english news

Aryan Khan: Drug charges dropped against Shah Rukh Khan’s son

drug charges

India’s anti-drug agency has dropped charges against Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan’s son in a drugs case. Aryan Khan, 24, was arrested in October 2021 for allegedly doing recreational drugs at a party. The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) had charged him under laws “related to possession, consumption and sale of illegal substances.” On Friday, the NCB cleared him in the case, saying “no drugs had been found on Aryan Khan”. A charge sheet filed in court by the agency on Friday named 14 accused in the case but left out six others, including Aryan Khan, “due to lack of evidence.” Officials from NCB had on 2 October 2021 raided a cruise ship, saying they had been tipped off that there were drugs on board. Aryan Khan had been searched and interrogated before he boarded the ship – and eventually taken into custody by the NCB. Khan was one of several people arrested in the case and spent nearly three weeks in jail. He was later released on bail.(BBC)…[+]

Brazilian man allegedly gassed to death in police car boot

brazil

The death of a black man who was forced into a police car boot where a gas grenade was set off has sparked outrage in Brazil. Police stopped Genivaldo de Jesus Santos, 38, in the street in the north-eastern city of Umbaúba, Sergipe state, on Wednesday. Video footage showed two officers holding down the boot the man was in as thick smoke billowed from the car. An autopsy report on Thursday confirmed Mr Santos died of asphyxiation. Brazil’s federal highway police said a disciplinary proceeding has been opened to investigate the officers’ conduct. An investigation has also been opened by the federal police into the circumstances of Mr Santos’ death. There are conflicting reports of the incident. A police statement said that Mr Santos had been arrested because he had “actively resisted” the police’s approach, and that because of his “aggressiveness… immobilization techniques and instruments of less offensive potential” were used to restrain him. But Mr Santos’ nephew, Wallison de Jesus, told local media he had been at the scene, and his uncle had been riding a motorcycle when federal highway police officers stopped him and asked him to lift his shirt. He said his uncle took prescription medication for schizophrenia, and got nervous when the officers found the medication.(BBC)…[+]

Texas school shooting: Husband of killed teacher ‘dies of grief’

husband dies

The husband of one of the teachers slain in Tuesday’s mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas, has reportedly died of a heart attack. Joe Garcia was the husband of Irma Garcia, who taught for 23 years at Robb Elementary School. Mrs Garcia was one of two teachers killed by a teenage gunman in the shooting that left 21 people dead – including 19 children. The couple – who were married for 24 years – are survived by four children. By Thursday night, an online fundraiser for the Garcia family had raised nearly $1.6m (£1.3m) out of an initial modest goal of $10,000.(BBC)…[+]

Yasin Malik: Top Kashmiri separatist given life in Indian jail

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A court in India has sentenced senior Kashmiri separatist leader Yasin Malik to life imprisonment after convicting him of funding terrorism. He was found guilty of participating in and funding terrorist acts and involvement in criminal conspiracy. Malik told the court he gave up arms in the 1990s. He was convicted last week. Tens of thousands of people have been killed in Muslim-majority Kashmir since an armed revolt against rule by India, which is mostly Hindu, erupted in 1989. The court in the capital Delhi gave Malik, 56, two life sentences and five 10-year jail terms, all to be served concurrently, NDTV reported. “Verdict in minutes by Indian kangaroo courts,” Malik’s wife Mushaal Hussein wrote on Twitter, saying he would never surrender.(BBC)…[+]

Texas shooting victims: ‘They were sweet kids and lovable’

texas

Nineteen children and two teachers were killed in a shooting on Tuesday at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. The children who died were aged between seven and 10. Some of them had just received awards for great school work. One victim was a 10-year-old boy who loved to dance. Another was a girl who died while trying to call the police. It is the deadliest shooting at a US elementary school since 20 children and six adults died at Sandy Hook school a decade ago. There were two pairs of cousins among the children killed in the attack. Some parents were at the school hours before the shooting, watching with pride as their children held up their honour roll certificates at an awards ceremony. Hours later, they were back there. One of them was Alexandria Aniyah Rubio, in the fourth grade, who had earned an A certificate. “We told her we loved her and would pick her up after school,” her mother Kimberly wrote on Facebook. “We had no idea this was goodbye.” Her cousin, meanwhile, described her as a “bright light in everyone’s life”.(BBC)…[+]

World Bank boss warns over global recession

world bank

The head of the World Bank has warned that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine could cause a global recession as the price of food, energy and fertiliser jump. David Malpass told a US business event on Wednesday that it is difficult to “see how we avoid a recession”. He also said that a series of coronavirus lockdowns in China is adding to concerns about a slowdown. His comments are the latest warning over the rising risk that the world economy may be set to contract. “As we look at the global GDP… it’s hard right now to see how we avoid a recession,” Mr Malpass said, without giving a specific forecast. “The idea of energy prices doubling is enough to trigger a recession by itself,” he added. Last month, the World Bank cut its global economic growth forecast for this year by almost a full percentage point, to 3.2%.(BBC)…[+]

Executions spiked in Iran in Saudi Arabia in 2021 – Amnesty

exucution

There was a worrying rise in executions in 2021 as Covid-19 restrictions were eased, Amnesty International says, with spikes seen in Iran and Saudi Arabia. A report by the human rights group says at least 579 executions were known to have been carried out in 18 countries – a 20% increase on the previous year. Iran accounted for the biggest portion of this rise. It put to death at least 314 people, compared with 246 in 2020. Saudi Arabia more than doubled its number of executions to 65. The global total is the second-lowest figure, after 2020, that Amnesty has recorded since at least 2010. However, as in previous years it does not include China. Although it is believed to execute thousands of people each year, the data on its use of the death penalty is a state secret. Amnesty says secrecy also made it impossible to verify reports from North Korea and Vietnam, where an extensive number of executions is thought to have taken place.(BBC)…[+]

Heard’s team change course on Johnny Depp testimony

heard

Amber Heard’s team will not call Johnny Depp to the stand, a source close to Ms Heard said, a strategic U-turn in the last days of the high-profile trial. Ms Heard’s team had planned to call Mr Depp for more questioning on Monday, but changed course without explanation at midday. Mr Depp, 58, sued his ex-wife for $50m (£40m) for a column she wrote in which she claimed to be a victim of domestic abuse. Ms Heard, 36, has countersued. The case is expected to wrap this week. British supermodel Kate Moss, a former girlfriend of Mr Depp, is among witnesses expected to take the stand in the remaining days of the defamation trial. On Monday, the court in Fairfax, Virginia, heard from several witnesses called by Ms Heard’s team, including psychologist David Spiegel.(BBC)…[+]

Argentine President Fernández pays ‘fine’ over lockdown party

argentine

Argentine President Alberto Fernández has made a large donation as part of a deal to end an investigation into a lockdown party he and his wife hosted. The couple came under investigation after photos emerged showing them having a birthday dinner attended by about a dozen people while lockdown measures were in force. At the time, public gatherings, including funerals, were banned.The photos caused outrage and caused the president’s popularity to plummet. A judge agreed to the offer by the president and First Lady Fabiola Yáñez to donate three million pesos ($25,000; £20,000) in exchange for the case against them to be dropped. Prosecutors had stipulated that the amount donated should be the equivalent of a respiratory machine and a stay in intensive care in hospital.(BBC)…[+]

Dozens feared trapped after 10-storey building collapses in Iran

dozens fear

Six people have been killed and dozens more are thought to be trapped after an unfinished building collapsed in south-west Iran, state media report. The Iranian Red Crescent said rescue teams had pulled 32 survivors from the rubble of the 10-storey Metropol office block in Abadan. Pictures showed that concrete floors and steel beams had fallen on to the street below, crushing several cars. Officials said the cause of the collapse was being investigated. Local prosecutor Hamid Maranipour said both the Metropol’s owner and the building contractor had been arrested.(BBC)…[+]