International

China’s attempt to raise Kashmir issue on Pak’s behalf at UNSC fails again

CHINA’S latest attempt to raise the Kashmir issue at the UN Security Council (UNSC) on Pakistan’s behalf has failed, with an overwhelming majority of the body expressing the view that it was not the right forum to discuss the bilateral issue between India and Pakistan. China, Pakistan’s ‘all-weather ally’, on Wednesday made the fresh pitch to raise the Kashmir issue under “other matters” during closed consultations in the Security Council Consultations Room. The overwhelming majority of the 15-member ..

Jaishankar holds talks with Iranian Minister Javad Zarif

EXTERNAL Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and his Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif on Thursday held extensive talks on the fast-evolving situation in the Gulf region in the wake of frayed Iran-US ties over the killing of Commander Qasem Soleimani. Zarif apprised Jaishankar about the overall situation and Tehran’s position on it in the meeting held over breakfast, officials said. In a statement, the External Affairs Ministry said the two sides exchanged views on regional and global issues of mutual interest, ..

Frosty India-Pak ties impacted Afghan tremendously: Karzai

ASSERTING that the “unfortunate state” of the Indo-Pak relationship has impacted Afghanistan tremendously, former Afghan president Hamid Karzai on Thursday said maintaining a balance in ties with the two neighbours has been very difficult for his country. Karzai also said dialogue with the Taliban was the way forward in Afghanistan, asserting that, “it isn’t our war. It is not our conflict, it is somebody else’s conflict.” ..

21st to be an Indian century: Jeff Bezos

MAKING major investment announcements for small and medium businesses (SMB), Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos on Wednesday said that the 21st century will be the century of India. Speaking at the Amazon SMBhav event here, Bezos announced that Amazon would invest $1 billion in digitising SMBs in the country. He further said that the e-commerce major would use its global footprint to export Made in India goods worth $10 billion by 2025...

7-bn-year-old stardust in meteorite discovered

SCIENTISTS have discovered the oldest solid material ever found on Earth -- seven-billion-year-old stardust trapped inside a meteorite. This stardust provides evidence for a ‘baby boom’ of new stars that formed seven billion years ago, contrary to thinking that star formation happens at a steady, constant rate. The meteorite fell 50 years ago in Australia...

India can play a role in de-escalating tensions in Gulf: Iran Foreign Minister

INDIA can play a role in de-escalating tensions in the Gulf region as New Delhi is an important player, Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, who was on India visit for the Raisina Dialogue, said on Wednesday. His remarks come amid tensions between the US and Iran over the killing of Iranian General Major General Qasem Soleimani. India has been maintaining that it would like the situation to de-escalate as soon as possible and the country has been in touch with key players, including Iran, United ..

World’s oceans were the warmest in 2019: Study

THE world’s oceans were the warmest in 2019 than any other time in recorded human history, especially between the surface and a depth of 2,000 metres, according to a study. The study, published in the journal Advances in Atmospheric Sciences, also found that the past ten years have been the warmest on record for global ocean temperatures, with the last five years holding the highest record...

US removes China’s label as currency manipulator

THE United States has removed the currency manipulator label it imposed on China last summer, in a sign of easing tensions between the two economic powers after nearly two years of conflict. Just two days before President Donald Trump is set to sign a “phase one” trade agreement with China, the US Treasury said in its semi-annual report to Congress that the yuan has strengthened and Beijing is no longer considered a currency manipulator...

Iran makes first arrests over Ukrainian airliner downing

IRAN on Tuesday announced its first arrests over the shooting down of a Ukrainian airliner in Tehran last week, after a third night of angry protests over the disaster. The Ukraine International Airlines plane was brought down by a missile shortly after takeoff on Wednesday, killing all 176 passengers and crew on board. Tehran for days denied Western claims based on US Intelligence that the Boeing 737 had been downed by a missile. It came clean on Saturday when Revolutionary Guards aerospace commander ..

Pakistan top court annuls Musharraf’s death penalty

IN A major relief for Pakistan’s self-exiled former military dictator, a top court here on Monday declared his “complaint and trial” in the high treason case as “unconstitutional” leading to the annulment of his death penalty by a special tribunal...

Wanted: Girlfriend to fly to the Moon with Japanese billionaire

A JAPANESE billionaire has launched an online wanted ad for a girlfriend who will fly around the Moon with him on a SpaceX rocket. Yusaku Maezawa, who recently announced his break-up with a Japanese actress, is accepting applications from “single women aged 20 or over” who want to enjoy life to the fullest. The matchmaking exercise is being turned into a TV show for a web streaming service. The flamboyant entrepreneur said he agreed to the idea due to loneliness in middle age...

Iran agrees to de-escalation amid rising tensions with US

QATAR’S Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani met Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani, the country’s supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei and other senior leaders on Sunday and agreed that de-escalation and dialogue were the only solutions to rising tensions in the Middle East between the United States and Tehran. Qatar and Iran agreed that de-escalation was the “only solution” to regional tensions, ‘Al Jazeera’ quoted Sheikh Tamim as saying after the meeting with Rouhani...

NASA satellite reveals more plants are growing around Mount Everest

RESEARCHERS have found that plant life is growing and expanding around Mount Everest and across the Himalayan region as the area continues to experience the consequences of global warming. According to the study, published in the journal Global Change Biology, research team from University of Exeter in UK, used satellite data to measure the extent of subnival vegetation - plants growing between the treeline and snowline - in this vast area...

8 rockets hit Iraq base hosting US troops

A VOLLEY of rockets slammed into an Iraqi airbase north of Baghdad where US forces have been based, wounding four local troops, the Iraqi military said on Sunday. Its statement said eight Katyusha-type rockets landed on Al-Balad airbase, wounding two Iraqi officers and two airmen. Al-Balad is the main airbase for Iraq’s F-16s, which it bought from the US to upgrade its air capacities...

Indian-American among NASA’s new astronauts; all set to conquer Moon, Mars

RAJA Jon Vurputoor Chari, an Indian-American US Air Force colonel, is among 11 new NASA graduates who have successfully completed their over two years’ of basic astronaut training and are all set to be a part of the space agency’s ambitious future missions to the International Space Station, Moon and Mars. The successful astronauts were selected among 18,000 applicants in 2017 after NASA announced its Artemis programme. Chari, 41, was selected by NASA to join the 2017 Astronaut Candidate Class. He ..

Unintentionally shot down Ukrainian airliner: Iran

IRAN on Saturday said it unintentionally shot down the Ukrainian airliner that crashed this week killing 176 people, calling it an “unforgivable mistake”. The Ukraine International Airlines plane came down on Wednesday shortly after Iran launched missiles at bases hosting American forces in Iraq in response to the killing of Qasem Soleimani, one of Iran’s top Generals, in a US drone strike. “The Islamic Republic of Iran deeply regrets this disastrous mistake,” Iranian President Hassan Rouhani tweeted...

Iran sending messages to militias not to move against American targets: Pence

VICE President Mike Pence has claimed that the US has received some “encouraging Intelligence” that Iran has asked its militia not to move against American targets or civilians after the assassination of a top commander of its powerful Revolutionary Guards. Pence’s remarks came after US President Donald Trump said in an address on Wednesday that no Americans were harmed in the attack by Iran on US bases in Iraq. Iran launched 22 ballistic missiles in a pre-dawn attack on Wednesday targeting at least ..

US, Iran step back from the brink; region still on edge

THE US and Iran stepped back from the brink of possible war on Wednesday as President Donald Trump signalled that he would not retaliate militarily for Iran’s missile strikes on Iraqi bases housing US troops. No one was harmed in the strikes, but US forces in the region remained on high alert. Speaking from the White House, Trump seemed intent on deescalating the crisis, which spiralled after he authorised the targeted killing last week of Iran’s top General, Qassem Soleimani...

US troops must leave: Iraq PM

IRAQ’S outgoing Prime Minister said on Tuesday that the United States has no alternative and must pull its troops out of the country, or else face an impending crisis, as the remains of a senior Iraqi militia commander killed in a US strike was brought to Iraq from Iran for burial. Adel Abdul-Mahdi, who resigned in November amid mass anti-Government protests, said Iraq wants a US troop withdrawal to avoid further escalation as tensions soar between American and Iran. His comments came just days after ..

Iran strikes two US bases in Iraq with 22 ballistic missiles

IRAN launched over a dozen of ballistic missiles targeting at least two bases where US military and coalition forces’ are stationed in Iraq, which Tehran said was a “slap in the face” of America. According to Iranian State TV, the attacks were in revenge for the killing of the commander of Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guards, General Qasem Soleimani, in a US drone strike on Friday, which was ordered by President Donald Trump. While the Iranian State television claimed that “at least 80 terrorist ..

Any peace initiative from India is most welcome: Iran envoy

IRAN will welcome any peace initiative by India to de-escalate tensions with the US following the killing of Iranian military Commander Qasem Soleimani, the Iranian envoy here said on Wednesday while asserting that his country wants peace not war. Iran’s Ambassador to India Ali Chegeni also expressed the hope that there would be no further escalation in hostilities between his country and the US...

176 killed as Ukraine passenger jet crashes in Iran

A UKRAINIAN airliner carrying 176 people from seven countries crashed shortly after take-off from Tehran on Wednesday, killing all on board. The vast majority of the passengers on the Boeing 737 flight from Tehran to Kiev were non-Ukrainians, including 82 Iranians and 63 Canadians, officials said. The crash occurred with tensions high in the Middle-East and shortly after Tehran launched missiles at bases in Iraq housing US troops. But there was no immediate indication of foul play and Ukrainian President ..

Geopolitical tensions at their highest level this century: UN

UNITED NATIONS, AMID escalating US-Iran tensions over the killing of Iran’s most influential general Qassim Suleimani, UN chief has voiced concern over the geopolitical tensions, saying such conflicts are at their highest level this century and nations are taking unpredicted decisions that have a profound risk of miscalculation. “The New Year has begun with our world in turmoil. We are living in dangerous times,” UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres told reporters here on Monday. “Geopolitical tensions ..

‘Planet hunter satellite TESS finds Earth-sized world in Goldilocks zone’

NASA said on Monday that its planet hunter satellite TESS had discovered an Earth-sized world within the habitable range of its star, which could allow the presence of liquid water. The planet, named ‘TOI 700 d’, is relatively close to Earth -- only 100 light years away, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory announced during the annual American Astronomical Society meeting in Honolulu, Hawaii. “TESS was designed and launched specifically to find Earth-sized planets orbiting nearby stars,” said Paul Hertz, ..

Iran dubs US forces as terrorists for killing Gen

IRAN’S Parliament passed a Bill on Tuesday designating all US forces “terrorists” over the killing of a top Iranian military commander in a US strike last week. Qassem Soleimani, the popular head of the Revolutionary Guards’ foreign operations arm, was killed in a US drone strike outside Baghdad airport on Friday, ratcheting up tensions between the arch-foes. Under the newly adopted Bill, all US forces and employees of the Pentagon and affiliated organisations, agents and commanders and those who ..

Stampede kills 50 at funeral for Iran General

A STAMPEDE erupted on Tuesday at a funeral procession for a top Iranian General killed in a US airstrike last week, killing 50 people and injuring 190 others, State television reported. According to the report, the stampede took place in Kerman, the hometown of Revolutionary Guard Gen Qassem Soleimani, as the procession got underway. Initial videos posted online showed people lying lifeless on a road and others shouting and trying to help them. Iranian State TV gave the casualty toll in its online ..

Weeping Iran supreme leader, a sea of mourners pray over slain general

WEEPING amid wails from a crowd of hundreds of thousands of mourners, Iran’s supreme leader on Monday prayed over the remains of a top Iranian General killed in a US airstrike in Baghdad, an attack that’s drastically raised tensions between Tehran and Washington. The targeted killing of Iranian Revolutionary Guard Gen. Qasem Soleimani already has seen his replacement vow to take revenge...

Iran completely abandons 2015 nuclear deal

AS rift deepens between Iran and the United States after the latter killed Iran’s senior military commander Qassem Soleimani, Tehran on Sunday announced that it was abandoning its last obligation under the 2015 nuclear deal which is to limit the number to centrifuges. “By taking the fifth step in reducing its obligations, Iran is abandoning the last key practical limitation under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, which is dealing with the number of centrifuges,” the Iranian Government in a statement ..

Mourners throng as Soleimani’s remains return

A TIDE of mourners flooded the Iranian city of Ahvaz on Sunday, weeping and beating their chests in homage to top General Qasem Soleimani who was killed in a US strike in Baghdad. “Death to America,” they chanted as they packed the streets and filled a long bridge spanning a river in the southwestern city, where Soleimani’s remains arrived from Iraq before dawn...

Will target 52 sites if Iran retaliates, warns Trump

WASHINGTON PRESIDENT Donald Trump has warned Iran that the US has identified 52 possible targets in the country and will hit it harder than ever before if Tehran, which has vowed “severe revenge”, carries out any attack against America to avenge the killing of top military commander Qasem Soleimani. Major General Soleimani, 62, the head of Iran’s elite al-Quds force and architect of its regional security apparatus, was killed when a US drone fired missiles into a convoy that was leaving the Baghdad ..

US to deploy thousands of additional troops to Middle East: Defence official

THE United States will deploy thousands of additional troops to the Middle East, amid rising tensions with Iran, following airstrikes that killed Iranian commander Qasem Soleimani, informed a US defence official. Pentagon has also confirmed the additional deployment of troops from a US’ Immediate Response Force unit, reported CNN. Earlier it was reported that the US has deployed 750 troops from a similar unit following the attack on US violent protest at the US embassy in Baghdad...

Iranian General Soleimani made death of innocent people his ‘sick passion’: Trump

US PRESIDENT Donald Trump has said Iranian General Qasem Soleimani had made the death of innocent people his “sick passion” and contributed to terrorist plots as far away as New Delhi and London, a day after ordering the drone attack that killed the powerful Revolutionary Guards commander in Iraq. Soleimani, 62, the head of Iran’s elite al-Quds force and architect of its regional security apparatus, was killed when a drone fired missiles into a convoy that was leaving the Baghdad International Airport ..

Fresh airstrike on pro-Iran convoy in Iraq

A FRESH airstrike hit pro-Iran fighters in Iraq early Saturday, as fears grew of a proxy war erupting between Washington and Tehran a day after an American drone strike killed a top Iranian general. The killing of Quds Force commander Major General Qasem Soleimani in Baghdad on Friday was the most dramatic escalation yet in spiralling tensions between Iran and the United States, which pledged to send more troops to the region -- even as President Donald Trump insisted he did not want war...

Top Iranian General killed in US drone strike

General Soleimani, the head of Iran’s elite al-Quds force was killed when in a drone attack on a convoy that was leaving Baghdad Airport on Friday Deputy chief of Iraq’s paramilitary force and some local Iran-backed militias also killed Military Action carried out at the direction of Trump, says PentagonWASHINGTONGENERAL Qasem Soleimani, the powerful commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, was killed in a US drone strike in Iraq to protect American personnel abroad, the Pentagon ..

Stones pelted at Nankana Sahib Gurudwara in Pak

ISLAMABADAN ANGRY group of local residents pelted stones at Gurdwara Nankana Sahib in Pakistan on Friday evening.As per the initial reports, the group was led by the family of a boy who had allegedly abducted Sikh girl Jagjit Kaur, daughter of gurudwara’s pathi. Akali Dal MLA Manjinder Singh Sirsa shared the video which, he said, showed an angry Muslim mob shouting anti-Sikh slogans outside Nankana Sahib.   “Live footage from Nankana Sahib where an angry Muslim mob is outside ..

Iran warns of ‘severe revenge’

TEHRANIRAN warned of “severe revenge” and said arch-enemy the United States bore responsibility for the consequences after killing one of its top commanders, Qasem Soleimani, in a strike Friday outside Baghdad airport. Iranians hold posters of General Qasem Soleimani during a demonstration in the capital Tehran on Friday. (AFP)  The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps confirmed the commander of its Quds Force foreign operations arm had been killed by US forces in Baghdad, ..

Oil price jumps amid rising tension

Benchmark for crude oil jumped 4.1 per cent, or $2.70, to $68.95 a barrel in London tradingLONDONTHE price of oil surged Friday as global investors were gripped with uncertainty over the potential repercussions after the United States killed Iran’s top general.   News that Gen. Qassem Soleimani, head of Iran’s elite Quds Force, was killed in an air attack at the Baghdad international airport prompted expectations of Iranian retaliation against US and Israeli targets. In ..

17% of babies to be born globally on Jan 1 will be Indian: UNICEF

AN estimated 67,385 babies will be born in India, in 2020 on New Year’s Day, UNICEF said on Wednesday. Indian babies will account for 17 per cent of the estimated 3,92,078 babies to be born globally on New Year’s Day. Fiji in the Pacific will most likely deliver 2020’s first baby. The US, its last. Globally, over half of these births are estimated to take place in eight countries. India with 67,385 tops the list followed by China at 46,299, Nigeria -- 26,039, Pakistan -- 16,787, Indonesia -- 13,020, ..

Indian-Americans hold events in New York in support of CAA

MEMBERS of the Indian diaspora held events at different places, including the iconic Times Square, here to express their support for the amended Citizenship Act, terming it as a historic step taken by the Indian Government. According to the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), members of Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian communities who have come from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan till December 31, 2014 following religious persecution there will get Indian citizenship. A group of ..

Mars 2020 rover to search for ancient life on red planet, prepare for human missions

THE Mars 2020 rover, which sets off for the Red Planet next year, will not only search for traces of ancient life, but pave the way for future human missions, NASA scientists said on Friday as they unveiled the vehicle...

Massive truck bomb kills 78 in Somalia

A TRUCK bomb exploded at a busy security checkpoint in Somalia’s capital on Saturday morning, killing at least 78 people including many students, authorities said. It was the worst attack in Mogadishu in more than two years, and witnesses said the force of the blast reminded them of the devastating 2017 bombing that killed hundreds...

China digging tunnels near disputed mountain in Ladakh

CHINA has upped the ante against India’s security establishment by massively enhancing its military infrastructure in the bordering areas in Ladakh that have witnessed skirmishes between the forces of the two countries. China’s People’s Liberation Army has started carrying out military infrastructure development work near the Pangong lake in Ladakh region, a Defence Ministry source said on Thursday. The PLA has set up tents and has constructed underground tunnels and are constructing more tunnels ..

Five reasons why COP25 climate talks in Madrid failed

PARISTHE climate summit in Madrid earlier this month did not collapse - but by almost any measure it certainly failed.Five years after the fragile UN process yielded the world’s first universal climate treaty, COP25 was billed as a mopping-up session to finish guidelines for carbon markets, thus completing the Paris Agreement rulebook.  Activists hold a rally on stage at the UN COP25 climate negotiations in Madrid, calling for more aggressive cuts to emissions and more international ..

After Google, Twitter warns Indian users about data breach

IN AN extremely stressful year for social media users who have been bugged several times this year, Twitter on Saturday admitted a malicious code was inserted into its app by a bad actor that could have compromised several Android users’ information worldwide, including in India. Some users in India woke up to an email from Twitter, warning them to update the app for Android and immediately change the password. ..

‘Ghani tops Afghan presidential polls’

AFGHANISTAN’S President Ashraf Ghani was on track to win a second term on Sunday, after election officials announced he had scored a majority in the presidential polls. But despite Ghani’s apparent clean win, the fallout from the bitterly contested September 28 election looked set to continue, with top rival Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah saying he would contest the result. ..

Doval, Chinese Foreign Minister hold talks to resolve boundary issues

INDIA and China on Saturday agreed that it is important to maintain peace and tranquillity in the border areas and stressed on approaching the boundary issue from the strategic perspective of bilateral ties. ..

Earth’s innermost layer is capped by “iron-snow”: Study

THE Earth’s deepest layer, the inner core, is capped by snow made of tiny particles of iron, which are much heavier than the snowflakes seen in the atmosphere, a new study says. According to the study, published in the journal JGR Solid Earth, the iron-snow falls from the molten outer core, and piles up on top of the inner core, creating stacks up to 200 miles thick which cover the innermost layer of the planet. The researchers, including those from the University of Texas at Austin in the US, studied ..

Earth’s magnetic North Pole moving towards Siberia

OUR planet is never still and its poles are on a move. The geographic north pole is in the same place it always was, but its magnetic counterpart that we know as the ‘N’ on the compass is now drifting from the Canadian Arctic towards Siberia at record-breaking speeds that has scientists puzzled. Although the pace of the movement is remarkable, the movement itself isn’t. Due to fluctuations in the flow of molten iron within the Earth’s core that affects Earth’s magnetic field, the North pole is never ..

UK confirms new fast-track visa for doctors from countries such as India

THE UK Government on Thursday confirmed plans to introduce a new visa for qualified doctors and nurses from countries around the world, including India, to address workforce shortages in the state-funded National Health Service (NHS). Prime Minister Boris Johnson had made references to such a new so-called “NHS visa” on the election campaign trail, which was confirmed as part of the Queen’s Speech in Parliament on Thursday – the formal process of Queen Elizabeth II laying out the parliamentary agenda ..

Modi, Portuguese PM, discuss broader roadmap for strengthening bilateral ties

PRIME Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday met his Portuguese counterpart Antonio Costa and discussed broader roadmap for strengthening bilateral relations in areas such as defence, science and technology and trade. Costa is visiting India on Modi’s invitation to attend the second meeting of the organising committee for the celebrations of the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi...

US House favours Donald Trump’s impeachment by 230-197 votes

DONALD Trump was impeached by the House of Representatives on Wednesday, charging the unfazed US President with abuse of power and obstructing Congress, making him the third President to face the ignominy of a bruising Senate trial, months before he stands for re-election. After some 11 hours of fierce arguments between Opposition Democrats and the ruling Republicans over Trump’s conduct with his Ukrainian counterpart, lawmakers voted almost entirely along party lines to impeach the 73-year-old President, ..

India, US agree to expand bilateral cooperation at second 2+2 dialogue

INDIA and the US have agreed to deepen their bilateral cooperation in areas of defence, counterterrorism and trade, and to work with like-minded countries for a free and open Indo-Pacific region. The decisions were taken as the second India-US 2+2 dialogue concluded here. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo along with Defense Secretary Mark Esper hosted their Indian counterparts External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh for the dialogue at the Foggy Bottom headquarters ..

Indian scientists see new magnetic explosion on Sun

USING images from NASAs Solar Dynamics Observatory, a team of scientists including those from the Indian Institute of Technology (BHU), Varanasi and the Indian Institute of Astrophysics in Bengaluru has observed a magnetic explosion the likes of which has never been seen before...

Musharraf sentenced to death for high treason

PAKISTAN’S former dictator General Pervez Musharraf was on Tuesday sentenced to death in absentia in the high treason case for subverting the Constitution in 2007, drawing a sharp reaction from the powerful military which has ruled the coup-prone country for nearly half its 72-year history. A three-member bench of the special court, headed by Peshawar High Court Chief Justice Waqar Ahmad Seth, pronounced the verdict in the landmark case launched in 2013 against the former Pakistan Army chief by the ..

Sold to China as a bride, she came home to Pak on the brink of death

SOLD by her family as a bride to a Chinese man, Samiya David spent only two months in China. When she returned to Pakistan, the once robust woman was nearly unrecognisable: malnourished, too weak to walk, her speech confused and disjointed. “Don’t ask me about what happened to me there” was her only reply to her family’s questions, her cousin Pervaiz Masih said. Within just a few weeks, she was dead. David’s mysterious death adds to a growing body of evidence of mistreatment and abuses against Pakistani ..

Pak court indicts Saeed for terror financing

HAFIZ Saeed, the Mumbai terror attack mastermind and chief of the banned JuD, was indicted on Wednesday by a Pakistani anti-terrorism court here on terror financing charges, amidst intense international pressure on Islamabad to bring him to justice. The anti-terrorism court (ATC) Lahore indicted Saeed and three of his top aides Hafiz Abdul Salam bin Muhammad, Muhammad Ashraf and Zafar Iqbal on terror financing charges. ATC Judge Arshad Hussain Bhutta directed the prosecution to produce the witnesses ..

‘India among top 10 countries with higher climate performance’

INDIA, for the first time, ranks among the top 10 in this year’s Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) presented on Tuesday at the COP25 climate summit here. The current levels of per capita emissions and energy use in India, ranked 9th in the ‘high category’, are still comparatively low and, along with ambitious 2030 targets, result in high ratings for the green house gas (GHG) emissions and energy use categories, the report released here in the Spanish capital. However, despite an overall high ..

Ethiopian PM receives Nobel Peace Prize; urges unity against hatred

ETHIOPIAN Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed collected the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo on Tuesday, appealing for unity as ethnic violence flares in his country and reconciliation efforts with neighbouring former foe Eritrea have stalled. Abiy, 43, won the Nobel for his efforts to resolve the long-running conflict with Eritrea. Announced back in October, the prize also honoured his mediation efforts in eastern Africa and the democratic reforms he has undertaken in his country, long ruled by authoritarian leaders...

Artist eats USD 120,000 piece of art — a banana taped to wall at Miami exhibition

THE move was bananas... Or maybe the work was just too appealing. A performance artist shook up the crowd at the Art Basel show in Miami Beach on Saturday when he grabbed a banana that had been duct-taped to a gallery wall and ate it. The banana was, in fact, a work of art by Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan titled “Comedian” and sold to a French collector for $120,000. In a video posted on his Instagram account, David Datuna, who describes himself as a Georgian-born American artist living in New ..

S Africa’s Tunzi wins Miss Universe 2019

SOUTH Africa’s Zozibini Tunzi has been crowned Miss Universe for the year 2019, beating more than 90 contestants, including Miss India, from around the globe. The 26-year-old Tunzi was declared the winner at a televised event, hosted by American comic-turned-TV personality Steve Harvey, held at Tyler Perry Studios here on Sunday. Indian contestant Vartika Singh crashed out of the world’s biggest beauty pageant after securing a place in the top 20. Hailing the power of dreams, Tunzi took to Twitter ..

Russia banned for 4 years from all major sporting events

RUSSIA has been handed a four-year ban from all major sporting events by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), including next year’s Tokyo Olympics and the FIFA World Cup in 2022. Meanwhile , an official linked to WADA said Russia can participate in qualifying for the 2022 World Cup. After the development, the Russian flag and anthem will not be allowed at any major sporting event...

4 eminent diplomats honoured with 2019 ‘Diwali - Power of One Award’

UNITED NATIONS, FOUR prominent diplomats have been honoured with ‘The Diwali - Power of One’ award in recognition and celebration of their work, especially at the United Nations, for a secure and peaceful world. The diplomats who were honoured are former Foreign Minister and Permanent Representative of Kazakhstan to the UN Kairat Abdrakhmanov, former Permanent Representative of Cyprus to the United Nations Nicholas Emiliou...

Israeli students to launch self-made satellite from Sriharikota on Dec 11

THREE youngsters from an Israeli school will travel to India next week to launch a satellite -- Duchifat 3 -- designed and built by them aboard PSLV C48 from ISRO’s Sriharikota launch site. Alon Abramovich, Meitav Assulin and Shmuel Aviv Levi, all 17 to 18 years old, are students of Sha’ar HaNegev High school in Israel’s southern region..

3 killed after Pearl Harbor sailor shoots civilians, self

A SAILOR shot three civilians, killing two of them, before taking his own life at Pearl Harbor just days before thousands were scheduled to gather at the storied military base to mark the 78th anniversary of the Japanese bombing that launched the US Into World War II. Rear Admiral Robert Chadwick, the Commander of Navy Region Hawaii, said the service would evaluate whether security would need to be upgraded ahead of the annual ceremony. About a dozen survivors of the 1941 bombing were expected to ..

Google CEO Sundar Pichai also named chief of its parent company Alphabet

WASHINGTON SUNDAR Pichai, Google’s CEO will also become the chief of the parent company Alphabet after the Internet giant’s co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin stepped down from their executive roles, making the India-born tech wizard one of the world’s most powerful corporate leaders. Page and Brin are stepping down as CEO and President, respectively, of Alphabet, the company announced on Tuesday. Pichai, 47, the current CEO of Google and a longtime executive at the company, will take over as ..

This decade is set to be hottest in history: UN

THIS decade is set to be the hottest in history, the United Nations said on Tuesday in an annual assessment outlining the ways in which climate change is outpacing humanity’s ability to adapt to it. The World Meterological Organization said global temperatures so far this year were 1.1 degrees Celsius (two degrees Farenheit) above the pre-industrial average between 1850-1900. That puts 2019 on course to be in the top three warmest years ever recorded, and possibly the hottest non-El Nino year yet. ..

Air India ferries Swedish royals to India, couple carry own bags

IN A pleasant surprise to fellow passengers, visiting Swedish royal couple King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia arrived in India on board an Air India commercial flight from Stockholm, and carried their own bags after landing at the airport here on Monday. “Very Proud moment for Air India when we had a Special Guest onboard. His Majesty Carl Gustaf Folke Hubertus , King of Sweden and Her Majesty Silvia Renate Sommerlath travelled AI168 Stockholm to Delhi. Ms. Sangeeta Sanyal Country Manager Sweden ..

Nearly 200 countries attend ambitious climate talks

THE chair of a two-week climate summit attended by nearly 200 countries warned at its opening Monday that those refusing to adjust to the planet’s rising temperatures “will be on the wrong side of history.” Chile’s Environment Minister, Carolina Schmidt, said that the December 2-13 meeting in Madrid needs to lay the groundwork for moving toward carbon-neutral economies while being sensitive to the poorest and those most vulnerable to rising temperatures — something that policy makers have termed “just ..

New ultrasensitive sensor can detect explosives, pollutants, says study

RESEARCHERS have developed an ultrasensitive detector based on black silicon that can be applied to identify the majority of explosives, or highly toxic pollutants for medical and forensic analysis. The study, published in the journal ACS Sensors, noted that the new device can detect trace amounts of nitroaromatic compounds which make up most of the explosives...

London Bridge terrorist hailed from PoK, was convicted in 2012

LONDON, THE man who stabbed and killed two people in the London Bridge terrorist attack on Friday has been identified as a convicted terrorist who was jailed seven years ago over a plot to bomb the London Stock Exchange and build a terrorist training camp on land owned by his family in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. The suspect, identified as Usman Khan, had also discussed staging a Mumbai-style attack on the UK Parliament and described by the judge who sentenced him for terrorism offences in 2012 as ..