Four passengers die in ‘unbearable’ heat on Indian train

NEW DELHI, India (AFP) — Four people died in ‘unbearable’ heat while travelling by train in northern India, which has been in the grip of a heatwave for two weeks, officials and passengers said Tuesday. The four died Monday while travelling from Agra — the city of the Taj Mahal — to Coimbatore in the country’s south. “Heat seems to be a factor,” Indian Railways spokesman Ajit Kumar Singh told AFP, “it is really unfortunate”. […]

Indian toddler dies after 110 hours down well

NEW DELHI, India (AFP) — A two-year-old Indian boy stuck in a narrow well for more than four days was pulled out dead on Tuesday, triggering protests over delays in reaching the toddler. The case of Fatehveer Singh captured national attention after he fell into the 33-meter (110 feet) deep well in the Punjab state district of Sangrur while playing on Thursday. The disused well was just 23 centimeters (nine inches) wide, complicating desperate efforts […]

Beating Boris: Race to replace UK’s May kicks off

by Alice RITCHIE LONDON, United Kingdom (AFP) — The contest to succeed Theresa May as Britain’s next leader heated up on Monday, with candidates lining up to define themselves against the “bluff and bluster” of Brexit-backing frontrunner Boris Johnson. Ten Conservative MPs gathered enough support to qualify by Monday’s deadline for the race to replace May, who quit as the party’s leader on Friday over her failure to take Britain out of the European Union […]

Light plane makes emergency landing on Portuguese highway

LISBON, Portugal (AFP) — A light plane made an emergency landing on a highway in Portugal, leaving one woman aboard injured and damaging vehicles on the road, emergency services and local media said. The Flyer Pelican plane, which had been on its way to the town of Sintra landed on the road near Pinhal Novo, in the Lisbon area, the Lusa press agency reported. It clipped three vehicles as it made its emergency landing, causing […]

Huawei denies being bound by Chinese spy laws

by Dmitry ZAKS LONDON, United Kingdom (AFP) — Huawei’s cybersecurity chief told the UK parliament Monday that the Chinese telecoms giant has been advised it was under no obligation to spy for Beijing if so asked by the Communist state. John Suffolk told a committee hearing that Huawei has sought guidance from its attorneys to see if a Chinese law on domestic companies’ cooperation with the government on security matters could force it to conduct […]

Britain’s Tory party set for rollercoaster leadership battle

by Robin MILLARD LONDON, United Kingdom (AFP) — The election of a new British Conservative Party leader is a contest traditionally marked by twists, turns and political backstabbing. The nominations open and close on Monday and the new leader of the center-right governing party will almost certainly take over from Theresa May as Britain’s prime minister. Here is a guide as to what to expect in the coming weeks, where the premiership is a separate […]

One dead as helicopter crash-lands on Manhattan building

by Thomas URBAIN NEW YORK, United States (AFP) — A helicopter crash-landed on top of a high-rise in midtown Manhattan Monday, starting a fire and leaving one person dead as the entire building shook from the impact. Emergency services fanned out around the 54-story building on Seventh Avenue after what was described as a “hard-landing” by a chopper that took off barely 10 minutes earlier from a heliport in the city. The New York fire […]

Prosecutor accuses Argentine bishop close to pope of abuse

  BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — A bishop close to Pope Francis has been formally accused of sexually abusing seminarians, a public prosecutor’s office in Argentina said Friday. The prosecutor’s office in the Argentine province of Salta said prosecutor Mónica Viazzi accused Bishop Gustavo Zanchetta of “aggravated continuous sexual abuse.” This is the first time that a prosecutor has formally accused Zanchetta in his native Argentina. Zanchetta resigned suddenly as bishop of the Argentine city […]

US Supreme Court rejects challenge to regulation of gun silencers

  WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court is rejecting a challenge to federal regulation of gun silencers, just days after a gunman used one in a shooting rampage that killed 12 people in Virginia. The justices did not comment Monday in turning away appeals from two Kansas men who were convicted of violating federal law regulating silencers. The men argued that the constitutional right “to keep and bear arms” includes silencers. Kansas and seven other […]

Disgraced Australian cardinal Pell faces new legal battle over failure to report abuse

  SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — Disgraced Australian Cardinal George Pell is facing fresh legal woes after being named in a civil suit alleging he failed to protect victims of a priest he knew was abusing children. The civil case was filed in the Victoria state Supreme Court on Friday by a man who said he suffered abuse at the hands of Christian Brother Edward “Ted” Dowan when he was a student at a Melbourne college […]

Pakistan ex-president Zardari arrested over graft charges

  ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (AFP) — Former Pakistani president Asif Ali Zardari was arrested Monday after his bail application was rejected in connection with a high-profile money laundering case that saw millions allegedly siphoned out of the country. Zardari, husband of assassinated former prime minister Benazir Bhutto, served as president from 2008 until 2013 and has long been the subject of corruption allegations, and he is widely known in Pakistan as “Mr Ten Percent”. Small scuffles […]

Trump raises tariff threat anew over secret provision in Mexico deal

  WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) — President Donald Trump said Monday a secret provision of the US immigration deal with Mexico will require the approval of that country’s legislature and warned US tariffs will be reinstated if it is not forthcoming. Trump did not say what the provision entails, only that it would be revealed “in the not too distant future and will need a vote by Mexico’s Legislative body.” “We do not anticipate a […]