The wRap


Your World in 10 - December 26, 2012 Edition

#WeatherPH

1. Tropical Storm Quinta weakens, 14 areas still under Signal No. 1



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At least 6,000 passengers were stranded on Christmas day due to Tropical Storm Quinta (Wukong). As of 11am Wednesday, December 26, PAGASA said Quinta had slightly weakened after making landfall but storm signal No. 1 continued to be raised over 14 provinces. Landslides triggered by Quinta shut down a highway in Southern Leyte on Wednesday morning, no casualties, injuries or damages were reported.

Read more here
Other details here



Referendum

2. Egypt approves new constitution



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Egyptian voters approved their new constitution in a 2-phase referendum that took place over the weekend. Of the 32.9% which turned out to vote, 63.8% voted in favor of the new constitution while 36.2% voted against it. The results come despite protests saying the referendum was rushed, that its wording does not protect the people, and that the composition of the body tasked to draft it was not representative of the people.

Read the full story on CNN



Christmas Message

3. Pope's calls for peace in Syria



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Pope Benedict XVI called for peace in Syria during his annual Christmas message, the Urbi et Orbi (to the city and the world) at the Vatican City. Speaking before thousands of followers who gathered at St. Peter's Square the pope appealed, "for an end to the bloodshed and easier access for the relief of refugees and the displaced." The pope also prayed for those affected by the "savage acts of terrorism" against Christians in Nigeria. The 85-year old pontiff also urged Christians to "find time and room for God in their fast-paced lives."

Read the full story on BBC



New Champ

4. Nonito Donaire named ESPN Boxer of the Year



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ESPN named junior featherweight champion Nonito "The Filipino Flash" Donaire as Boxer of the Year. At the start of 2012 Donaire vacated his bantamweight titles and moved up to the junior featherweight division. He he won 4 out of his 4 fights this year, 2 by knockout including his most recent against Mexican champion Jorge Arce. ESPN calls his four fights, "an exceptionally busy year by modern standards for an elite champion." Donaire's other wins this year include fights vs Wilfredo Vazquez (Puerto Rico), Jeffrey Mathebula (South Africa), and Toshiaki Nishioka (Japan).

Read the full story on ESPN



Plane Crash

5. 27 die in Kazakstan military plane crash



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27 people, including top members of the Kazakhstan border guard died on board a Kazakh military plane that crashed in southern city of Shymkent December 25. The Antonov An-72 military transport was carrying seven crew and 20 servicemen, including the acting head of the Kazakh federal border service Turganbek Stambekov. Reports by KTK TV say the plane disappeared shortly before 7pm Kazakstan time as it was making descent. The plane crashed 20 kilometers from the Shymkent airport from a height of 800 meters.

Read the full story on BBC



New Leadership

6. Shinzo Abe is new Prime Minister



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Japan's conservative leader Shinzo Abe is set to become the country's next prime minister Wednesday. The country's powerful lower house will name the 58-year-old as leader in an extraordinary session Wednesday afternoon, following a resounding national election victory for his Liberal Democratic Party earlier this month. Abe rose to power on a platform that stressed the need for to be tough on diplomacy while fixing the economy. He replaces outgoing Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda whose Democratic Party of Japan suffered a stinging defeat at the polls. Abe previously served as prime minister from 2006 to 2007.

Read the full story on Rappler



Strategic Defensive

7. Communist party celebrates 44th anniversary



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The Communist Party of the Philippines turns 44 years old today, December 26. A day after police and military units captured a key NPA leader in Negros Oriental, Filemon Mendrez, the 6th most wanted man in the country. 44 years since its inception, Asia's longest running insurgency is still in the strategic defensive stage despite its 2008 goal of being in a strategic stalemate with the Philippine government by 2013. The CPP however says they are "making substantial progress" in carrying out this objective. It also claims it now operates in more than 100 guerrilla fronts up from 39 in 2008.

Read the full story on Rappler



Technology

8. Netflix blames Amazon for Christmas outage



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Video streaming service Netflix was down across the United States the day that most of America needed it the most. While most families were home for the Christmas holiday, subscribers discovered that they were unable to stream new movies to watch using the popular service. Netflix admitted the outage via a Tweet on the afternoon of December 24th (Christmas morning in Manila) saying, "We're sorry for the Christmas Eve outage. Terrible timing! Engineers are working on it now." The service resumed to "streaming levels" on December 26th around 1am Manila time with Netflix blaming the problem on Amazon Web Services (AWS) servers. AWS reported "Elastic Load Balancing Service" issues the same time Netflix went down, but as GigaOm writer Barb Darrow points out, the issue did not affect Amazon's own video streaming service.

Read the full story on The Atlantic Wire



Finals Rematch

9. LeBron James powers Miami to Christmas day victory over Oklahoma



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LeBron James scored 29 points, passed out 9 assists and grabbed 8 rebounds on Tuesday, December 25 to spark the Miami Heat over the Oklahoma City Thunder 103-97 in a rematch of last June's NBA Finals. The reigning NBA champion Heat won their 5th game in a row and improved to 19-6, the best record in the Eastern Conference, while the Thunder lost for the second game in a row after a 12-game win streak, falling to 21-6.

Read the full story on Rappler



Film Fest

10. Rappler MMFF Film Reviews



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The 38th Metro Manila Film Festival kicked of Christmas Day shutting down the screening of foreign films and giving the public 8 local feature films to choose from, The Strangers, El Presidente, Thy Womb, Sisteraka, One More Try, Si Agimat, Si Enteng Kabisote, Sosy Problems and Shake, Rattle and Roll 14. Still can't decide which film to watch? Rappler has posted reviews of 3 of the 8 films.

You can check them out here: