Indonesian searchers find black box from crashed jet on sea floor

JAKARTA (Reuters) – Indonesian authorities on Thursday retrieved a flight data recorder from a Lion Air jet that crashed and broke apart in shallow sea near the capital, Jakarta, this week, killing all 189 people on board. The country’s second-deadliest air disaster since 1997 has prompted renewed concern about Indonesia’s patchy aviation safety record, and the government has said Lion […]

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Pakistani Christian woman's blasphemy ordeal highlights plight of minorities

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Until one sweltering day in 2009, Asia Bibi led a simple life with her husband and children in rural Pakistan. Hers was one of only three Christian families in her village but they’d never had much trouble from Muslim neighbors, relatives say. “She was an innocent, loving and caring ordinary woman,” said Bibi’s brother-in-law, Joseph Nadeem. “She […]

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Future EU-UK relationship likely an FTA plus equivalence plus MoUs: EU's Huebner

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The future relationship between the European Union and Britain after Brexit is likely to be governed by a free trade agreement (FTA), legal equivalence rules for financial services and memoranda of understanding, an EU official said on Thursday. Danuta Huebner, a member of the European Parliament’s team dealing with Brexit, said it was unlikely to expect anything […]

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Ethiopia gets its first female supreme court president

ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – Ethiopia’s parliament on Thursday swore in the country’s first female supreme court president, building on efforts by reformist Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed to achieve gender parity in government. The appointment of Meaza Ashenafi comes two weeks after Abiy named 10 female ministers to make Ethiopia the third country in Africa – after Rwanda and Seychelles – […]

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Turkey says 260,000 Syrians have returned to 'Euphrates Shield' operation area

ANKARA (Reuters) – A total of 260,000 Syrian nationals have returned to a swathe of land in northern Syria where Turkey carried out a cross-border operation dubbed “Euphrates Shield”, Defence Minister Hulusi Akar said on Thursday. Turkey launched Euphrates Shield in 2016 to drive away Islamic State militants and the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia from its border with Syria. Ankara […]

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Japan' Rakuten, KDDI to tie up, challenging NTT Docomo, SoftBank

TOKYO (Reuters) – Rakuten Inc on Thursday unveiled a tie-up with telecom company KDDI Corp as the Japanese e-commerce firm aims to enter the mobile phone services business, challenging bigger rivals NTT Docomo and SoftBank Group Corp. KDDI will give Rakuten access to its nationwide roaming services, while Rakuten will provide KDDI its expertise in mobile payments, the two companies […]

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Mao Zedong's Red Flag car gets driverless makeover

BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s iconic Red Flag, the vehicle of choice of former revolutionary leader Mao Zedong, is going hands-free. Chinese tech giant Baidu Inc said on Thursday it would launch a fully autonomous passenger car next year in a partnership with Hongqi, or Red Flag, the car brand long favored by China’s political elite. Hongqi, owned by carmaker China […]

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In Indonesia's tin islands, plane crash leaves deep scars

PANGKAL PINANG, Indonesia (Reuters) – As Indonesia struggles to determine why an airliner crashed this week with the loss of all 189 people on board, there is nowhere the impact of its second-worst air disaster has been felt as deeply as the sleepy, palm-fringed Bangka-Belitung islands. Lion Air flight JT610, an almost new Boeing 737 MAX 8, was en route […]

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Sex abuse by officials 'endemic' in North Korea: rights group

SEOUL (Reuters) – Sexual abuse by officials in positions of authority in North Korea appears to be “endemic”, a watchdog group reported on Thursday, as activists complain the isolated country’s rights record is being ignored amid an international push to improve relations. Investigators with U.S.-based Human Rights Watch (HRW) interviewed more than 60 North Koreans who had left the country […]

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