At least 51 killed as tornado hits Oklahoma suburb. 30 Chinese vessels, 1 warship sighted in Palawan. Chiz poorest Senator, Manny Villar still richest.
Today on Rappler.
Story 1: US NAVY SHIP DAMAGED CORAL IN TUBBATAHA
A US Navy ship runs aground near Tubbataha Reef in the Sulu Sea Thursday.
Tubbataha park officials are investigating the damaged corals.
Tubbataha management office head Angelique Songco tells Rappler the USS Guardian "entered without a permit" in violation of the Tubbataha Reefs National Park Act of 2009.
The ship may also be charged with destroying resources inside the marine protected area.
Songco says the coral damage will be determined by personnel from the marine park and the ship.
She says once the damage is assessed, the US Navy can expect to pay P12,000 per square meter of destroyed reefs.
In a statement, the US Pacific Fleet says the ship came from a routine port call in Subic, Zambales on Monday.
Songco says the Park sent its Rangers Thursday morning to visit the ship but were barred by the Americans.
Tubbataha is a multi-awarded conservation project and one of the world's best dive sites, home to a huge variety of marine life species and pristine coral.
Story 2: NEW PH MAP TO INCLUDE 'WEST PH SEA,' EEZ
The tension in the South China Sea or West Philippine Sea, has found a new arena.
Call it the map wars.
Carlos Santamaria reports.
China claims virtually the whole South China Sea.
Now that claim finds expression in an official map that includes about 130 islands and territories in the region.
The Philippines is preparing its own map, which will include also for the first time the new official name 'West Philippine Sea' and the 200-nautical-mile Exclusive Economic Zone or EEZ.
The map has already been drawn by the National Mapping and Resource Information Authority or Namria, as ordered by the President.
RUEL BELEN, DIRECTOR, MAPPING AND GEODESY DEPARTMENT, NAMRIA: Previously, in the old maps, the EEZ was not yet indicated, but for the new maps we will now have to produce, we will have to include the EEZ.
The mapmakers were not sure exactly where to put the name 'West Philippine Sea."
JOAQUIN BORJA, OIC, CARTOGRAPHICAL DIVISION, NAMRIA: The cartographic challenge was where to put the text 'West Philippine Sea', considering cartographic specifications, diagonal or horizontal. They instructed us that this is where the West Philippine Sea should be placed.
Once they are approved by Malacañang and the DFA, the new maps will be used in all official government publications and school textbooks.
The name West Philippine Sea is rejected by China.
DR. PETER TIANGCO, ADMINISTRATOR, NAMRIA: The former name of that part of the world is South China Sea, so when we name it as such, West Philippine Sea, definitely there will be a not so good reaction from the party, so that's the biggest challenge.
The drafts are still being studied by the DFA.
RAUL HERNANDEZ, SPOKESPERSON, DFA: It is very clear that based on UNCLOS, we have the 200 nautical miles of EEZ and that area in the West Philippine Sea is clearly part of our national territory.
Once it is approved, the government plans to register the new official map with the United Nations.
Carlos Santamaria, Rappler, Manila.
Story 3: MILITARY CLEARS MEN IN ATIMONAN SHOOTING
The military says the incident in Atimonan, Quezon that killed 13 people on January 6 was not an execution.
Soldiers in the checkpoint say the 13 suspects fired at them, prompting them to return fire.
Southern Luzon Command chief Maj Gen Allan Luga says he is taking their word for it.
This contradicts a report by the National Bureau of Investigation ruling out a shootout.
The 25 Army soldiers involved in the incident do not face administrative charges, but have been confined to barracks.
Luga says he will allow the soldiers to be investigated by the NBI.
Story 4: AQUINO TELLS HIS 4TH CHIEF OF STAFF: ENSURE HONEST POLLS
President Benigno Aquino on Thursday orders the military to ensure honest and clean elections in May.
He also tells the soldiers, continue your frontline efforts during disasters.
Speaking before soldiers at turnover ceremonies for Emmanuel Bautista, the next chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines...
the President says it is the military's obligation to ensure the integrity of the electoral exercise in May.
Aquino also says while the road to peace is set as far as the Moro Islamic Liberation Front is concerned, the military has to continue being at the forefront of rescue, relief and rehabilitation efforts during disasters.
BENIGNO AQUINO III, PHILIPPINE PRESIDENT: Nais nating mangibabaw ang boses ng bayan, at hindi ito mabusalan ng armas, takot, at karahasan…Pangalagaan ninyo ang karapatan ng mamamayan na malayang makapili ng kanilang mga pinuno.
Story 5: REPORT: PINOYS AMONG HOSTAGES IN ALGERIA
Malaysian and Filipino nationals are among the hostages being held at a gas field in Algeria.
Islamists tell media in Mauritania, they are holding 41 hostages at the In Amenas gas field, a joint-venture operation that includes British oil company BP.
The kidnappers say they are retaliating against France for its intervention in Mali.
On Wednesday, news channel France 24 broadcasts an excerpt of a conversation with a French hostage, who says he is held along with English, Japanese, Filipino and Malaysian nationals.
US. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland says Americans were among the hostages.
US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta calls the kidnapping a “terrorist attack.”
A spokesperson for Britain's Foreign Office says a British national is killed in the attack.
Story 6: DISINI: CYBERCRIME LAW THREATENS FREEDOM AND PRIVACY
Technology law expert Atty. JJ Disini, one of five lawyers who took part Tuesday in the Supreme Court oral arguments on the cybercrime law says ordinary people should care about it.
He cites increasing libel penalties when done online, use of traffic data, and the takedown clause as his primary reasons.
JJ DISINI, CYBERCRIME LAW PETITIONER: The worst provision is the take down clause. We argue that if enough complaints are with the DOJ, at some point it’s going to look like the great firewall of China. I think the problem, and the reason why there was so much focus on libel, when you talk to law enforcement authorities, what they’ll tell you - what they told me, is that 60 to 70% of cases filed before them are libel cases.
MARIA RESSA: Why should ordinary people care?
JJ DISINI: I think there are a lot of people who have been victimized...I’m sure there are a lot of instances of invasion. You go check your email and you realize you’ve been compromised. So things of that nature...hacking...or web defacements.
Disini says the passage of the cybercrime law could limit the Filipinos’ participation in the still evolving cyberspace.
JJ DISINI: Two things are at stake here: the freedom of expression, which includes the freedom of the press and privacy. When your privacy is breached, when somebody is looking over your shoulder, looking at what your surfing, making conclusions about you and engaging in some sort of surveillance there is no freedom.
Disini adds a lot the provisions that are being questioned comes from the Senate version.
Story 7: JAKARTA PARALYZED BY FLOODS
Days of heavy downpour leaves the streets of Indonesian capital Jakarta heavily flooded with thousands forced to leave their homes.
Weather officials say the seasonal rain could continue and flood may get worse in the next few days.
Indonesia's disaster management agency says over 9,000 are forced to evacuate to shelters.
Jakarta's governor Joko Widodo has already declared a state of emergency.
Story 8: BOEING CRISIS DEEPENS AS US GROUNDS DREAMLINERS
Boeing suffers another blow after the US Federal Aviation Administration orders airlines to stop flying 787 Dreamliners until a fire risk linked to the plane's lithium batteries is resolved.
This comes after Japan's two biggest airlines -- All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines -- ground their fleets pending safety checks.
On Wednesday, an ANA flight is forced into an emergency landing after cockpit instruments detect smoke, possibly coming from a faulty battery.
The FAA's announcement means 30 of the world's 50 Dreamliners are now grounded.
United Airlines, the world's biggest airline, is currently the only US airline operating the 787, with six airplanes in service.
The incidents dent investor confidence in Boeing, which saw its shares plunge 3.4 percent in New York on Wednesday.
Story 9: OBAMA UNVEILS SWEEPING GUN VIOLENCE PROPOSALS
US President Barack Obama demands an assault weapons ban and universal background checks for gun buyers.
The move is pushed by shooting incidents in 2012, most recently the Newtown massacre.
Obama signs 23 executive actions in a swift effort to check a rash of recent mass shootings.
He lays out the most sweeping gun control legislation in decades and dares Congress not to defy public outrage and block his plans.
BARACK OBAMA, US PRESIDENT: This is our first task as a society, keeping our children safe. This is how we will be judged. We can't put this off any longer.
Prominent Republicans reject Obama's plans out of hand.
Republican Senator Marco Rubio says, "Guns are not the problem."
He adds, "Criminals with evil in their hearts and mentally ill people prone to violence are."
Story 10: THE wRap: YOUR WORLD IN ONE READ
At number 3, Over the past year, Islamic militants with links to al-Qaeda carved out a post in Mali while officials in Washington, Paris and African capitals struggled with how to contain them.
The predominant idea seemed to be to let African troops deal with them.
Last Friday, a surprise French assault after repeated calls for help turned those plans upside down and triggered a Wednesday raid in Algeria, with hostage-takers saying they were retaliating for French actions in Mali.
West African army chiefs met Tuesday to plan the deployment of about 3,300 troops as part of a UN-backed intervention.
At number 9, Her voice landed her on the Les Miserables not once, but twice -- playing two different roles.
Tony-winning singer and actress Lea Salonga is the first Asian to play street urchin Eponine and desperate mother Fantine in two different productions of the well-loved musical.
With Tom Hooper's cinematic adaptation finally in Philippine theaters, Lea shares her thoughts on the film's performances.
On Anne Hathaway's rendition of "I Dreamed a Dream," Lea says, "It was perfect. I couldn't stop crying big tears."
And at number 10, It was the interview to get: Lance Armstrong, disgraced cyclist, set to talk about doping for the first time.
The exclusive went to Oprah Winfrey, who taped the two and a half hour interview Monday.
It’s set to air in two parts beginning Thursday.
58 year old Winfrey dominated US daytime television from 1986 to 2011.
Celebrity biographer Kitty Kelley says the interview benefits Winfrey’s cable and satellite channel OWN because “it is not yet part of the (media) mainstream.”
Insider reports say Armstrong admitted to taking performance-enhancing drugs in the interview.
Newscast production staff
|EXECUTIVE PRODUCER / WRITER||Lilibeth Frondoso|
|ASSOCIATE PRODUCER / PUBLISHER||Rodneil Quiteles|
|HEAD WRITER / PROMPTER||Katerina Francisco|
|MASTER EDITOR / PLAYBACK||Vicente Roxas|
|TECHNICAL DIRECTOR / CAMERAMAN||Charlie Salazar|