• Washington DC converted into garrison city ahead of Biden's inauguration as threat looms large
    Washington, January 18 (PTI): Ahead of the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on Wednesday, the American capital has been virtually turned into a garrison city, amidst multiple reports of threats and more armed violence by pro-Trump supporters. In the aftermath of last week's Capitol riots, Washington D.C. is preparing for the scaled down inauguration of the 46th US President with extreme security measures - closing roads, erecting b
  • Afghan-Taliban negotiators meet after delay
    KABUL, JANUARY 18 (IANS): Negotiators representing the Afghan government and the Taliban militant group met in Doha and discussed the agenda of the second round of peace talks, a top official said. The meeting on Sunday came cafter days of delay, TOLO News reported citing Afghan government negotiator Nader Nadery as saying. Over the nine days since the start of the second round of talks, the two sides have held four meetings, including Sunday evening's meeting, at the working
  • SKorean court gives Samsung scion prison term over bribery
    Seoul, January 18 (AP): Billionaire Samsung scion Lee Jae-yong was sent back to prison on Monday after a South Korean court handed him a two and a half-year sentence for his involvement in a 2016 corruption scandal that spurred massive protests and ousted South Korea's then-president. In a much-anticipated retrial, the Seoul High Court found Lee guilty of bribing then-President Park Geun-hye and her close confidante to win government support for a 2015 merger between two Samsung
  • Kremlin critic Navalny detained after landing in Moscow
    Moscow, January 18 (AP): Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was arrested Sunday at a Moscow airport as he tried to enter the country from Germany, where he had spent five months recovering from nerve agent poisoning that he blames on the Kremlin. Navalny's detention at passport control in Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport was widely expected because Russia's prisons service said he had violated parole terms from a suspended sentence on a 2014 embezzlement conviction.
  • 'Rooting hard for you': Will departure notes end with Trump?
    Washington, January 18 (AP): Presidential traditions are usually known for their solemnity and carry the weight of future historical significance. This one began with cartoon turkeys and a reference to lunch. As he was preparing to leave the White House in January 1989, President Ronald Reagan wanted to leave a note for his successor, George H.W. Bush, and reached for a pad emblazoned with a cartoon by humorist Sandra Boynton under the phrase, Don't Let the Turkeys Get You Down.
  • Lahore police launches probe into '279 unnatural deaths'
    Lahore, January 18 (IANS): Police in Lahore have launched an investigation into "279 unnatural deaths" in 2020, a first-of-its-kind initiative, a media report said on Monday. The Dawn news report said "the police have shifted the pending inquiries into 279 unnatural deaths from operations wing to the investigation". "A directive was issued by the capital city police officer (CCPO) to inquire into suicides, accidental, unnatural and suspicious deaths on re
  • New Covid variant detected in Nepal
    Kathmandu, January 18 (IANS): Nepal's Health Ministry has confirmed the detection of cases of the new coronavirus variant, which was first discovered in the UK late last year. Three people whose samples were sent to Hong Kong for testing via gene sequencing have been confirmed to have contracted the mutated varian. A 28-year-old woman and two men aged 32 and 67, were found to have been infected. The woman and the 32-year-old man have already tested negative, while the 67-y
  • Trapped Chinese miners send note to rescuers
    Beijing, January 18 (IANS): Miners trapped for over a week following a blast at a mine China's Shandong province, have sent a note to rescuers shedding light on the situation below. The note, sent on Sunday, said 12 workers are still alive, including four injured, while the state of the other 10 was currently unknown, reports Xinhua news agency. "We are heavily exhausted and in urgent need of stomach medicine, painkillers, medical tape, external anti-inflammatory drugs,
  • Global Covid-19 cases top 95 mn mark: Johns Hopkins
    Washington, January 18 (IANS): In yet another grim milestone, the total number of global coronavirus cases has topped the 95 million mark, while the deaths have surged to more than 2.02 million, according to the Johns Hopkins University. In its latest update on Monday morning, the University's Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) revealed that the current global caseload and death toll stood at 95,003,533 and 2,029,938, respectively. The US is the worst-hit count
  • 73% drop in election misinformation since Trump ban: Report
    San Francisco, January 18 (IANS): The social media ban on outgoing US President Donald Trump has resulted in a massive 73 per cent drop in online misinformation about election fraud, a new report has revealed. The research by the San Francisco-based analytics firm Zignal Labs found that conversations about election fraud dropped from 2.5 million mentions to 688,000 mentions across several social media sites in the week after Trump was banned on Twitter on January 8. Trump and his
  • Kamala Harris to be sworn in as US Vice President by Justice Sonia Sotomayor
    Washington, January 17 (PTI); Kamala Harris, who will script history as the first female, first Black and first South Asian US vice president on Wednesday, will be sworn in by Justice Sonia Sotomayor, the first Hispanic justice in the US Supreme Court. The 58-year-old vice president-elect was inspired by Justice Sotomayor's background, ABC News reported, ahead of the presidential inauguration event on January 20. They have both previously served as former prosecutors -- Harri
  • Cargo ship sinks in the Black Sea; 3 dead, 6 rescued
    Istanbul, January 17 (AP): A cargo ship sank off Turkey's Black Sea coast on Sunday, leaving at least three people dead, Turkish authorities said. Six others were rescued. The transport ministry said the Palau-flagged ship named Arvin had anchored off the port of Bartin in northern Turkey due to bad weather, before breaking into two pieces and sinking. Emergency workers saved at least six crew members and reached the bodies of two others, the ministry's naval branch said
  • Biden releases plan for first 10 days to 'unTrump' US
    New York, January 17 (IANS): US President-elect Joe Biden has announced a masterplan for his first 10 days in office to "un-Trump" the country and focus on the battle against Covid-19, the economy and immigration. His Chief of Staff Ron Klain sent a memo to the senior staff giving details of the plan to undo outgoing President Donald Trump's legacy in many areas and it was released by the transition office to the media on Sunday. "President-elect Biden will tak
  • Uganda says president wins 6th term as vote-rigging alleged
    Kampala, January 17 (AP): Ugandas electoral commission said Saturday that President Yoweri Museveni won a sixth five-year term, extending his rule to four decades, while top opposition challenger Bobi Wine dismissed cooked-up, fraudulent results and officials struggled to explain how polling results were compiled amid an internet blackout. In a generational clash watched across the African continent with a booming young population and a host of aging leaders, the 38-year-old singer-
  • Auspicious Kolam drawings mark kickoff of Biden-Harris inauguration ceremony
    Washington, January 17 (PTI): Kolam, a traditional Indian art form of drawing geometric patterns on the floors as a sign of welcome, was part of the virtual kick-off ceremony of the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden and his deputy Kamala Harris, who traces her origin to Tamil Nadu where these auspicious designs adorn almost every household. In Tamil Nadu, where Harris has roots, women draw Kolams on the ground to invite health and prosperity into houses where they are displa
  • Iran warns US to stop 'illegal actions' against diplomats on American soil
    TEHRAN, JANUARY 17 (IANS): Iran has warned the US to stop "illegal actions" taken against its diplomats on American soil, Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh confirmed. "Iran has officially warned the US that it will sue it before the International Court of Justice if it does not stop its illegal actions against Iranian diplomats in international organisations," Xinhua news agency quoted Khatibzadeh as saying on Saturday. The spokesman noted t
  • Nepalese mountaineers scale K2 for 1st time in winter
    KATHMANDU, JANUARY 17 (IANS): Nepalese mountaineers created history by scaling K2, the second highest peak of the world, for the first time during the winter season, the company which organised the expedition said. "We did it, believe me we did it - journey to the summit never done before. The Karakorum's 'Savage Mountain' been summited in most dangerous season: Winter. Nepalese climbers finally reached the summit of Mt. K2 (Chhogori 8,611m) this afternoon at 17:00
  • 5 dead, 7 hospitalised in suspected carbon monoxide leak in Italy
    ROME, JANUARY 17 (IANS): At least five people died and seven others hospitalised in critical condition in what rescuers said was a probable case of carbon monoxide poisoning at a rest home near Rome, the Italian National Fire Department said. The rest home, called Villa Diamanti, is located in the town of Lanuvio, south of Rome, the Lazio Public Health Service said in a statement on Saturday. "The five deceased were all rest home residents aged between 80 and 99 years,"
  • North Korean parliament to convene to approve Kim''s agenda
    Seoul, January 17 (AP): North Korea's rubber-stamp parliament was scheduled to convene Sunday to pass decisions made by a major ruling party meeting where leader Kim Jong Un vowed maximum efforts to expand his nuclear weapons program in face of what he described as US hostility. The North's official Korean Central News Agency said deputies led by senior official Choe Ryong Hae, president of the Supreme People's Assembly's presidium, laid flowers at the statues of Kim
  • Afghanistan launches polio vaccination targeting 9.9mn kids
    KABUL, JANUARY 17 (IANS): The Afghan Public Health Ministry on Sunday launched a nationwide campaign to administer polio vaccines to 9.9 million children under the age of five. The five-day drive was launched as 56 polio cases were detected in Afghanistan in 2020, reports Xinhua news agency. The Covid-19 pandemic and ongoing insurgency and conflicts have been hindering the efforts to stamp out the infectious disease in the mountainous country as millions of children from are