The wRap


Your World in 10 - December 13, 2012 Edition

Historic Vote

1. Victory and more challenges ahead for the RH bill



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Late into the night, members of the House of Representatives stood up and explained their vote on a contentious RH bill, which has languished in the legislature for 14 years. The Philippines, Asia's largest Roman Catholic nation, has one of the world's fastest population growth rate largely because contraception is either unavailable or too expensive for the majority of its poor - at least 65% of its 100 million people. Despite strong opposition from the Church, the bill passes the House of Representatives on second reading, now ready to face more challenges ahead in the coming days.


Read about the vote, the reactions, and the battles ahead - all on Rappler.




#PabloPH

2. Death toll rises to more than 900



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A little more than a week since typhoon Pablo devastated parts of the southern Philippines, at least 900 people are declared dead and more than 600 remain missing. Some good news on Thursday: nearly 300 fishermen are rescued. According to the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Center, 63 evacuation centers are temporarily sheltering 765,530 people. The government estimates the damage at P14.30 billion, with agricultural damage alone estimated to reach P9.68 billion. Aid has yet to reach some of the most remote areas where homes and buildings have been reduced to toothpicks sprinkling the barren landscape.


Read more about Thursday's NDRRMC announcement and watch hope in the midst of the destruction - all on Rappler.




Rocket Launch

3. Launch fuels security concerns



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North Korea successfully launched a long-range rocket on Wednesday, December 12, defying UN sanctions threats and raising security concerns in Asia. US officials said they believed the launch is part of North Korea's plans to develop long-range missiles that could eventually carry nuclear warheads capable of threatening US allies in Asia and the US west coast. The rocket flew over Japan's airspace with part of it crashing in the ocean near the Philippines, which condemned the launch. India also condemned North Korea's actions, but on the same day tested its own missile.


Read more about the launch, the Philippine reaction and India's actions - all on Rappler.




Consequences

4. Pacquiao drops to number 7 in the world



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After his devastating loss to Mexican Juan Manuel Marquez, Manny Pacquiao drops from number 2 to number 7 in pound-for-pound rankings globally of world-class boxers in The Ring magazine. Its list is considered the most accurate and prestigious in boxing. Marquez moved up from number 6 to number 3, with Filipino fighter Nonito Donaire at number 6, a notch ahead of his idol, Pacquiao. Still stinging from his loss, Pacquiao arrives in Manila Wednesday to a humbling welcome and receives a standing ovation in Congress when he voted no to the RH bill.


Read more about the boxing rankings, Pacquiao's arrival in Manila and his vote in Congress - all on Rappler.




Historic Match

5. Azkals lose to Singapore 1-0



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There were great hopes the Philippines would bring home the win, which made the loss, following the weekend KO of Manny Pacquiao, tougher for Filipino sports fans. The Philippine men's football team failed to make the finals of the Suzuki Cup for the second time in a row on Wednesday after Singapore defeated the Azkals 1-0. The only goal of the game came in the 19th minute. This is the second time the Philippines made it to the semifinals but failed to advance.


Read more on Rappler.




Violence

6. Scuds fired inside Syria



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A day after US President Barack Obama recognized the rebels in Syria, US officials announce that President Bashar al-Assad's forces are firing ballistic missiles at rebel fighters. A civil war that's been raging for nearly two years seems to be shifting as the insurgency gains momentum. More than 40,000 people have been killed according to human rights activists. Last week, the US warned Syria not to use chemical weapons against its people.


Read more about the scud missiles on the New York Times and Obama's move to recognize the Syrian rebels on Rappler.




Blessed Tweet?

7. Pope sends 1st Tweet



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The Pope's on Twitter! When the Vatican announced he would start tweeting under @pontifex last week, more than 625,000 people registered to follow his account in English. Tens of thousands more are following his Arabic, French, German, Italian, Polish, Portuguese and Spanish accounts. His first tweet? "Dear friends, I am pleased to get in touch with you through Twitter. Thank you for your generous response. I bless all of you from my heart." It was retweeted more than 7,000 times in the first twelve minutes. Will the Catholic Church expand its influence among the Youth? It certainly hopes so.


Read more on Rappler.




Uncertainty

8. Egypt's opposition urges 'No" vote on Constitution



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It's been a difficult transition for Egypt, and now the Dec. 15 vote called by President Mohammed Morsi is becoming a major test for its nascent democracy. The original vote to ratify a new constitution will now be split into two. After two weeks of often violent protests, the main opposition, the National Salvation Front, announced it would campaign for 'no' votes instead of boycotting. It might, though, still call for a last-minute boycott if several conditions aren't met by Saturday morning. Opposition leaders want it scrapped, saying it's drafted by an Islamist-dominated assembly.


Read more on the New York Times.




FB & Crime

9. Facebook helps FBI arrest 10 in social network hacking



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The FBI announced that Facebook helped in the takedown of an international crime ring that cost online users more than US$850 million. Ten people were arrested from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, the Republic of Macedonia, New Zealand, Peru, the United Kingdom and the United States.


Read more on Rappler.




Privacy

10. Facebook changes privacy settings



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Nearly 30 million Filipinos are on Facebook. According to Comscore in 2010 and 2011, the Philippines was Facebook's largest market. On Wednesday, the social networking site that counts more than 1 billion users globally changed its sometimes controversial privacy policies again. Check out how you may be affected.


Read more on the New York Times.


Read more on Rappler.