Ahad, 29 September 2013

The Star Online: World Updates

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The Star Online: World Updates

Death toll from Pakistan market attack rises to 42


PESHAWAR, Pakistan (Reuters) - The death toll from a car bomb explosion in an ancient market in Pakistan's north-western city of Peshawar rose to at least 42 on Monday, after the third attack in the area in a week.

The blast ripped through the busy centuries-old market known as Quiswakhani, or the storytellers' bazaar, in Peshawar's old city on Sunday, exactly a week after more than 80 Christians were killed in a twin suicide bomb attack on a nearby church.

A spokesman for the main city hospital said at least 107 people were wounded.

The dead included at least 15 members of a family who had come to the city from a nearby village to make wedding arrangements.

Islamist violence has been on the rise in Pakistan in recent months, undermining Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's efforts to tame the insurgency by launching peace talks with the Taliban.

Pakistan's main Taliban group, which has expressed willingness to talk peace on its conditions, denied responsibility for the latest attack.

(Reporting by Hameed Ullah Khan; Writing by Maria Golovnina; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)

China to crack down on false terrorist threats to airlines


SHANGHAI (Reuters) - China will impose tough penalties on people making false terrorist threats against airlines and airports, after a stream of bogus calls grounded flights and piled pressure on an already strained air traffic control system, state media reported.

Flights and domestic airports have been disrupted by 80 fake threats this year, the official Xinhua news service said. Between May 15 and 18 alone, six bomb threats were reported, forcing 22 flights to turn back, land elsewhere or be delayed, a separate China Daily report noted.

The media reports come a day before China embarks on a week-long national holiday which will see transportation channels jammed with tourists and people returning home.

China's top court is planning to make false calls a criminal offence and offenders could be jailed for more than five years if there is economic damage of more than 500,000 yuan (50,528.79 pounds), or even longer if the damage is more severe.

Fake threats were sometimes made out of curiosity or for a joke, or even by irate boyfriends trying to prevent girlfriends leaving town, media reports have said.

Chinese airlines are already struggling to handle increasing traffic in a timely manner given heavy restrictions on the usage of civilian airspace.

Only 18.3 percent of flights departing from Beijing left on time in June, and only 28.7 percent of flights leaving Shanghai made it on time, making them the two poorest performing major airports in the world, according to FlightStats.com.

The new laws will also apply to threats made against trains, ferries as well as other public facilities like shopping malls, the China Daily said. It also warned people from disseminating rumours about such threats via text messages or social media, saying they could be criminally charged.

(Reporting by Pete Sweeney; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)

Alitalia aircraft makes emergency landing, no injuries


ROME (Reuters) - An Alitalia aircraft went off the runway while landing at Rome's Fiumicino airport on Sunday, but there were no injuries among the 151 passengers or crew, authorities said.

The airport said the pilot reported problems opening the undercarriage and made an emergency landing.

(Reporting by James Mackenzie; Editing by Patrick Graham and Stacey Joyce)

Kredit: www.thestar.com.my

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