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UN backs anti-graft investigator in standoff with Guatemala

UN Secretary-general Antonio Guterres on Wednesday rejected a request by Guatemala’s government to name a new head of a UN commission investigating corruption in the Central American nation. Spokeswoman Florencia Soto told The Associated Press that the agreement between Guatemala and the United Nations stipulates that Guterres gets to determine the head of the commission.   “The secretary-general does not ...

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21, including 2 Bangladeshis dead from bootleg liquor in Malaysia

Police in Malaysia are investigating a case of alcohol poisoning that killed at least 21 people, including two Bbangladeshis with dozens more hospitalised, most of them citizens of Asian nations, reports Lakes Mail. Cheap, homemade liquor is popular among poor, migrant workers in Muslim-majority Malaysia, which has high taxes on alcohol.   A total of 57 cases of methanol poisoning ...

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Pakistan court frees deposed premier Nawaz Sharif, daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Safdar

The Islamabad High Court (IHC) of Pakistan on Wednesday suspended the sentences awarded to deposed premier Nawaz Sharif, daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Capt (retd) Safdar.   A division bench comprising Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb also allowed petitions filed by Sharif family members against the accountability court’s July 6 verdict in Avenfield reference case which found them ...

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Triple Talaq now a crime in India

Indian Cabinet approves Triple Talaq ordinanc In a major victory for the Muslim women, the Indian Cabinet on Wednesday approved an ordinance making Triple Talaq a punishable offence. The cabinet approved an executive order on the amended Triple Talaq Bill that was deferred to the next session of parliament, reports NDTV. In early August, parties in the Rajya Sabha had ...

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Moon, Kim to visit volcano considered sacred

South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un plan to visit a volcano sacred to the North on the last day of Moon’s visit. Moon’s office said Wednesday that Moon accepted Kim’s offer to visit Mount Paektu on Thursday.   The volcano topped with a deep crater lake is at the heart of North Korea’s foundation ...

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Pakistan’s new PM, Imran Khan visits Saudi Arabia

Pakistan’s new prime minister, former cricket player Imran Khan, is in Saudi Arabia as part of his first official overseas trip. Khan arrived in the kingdom on Tuesday and will later travel to Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates.   While in Saudi Arabia, Khan traveled to Medina and visited the Prophet’s Mosque. He then flew to ...

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Philippines typhoon toll hits 81

The death toll in the Philippines from Typhoon Mangkhut has climbed to 81 and could hit triple digits as searchers dig through a landslide where dozens are presumed dead, authorities said Wednesday. Mangkhut swamped farm fields in the nation’s agricultural north and smashed houses when it tore through at the weekend with violent winds and heavy rains.   Since then ...

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S Korea’s Moon seeks nuclear agreement with Kim at summit

South Korean President Moon Jae-in and the North’s leader Kim Jong Un opened a new round of talks at a summit in Pyongyang on Wednesday with the North Korean nuclear arsenal high on the agenda, but Seoul warned they may not reach an agreement. Moon is on a three-day trip to the North Korean capital for his third summit with ...

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New Zealand to increase annual refugee quota to 1,500

 New Zealand plans to increase the number of refugees it takes each year from 1,000 to 1,500. Liberal Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced on Wednesday that the new quota will take effect from 2020.   The country has previously been criticized for not taking enough refugees after the annual quota remained at 750 for three decades before it was raised ...

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Afghan official: 9 local policemen die in ‘insider’ attack

An Afghan official says at least nine members of the local police force were killed when another policeman opened fire and shot them at a checkpoint in northern Balkh province, the latest in so-called “insider” attacks in Afghanistan. Mohammadudin Khanjer, a police official in the district of Char Boldak, says one policeman was wounded and three others were missing after ...

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