Saturday 25 November 2017

In Brief: Murder hunt launched after firework through letterbox led to blaze death

British police yesterday launched a murder hunt after a devoted mother of nine died saving her son from a house fire started by a firework pushed through her letterbox.

Mary Fox, 59, was trapped in her bedroom after reportedly pushing her 17-year-old son Raum to safety through an upstairs window. Police have launched a murder investigation after the remnants of a firework were found behind the front door of Mrs Fox's house in Bodmin, Cornwall, south-west England.

Last night, Mrs Fox's family paid tribute to their "loving and caring" mother who devoted her life to her children and "would give her last penny" to help people in need.

Eight die in Nato 'friendly fire' attack

AFGHANISTAN'S Defence Ministry said yesterday that a Nato air strike in the western province of Badghis the previous day mistakenly hit a joint base housing coalition troops and Afghan security forces, killing four Afghan soldiers, three policemen and an interpreter.

Nato said it was investigating whether a Nato air strike during an operation on Friday to rescue two missing American paratroopers had caused casualties.

Obama in final push for healthcare bill

US President Barack Obama summoned Democrats to "answer the call of history" yesterday as the House of Representatives pushed toward a vote on a landmark health care bill holding out the promise of coverage for tens of millions who lack it.

After months of struggle capped by a final wrenching compromise over abortion, Speaker Nancy Pelosi predicted, "we will pass health care reform," and likened the events to the creation of Social Security in 1935. The $1.2 trillion measure was expected to pass easily.

Kenyan officials face Hague trial

Senior Kenyan government officials suspected of committing crimes against humanity during last year's election violence could be indicted in The Hague as soon as next year, the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court announced yesterday.

Luis Moreno-Ocampo said two or three cases could be presented for trial by July 2010, well before the next presidential poll in 2012.

Spy planes to track Somali pirates

Spy planes are being used for the first time to track the movements of Somali pirates as they plunder hundreds of ships, a Nato report will reveal next week. Satellites may also be employed to identify gangs armed with rocket-propelled grenades and submachine guns off the Horn of Africa, according to the report.

The Nato revelations come amid growing concern for the plight of Paul and Rachel Chandler, the middle-aged British couple held by bandits after being captured on their boat 15 days ago. Brigands, meanwhile, are holding a Spanish trawler and 33 crew members off Somalia and have reportedly threatened to start killing hostages.

Air France crash memorial dedicated

Scores of relatives of the 228 people killed in the June 1 Air France crash dedicated a memorial to their loved ones in Rio de Janeiro yesterday -- amid strong criticism that the airline has failed to provide them with the answers or the compensation they were promised.

Three Irish women -- Aisling Butler of Roscrea, Co Tipperary; Jane Deasy, of Dublin; and Eithne Walls, originally from Belfast -- were among those killed when the Airbus 330 crashed en route from Rio to Paris.

The cause of the crash remains unclear as the black box recorder has yet to be located. The memorial overlooks the Atlantic Ocean in an affluent suburb of Rio.

'Dead' Honduras peace pact is reborn

Honduras's ousted president and de facto leader gave signs yesterday they would try again to form a unity government after the process collapsed a day earlier.

President Manuel Zelaya, a refugee in the Brazilian embassy, declared a pact to end the four-month crisis dead on Friday, while de facto leader Roberto Micheletti said he would form a new government without Zelaya.

But Micheletti's government said yesterday -- after diplomatic pressure -- that it would suspend installing a new cabinet to give Zelaya time to name members to it. A Zelaya spokesman confirmed that representatives from the two sides were due to meet yesterday.

Sunday Independent

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