Harry downplays his candid comments, ‘thrilled’ to be in UK
London : Prince Harry, “thrilled” on being back in the UK after a 20-week deployment in war-torn Afghanistan, downplayed his admission of killing the Taliban saying it was a job “you would expect to do” as a soldier. The 28-year-old Apache co-pilot gunner arrived back yesterday at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire after his tour of duty in Afghanistan. Harry has been on post-deployment ‘decompression’ at a British military base in Akrotiri, Cyprus, since leaving Helmand province on Monday night.
15,000 crocs escape from SAfrican farm
Johannesburg : Around 15,000 crocodiles have escaped from a farm in South Africa amid heavy rains and flooding. The predators sprung from the Rakwena Crocodile Farm in the far north of the country when owners were forced to open the gates to prevent a storm surge. A number have since been recaptured, but at least half remain on the loose, scattered far and wide.
Pak working towards MFN status to India
Islamabad : Pakistan said it is working towards giving Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status to India though a final decision will be made only after talking to all stakeholders and “prioritising the country’s interests”. During question hour in the Senate or upper house of Parliament, Minister of State for Commerce Abbas Khan Afridi said “work was in progress” to grant MFN-status to India. Meanwhile, Pakistan has received Rs 164.3 billion from US over the past 5 years as reimbursement for expenses on the war against terror.
Pak records 103 child measles deaths in 19 days
Karachi : More than 100 children have died of measles in Pakistan this month, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said today, calling it “an alarming outbreak”. “Some 103 Pakistani children have died from January 1 to January 19 this year because of the post-measles complications such as pneumonia, post-measles encephalitis and diarrhoea,” said WHO spokeswoman Maryam Yunus.
Shakespeare’s sonnets encoded in DNA
London : A genetic storage device has been used to ‘download’ all 154 of Shakespeare’s sonnets on to strands of synthetic DNA, in a breakthrough which could solve the problem of storing the ever-growing mountain of data. Scientists were able to decode the information and reproduce the words of the Bard with complete accuracy.
Assange hits out at WikiLeaks movie
London : WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange hit out at a Hollywood film about his secret-spilling website, calling the movie “a massive propaganda attack”. Assange revealed that he had acquired a copy of the script for “The Fifth Estate”, due to be released in November. “It is a lie upon lie. The movie is a massive propaganda attack on WikiLeaks and the character of my staff,” the Australian Internet activist said.
Dead woman, 101, comes alive at funeral
Beijing : A 101-year-old Chinese woman who was about to be put into a coffin by her family after being found ‘dead’ by daughters a day ago, came alive before all mourners gathered for the funeral ceremony. Peng Xiuhua had turned bed-ridden after a fall. Her daughters noticed her body had turned stiff. As they could not feel any breathing or heartbeat in her, they presumed her to be dead. As villagers cleaned her body before putting it into the coffin in the afternoon, Peng opened her eyes while greeting all with her pet words: “Here you come.”
Woman jailed for 96 years is freed
London : A French woman who was initially sentenced to 96 years in jail by a Mexican court over a kidnapping in 2005 has been freed after Mexico’s Supreme Court ruled that her rights were violated. Florence Cassez, now 38, was arrested on December 8, 2005 at a ranch near Mexico City where several hostages were found. She denied knowledge of the kidnappings, carried out by a gang – the Zodiacs – led by her Mexican then-boyfriend Israel Vallarta, who confessed to his crime, BBC reported.
7 Qaeda suspects killed in drone strike
Sanaa : Seven suspected Al-Qaeda members, including two Saudis, were killed in a US drone attack in a village east of the Yemeni capital. Four missiles targeted the vehicle on the road link Marib province with the capital, a source said, giving a death toll of six. Amid an escalation in such attacks, five suspected Al-Qaeda militants were killed on Tuesday.