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WASHINGTON: Astronomers have autopsied a distant, broken apart planet and revealed signs of water and a rocky surface together for the first time, delighting scientists on the hunt for alien life. In a planetary system some 150 light years away, the right conditions for life appear to have once existed,…

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BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN, Brunei Darussalam: The 18 leaders in East Asia have endorsed the creation of an Asia Pacific Leaders Malaria Alliance (APLMA) to unite countries and promote regional political leadership and collaboration against the disease. APLMA aims to reduce malaria cases and deaths by 75% by 2015 and to…

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WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM OUR FACEBOOK GENERATION In the mature states, representative institutions may depend on disciplined parties, the rule of law, and constitutional guarantees. But in the still-tentative states of the emerging world, the effectiveness of government depends on the character and competence of the individuals who lead…

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They’re both named Arlene, and their operation may be minuscule compared with the multi-billion enterprise of Janet Lim-Napoles. But “Arlene CA” and “Arlene CH” are as shrewd and well-entrenched as the woman who is accused of masterminding the pork barrel scheme. The two Arlenes are fixers who can win favorable…


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CITING highly credible intelligence information on possible terror attacks in at least two of the country’s southern regions, the United States State Department has restricted Americans from traveling to Mindanao. A security message released by the US Embassy in Manila on Thursday cited the areas of concern as Regions II…

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BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN, Brunei: United States Secretary of State John Kerry sought to reassure Asian leaders on Thursday that Washington would resolve its political stalemate, after China voiced concern over a possible US debt default. The specter of a calamitous default has emerged as a major issue at an annual…

Business

ALTHOUGH PH REMAINS ASIA’S BRIGHT SPOT

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The local economy appears to continue gaining momentum as consumption and spending expand further, but banking giant HSBC urged the government to do more to attract investment, particularly in infrastructure—“the bedrock of the Philippines’ growth outlook over the next decade.” The UK bank stressed that the Philippines’ public-private partnership (PPP)…

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SHANGHAI: China will suspend “circuit breakers,” the top securities regulator said, after the trading curbs were again triggered on Thursday when share prices tumbled more than 7 percent, halting share trading early for the second time this week. The mechanism went into force at the beginning of the year to…

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DEVELOPING economies will benefit more from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement than bigger economies, as it can enhance trade and industry. The TPP would strengthen trade and gross domestic product (GDP) of TPP member countries, especially the developing economies. “The model situations suggest that by 2030, the TPP will raise…

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The peso lost more strength against the US dollar to hit a two-week low in pre-weekend trade as investors chased the greenback on expectations of better US non-farm payroll (NFP) data. The currency weakened to P47.16 to $1, losing 13 centavos from its P47.03 finish on Thursday. Friday’s finish was…

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The Department of Agriculture (DA) said on Friday it is pleased with the private sector’s response to the government’s farm mechanization program as the use of farm machineries has steadily increased throughout the country. Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala said the private sector has been very supportive of the farm mechanization…

Regions

World

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UNITED NATIONS: United Nations humanitarian chief Valerie Amos called again on Monday for an end to the violence in Ukraine, as she continued her visit to areas of the country’s crisis-riven eastern regions to see for herself the impact of the continued fighting on millions of people. Amos, Under Secretary-General…

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BRITISH intelligence officials have identified the man who killed an American journalist in a brutal beheading video that surfaced last week, NBC News reported Sunday citing unnamed UK security officials. NBC News said it has not yet confirmed the name of the suspect seen in the video released by Islamic…

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CAIRO: Egyptian mediators have proposed a new ceasefire in Gaza that would open the blockaded enclave’s crossings and allow in aid and reconstruction materials, a senior Palestinian official said on Monday. The Palestinians, including the de facto Hamas rulers of the enclave, would be willing to accept such a deal…

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LET’S be honest. The United States has crossed the threshold on Iraq. It’s in it to salvage the country — again — using American military might. But the mission has also, very quickly, grown much bigger in less than two weeks. US warplanes are no longer simply helping create escape…

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MONROVIA: The worst-ever outbreak of the Ebola virus is taking a heavy toll on west Africa’s economy as crops rot in the fields, mines are abandoned and goods cannot get to market. The epidemic has ravaged the region since it erupted in the forests in the south of Guinea earlier…

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GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories: An Israeli air strike killed two Palestinians in Gaza on Sunday as militants kept up rocket fire, a day after an Egyptian call for an open-ended ceasefire to enable new truce talks. The pace of Israeli raids was slower than Saturday when at least 60 strikes…

Today's Breaking News

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KIEV: Ukraine said Russia has thousands of troops in its conflict-ravaged east and vowed to boost its own military capacity, ratcheting up tensions Saturday after Kiev’s new coalition pledged to make joining NATO a priority. The latest declarations from Ukraine’s defence minister threaten to provoke fresh Russian anger as the…

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GARISSA, Kenya: Somalia’s Shebab Islamists on Saturday ambushed a bus in Kenya, killing 28 non-Muslim passengers in what they said was a revenge attack for police raids on mosques in the troubled port city of Mombasa. “I can confirm… that 28 innocent travellers were brutally executed by the Shebab,” regional…

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FRANKFURT: Hundreds of Germans have left their home country to fight alongside jihadists in Syria and Iraq, Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said. “We estimate 550. Just a few days ago we had 450,” the minister told German television channel Phoenix on Friday. “These young people… were radicalized in Germany,…

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Kabataan Party-list Rep. Terry L. Ridon has filed a bill requiring all museums and historical shrines in the country to offer free entrance to the public at least twice a month. In his House Bill 4757, Ridon said one of the main reasons Filipinos lack interest to visit museums and…

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HONG KONG: Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protesters are at a crossroads — as public support fades after nearly two months of mass sit-ins and gridlocked traffic, activists are split on whether to retreat or ramp up their campaign. With little hope of fresh dialogue between protesters and government, the spectacle of…