32 killed in bus accident in Brazil

Sao Paulo : At least 32 people were killed and 11 injured in a bus accident on Saturday afternoon in Brazil.

The driver of the tourist bus, which was carrying more than 50 passengers, lost control of the vehicle while taking a turn, before it veered off the road and fell into a ravine in Santa Catarina province, Xinhua reported.

Over a dozen of ambulances have rushed to the scene, but growing darkness was hindering the search and rescue operation.


Toll rises to 60 in Myanmar shipwreck

Bangkok : Toll in the Friday's shipwreck off the coast of Myanmar's western state of Rakhine has risen to 60, with dozens of people still missing, media reported Saturday.

The state-owned passenger ship 'Aung Dakun-3' went down Friday night near the municipality of Khyaukpyu while making the crossing between Taunggup and the state capital of Sittwe, the Myanmar International TV channel said.

Aboard the double-decked ship were more than 400 travelers, of whom more than 170 were rescued by the authorities and personnel of non-governmental organisations working in the area.


Cyclone kills eight in Vanuatu

Suva : At least eight people were killed in Vanuatu due to cyclone, an official said on Sunday.

Aurelia Balpe, Fiji-based head of delegation for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies in the Pacific, confirmed that eight people were killed due to cyclone Pam, Xinhua reported.

Cyclone Pam generated gusts of up to 330 km per hour, and the gales extended some 380 km from the storm centre.


Gandhi gets most central position in London's Parliament Square

London: A statue of Mahatma Gandhi has been extended the most central position in London's Parliament Square directly facing Britain's Palace of Westminster or Houses of Parliament.

In a park where there are statues of Sir Winston Churchill and Nelson Mandela in two corners, it is highly significant that arguably the most prestigious location has been given to Gandhi.

US concerned over Maldivian ex-president's jail sentence

Colombo: The US is concerned over the trial of former Maldives president Mohamed Nasheed who was sentenced to 13 years in jail, the embassy said in a statement on Saturday.

The US was concerned with the apparent lack of appropriate criminal procedures during the trial of Nasheed, who was found guilty on Friday and sentenced to 13 years in prison, Xinhua news agency reported citing the statement.


Over 100 countries participate at Crans Montana Forum in Morocco

Rabat : Representatives of more than 100 countries have been deliberating on "Africa, regional cooperation and South-South cooperation" at the annual session of Crans Montana Forum being held in Morocco's southern city of Dakhla from March 12-14.

"The success of this historic event is unprecedented in the Forum's 30 years of existence," said the Crans Montana Forum, an international Swiss-owned and managed organisation. The event is being held under the patronage of King Mohammed VI of Morocco.


'Liberia one month away from being declared Ebola-free'

Monrovia: Liberia -- one of the countries worst hit by Ebola -- will be declared free of the disease by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on April 13 if no new case is reported, a Liberian official has said.

Montserrado county -- an Ebola hot spot -- has gone 18 days without any new case being reported, said Tolbert Nyenswah, head of Liberia's Ebola Incident Management System and assistant minister of health for preventive services, according to Xinhua on Friday.

He said that other areas across the country have had no new cases for 21 days or longer.

US offers $70 mn new aid to Syrian opposition

Washington: The US announced on Friday that it will provide nearly $70 million in new non-lethal assistance to the Syrian opposition, as the conflict in Syria entered its fifth year.

With the additional funding, the US would have committed nearly $400 million in assistance that supported the Syrian opposition since the start of the conflict, US deputy Secretary of State Tony Blinken said, according to a Xinhua report.

If India-China go to war tomorrow, 1962 will be repeated: Expert

New Delhi : If China attacks India tomorrow, the situation would be something similar to the 1962 war, a strategy expert said on Friday.

Sam Roggeveen, a well known strategy expert and founding editor of Australia's Lowy Institute of International Policy's blog, however, said there were little chances of this happening.

"The situation will be much like 1962 if a war happened tomorrow (between India and China). But the chances of a war are very low," Roggeveen said at a dialogue organised by think-tank Ananta Centre.

Modi visit won't hurt Sri Lanka-China ties: Chinese commentary

Beijing : China-Sri Lanka relations will not be affected by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit but only grow stronger, a commentary in the Chinese media said Friday.

"Some foreign media's narrow-minded interpretation of Modi's visit as a move to tame China's influence over the island nation is driven by outdated geopolitical and confrontational mindset," said Xinhua writer Sun Ding.