News That Matters

World

Iran-Iraq border earthquake is deadliest of 2017

Iran-Iraq border earthquake is deadliest of 2017

World
A huge rescue effort is under way after a powerful earthquake struck Iran's mountainous border with Iraq, killing more than 400 people and injuring more than 7,000.Teams are looking for survivors trapped in the rubble of collapsed buildings.The quake is the deadliest in the world this year.Most people who died were in western Iran in Sarpol-e-Zahab, a town 15km (10 miles) from the border, and other parts of Kermanshah province.The town's main hospital was severely damaged, leaving it struggling to treat hundreds of wounded people, state TV reported.A woman and her baby were pulled alive from rubble in the town, Iranian media said.Many buildings in the town appear to have collapsed, amateur video posted to Twitter by a radio station showed.Running water and electricity cut out in some citie...
In Florida, all eyes on Puerto Rican voters after Maria

In Florida, all eyes on Puerto Rican voters after Maria

World
Javier Gonzalez has joined a human tide of more than 130,000 U.S. citizens arriving in Florida since Hurricane Maria wrecked Puerto Rico, grateful for a place to start over but resenting how their island has been treated since the disaster. More than a million Puerto Ricans — about 5 percent of Florida's population — already call the state home, and given the outrage many feel over President Donald Trump's handling of the storm, political observers say this voting bloc could loosen the Republican Party's hold on this battleground state. Gonzalez, 38, saw the storm destroy the restaurant he opened with his father five years ago. Without power or reliable water, he became violently ill from food poisoning for three weeks. Finally, he packed his bags, determined to make his future in Miami i
At least 16 dead as overloaded boat capsizes in India

At least 16 dead as overloaded boat capsizes in India

World
Nov. 12 (UPI) -- At least 16 people were killed and seven more are missing after an overloaded boat capsized on a river in India, police said.A total of 38 passengers and three crew members were on-board the vessel, which was operated by a private company and traveling along the Krishna river near Vijayawada on Sunday."The boat was overloaded with 38 people and most of them were not provided life jackets. It capsized near a curve as it approached the Pavitra Sangamam point and most of the people were trapped underneath and were killed," an assistant commissioner of police said.Local fishermen rushed into the water and managed to save 15 passengers and another three were rescued by members of the National Disaster Response Force.The boat exceeded its maximum carrying capacity of 24.Deputy c...
Trump trades 'short and fat' barb with N Korea's Kim

Trump trades 'short and fat' barb with N Korea's Kim

World
President Donald Trump has again traded barbs with North Korea, shortly before offering to mediate in a heated regional dispute.He took to Twitter to complain he would never call North Korean leader Kim Jong-un "short and fat", after its foreign ministry called him "old".It was one of a series of remarks he made on social media before volunteering his services over maritime claims in the South China Sea."I'm a very good mediator," he said.China, Vietnam, the Philippines, Taiwan, Malaysia and Brunei all have competing claims to territory in the South China Sea. Why is the South China Sea contentious?Tensions with China have been high in both Vietnam and the Philippines, inflamed by the formers island-building and naval patrols. A framework for a code of conduct was agreed in August, but thi...
Thousands demand release of Catalan officials

Thousands demand release of Catalan officials

World
Tens of thousands of Catalan pro-independence supporters packed streets in Barcelona to demand the release of officials who pushed for the region to split from Spain.At the march, organised by Catalonia's two main grassroots independence groups, activists waved Catalan flags and held yellow banners with the word "Freedom".After the Catalan government declared independence on 27 October, Madrid dismissed the region's leader Carles Puigdemont, his administration and the parliament.Catalonia's autonomy was suspended and Madrid called for new elections on 21 December.Image:Tens of thousands of people took part in the march in BarcelonaMr Puigdemont is currently in self-imposed exile in Belgium awaiting a hearing on possible extradition back to Spain after Madrid issued an EU-wide warrant.The d...