Hundreds of schoolgirls missing after armed bandits storm Nigerian school in Zamfara

At least 300 girls have been abducted by suspected armed bandits from a school hostel in northwest Nigeria’s Zamfara state, according to teacher and parent. The incident would be the latest mass kidnapping in the troubled region. Abduction for ransom, raping and pillaging by heavily-armed criminal gangs in northwest and central Nigeria has increased in recent years. “More than 300 girls are unaccounted for … Read more

The Latest: Hong Kong Starts Virus Jabs at Community Centers | World News

HONG KONG — Hong Kong has begun administering its first COVID-19 vaccines to the public, kicking off its program offering free vaccinations to all 7.5 million residents. People age 60 and older and health care workers are among the some 2.4 million people prioritized to receive vaccines at community centers and outpatient clinics across Hong … Read more

In Iraq’s Biblical Lands, Scattered Christians Ask ‘Should I Stay or Go?’ | World News

MOSUL, Iraq (Reuters) – A jihadist message, “Islamic State endures”, is still graffitied on the front gate of Thanoun Yahya, an Iraqi Christian from the northern city of Mosul, scrawled by Islamist militants who occupied his home for three years when they ruled the city. He refuses to remove it, partly in defiance of the … Read more

South Korea Starts Vaccinating, but People Over 65 Must Wait | World News

By KIM TONG-HYUNG, Associated Press SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea administered its first coronavirus vaccines Friday to people at long-term care facilities, launching a mass immunization campaign that authorities hope will restore some level of normalcy by the end of the year. The rollout comes at a critical time for the country, which … Read more

Father’s lawyer says critics of conservatorship ‘have it so wrong’ 

“This is a story about a fiercely loving, dedicated and loyal father who rescued his daughter from a life threatening situation. People were harming her and they were exploiting her. Jamie saved Britney’s life.” Ms Thoreen repeated an argument that has been advanced in court – that Jamie’s shrewd handling of his daughter’s estate saved her … Read more

Coronavirus live news: France may impose regional lockdowns; South Korea starts vaccinations | World news

12.56am GMT00:56 The Bosnian government on Thursday denounced delays in the global Covax vaccine scheme, as infections worsen in the country which has received very few inoculation doses. The government said it had been informed that Pfizer is seeking further consultations on the cooling chain and administrative procedures for delivering the vaccines. (The Pfizer jabs … Read more

Ukraine Names Ex-Finance Minister as Ambassador to U.S., to Upgrade Ties Post-Trump | World News

KYIV (Reuters) – Ukraine named a former finance minister as ambassador to the United States on Thursday, a sign of its push to upgrade ties with Washington under President Joe Biden after it was sucked into an awkward role in Donald Trump’s first impeachment. President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s office said he had appointed Oksana Markarova to … Read more

Armenia’s Armed Forces Demand Resignation of PM and Government: Ifax | World News

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Armenia’s armed forces called for the resignation of Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and his government in a statement on Thursday, the Interfax news agency reported. Pashinyan has faced protests and calls to resign after what his critics say was the disastrous handling of a bloody six-week conflict between Azerbaijan and ethnic Armenian … Read more

Coronavirus latest news: Pfizer vaccine’s second dose boosts protection dramatically

New Zealand’s success in battling the coronavirus has unleashed an unanticipated problem: skyrocketing house prices. When the pandemic hit, most experts predicted house prices would fall. Instead, prices have risen by more than 19 per cent over the past year, putting them out of reach for many people wanting to buy their first home. The government, … Read more

Jill Biden opens up about divorce in first solo interview as first lady

Jill Biden offers comforting advice to Kelly Clarkson, telling the singer and talk-show host who is going through a divorce that things happen for the best and that life will eventually “look better.” The first lady – a divorcee herself – also reveals what she looks forward to when Covid-19 clears up and explains why … Read more

Coronavirus live news: Pfizer vaccine found 94% effective in major study; EU states split over vaccine passports | World news

12.13am GMT00:13 Toronto cancels outdoor events through July Canada’s largest city Toronto is cancelling all large in-person, city-permitted outdoor events through July as the country seeks to stave off a third wave of the coronavirus pandemic, Reuters reports. The city of Toronto announced Wednesday it is extending an existing cancellation of outdoor events, including the … Read more

Lucky-to-be-alive Tiger Woods faces hardest test

In a career filled with remarkable comebacks, Tiger Woods faces perhaps his toughest recovery of all. Woods was driving alone through a sweeping, downhill stretch of road through coastal suburbs of Los Angeles on Tuesday when his SUV struck a sign, crossed over two oncoming lanes and flipped several times before coming to rest on … Read more

GPs told to invite those on learning disabilities register to get jab

It is “going to take many years for us to realistically get back on top” of tackling waiting lists, which are now longer than they have been for about 20 years, according to NHS Confederation chief executive Danny Mortimer. He told Times Radio that, once the impacts of the spike of the virus in January … Read more

Senate postpones vote on Neera Tanden’s confirmation amid opposition – live | US news

The group of executives includes the top executives representing some of the powerful business interests in the US, ranging from bank and investment firms like Goldman Sachs and Blackstone, to technology companies like Google, Intel and IBM, to hospitality companies like Loews Hotels & Co and airlines including American and United Airlines. Top executives from … Read more

German Court Convicts Radical Imam of Membership in IS | World News

BERLIN (AP) — A former imam at a radical mosque in Germany was convicted Wednesday of being a member of the Islamic State group and sentenced to 10 1/2 years in prison. The state court in Celle in northern Germany convicted Ahmad Abdulaziz Abdullah A., who goes by the alias Abu Walaa, of membership in … Read more

India Warns States of Worsening COVID-19 Situation if Rules Ignored | World News

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India warned on Wednesday that a breach of guidelines on testing and other measures to contain the coronavirus could worsen a recent spurt in infections in many states, particularly after it detected several variants. Nearly a month after the health minister declared that COVID-19 had been contained, states such as Maharashtra … Read more

Tiger Woods car crash: Golfer in surgery with ‘multiple injuries’

In 2009, Woods smashed his car into a tree and a fire hydrant outside his luxury Florida home, sparking a series of scandalous revelations that led to the end of his marriage and harmed his reputation. He divorced his wife, Elin Nordegren, with whom he has two children, after a number of women claimed they had affairs … Read more

Coronavirus live news: WHO says global deaths down 20% since last week; cases declining for six straight weeks | World news

12.18am GMT00:18 Ireland extends lockdown Rory Carroll Ireland is to start reopening some schools next week but is extending other lockdown restrictions until April to prevent another explosion in Covid-19 cases. The government has prioritised education and childcare in a cautious new roadmap out of restrictions after a disastrous relaxation before Christmas led to Ireland … Read more

Canada Back in Court Defending Pact With U.S. to Turn Back Asylum-Seekers | World News

TORONTO (Reuters) – The Canadian government will be back in court on Tuesday defending its agreement with the United States to turn back asylum-seekers in an effort to overturn a federal court decision that found the pact violated Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms. A victory for the government would mean asylum-seekers would continue to be … Read more

Coronavirus live news: Fauci says political divide added to ‘stunning’ US deaths; Italy ‘misled’ WHO | World news

Dr Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, said political divisiveness contributed significantly to the “stunning” US coronavirus death toll, which on Monday surpassed 500,000 lives lost, Reuters reports. The country had recorded more than 28 million Covid cases and 500,054 fatalities as of Monday afternoon, according to a Reuters tally of public health … Read more

NASA releases new video of Perseverance rover landing on Mars

NASA has released new video footage from its Perseverance rover showing the moment it touched down on Mars. The plutonium-powered rover, which is 10ft long, nine feet wide, seven foot high and weighs 126kg, parachuted down onto the red planet on Thursday evening and has begun its epic quest to search for signs of ancient life. … Read more

The Latest: California Opens 2 Mass Vaccination Sites | World News

LOS ANGELES — California opened federally supported mass vaccination sites Tuesday in Los Angeles and Oakland that are intended to bring inoculations to communities hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. The sites opened on the east side of the nation’s second-largest city at California State University, Los Angeles, and on the east side of San … Read more

Finland’s secret weapon in the fight against fake news: its kindergarten children

When 5G masts were attacked in May, the Government was left scratching its head. On New Year’s Eve, when anti-vaccine campaigners shouted “Covid is a hoax” at doctors and nurses leaving London’s St Thomas’ hospital there was a collective grimace. Last week, it was reported that almost half of the UK’s children complained they were … Read more

European Space Agency Seeks Diversity in New Astronaut Drive | World News

PARIS (AP) — The European Space Agency is holding its first recruitment drive in 11 years and is highlighting its desire to achieve greater diversity. The European equivalent of NASA is seeking to recruit more women astronauts this year, as well as people with disabilities who have always dreamed of going into space. “We are … Read more

Coronavirus latest news: Vaccine impact seen as antibodies rise in over-80s

Earlier this morning we reported on Office for National Statistics data suggesting the number of people who have antibodies for Sars-Cov-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, has increased across the UK (see 10:35am). Here’s what the experts make of the news. Lawrence Young, Professor of Molecular Oncology, Warwick Medical School: “In England 1 in 5 … Read more

Belarus Detains Dozens of Journalists, Activists | World News

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Belarusian authorities on Tuesday raided homes and offices of journalists and human rights activists and detained dozens in the latest move to squelch protests against the nation’s authoritarian president. Police searched the offices of the Belarusian Association of Journalists and the Viasna human rights center as well as the apartments of … Read more

Alleged Central African Republic Rebels Plead Not Guilty | World News

By MIKE CORDER, Associated Press THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — Two alleged leaders of a predominantly Christian rebel group in the Central African Republic pleaded not guilty Tuesday to multiple counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity as their trial opened at the International Criminal Court. Former soccer official Patrice-Edouard Ngaïssona and Alfred Yekatom, … Read more

Coronavirus live news: UK to consider giving excess vaccine to other countries; WHO approves Oxford jab

Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid jab can now be rolled out globally and participate in Covax; South Africa opens borders UK to consider offering excess vaccine doses to other countries Israel battles Covid misinformation as vaccination drive slows Seventy per cent of Australians think border should stay closed Postponement of ski resort reopenings prompts anger in Italy See … Read more

Turkey Accuses US of Backing PKK After Turks Killed in Iraq | World News

By SUZAN FRASER, Associated Press ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan laid into the United States, accusing it of supporting Kurdish militants on Monday, days after Turkish troops found the bodies of 13 Turkish soldiers, police and civilians abducted by Kurdish insurgents in a cave complex in northern Iraq. Addressing his ruling … Read more

Hundreds in Serbia Mourn Medics, Demand Better COVID Protection | World News

BELGRADE (Reuters) – Hundreds of people held a minute’s silence in front of Serbia’s government building on Monday to pay their respects to doctors and nurses killed by COVID-19 and to demand more is done to protect health workers. People placed white roses at the entrance to the building and lit candles. Of the 4,245 … Read more

Lack of Covid data may leave African countries behind in vaccine rush | World news

African countries may suffer in the global rush for vaccines because they are unable to gather statistics that reveal the true extent of the spread of Covid among their populations, epidemiologists and other experts fear. According to data from Johns Hopkins university, there have been 3.7m confirmed cases in Africa, and the landmark figure of … Read more

Heathrow braced for quarantine chaos

In recent days, government ministers have done their best to torpedo the entire travel sector by telling UK citizens not even to book a holiday in the UK or abroad, write Paul Charles, chief executive of The PC Agency, and Henry Morley, chief executive of True Travel. It is hard to think of a more damaging … Read more

U.S. Condemns Executions of Turks in Northern Iraq | World News

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States on Sunday condemned the killing of 13 kidnapped Turkish citizens in northern Iraq, after Turkish officials said they were executed by militants of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). The executions, which included military and police personnel, took place during a Turkish military operation lauched on Feb. 10 against … Read more

Coronavirus live news: UK variant hits New Zealand; CDC says ‘absolutely’ too soon to lift US mask mandate | World news

12.51am GMT00:51 Pfizer/BioNTech jab gives 94% protection, Israeli study suggests An Israeli study of more than half a million fully vaccinated people indicated the Pfizer/BioNTech jab offered 94% protection against Covid-19, according to the country’s largest healthcare provider. Clalit Health Services said that its researchers tested 600,000 patients who had received the recommended two doses … Read more

Separatists Grow Majority in Catalonia Despite Socialist Win | World News

By JOSEPH WILSON, Associated Press BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — The pro-union Socialist Party appeared set to claim a narrow win in regional elections in Catalonia late Sunday, but the bloc of parties supporting secession by Spain’s northeastern corner were widening their control of the regional parliament. With 90% of the votes counted, the three main … Read more

The Latest: Advocates Say Disabled Bypassed for Vaccines | World News

UNDATED — Though many people with disabilities are more vulnerable to COVID-19, in some U.S. states they’re being left behind in the massive effort to get limited vaccines into the arms of those who need them most. People with disabilities have been pushed down the priority list in places such as North Carolina and California, … Read more

Virus May Never Go Away but Could Change Into Mild Annoyance | World News

By ANIRUDDHA GHOSAL and CHRISTINA LARSON, Associated Press NEW DELHI (AP) — What if COVID-19 never goes away? Experts say it’s likely that some version of the disease will linger for years. But what it will look like in the future is less clear. Will the coronavirus, which has already killed more than 2 million … Read more