World’s top news stories for today from Washingtonian post (March 13, 2016)
Germanwings crash and better health reporting rules
Aviation agencies around the world should draw up new rules requiring medical workers to warn authorities when a pilot’s mental health could threaten public safety, French investigators recommended Sunday in their report on the Germanwings plane crash.
Germanwings co-pilot Andreas Lubitz had been treated for depression in the past, and the investigation found that he had consulted dozens of doctors in the weeks before he deliberately crashed a jet into the French Alps on March 24, 2015, killing all 150 people on board.
But the doctors didn’t tell authorities of any concerns about Lubitz’s mental health, France’s BEA air accident investigation agency said, even though one even referred Lubitz to a psychiatric clinic just two weeks before the crash.
“Experts found that the symptoms (two weeks before the crash) could be compatible with a psychotic episode,” said Arnaud Desjardin, leader of the BEA investigation. This information “was not delivered to Germanwings.” Because Lubitz didn’t inform anyone of his doctors’ warnings, the BEA said, “no action could have been taken by the authorities or his employer to prevent him from flying.” The Associated Press
Merkel faces test in regional elections
Germans are voting in three regional elections seen as a test of support for Chancellor Angela Merkel’s policy towards refugees. The anti-immigration Alternative for Germany party (AfD) is expected to make gains amid unease over Mrs Merkel’s so-called “open door” policy. More than a million migrants and refugees entered Germany in 2015.
Asked on Saturday how she was preparing for Sunday’s elections, Mrs Merkel said: “I’m crossing my fingers.” Polls suggest that her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) will remain the biggest party in Saxony-Anhalt in the east of the country. BBC
US Presidential election
Saturday’s Caucus: Marco Rubio edged out John Kasich in Saturday’s Republican presidential caucus in Washington, D.C, earning 37 percent support and 10 delegates to Kasich’s nine. Donald Trump and Ted Cruz didn’t pick up any delegates. Cruz easily took Wyoming’s county conventions with 66 percent support, snagging nine delegates. Rubio and Trump earned one apiece. Cruz also won one delegate in Guam on Saturday.
Trump cancels Chicago rally: Donald Trump’s presidential campaign canceled his Chicago rally moments before it was about to start Friday, citing security concerns. Hundreds of anti-Trump protesters were among the thousands gathered in and around the University of Illinois at Chicago venue. Police arrested five people as violent clashes broke out. The Republican frontrunner called for peace in a statement, but lately has been criticized for defending violence at his rallies against protesters and journalists. CNN, The New York Times
Trump blames Sanders: Trump is blaming Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders and his supporters for what he says was a planned disruption that forced him to cancel a Chicago rally Friday night. Fights broke out among several Trump supporters and opponents before police cleared the crowd. Many of the protesters chanted “Bernie, Bernie” and waved Sanders signs. VOA News
Facebook gets 1 million violation reports a day
Bickert spoke to the fine (and imperfect) line between free speech and hate speech at SXSW’s first Online Harassment Summit on Saturday. Bickert told CNNMoney she didn’t know offhand what percentage are serious and taken off the site.
The panel centered on how far tech companies could — and should — go in removing potentially harmful content on their platforms. CNN
US, South Korea begin war games
The United States and South Korea began a series of annual joint military exercises Saturday, after days of threats by North Korea that it will retaliate if the war games turn into an attack — threats generally made each year.
The annual U.S. and South Korean exercises last eight weeks and are meticulously planned. Saturday’s activities began with U.S. and South Korean troops in assault vehicles storming a beach on South Korea’s east coast.
South Korea’s Defense Ministry is calling the exercises “the largest scale ever,” with 300,000 South Korean and at least 17,000 U.S. troops participating. A U.S. statement released before the exercises began said about 55 U.S. Marine aircraft and 30 U.S. and South Korean ships are taking part in the war games near Pohang City.
ISIS Uses birth control to maintain supply of sex slaves
The Islamic State group is using several forms of contraception to maintain its supply of sex slaves, The New York Times reported Saturday, citing interviews with more than three dozen Yazidi women who escaped from the militant group.
The Times said IS used “oral and injectable contraception, and sometimes both,” to ensure that the women did not become pregnant and could be passed among the fighters. “In at least one case, a woman was forced to have an abortion in order to make her available for sex, and others were pressured to do so,” the paper said.
Islamic State militants consider the Yazidis to be devil worshippers. The Yazidi faith has elements of Christianity, Zoroastrianism and Islam. Most of the Yazidi population, numbering around half a million, remains displaced in camps inside the autonomous entity in Iraq’s north known as Kurdistan. VOA News
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