Iran quake

DUBAI – A magnitude 5.3 earthquake hit western Iran on Sunday, injuring at least 38 people. Most of the 38 were released after receiving treatment in hospitals in the affected province of Kermanshah. Most of the injuries were minor, with some people being hurt on the head by falling items.

Hotel collapses

NEW DELHI – Ten people were killed and two were injured when a four-storey hotel collapsed in a crowded part of the central Indian city of Indore late on Saturday. Rescue operations were complete and no other casualties were likely.

MP warns

VANUATU’S Minister of Home Affairs Andrew Napuat has warned all MPs not to interfere with the work of Operation Gateway which is targeting overstayers. Hundreds of foreigners are alleged to have overstayed or have issues with their visas and work permits.

Election date

KABUL – Long-delayed Afghan parliamentary and district council elections should be possible this year despite major security and logistical challenges, Afghan election authorities said on Sunday as they confirmed October 20 as the date of the vote. President Ashraf Ghani has vowed to hold the elections before presidential elections next year.

Death sentence

DUBAI – A Kuwaiti court has sentenced a Lebanese man and his wife to death after they were convicted in absentia of killing a Filipina maid in a case that triggered a crisis between the Philippines and the Gulf Arab state. Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte last month ordered workers in Kuwait to return home.

Assault charge

ALOFI – Niue cabinet minister, Billy Talagi, has been charged with assaulting fellow MP Terry Coe. Mr Coe had complained to police that Talagi, who is the Justice, Health and Education Minister, punched him in the face after a heated debate in parliament.

Refugee boat

BANGKOK – A boat with Rohingya refugees restocked with essential supplies at an island in southern Thailand on Sunday, amid signs that overcrowding in Bangladeshi camps could prompt many others to make similarly perilous sea crossings. About 700,000 Rohingya Muslims crossed the border from Myanmar’s Rakhine State into Bangladesh after militant attacks in August.

Gaza inquiry

GAZA/JERUSALEM – Israel’s defence minister rejected on Sunday calls for an inquiry into the killing of 15 Palestinians by the military during a Palestinian demonstration that turned violent on Friday at the Gaza-Israel border. Hamas, the dominant Palestinian group in Gaza, said five of the dead were members of its armed wing.

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