Musk’s X ‘deceives’ users with blue checks, EU charges

By Raziye AKKOC BRUSSELS, Belgium, July 12, 2024 (AFP) – Tech billionaire Elon Musk’s X platform is misleading users with its blue checkmarks for certified accounts, and is also violating EU content rules, Brussels said Friday, in a finding that could lead to hefty fines. EU regulators are unhappy with the blue badge system under Musk’s ownership since anyone can now obtain it with a premium subscription, whereas before it was reserved for verified accounts […]

Nigeria school collapse kills 16 students: AFP

JOS, Nigeria, July 12, 2024 (AFP) – At least 16 students were killed on Friday when a school in central Nigeria collapsed on pupils taking exams, according to an AFP correspondent. Trapped students were heard crying for help under the rubble after the Saint Academy school in Jos North district of Plateau State fell in on classrooms. Mechanical diggers tried to rescue the victims while parents desperately looked for their children. Officials have so far […]

Biden under pressure from Hollywood’s wealthy donors

By Romain FONSEGRIVES LOS ANGELES, United States, July 12, 2024 (AFP) – What if Hollywood, a key Democratic financial pillar, cut off Joe Biden’s campaign funding? That possibility now looms large after actor George Clooney and other wealthy donors urged the US president to withdraw from the White House race. “I love Joe Biden. But we need a new nominee,” Clooney wrote in a column in the New York Times on Wednesday, after Biden’s disastrous […]

At least three dead as scaffolding collapses in Switzerland

By Elodie LE MAOU, Fabrice COFFRINI LAUSANNE, July 12, 2024 (AFP) – At least three people were killed and eight injured on Friday when scaffolding collapsed off a 19-storey building under construction in the western Swiss city of Lausanne, police said. The scaffolding collapsed shortly before 9:30 am (0730 GMT), falling “like a house of cards”, according to one witness. The entire scaffolding structure on one side of the 60-metre (200-foot) tower came down, sending […]

Suitcases dumped on UK bridge contained remains of two people: police

LONDON, July 12, 2024 (AFP) – Detectives from the UK’s largest police force said Friday that they were leading the manhunt after two suitcases believed to contain the remains of two men were dumped on a famous bridge. Avon and Somerset Police received a report late on Wednesday night of a man with a suitcase acting suspiciously on the Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol, southwest England. Officers arrived at the scene around 10 minutes later, […]

Hungarian airport suspends operation after heatwave damage

  BUDAPEST, July 12, 2024 (AFP) – An airport in eastern Hungary is temporarily closed due to runway damage caused by the scorching temperatures of a heatwave hitting the central European country, its operator said on Friday. Despite a typically temperate climate, Hungary has been experiencing daily highs exceeding 35 degrees Celsius (95 degrees Fahrenheit) in recent days, and temperatures could hit a record high over the weekend. Due to the “continuous thermal stress”, the […]

NATO begins sending F-16 jets in new support for Ukraine

By Shaun Tandon and Max Delany WASHINGTON, July 11, 2024 (AFP) – NATO allies on Wednesday announced they had started transferring F-16 jets to Ukraine while stepping up promises to Kyiv on eventual membership in the alliance, at a 75th anniversary summit clouded by political uncertainties in the United States. With the pomp of the three-day gathering in the US capital, President Joe Biden is aiming to rally the West and also reassure voters amid […]

Philippines hit by 7.1 magnitude earthquake in Mindanao, no tsunami threat detected

Eagle News – On Thursday, July, 11, Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology reported a magnitude 7.1 earthquake in Mindanao, Philippines. The German Research Center for Geosciences (GFZ) said the quake occurred at a depth of 630 km (391.46 miles). While the deep offshore quake is not anticipated to cause damage, aftershocks are likely. There is no threat of a tsunami. The Philippines is situated in the Pacific ‘Ring of Fire’, an area known for […]

Ecuador volcano rumbles, spews ash cloud

QUITO, July 11, 2024 (AFP) – A volcano in central Ecuador spewed a cloud of ash Wednesday that fell on four towns as residents reported hearing rumblings and loud bangs. The Sangay volcano, some 195 kilometers (120 miles) from the capital Quito, has been in a state of near-constant, mainly low-level activity since 1628, according to the Geophysical Institute. In 2021, ashfall from the 5,230-meter (some 17,300-foot) volcano destroyed about 43,000 hectares (over 160,000 acres) […]

NATO meets in Washington as questions swirl over Biden

By Max DELANY WASHINGTON, July 9, 2024 (AFP) – NATO leaders gather Tuesday in Washington for a summit aimed at showing resolve against Russia and support for Ukraine — but the meeting is set to be overshadowed by US President Joe Biden’s fight for political survival. The 81-year-old leader will try to use the three days of pomp marking NATO’s 75th anniversary to reassure allies over US leadership, and his own ability to govern, as […]

18 Filipino seafarers saved after abandoning ship in stormy South African waters

JOHANNESBURG, July 9, 2024 (AFP) – Strong winds and heavy rains have damaged buildings and left thousands of people homeless in South Africa, authorities said, as weather services warned Tuesday that more bad weather was coming. The Cape Town region has been battered by several cold fronts over the past few days, with mountainous areas experiencing rare heavy snowfalls. The Western Cape government said 82 schools were damaged, forcing five to remain closed on Tuesday. […]

Keir Starmer to become UK prime minister after Labour’s landslide victory

By Phil HAZLEWOOD, Peter HUTCHISON LONDON, July 5, 2024 (AFP) – Keir Starmer on Friday will become Britain’s new prime minister, as his centre-left opposition Labour party swept to a landslide general election victory, ending 14 years of right-wing Conservative rule. “The Labour Party has won this general election, and I have called Sir Keir Starmer to congratulate him on his victory,” a sombre-looking Rishi Sunak said after he was re-elected to his seat. “Today, […]