Khamis, 26 September 2013

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The Star Online: Metro: Sunday Metro

Officials: Dozens feared trapped in Mumbai building collapse


MUMBAI: A five-storey residential building collapsed in Mumbai at daybreak on Friday in the latest accident in India's financial capital, with dozens feared trapped inside.

Crowds formed around the rubble of the completely flattened block, owned by the city's civic administrative body the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, in the east of the city.

"My son is inside. I'm waiting for them to get him out," distraught 62-year-old retiree Mithi Solakani told AFP at the scene.

Local people estimated between 40-60 people lived in the destroyed building, but BMC official Manisha Mahiskar and police said they believed some 20-24 were still trapped in the debris.

Seven people had been pulled out alive, Mahiskar said.

Five other apartment blocks have collapsed in or close to Mumbai in recent months, including one in April that killed 74 people.

They have highlighted poor quality construction and violations of the building code, caused by massive demand for housing and endemic corruption.-AFP

World’s most expensive necklace to go on display


THE world's most expensive necklace – worth a whopping US$55mil (RM177mil) and em­­bedded with 1,044 carats of diamonds – will be making its first Asian stop in Singapore.

Aptly named the L'Incomparable and created by international jeweller Mouawad, the necklace earned a Guinness World Record in January for being "the most valuable". It will be displayed from Oct 11 to 15 at Ngee Ann City Civic Plaza as part of a global tour targeted at potential buyers.

Studded with 91 diamonds, the necklace's crown jewel is a deep brownish yellow centrepiece that is said to be "the world's largest internally flawless diamond" weighing 407.48 carats and is set in 18K rose gold.

The display is part of the upcoming 11th Singapore JewelFest from Oct 11 to Oct 20, which will showcase a combined US$250mil (RM805mil) in jewellery – double that of last year's edition.

L'Incomparable was brought in to celebrate Mouawad's opening of its second boutique in Singa­pore later this year, and in recognition of the city-state's reputation as a top shopping destination, said JewelFest festival director Angela Loh-Bem. — The Straits Times / Asia News Network

Taiwan's navy launches surface-to-air missile


ABOARD THE ROCS SU AO (Taiwan) (AFP) - Taiwan's navy launched its premier surface-to-air missile from the deck of a warship Thursday, its first test of the weapon in six years, destroying a drone simulating a Chinese air attack.

The US-made Standard II missile, fired from the Kidd-class Makung destroyer, soared into the skies over the ocean dozens of miles east off Hualien, eastern Taiwan, hitting the drone, according to the navy.

Artillery were also used in the drill, codenamed "Sea Standard", that simulated a Chinese strike on the Taiwanese fleet.

"Standard II is very stable. There is no need to fire the costly weaponry every year to verify its reliability," Admiral Wen Chen-kuo told AFP from the nearby Su Ao destroyer, citing its success six years ago in a similar naval manouevre.

Each Standard II missile costs around $3 million. With a range of over 130 kilometres (81 miles), it provides warships with a more comprehensive and longer-range air defence capability.

Currently, only four 10,000-tonne Kidd-class destroyers, the biggest warships of Taiwanese navy, are armed with the regional air defence weaponry.

Due to bad weather, Taiwan's military had to call off some of the exercises.

Taiwan and China split in 1949 at the end of a civil war.

Tensions between them have eased markedly since 2008, after Ma Ying-jeou of the China-friendly Kuomintang party came to power. He was re-elected in January 2012.

China has repeatedly threatened to invade Taiwan should the island declare independence, prompting Taiwan to keep modernising its forces and conduct regular military drills. -  AFP


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