Wednesday 22 January 2020

Five skiers killed in avalanche

Police said four Swiss and one French citizen have been confirmed killed by a massive avalanche in northern Norway. Police spokesman Morten Pettersen said a sixth person, also Swiss, was dug out alive and taken to hospital.

The tourists were part of a group of 12 people out skiing yesterday near Tromsoe on Norway's Arctic coast.

Teacher harassed German couple

A maths teacher was convicted yesterday in Britain of harassing his German neighbours by playing wartime classics and performing Nazi salutes.

Reinhard and Kathryn Wendt, both 62, said 54-year-old Geoffrey Butler made their lives a misery. Butler was found guilty of racially aggravated harassment and sentenced to a three-year conditional discharge. Butler, of Lower Upnor, near Rochester, Kent, loudly played wartime songs including 'The White Cliffs Of Dover' by Vera Lynn and 'Rule Britannia'.

Court to decide on benefits for babies

The US Supreme Court is grappling with whether babies conceived through artificial insemination after a father's death get his government pension-fund survivor benefits, after government officials rejected a benefits claim from twins whose mother used her husband's frozen sperm to conceive them after his death.

The Capato twins were born through artificial insemination 18 months after Robert Capato died of cancer. Pension-fund administrators denied them survivor benefits, saying that to qualify as Mr Capato's children under federal law he needed to be alive during their conception.

Animals flee fire on Mount Kenya

A fire on the slopes of Kenya's tallest mountain is sending big-game animals fleeing for their lives as wildlife agents and British troops fight the blaze.

The flames had already consumed hundreds of acres of forest on Mount Kenya, said Paul Udoto, a spokesman for the Kenya Wildlife Service.

Law on cigarette labelling upheld

A US appeals court has upheld a law requiring new, bigger, graphic-warning labels on cigarette packs.

The lawsuit is one of two by tobacco companies against federal rules that would make them put large images on cigarette packs depicting the health ravages of smoking. A judge in the other case blocked the new requirement, arguing last month it violated free speech. The government is appealing.

Irish Independent

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