UNSC calls for 'unhindered humanitarian access' to Palestinian camp

United Nations: The UN Security Council (UNSC) has called for "unhindered humanitarian access" to the Yarmouk Palestinian refugee camp near the Syrian capital of Damascus and stressed on "the protection of civilians" there.

"The members of the security council called for unhindered humanitarian access to the Yarmouk camp and for the protection of civilians inside the camp," according to a statement issued here by the 15-nation UN body, Xinnhua reported on Monday.

Six arrested in US for seeking to join IS in Syria

Washington: Six people have been arrested over the weekend in the US states of Minnesota and California for trying to visit Syria and join the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group, according to the US justice department.

The arrested people were part of a "group of friends" aged between 18 and 24 years, living in the city of Minneapolis, Spanish news agency Efe reported on Monday.

The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) said that it had been monitoring the accused individuals for 10 months on the suspicion of joining or trying to join the IS.

China, Pakistan to lift bilateral trade to $20 bn

Islamabad: China and Pakistan on Monday agreed to work towards raising bilateral trade to $20 billion in three years.

The agreement was announced in a joint statement issued during Chinese President Xi Jinping's state visit to Pakistan, according to a Xinhua report.

China has become Pakistan's largest trading partner, and official statistics show that two-way trade exceeded $16 billion last year, marking an annual growth of 12.57 percent.

Sri Lanka opposition MPs protest summoning of ex-president

Colombo : Opposition parliamentarians disrupted parliamentary proceedings on Monday to protest the government move to summon former President Mahinda Rajapaksa over bribery allegations.

Rajapaksa and his brother and former defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa were asked on Friday to depose before the Bribery Commission (BC) on April 22 regarding allegations of financial frauds during their decade-long tenure in office.


UN Crime Prevention Congress calls for action on recovering black money

By Arul Louis,

United Nations : A major UN meeting of law officials has called for a strong international action to track down and recover black money hidden in safe havens.

The 13th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, which ended on Sunday in Doha, Qatar, declared that effective steps should be taken to trace, recover and freeze "money and other assets that have not been accounted for and are found in safe havens" so they can be confiscated and transparently disposed of.

Mediterranean boat capsize: UN calls for 'comprehensive' response

United Nations : UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Sunday called for a "comprehensive and collective" response to ensure "a robust search and rescue capacity in the Mediterranean" after a boat capsize off the Libyan coast is believed to have killed nearly 700 migrants.

"The secretary-general is shocked and deeply saddened by reports that a ship carrying as many as 700 migrants and refugees has capsized off the Libyan coast," said a statement issued here by Ban's spokesman, according to a Xinhua report.


Urgent EU meeting proposed after Mediterranean boat capsize

Valletta : The prime ministers of the Mediterranean nations Malta and Italy have proposed an urgent meeting of the European Union (EU) to discuss ways to deal with one of the worst accidents in the Mediterranean in which nearly 700 migrants are believed to have drowned in a boat capsize off Italy on Saturday.

Only 28 out of the 700 migrants on board the ill-fated boat seem to have survived the accident, Xinhua reported on Sunday.

This disaster follows a similar tragedy last week, during which over 400 migrants drowned in a boat capsize off the Libyan coast.


Nearly 700 migrants missing in shipwreck in Mediterranean

Rome : Nearly 700 migrants are believed to have drowned when a packed boat capsized in international waters south of Italy's Sicily island on Saturday night, media reports said on Sunday.

A total of 28 migrants aboard the boat have been rescued and 24 bodies recovered, the Italian coast guard said on Sunday, according to Spanish news agency Efe.

Navy and coast guard ships continue searching for other survivors of the vessel that sailed from Libya and sank near Sicily.


Hindu temple vandalised in US

New York : A temple was vandalised in the US, "horrifying" both Hindus and non-Hindus who have offered to help the temple clean the damage, media reports said.

There have been a string of attacks on Hindu places of worship in the country.

In the attack on the North Texas Hindu Mandir in Lake Highlands suburb of Dallas, vandals painted symbols of devil worship on the temple's door, media reports said on Saturday.


Hundreds missing as boat capsizes off Libya coast

Valletta: Hundreds of people were reported missing after a migrant boat with as many as 700 people on board capsized just off the Libyan coast, media reported on Sunday.

The incident happened on Saturday night and till Sunday afternoon only 28 migrants had been rescued, Xinhua news agency reported.

The migrants were believed to have moved to one side of the boat over-balancing it when a merchant ship approached.