A top South Korean television station draws flak for the shock suicide of a reality show contestant. 'The Lovetown' »
An elderly man, believed to be a family member of one of the passengers, punched a cameraman as he was trying to film events at the Beijing airport.
The Philippines is to upgrade a navy base facing disputed South China Sea waters to serve the extra ships being acquired to protect its territory, the military said Thursday. Navy spokesman Lieutenant-Commander Gregory Fabic said the military would build a 500-million-peso ($11.2 million) port at Ulugan Bay, the Philippine military base nearest to the Spratly Islands. President Benigno Aquino is set to visit the base on May 20 to launch the upgrading, Fabic added. In recent years, the Philippines has been locked in an increasingly tense standoff with China involving disputed reefs and islands in the Spratlys and other areas of the South China Sea.
By Stuart Grudgings and Nguyen Phuong Linh KUALA LUMPUR/HANOI (Reuters) - A Malaysia Airlines flight carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew went missing over the South China Sea on Saturday, presumed crashed, as ships and planes from countries closest to its flight path scoured a large search area for any wreckage. Vietnamese state media, quoting a senior naval official, had reported that the Boeing 777-200ER flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing had crashed off south Vietnam. Malaysia's transport minister later denied any crash scene had been identified. We are doing everything we can to ensure every possible angle has been addressed," Transport Minister Hishamuddin Hussein told reporters near the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) - Malaysian naval vessels saw no immediate sign of wreckage when they reached the maritime area off the country's northeast coast where a missing Malaysia Airlines flight last made contact on Saturday, a senior rescue official said. Malaysia has sent three maritime enforcement ships and a navy vessel to the area, backed by three helicopters, a Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency official told Reuters. "Our aircraft asset spotted an orange speck in the sea where the last signal came from. ...
SEVASTOPOL, Ukraine (AP) — A Ukrainian officer at a military base in Ukraine's region of Crimea says that pro-Russia soldiers have crashed a truck through its gates in an attempt to take it over.
The model is the oldest in the Boeing 777 family and has a range of 5,240 nautical miles (9,700 kilometres), according to the Boeing website. "But since that information came from the Vietnamese navy, I have asked our navy to contact their counterparts immediately," he told reporters in Kuala Lumpur. Neil Connor in Beijing reports seeing a man who appeared to be in his sixties entering a room, wiping tears from his eyes with a handkerchief, and punching a cameraman in the face when he tried to film him as he walked by. At the same time a security shouted "Don't you all have families." 08:18 GMT - A father mourns - Hamid Ramlan, a 56-year-old policeman living in the capital Kuala Lumpur, tells AFP that his daughter, 34, and son in law, 24, were on the flight.
OXON HILL, Md. (AP) — The nation's largest annual gathering of conservative activists comes to a finish Saturday but not before a final group of Republican all-stars takes the stage.
KATMANDU, Nepal (AP) — An Indian airliner with 170 people on board has caught fire while landing in Nepal's capital, but there were no casualties reported.
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Search and rescue crews across Southeast Asia scrambled to find a Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 that disappeared from air traffic control screens over waters between Malaysia and Vietnam early Saturday with 239 people aboard.
ISLAMABAD (AP) — Pakistani officials say authorities are investigating whether malnutrition is responsible for the deaths of nearly two dozen children in the country's drought-hit desert south.
BEIRUT (AP) — A coalition of Syrian opposition groups has confirmed its choice for a new army chief after the former military leader refused to step down.
Sri Lankan authorities halted excavations after recovering 81 skeletal remains from an unmarked mass grave atop an old burial ground in the island's former war zone, an official said Saturday. Judicial medical officer Dhananjaya Waidyaratne said digging at a depth of about two metres (6.7 feet) led to the old cemetery and the authorities did not want to go deeper and disturbed those who had been properly buried. "We have gathered skeletal remains from upper layers and grouped them into 81 boxes," Waidyaratne told AFP. "These remains were in a mass grave buried in a haphazard way compared to the properly laid out graves we found at a depth of two metres." He said forensic tests were being done in respect of the 81 groups of skeletal remains to establish the cause and time of death.
Qatar Airways and Emirates Airline have defended their policies on pregnancy and marriage for cabin crew after the Qatar carrier came under fire over its working conditions. The International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF) is running a campaign against Qatar Airways over its monitoring of staff and rules preventing women from becoming pregnant and getting married. It has called on women across the globe to speak out against the airline on Saturday, International Women's Day. "The treatment of workers at Qatar Airways goes further than cultural differences.
By Siva Govindasamy and Alwyn Scott MUMBAI (Reuters) - Malaysia Airlines , operator of Flight MH370 that went missing en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on Saturday, has established a record as one of the Asia-Pacific's best full-service carriers in terms of safety and service despite some recent financial problems. The Kuala Lumpur-based carrier competes with AirAsia domestically, and with the likes of AirAsia X , Emirates , Singapore Airlines , Thai Airways and Cathay Pacific on international routes. The airline, part of the Oneworld alliance that includes British Airways and Qantas, has 88 aircraft in its fleet, including Airbus A330s and A380s, and Boeing 777-200s and 737s, according to its website. These aircraft are deployed on its long-range services within the Asia-Pacific and to Europe.
BEIJING (Reuters) - Vietnam, Malaysia and Singapore are conducting joint search and rescue operations for a missing Malaysia Airlines plane in waters south of Vietnam's Tho Chu island, China's Xinhua news agency said on Saturday. The report said that the information was relayed to China's civil aviation regulator by its Vietnamese counterpart. The aircraft went missing while on a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. (Reporting by Ben Blanchard)
Almost all Chinese cities monitored for pollution last year failed to meet environmental standards, Wu Xiaoqing, China's vice-minister of environmental protection, said on Saturday. Out of the 74 cities that Beijing monitored, 71 had various degrees of problems, Wu said at a news conference at the sidelines of the annual parliament session in Beijing. The environment has emerged as one of Beijing's key priorities amid growing public disquiet about urban smog, dwindling and polluted water supplies and the widespread industrial contamination of farmland. China's environmental policy goals also serve a wider agenda, aimed at diversifying and "upgrading" the country's resource-intensive economy.
A magnetic bomb attached to a district governor's vehicle exploded in eastern Afghanistan on Saturday, killing the governor and his bodyguard, provincial authorities said. The attack in Nangarhar province highlights the security threat surrounding presidential elections in a month's time, when voters will choose a successor to Hamid Karzai. "Today 9:00am, a mine attached to the vehicle of Nazyan district governor, Noor Agha Kamran, was detonated in the city of Jalalabad," Nangarhar police spokesman, Hazrat Hussain Mashriqiwal told AFP. "Unfortunately, district governor, Noor Agha Kamran was martyred along with his one bodyguard, and several passersby were wounded in the attack," he added.
Oscar Pistorius told a security guard "everything is fine" shortly after shots were heard from his home the night girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp was killed, the court heard. Pieter Baba, who works as a security guard at the Silverwoods Country Estate in Pretoria, testified that when he phoned the athlete to investigate the shots, Pistorius told him "security, everything is fine." But Baba noticed the Paralympian was crying. "Not everything was in order as Mr Pistorius was telling me," he said, "I then tried to speak to Mr Pistorius so that he can calm down." The security guard said the phone connection was lost, then he received another incoherent call from the sprinter. "He just started crying over the phone," said Baba, adding: "That's when the line went off again, my lady." Pistorius, 27, has denied intentionally killing Steenkamp and has pleaded not guilty to three other charges, including one of firing a gun through a moving car's sunroof and to illegal possession of ammunition.
A potent new painkiller hit the US market this week, despite warnings from top experts that the drug may deliver a deadly setback in America's battle with opioid addiction. Zohydro ER can contain 10 times the amount of hydrocodone as the most popular prescription painkiller, Vicodin, and is easily crushable so it could be snorted, bearing none of the recent safeguards added to pills like OxyContin (oxycodone). In a nation where some 15,000 people die annually from prescription painkiller use, the drug's approval has raised alarm among doctors, lawmakers and relatives of those lost to overdose. Two senators have launched an investigation into practices by the US Food and Drug Administration, amid allegations that pharmaceutical companies eager for a chunk of the $9 billion painkiller market may have paid to influence regulators' decisions.