World

Food gardens for urban dwellers in Vanuatu’s capital

More than a hundred people attended a programme in Vanuatu’s capital last week to take up backyard food gardening. The programme, by the regional environment agency SPREP, is an effort to provide more fresh food...

Uneasy calm in Ethiopia after protests, official death toll doubles

ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – More than 166 people were killed during anti-government protests in Ethiopia last week, the government said on Sunday, as the capital and other hotspots remained closely guarded by security forces and a blanket Internet shutdown entered its sixth day. Large protests broke out in Addis Ababa and spread to the surrounding...

DeChambeau wins latest PGA Tour event

Bryson DeChambeau got the result he was looking for after transforming his body. With jaw-dropping drives and some clutch putts, DeChambeau won the Rocket Mortgage Classic by three strokes Sunday for his first victory of the season and sixth overall. DeChambeau shot a 7-under 65 at Detroit Golf Club, birdieing four of the first seven...

Last Covid-19 relief flight lands in Tahiti

The last of nine Covid-19 related relief flights from France has arrived in French Polynesia, bringing in a further 100 people. The French government-sponsored flight landed in Tahiti after a stopover in Canada. The French High Commission said the Air Tahiti Nui plane carried stranded residents and patients who had completed their care in France....

Tunisia’s Ennahdha party to review stance on government

TUNIS (Reuters) – The moderate Islamist party Ennahda will review its stance on Tunisia’s coalition government over an alleged conflict of interests involving Prime Minister Elyes Fakhfakh, the party said on Sunday. Ennahda gave no details of what action it would consider taking, but sources close to the party said the withdrawal of its seven...

Samoa extends Covid-19 state of emergency

Samoa has extended the COVID-19 State of Emergency for another month, taking the country to an unprecedented four-month lockdown. Samoa Observer reports that Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi announced that as long as there is still a threat of the virus reaching Samoa “we will continue to close our borders”. Some of the emergency orders...

In virus-marked vote, Dominican Republic’s ruling party may lose power

SANTO DOMINGO (Reuters) – Millions headed to the polls in the Dominican Republic on Sunday, defying a coronavirus outbreak that had delayed the vote and forced the leading presidential candidate to briefly suspend appearances after falling ill with the disease. Voters attempted to remain distanced in line, all wearing face masks and sometimes face shields...

Vanuatu policeman to pay damages over assault

A Vanuatu police officer has been ordered to pay US$36,000 in damages to the man he assaulted in 2015. The man was a student at Santo’s Matevulu College when he was slapped by an officer so hard his ear drums perforated. The student was among several students detained after they were accused of damaging school...

China reports eight new coronavirus cases in mainland

BEIJING (Reuters) – China reported eight new coronavirus cases in the mainland for July 4, compared with three cases a day earlier, the health authority said on Sunday. Six of the new infections were imported cases, according to a statement by the National Health Commission, while the capital Beijing reported two new cases. There were...

Pandemic or not, hot dogs eaten, records broken on New York’s Coney Island

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A global pandemic could not stop Coney Island’s venerable Fourth of July hot-dog eating competition from going ahead on Saturday, or its reigning men’s and women’s champions from setting new records in their respective divisions. In fact, men’s winner Joey Chestnut said, moving the Nathan’s Famous event to a climate-controlled indoor...

Tokyo scare squad offers drive-in horror shows amid coronavirus fears

TOKYO (Reuters) – A Japanese performance group is starting a run of drive-in horror shows for people who are scared of catching the coronavirus but still want to get close-up frights from ghouls and zombies. Audience members will drive into a garage in Tokyo, one car at a time, and listen to a murder story...

Angolan app gives performers a lifeline – streaming to paying public

LUANDA (Reuters) – When the Angolan government imposed its coronavirus lockdown in late March, local entrepreneur and innovator Claudio Kiala saw a gap in the market when it came to virtual entertainment. Kiala and his team had been developing a performance platform known as Soba Channel App, before the crisis struck, where artists would be...

Greenwood shines as five-star Man United crush Bournemouth

MANCHESTER, England (Reuters) – Manchester United’s three-pronged attack combined to devastating effect as they crushed Bournemouth 5-2 in the Premier League on Saturday to move into the top four and stretch their unbeaten run to 16 games in all competitions. Mason Greenwood shone with two superb goals while Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford and playmaker Bruno...

Kante injury takes gloss of Chelsea win

LONDON (Reuters) – A hamstring injury for N’Golo Kante took some of the gloss off Chelsea’s impressive 3-0 win over Watford on Saturday. Kante picked up the injury in the second half at Stamford Bridge — a potential blow in Chelsea’s battle to seal a top-four finish in the Premier League. The fixtures are coming...

Tiafoe tests positive for COVID-19, withdraws from Atlanta event

(Reuters) – Frances Tiafoe has tested positive for COVID-19 and been forced to withdraw from the All-American Team Cup exhibition tournament in Atlanta, the American said on Saturday. Tiafoe played in the first session on Friday and beat Sam Querrey in straight sets at the event in which the top eight American players are participating....

5th July

Japan braces for return of torrential southern rains that killed 16

TOKYO (Reuters) – Torrential rains that hit Japan’s southern island of Kyushu killed 16 people, with 13 going missing and 17 showing no vital signs, public broadcaster NHK said on Sunday, as the weather agency expects heavy rain to resume by evening. Saturday’s unprecedented rains in the Kumamoto prefecture of central Kyushu unleashed floods and...

New Zealand’s Ardern launches election campaign with promises of jobs, financing

(Reuters) – With promises of extra financing for small businesses and more jobs as a severe economic downturn looms, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Sunday launched her party’s campaign ahead of September general election. Ardern’s rise to become New Zealand’s most popular prime minister in a century, buoyed by her response to the...

Rapper Kanye West announces U.S. presidential bid on Twitter

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – American rapper Kanye West, a vocal supporter of U.S. President Donald Trump, announced on Saturday that he would run for president in 2020 in an apparent challenge to Trump and his presumptive Democratic rival, former Vice President Joe Biden. “We must now realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our...

WHO reports record daily increase in global coronavirus cases, up more than 212,000

(Reuters) – The World Health Organization reported a record increase in global coronavirus cases on Saturday, with the total rising by 212,326 in 24 hours. The biggest increases were from the United States, Brazil and India, according to a daily report here The previous WHO record for new cases was 189,077 on June 28. Deaths remained steady...

China rebukes Canada over criticism of Hong Kong security law

WINNIPEG, Manitoba (Reuters) – China fired back at Canada on Saturday for criticising Beijing’s national security law for Hong Kong, the second rebuke in a week that has added to strains of their bilateral ties. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Friday that Canada was suspending its extradition treaty with Hong Kong due to the...

Florida sees coronavirus cases spike to new daily record

(Reuters) – Florida’s confirmed coronavirus cases rose by a record 11,458 on Saturday, the state’s health department said, the second time in three days that its caseload increased by more than 10,000. In just the first four days of July, 14 states have posted a daily record increase in cases of COVID-19, the disease caused...

Protest marks Moruroa anniversary

A sit-in has been held outside the French High Commission in French Polynesia to commemorate the 54th anniversary of the first nuclear weapons test at Moruroa. The demonstration was organised by the anti-nuclear group Association 193 which again decried the recent law change tightening compensation criteria for those suffering ill-health. The group said most compensation...

LGBT Pride activists protest in Paris against racial injustice

PARIS (Reuters) – A pared-down LGBT Pride march drew thousands of people to the streets of Paris on Saturday, without the colourful trucks blasting out techno music but with powerful slogans demanding racial equality and protesting against police violence. The French capital’s official Pride parade was postponed to November because of the coronavirus epidemic, but...

Tonga government less accountable – Opposition MP

An opposition MP in Tonga says there is now less acountability within the country’s administration. Siaosi Pohiva, the son of the late prime minister, ‘Akilisi Pohiva, wants to continue his father’s push for greater accountability. Campaigns by his father’s administration to wrest control of key appointments, such as the attorney-general and police commander, from King...

Barcelona’s landmark Sagrada Familia reopens for key workers

BARCELONA (Reuters) – Barcelona’s Sagrada Familia reopened on Saturday, giving frontline workers the chance to have the usually tourist-packed landmark to themselves in recognition of their efforts during the coronavirus pandemic. People took photos and listened to audio guides after Archbishop of Barcelona Juan Jose Omella led representatives of healthcare workers into the church. The...

Catalonia curbs movement of 200,000 people after new coronavirus outbreaks

LLEIDA (Reuters) – Police at roadblocks warned motorists they were entering a lockdown zone on Saturday as Spain’s northeastern region of Catalonia reimposed restrictions on more than 200,000 people following several new coronavirus outbreaks. Residents in Segria, which includes the city of Lleida, will not be able to leave the area from 12 noon (1000...

Northern Marianas and Guam record new Covid-19 cases

Nearly a month after registering its last case, the Northern Marianas has reported a positive Covid-19 test, bringing its total infections to 31. Health authorities haven’t released any details about the case but reports say the person was a passenger on a 27 June flight from Guam. The CNMI has concluded quarantining arrivals from Guam...

Fans gather for final showings at Thailand’s much-loved La Scala theatre

BANGKOK (Reuters) – Donning masks and observing social-distancing practices, movie and theatre fans on Saturday bid a final farewell to Thailand’s La Scala theatre in Bangkok, which is set to close its doors in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. The 50-year-old theatre, built in the late modernism architectural style with an Art-Deco interior, has...

American Samoa fono uses Covid federal funds for office space

Lawmakers in American Samoa have confirmed they are receiving Covid-19 funding but that it will go towards finding suitable premises to work. The Senate President and Speaker of the House are getting cheques of $US20,000 and senators and representatives are receiving checks of $US10,000. Governor Lolo Moliga has explained the Fono had wanted to buy...

Washington braces as crowds converge for Trump’s July Fourth fireworks, racial protests

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to converge on Saturday in the heart of Washington, where U.S. President Donald Trump will host an Independence Day fireworks display and military flyover, while protesters will march for racial equality. Disregarding the Washington mayor’s warnings of the risk of gathering as many U.S. states...

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