• Nepal shuts all educational institutions as air pollution worsens
    KATHMANDU, MARCH 29 (IANS): The Nepal government on Monday announced it was shutting all educational institutions for the next four days owing to the severe deterioration of air quality in the recent period. The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology said that the increasing levels of air pollution could adversely affect the children's health. A meeting, chaired by Education Minister Krishna Gopal Shrestha, took the decision to close down all education institutions owi
  • Japan, Indonesia seek to improve Myanmar situation
    Tokyo, March 29 (AP): Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi denounced Myanmar's escalating crackdown on pro-democracy protests in talks Monday with his Indonesian counterpart, who is visiting Tokyo for security discussions focusing on China's growing assertiveness in regional seas. Motegi strongly criticised" the growing military crackdown on civilian protesters in Myanmar, and welcomed efforts by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to respond to it, his mi
  • Hundred-year-old Hindu temple in Pakistan's Rawalpindi attacked by unidentified people
    Islamabad, March 29 (PTI): An over 100-year-old Hindu temple undergoing renovation in Pakistan's garrison city of Rawalpindi has been attacked by a group of unidentified people, according to a complaint registered by the police. The incident occurred at Purana Qila area of the city on Saturday when 10 to 15 people stormed the temple at about 7.30 pm and damaged the main door and another door at the upper storey as well as the staircase, according to a complaint made to police.
  • Obama family matriarch has died in a Kenyan hospital at 99
    Nairobi, March 29 (AP): Sarah Obama, the matriarch of former US President Barack Obama's Kenyan family has died, relatives and officials confirmed Monday but did not disclose the cause of death. She was at least 99 years old. Mama Sarah, as the step-grandmother of the former US president was fondly called, was a philanthropist who promoted education for girls and orphans. She passed away around 4 am local time while being treated at the Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Ref
  • Happy Monday: England embarks on major easing of lockdown
    London, March 29 (PTI): British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Monday called on people to remain cautious as he officially lifted the stay-at-home order to allow the first phase of easing the strict COVID-19 lockdown, allowing for more outdoors activities. Johnson said that he hoped that this first phase of his roadmap to ease restrictions would kickstart a "Great British summer of sport" as people would be able to hold outdoor games and sporting activities. But he stress
  • WHO report says animals likely source of COVID
    Beijing, March 29 (AP): A joint WHO-China study on the origins of COVID-19 says that transmission of the virus from bats to humans through another animal is the most likely scenario and that a lab leak is extremely unlikely, according to a draft copy obtained by The Associated Press. The findings offer little new insight into how the virus began to spread around the globe and many questions remain unanswered, though that was as expected. But the report did provide more detail on the
  • Pak starts 5-day anti-polio campaign
    Islamabad, March 29 (IANS): Pakistan on Monday launched a new door-to-door campaign to vaccinate millions of children against polio despite the risks posed by increasing coronavirus infections, an official said. The five-day campaign will target over 40 million children under the age of five, reports dpa news agency. Around 285,000 frontline workers will span out across Pakistan's 156 districts to administer the oral drops while following Covid-19 safety protocols. "C
  • Hundreds of migrants intercepted off the coast of Libya
    Cairo, March 29 (AP): At least 480 migrants were intercepted off Libya by local coast guard forces over the weekend, according to the United Nations'' migration agency. They are among the 4,500 people who have been brought back to Libya this year after attempting the dangerous Mediterranean Sea crossing to Europe, the International Organization for Migration said in a tweet Sunday. Photos posted by the IOM Twitter feed showed workers distributing blankets to migrants afte
  • Pak bans public gatherings to counter 3rd wave
    Islamabad, March 29 (IANS): Pakistan has imposed a complete ban on public gatherings in strengthened efforts to counter the ongoing third wave of the coronavirus pandemic, according to a statement from the National Command and Operation Center (NCOC). All kinds of gatherings, indoor or outdoor, will be banned with immediate effect, Xinhua news agency quoted the statement issued on Sunday ass aying. It added that the ban covers all social, cultural, political, sports and other eve
  • Massive container ship freed from Suez Canal
    Cairo, March 29 (IANS): A massive container ship which had blocked the Suez Canal since March 23 has been freed and re-floated, maritime service provider Inchcape Shipping said on Monday. The Panama-flagged ship, Ever Given, had veered off its course in a single-lane stretch of the canal during a sandstorm. "The MV Ever Given was successfully re-floated at 4.3 a.m.. She is being secured at the moment," Inchcape Shipping tweeted. The high tide on Sunday night helped t
  • 'Indonesia church suicide bombers were newly married'
    Jakarta, March 29 (IANS): The perpetrators of the a suicide bombing outside a church in Indonesia's South Sulawesi province were a newly married couple, police said on Monday. Twenty people were injured when two people on a motorbike detonated explosives as they were being stopped by security guards at the gate of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Cathedral in the provincial capital of Makassar on Sunday, reports dpa news agency. The suspects belonged to the local branch of the milit
  • Biden expresses outrage over civilian killings in Myanmar
    It's terrible. It's absolutely outrageous. And based on the reporting I've gotten, an awful lot of people have been killed totally unnecessarily, Biden said. WASHINGTON, March 29 PTI): US President Joe Biden has expressed outrage over the recent killings of innocent people by the security forces in Myanmar, where military junta overthrew a democratically elected government. “It's terrible. It's absolutely outrageous. And based on the reporting I've gotten
  • Thousands flee into Thailand following Myanmar air strikes
    Yangon, March 29 (AP) Thai authorities along the country's northwestern border braced themselves on Monday for a possible influx of more ethnic Karen villagers fleeing new airstrikes from the Myanmar military. Myanmar military aircraft carried out three strikes overnight on Sunday into Monday, according to Free Burma Rangers, a humanitarian relief agency that delivers medical and other assistance to villagers. The strikes possibly injured one person but caused no apparent fatali
  • Funerals become scenes of Myanmar resistance, more violence
    YANGON, Myanmar, March 29 (AP) — Myanmar security forces opened fire Sunday on a crowd attending the funeral of student who was killed on the bloodiest day yet of a crackdown on protests against last month’s coup, local media reported. The escalating violence — which took the lives of at least 114 people Saturday, including several children — has prompted a U.N. human rights expert to accuse the junta of committing “mass murder” and to criticize t
  • Defence chiefs from 12 nations slam Myanmar violence
    Nay Pyi Taw, March 28 (IANS): Defence chiefs from 12 countries condemned the Myanmar military's violence against peaceful protesters in a joint statement issued on Sunday. The US, the UK, Germany, Italy, Denmark, Greece, the Netherlands, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea and Japan issued the statement a day after dozens of people of people were killed in the deadliest day of protests in Myanmar since the February 1 military coup, reports dpa news agency. "We co
  • Attempts continue to free huge vessel stuck in Suez Canal
    Suez (Egypt), March 28 (AP): Two additional tugboats sped Sunday to Egypt's Suez Canal to aid efforts to free a skyscraper-sized container ship wedged for days across the crucial waterway, even as major shippers increasingly divert their boats out of fear the vessel may take even longer to free. The massive Ever Given, a Panama-flagged, Japanese-owned ship that carries cargo between Asia and Europe, got stuck Tuesday in a single-lane stretch of the canal. In the time since, auth
  • Covid: Putin says Russia could achieve herd immunity by summer end
    MOSCOW, MARCH 28 (IANS): Russian President Vladimir Putin expects that the country will achieve herd immunity against Covid-19 by the end of summer. Putin made the assertion that "this will happen" during a TV interview interview programme while answering a question when the pandemic restrictions in Russia could be lifted and the country would return to a normal life, TASS news agency reported on Sunday. During the programme on Russia's state-run Rossiya-1 TV channe
  • Lankan president says his govt will not succumb to UNHRC pressure
    Colombo, March 28 (PTI): Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on Sunday said the recent UNHRC resolution against his country was the doing of local and foreign forces which do not want Sri Lanka to progress, however, he vowed that his government would not succumb to such pressures. On Tuesday last, the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) adopted a resolution against Sri Lanka's rights record, giving the UN body a mandate to collect evidence of crimes committed during the country&
  • Key players in trial of ex-officer charged in Floyd's death
    Minneapolis, March 28 (AP): Opening statements are set for Monday in the trial of a former Minneapolis police officer charged with murder and manslaughter in George Floyd's death. Derek Chauvin's trial is expected to last about four weeks and it will be streamed online. Floyd, who was Black, was declared dead on May 25 after Chauvin, who is white, pressed his knee on Floyd's neck for about nine minutes while Floyd was handcuffed and pleading that he couldn't breat
  • NASA rules out asteroid Apophis hitting Earth in 2068
    NEW YORK, MARCH 28 (IANS): In a big relief, NASA has ruled out the possibility of asteroid Apophis impacting Earth in 2068, saying that our planet is safe from this notorious space rock for at least a century. The results from a new radar observation campaign combined with precise orbit analysis have helped astronomers conclude that there is no risk of Apophis impacting our planet for the next 100 years at least, NASA said. Discovered in 2004, asteroid Apophis, estimated to be ab