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Russian rescue amid deadly blaze on two cargo ships off Crimea

Russian rescue amid deadly blaze on two cargo ships off Crimea

World
Media playback is unsupported on your device At least 11 people have died in a fire involving two Tanzanian-flagged cargo vessels in the Black Sea near the Kerch Strait, authorities say.Russian rescuers are trying to reach sailors who jumped overboard. Fourteen people have so far been rescued.One ship is a gas tanker, and the fire reportedly followed an explosion, which set the other vessel on fire.They were named as the Kandy, with a crew of 17 from Turkey and India, and Maestro, with 14 sailors.The fire broke out when one vessel was transferring fuel to another, Russian maritime agency spokesman Alexei Kravchenko said, adding that this had then forced several crew members to jump overboard. Rescue workers reportedly witnessed a further three...
Elon Musk's SpaceX to cut 10% of staff amid 'difficult challenges'

Elon Musk's SpaceX to cut 10% of staff amid 'difficult challenges'

Business
SpaceX is making 10% of its workforce redundant - with the tech company saying it needs to become "leaner" if it is to accomplish ambitious projects such as creating a spaceship that can carry astronauts to Mars. About 600 of the firm's 6,000-strong workforce are being laid off, with the company blaming "extraordinary difficult challenges ahead" for its decision.The layoffs were announced to workers in an email from SpaceX president Gwynne Shotwell, the Los Angeles Times reported.In a statement, SpaceX said: "To continue delivering for our customers and to succeed in developing interplanetary spacecraft and a global space-based internet, SpaceX must become a leaner company."Either of these developments, even when attempted separately, have bankrupted other organisations."Th...
DNA pioneer stripped of honours amid 'reckless' race remarks

DNA pioneer stripped of honours amid 'reckless' race remarks

Technology
Nobel Prize-winning DNA scientist James Watson has been stripped of several honorary titles by the laboratory he once headed over his views about intelligence and race. The Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory said it was acting in response to remarks he made in a television documentary which aired earlier this month.The 90-year-old geneticist - one of three who discovered the DNA double helix - had lost his job at the New York laboratory in 2007 for expressing racist views.But in the new PBS film, American Masters: Decoding Watson, he said his views on intelligence and race had not changed since.He had told a magazine in 2007 he was "inherently gloomy about the prospect of Africa" as "all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours - wher...
Putin at blast site amid race to find survivors

Putin at blast site amid race to find survivors

World
Russian President Vladimir Putin has travelled to the site of a gas explosion in a apartment block that killed at least seven people and left dozens feared trapped. Rescuers faced a race against time to dig survivors out of the rubble of the blast with temperatures set to plunge as low as -24C (-17F).The explosion caused the partial collapse of a nine-storey building in the southern Russian city of Magnitogorsk, where cries for help could reportedly be heard beneath the ruins. Image: Cries for help have reportedly been heard from under the rubble Mr Putin looked on as rescue workers searched the site. He also visited the injured in hospital.Emergencies minister Yevgeny Zinichev said at a meeting with the Russian presid...
Dow Jones falls 508 points amid interest rate hike concerns

Dow Jones falls 508 points amid interest rate hike concerns

Science
Dec. 17 (UPI) -- The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell more than 500 points Monday as stocks were down across the board amid concerns over rising interest rates. At the end of trading Monday, the Dow was down 507.53 points, or 2.11 percent, while the S&P 500 dropped fell 2.08 percent and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 2.27 percent, as all 30 stocks in the Dow and all 11 sectors in the S&P 500 were down, CNBC reported. Monday's losses brought the S&P 500 to its lowest close for the year at 2,545.94 points. Both the S&P 500 and the Dow are on pace for their worst December performances since the Great Depression, dripping more than 7 percent this month. A looming interest hike was cited as a factor in the widespread decline of the market, which appeared to be recovering from a tumultuous Octob...