World

Wildfire rages north of Athens, one town evacuated

ATHENS (Reuters) – A large wildfire raged out of control north of Athens on Monday, prompting authorities to order the evacuation of a nearby coastal town as a precaution. Strong winds fanned the flames in...

Tens of thousands of Sydney residents told to evacuate as rains flood suburbs

SYDNEY (Reuters) -Fresh evacuation orders were issued for tens of thousands of Sydney residents on Monday after relentless rains triggered floods for the third time this year in some low-lying suburbs. An intense low-pressure system off Australia’s east coast is forecast to bring heavy rain through Monday across New South Wales after several places in...

Man suspected of organising killing of Dutch crime reporter arrested

THE HAGUE (Reuters) -A Polish man suspected of organising the killing of Dutch celebrity crime reporter Peter R. De Vries was arrested on Monday, the Dutch public prosecutor’s office said. “A suspect was arrested, a 27-year-old Polish man, for coordinating the men who carried out the killing,” prosecutor spokesperson Brechtje van de Moosdijk told Reuters....

Ukraine withdraws from battered Lysychansk city; Russia claims major victory

KYIV (Reuters) – Ukraine’s forces have withdrawn from the bombed-out city of Lysychansk, prompting Russia to claim full control of the eastern Luhansk region, a key Kremlin war goal, but President Volodymyr Zelenskiy vowed to regain the lost territory. Ukraine on Sunday said the tactical withdrawal would save the lives of its soldiers who would...

Japan coalition headed for election win, LDP seen gaining seats -poll

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s ruling coalition is headed for victory in a July 10 upper house election, with Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s ruling party likely to extend the number of seats it holds on its own, according to an opinion poll published on Monday. A total of 125 seats are being contested, making 63 a...

Italy’s Draghi to meet 5-Star chief with govt’s future at risk

ROME (Reuters) – Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi and the leader of the 5-Star Movement Giuseppe Conte will meet on Monday to try to resolve tensions which could bring down Draghi’s 16-month old government. Conte, who was Draghi’s predecessor as premier, took the reins of the 5-Star Movement after his own government collapsed in February...

Eastern China cities tighten COVID curbs as new clusters emerge

BEIJING (Reuters) – Cities in eastern China tightened COVID-19 curbs on Sunday as coronavirus clusters emerge, posing a new threat to China’s economic recovery under the government’s strict zero-COVID policy. Wuxi, a manufacturing hub in the Yangtze Delta on the central coast, halted operations at many public venues located underground, including shops and supermarkets. Dine-in...

4th July

Box Office – ‘Minions: The Rise of Gru’ going bananas with projected $129.2 million Independence Day opening

LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) – It’s official — the Minions are back. Universal and Illumination’s “Minions: The Rise of Gru” is setting off fireworks at the Fourth of July box office, projecting a $129.2 million opening over the four-day holiday weekend from 4,400 locations. On a three-day scale, the “Despicable Me” prequel looks to gross $109.4...

Canada’s emergency rooms bear the brunt of a ‘perfect storm’

TORONTO (Reuters) – Health authorities across Canada have cut the hours of hospital emergency departments and urgent care clinics in recent weeks, a move that in some cases may extend through the summer, due to a surge in patients and staff shortages. The situation, clinicians say, is tied to a resurgence of viral infections such...

Germany and Ireland tell UK: No justification for breaking Brexit deal

LONDON (Reuters) – Germany and Ireland on Sunday told Britain there was no legal or political justification for Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s plan to override parts of the Brexit deal governing trade with Northern Ireland. The British parliament is considering a new law which would unilaterally change customs arrangements between Britain and Northern Ireland that...

Visionary British theatre director Peter Brook dies aged 97

LONDON (Reuters) – Peter Brook, one of the world’s most innovative theatre directors who perfected the art of staging powerful drama in bizarre venues, has died aged 97, his publisher said on Sunday. The British director used the world as his stage mounting productions ranging from challenging versions of Shakespeare through international opera to Hindu...

Scottish voters remain split over independence after fresh referendum bid

LONDON (Reuters) – Voters in Scotland remain evenly split over whether or not they support independence from the rest of Britain, a poll published by the Sunday Times showed, days after the Scottish government set out plans for a referendum on the subject next year. Last week, Scotland’s first minister Nicola Sturgeon announced plans for...

Australia’s PM visits Ukraine’s Kyiv region – governor

KYIV (Reuters) – Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese visited three war-ravaged towns in Ukraine’s Kyiv region, the local governor said on Sunday. Governor Oleksiy Kuleba wrote on Telegram that Albanese visited the towns of Bucha, Irpin, and Hostomel, where Ukraine says Russia committed atrocities against civilians. Russia denies the allegations. “Australia supports Ukraine and wants...

Big wins for veteran Singapore singer at Taiwan music awards

TAIPEI (Reuters) – Veteran Singaporean singer Tanya Chua took home four top prizes at Taiwan’s Golden Melody Awards, one of the most prestigious entertainment events in the Chinese-speaking world. Chua, whose first album was the English-language “Bored” in 1997 and whose breakthrough Mandarin record was “Tanya” in 1999, won album of the year for “Depart”,...

NATO invites Finland, Sweden to join, says Russia is a ‘direct threat’

MADRID (Reuters) – NATO invited Sweden and Finland on Wednesday to join the military alliance in one of the biggest shifts in European security in decades after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine pushed Helsinki and Stockholm to drop their traditional of neutrality. NATO’s 30 allies took the decision at their summit in Madrid and also agreed...

China’s Wuxi tightens COVID curbs as new clusters emerge

BEIJING (Reuters) – Wuxi, a Chinese manufacturing hub, tightened its COVID-19 control measures on Sunday after reporting 31 new coronavirus cases, as the country continues battling clusters of the disease under a zero-COVID policy. The city in the Yangtze Delta on China’s central coast, halted operations at many public venues located underground, including shops and...

Taliban’s large gathering ends with calls for international recognition

KABUL (Reuters) – A Taliban-run gathering of thousands of male religious and ethnic leaders ended on Saturday by asking foreign governments to formally recognise their administration, but made no signals of changes on international demands such as the opening of girls’ high schools. The Afghan economy has plunged into crisis as Westerngovernments have withdrawn funding...

3rd July

New York artist turns Brooklyn home into showcase for urban dioramas

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A self-taught New York artist took advantage of the pandemic to create a diverse array of dioramas that depict urban Brooklyn scenes in addition to a host of other more rural settings. Aaron Winston Kinard has worked for decades for Barnard College in Manhattan. Around four years ago, he elevated a...

Zelenskiy adviser concedes key bastion could fall in eastern Ukraine

KYIV/KONSTYANTYNIVKA, Ukraine (Reuters) – Fighting intensified at the weekend for Lysychansk, Ukraine’s last big bastion in the strategic eastern province of Luhansk, and an adviser to President Volodymyr Zelenskiy conceded the city could fall. Russian forces seized Lysychansk’s sister city Sievierodonetsk on the opposite side of the Siverskiy Donets river last month, after some of...

North Korea says U.S.-South Korea-Japan agreement materialises U.S. plan for ‘Asian NATO’

SEOUL (Reuters) – North Korea criticised the United States, South Korea and Japan’s recent agreement on strengthening military cooperation to be a means to materialise a U.S. plan for a military alliance like NATO in the region. North Korea’s foreign ministry spokesperson said as much to a question put by KCNA, the state news agency...

More than a million pack London’s streets for Pride parade

LONDON (Reuters) – More than a million people flocked to central London on Saturday for a record-breaking 50th-anniversary Pride parade. The three-hour-long parade, headed by veterans of the LGBT movement who took part in Britain’s first Pride march, retraced part of the original route of 1972. Organisers said there had been 30,000 participants, The first...

China lashed by year’s first typhoon, record rains forecast

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – China’s first typhoon of the year brought gales and rain to its southern shores on Saturday, as forecasters warned of record rainfall and high disaster risk in provinces including Guangdong, the country’s most populous. Typhoon Chaba, the Thai name for the hibiscus flower, was moving northwest at 15 to 20 km (10...

Philippines President Marcos vetoes economic zone bill championed by sister

MANILA (Reuters) – In one of his first legislative acts, newly-inaugurated Philippines President Ferdinand Marcos Jr has vetoed a bill sponsored by his lawmaker sister that would have created a special economic zone north of the capital, the presidential office said on Saturday. Marcos, 64, who took office on June 30 after winning the May...

Striking Paris airport workers call new walkout on July 8-10

PARIS (Reuters) – Striking Paris airport workers said on Saturday they would stage another walkout at the French capital’s main international hub from July 8-10 to press their pay demands, signalling further disruption for early summer travellers. Ground staff at Roissy-Charles de Gaulle airport have staged a series of strikes to demand a wage hike...

India’s monsoon rains cover entire country but still down on average

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India’s annual monsoon covered the entire country on Saturday, six days earlier than usual, the state-run weather office said, but rain totals are 5% below average so far this season. The monsoon, critical for farm output and economic growth in the world’s second-most populous country, arrived on the coast of the...

Astronaut study reveals effects of space travel on human bones

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A study of bone loss in 17 astronauts who flew aboard the International Space Station is providing a fuller understanding of the effects of space travel on the human body and steps that can mitigate it, crucial knowledge ahead of potential ambitious future missions. The research amassed new data on bone loss...

Hamburg senator warns of hot water rationing if gas shortage becomes acute

BERLIN (Reuters) – The German city of Hamburg will ration hot water for private households and limit the maximum heating temperature in the event of an acute gas shortage, its environment senator said as Germany braces for possible outages of Russian gas imports. Germany moved last month to stage two of its three-tier emergency gas...

China reports 268 new COVID cases on July 1 vs 245 day earlier

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Mainland China reported 268 new COVID-19 cases for July 1, of which 72 were symptomatic and 196 were asymptomatic, the National Health Commission said on Saturday. That compares with 245 new cases a day earlier – 37 symptomatic and 208 asymptomatic infections, which China counts separately. There were no new deaths, keeping...

China to loosen entry restrictions on U.S. citizens, transit via 3rd country now permitted

(Reuters) – China will loosen entry restrictions on U.S. citizens, allowing entrance in case of transit via a third country, notices issued late on Friday by the Chinese embassy in Washington said, relaxing rules imposed in Beijing’s drive to curb COVID-19. China’s “dynamic COVID zero” policy, which aims to minimise the risk of infected travellers...

Tropical storm Bonnie makes landfall near the Nicaragua-Costa Rica border

(Reuters) – Tropical storm Bonnie made landfall near the Nicaragua-Costa Rica border on Friday evening, the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) said. Heavy rainfall is expected across Nicaragua and Costa Rica through Saturday, along with life-threatening flash flooding and mudslides, the center added. The storm is likely to weaken as it crosses land, only to...

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