New Zealand earthquake: a major quake hit New Zeland’s second largest city Tuesday, local time. Initial reports indicate collapsed buildings and possible casualties from the New Zealand earthquake.
By David C. Scott, Staff / February 21, 2011
For the second time in five months, New Zealand’s south island city of Christchurch was rocked by a major earthquake on Tuesday afternoon local time.
Initial reports from Reuters news agency indicated that there were no reports of casualties, from the magnitude 6.3 temblor. Read more…
Credible Western intelligence reports say that Muammar Gaddafi has fled Libya and is on his way to exile in Venezuela, according to William Hague, the foreign secretary.
Following an emergency EU meeting of foreign ministers on the situation in Libya, Mr Hague was asked if Britain, or other Western countries, knew if Col. Gaddafi had left Tripoli.
“About whether Col. Gaddafi, is in Venezuela, I have no information that says he is although I have seen some information that suggests he is on his way there,” he said.
British officials stressed that Mr Hague was referring “not to media reports but information from other channels”. “This is credible information,” said a diplomat. Read more…
CAIRO — Protesters and security forces battled in the center of Tripoli as anti-government unrest spread to the Libyan capital and Moammar Gadhafi‘s son went on state television to proclaim that his father remained in charge with the army’s backing and would “fight until the last man, the last woman, the last bullet.”
Even as Seif al-Islam Gadhafi spoke Sunday night, clashes were raging in and around Tripoli’s central Green Square, lasting until dawn Monday, witnesses said. They reported snipers opening fire on crowds trying to seize the square, and Gadhafi supporters speeding through in vehicles, shooting and running over protesters. Early Monday, protesters took over the office of two of the multiple state-run satellite news channels, witnesses said.
The protests and violence were the heaviest yet in Read more…
The North Korean authorities are apparently on full alert as news trickles in about pro-democracy protests in the Middle East despite an official blackout. According to a source, security agents have banned all gatherings, especially of university students, as news spreads about the public revolts in Egypt, Tunisia and elsewhere in the Arab world.
The source added that partitions have been removed in restaurants across the country, and security agents break up even small gatherings in open-air markets.
“This is the first time I saw even partitions removed from restaurants in North Korea,” a recent defector said. Students in Pyongyang have begun Read more…
Light sweet crude for March delivery, which will expire Tuesday, was seen trading at $87.37 a barrel at 12.00 noon Singapore time while April delivery jumped to $91.35 a barrel.
In London, Brent crude for April delivery was at $103.54 a barrel.
Analysts said the black gold is likely to advance further during the day Benchmark on worries of oil supply disruptions as unrests over authoritarian governments in the Middle East escalate to more countries.
Concerns over Middle East oil supplies helped prices recover from early weakness after China raised its banks’ reserve requirements last Friday for the second time this year to combat rising inflation.
According to China’s National Development and Reform Commission, gasoline and diesel prices will go up 350 yuan per ton starting Read more…
Johannesburg, South Africa
Global food prices reached a historic high last month, a fact that may cause even the most comfortable of Americans to cinch in their belts and cut back on spending.
But what about the world’s poor?
“Global food prices are rising to dangerous levels and threaten tens of millions of poor people around the world,” World Bank Group President Robert Zoellick said Tuesday as he announced the bank’s findings that about 44 million people in developing countries have been pushed into poverty since Read more…
“We have asked poultry farmers to report any unusual and large-scale deaths so as to take the necessary measures to confirm if there is any outbreak of bird flu here,” said Dr Y Thirupathaiah, additional director, planning, directorate of animal husbandry.
In 2006, bird flu fear led to losses worth crores of rupees in the state as poultry birds had to be culled in large numbers and eggs were also destroyed.
In case of any signs of bird flu in the state, the serum samples will have to be Read more…