USA-AFRICA | Obama announces USD33B in commitments

  President Barack Obama announced USD33 billion in commitments yesterday aimed at shifting U.S. ties with Africa beyond humanitarian aid and toward more equal economic partnerships. The bulk of the commitments came from private-sector

SPACE | Rosetta probe catches up with comet 

After a journey of 6.4 billion kilometers, Europe’s unmanned Rosetta probe reached its destination yesterday, a milestone in mankind’s first attempt to land a spacecraft on a comet. The decade-long trip was

this day in history: 2003 Bali bomber smiles at guilty verdict

At least 190 people from 21 countries died in the blasts. Most were foreign tourists, nearly half of them from Australia. Amrozi bin Nurhasyim is the first to stand trial for

Offbeat | Aussie commuters tip train cars to aid trapped man

Dozens of people helped rescue a fellow commuter in Australia by pushing against train carriages to free the man whose foot had slipped between the platform and the train. Closed-circuit footage

THE BUZZ: 51 migrants hurt in clashes in French port Calais

Migrants massing at France’s English Channel port of Calais have clashed in overnight battles that left 51 injured — one seriously. Police intervened with tear gas early yesterday to break

World briefs

CHINA’s smog-plagued capital has announced plans to ban the use of coal by the end of 2020 as the country fights deadly levels of pollution, especially in major cities. Beijing’s

ISRAEL | Temporary truce sets stage for talks on Gaza

Israel and Hamas began observing a temporary cease-fire yesterday that sets the stage for talks in Egypt on a broader deal on the Gaza Strip, including a sustainable truce and the rebuilding

UKRAINE | Gov’t troops edge closer to rebel city

Ukrainian troops took control of a checkpoint yesterday on the western edge of the pro-Russian rebel-held city of Donetsk as the government makes further gradual advances to quash separatist forces

This Day in History: 1945 US drops atomic bomb on Hiroshima

President Harry S Truman, announcing the news from the cruiser, USS Augusta, in the mid-Atlantic, said the device was more than 2,000 times more powerful than the largest bomb used

Offbeat | Missing from New Zealand’s ski slopes? Snow

Winter has rolled into its third month in New Zealand, and Nick Jarman says he’s going stir crazy as he stares out at the driving rain on the small ski

THE BUZZ: Snowden’s asylum status in Russia ending

Edward Snowden’s temporary asylum status in Russia will expire at 4am Friday (Macau time), but the former U.S. National Security Agency systems administrator appears set to stay on until authorities

Former enemies unite for WWI commemoration | Forgive not forget

Former enemies united yesterday to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I, with Belgium, France, Britain and Germany standing together in a spirit of reconciliation. Belgian King

World briefs

CHINA McDonald’s will start selling beef and chicken burgers in some Chinese cities again, resuming its full menu almost two weeks after a supplier came under investigation for using expired

CUBA | US sent Latin youth undercover in secret pro-democracy operation

Fernando Murillo was typical of the young Latin Americans deployed to Cuba by a U.S. agency to work undercover. He had little training in the dangers of clandestine operations — or how

This Day in History: 1975 Deadly tree disease spreads

Tests on a tree in Wakefield have confirmed the blight is now present in Yorkshire in the north of England. Previously it had been confined to the south of the country. Three

Offbeat | Big tortoise found strolling in Los Angeles suburb

The Alhambra Police Department joked on its Facebook page that the 68-kilogram reptile was captured Saturday afternoon after a brief pursuit. “The tortoise did try to make a run for it;

THE BUZZ: Emirates halts flights to Guinea over Ebola fears

Emirates, the Mideast’s largest airline, said yesterday that it halted flights to the West African nation of Guinea because of concerns about the spread of the Ebola virus there. The

ANALYSIS | Hong Kong retailers sandwiched by slower sales, high rents

Retail stores in Hong Kong’s commercial districts have been having a difficult time as rents stayed high but sales slowed due to the changing spending patterns of mainland tourists. An average

World briefs

CHINA A suspected dust explosion at an automotive parts factory in eastern China that supplies General Motors has killed at least 69 people and injured more than 180 others, state media report,

ISRAEL| Strike near UN school in Gaza leaves 10 dead

A United Nations school sheltering displaced people in the southern Gaza Strip was hit yesterday by what a U.N. official said appeared to be an Israeli airstrike, as the military

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