immoral’ attacks on Huawei

by Damon Wake BRUSSELS, Belgium (AFP) — China’s foreign minister lashed out Monday at what he called “abnormal, immoral” attacks on Huawei amid growing concern, led by the US, that the telecom giant poses a security risk to the West. Wang Yi demanded a “fair and just competition environment” for Chinese firms as he met EU foreign ministers and officials for talks in Brussels. His call comes as Washington steps up pressure on allies, particularly […]

Singaporean couple jailed for ‘worst of its kind’ maid abuse

Singapore (AFP) — A Singaporean couple was on Monday jailed for abusing a Myanmar maid after the pair force-fed her with a funnel, made her eat her own vomit and threatened to kill her family if she reported the maltreatment. In a case described by Singapore prosecutors as “arguably one of the worst of its kind” in the city-state, the married couple — who were sentenced two years ago over the abuse of another maid […]

Indonesia flood death toll hits 77

  SENTANI, Indonesia (AFP) –Flash floods in Indonesia’s eastern Papua province have killed at least 77 people, the disaster agency said Monday as it raised the death toll from 58. More than three dozen people remain missing, while scores have been injured in the disaster, triggered by torrential rain and landslides. “The death toll could still go up with 43 people unaccounted for,” said national disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho. Rescuers battled mud, rocks […]

China’s Xi to visit Italy, France as Rome joins ‘New Silk Road’

BEIJING, China (AFP) — Chinese President Xi Jinping will travel to Italy, Monaco and France this week, the foreign ministry said Monday, with Rome expected to join his global trade infrastructure programme despite reservations in other European countries. Xi will pay state visits from March 21 to March 26, foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said in a statement, without providing more details about his itinerary. An Italian official said last week that Rome would sign […]

Iran accuses West of fuelling Islamophobia after New Zealand massacre

TEHRAN, Iran (AFP) — Iranian President Hassan Rouhani accused Western governments of encouraging Islamophobia on Friday, after the attacks on two mosques in New Zealand that killed 49 worshippers and wounded dozens. In a statement carried by the official government website Rouhani said the shootings showed the need for “all out confrontation against… the Islamophobia pervasive in the West which is unfortunately encouraged by some Western governments.” Rouhani promised Iran’s foreign ministry would “diligently” follow […]

North Korea considering suspending nuclear talks with US

  by Kang Jin-kyu Agence France Presse SEOUL, South Korea (AFP) — North Korea is considering suspending denuclearization talks with Washington after the Hanoi summit between leader Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump ended without agreement, one of its top diplomats said Friday. The warning came amid concerns over the North’s satellite rocket launch site, where some rebuilding activity has been observed in recent weeks, triggering international alarm that Pyongyang might be preparing […]

Turkey’s Erdogan ‘strongly condemns’ New Zealand mosque killings

ISTANBUL, Turkey (AFP) —¬†Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday “strongly condemned” the attack on two mosques in New Zealand that left at least 40 people dead. “I strongly condemn the terror attack against the Al Noor Mosque in #NewZealand and Muslim worshippers. May Allah have mercy on the victims and grant a speedy recovery to the wounded,” the Turkish leader wrote on Twitter in English. His spokesman Ibrahim Kalin had earlier called it a […]

Israel strikes Gaza in response to rocket fire

JERUSALEM, Undefined (AFP) — The Israeli military carried out reprisal strikes against Hamas in Gaza early Friday, hours after rockets were fired from the Palestinian enclave, sources said. Around 30 strikes targeted positions held by the military wing of Hamas, which governs Gaza, and their ally Islamic Jihad, causing significant damage, a Gazan security source told AFP. No injuries or deaths have been reported, the source added. “We have just started striking terror sites in […]

Negligence case over deadly Mumbai bridge collapse

MUMBAI, India (AFP) — Indian police said Friday they had filed a negligence case against Mumbai’s civic and railway authorities after a footbridge collapsed killing six people and injuring dozens more. The bridge, which was under repair, gave away around 7.30 pm (1400 GMT) on Thursday as rush hour commuters made their way into Chhatrapati Shivaji terminus, the city’s main train station. It was the latest accident to highlight creaking infrastructure in India’s financial capital […]