March 14, 2014 Edition

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  1. China: PH ships outright provocation

    AFP Photo/Philippine Government

    China accused the Philippines of failing to live up to its promise to haul away a stranded ship from the disputed Ayungin Shoal (Ren’ai Reef for Beijing.) China’s Foreign Ministry also accused Manila of sending two ships loaded with construction materials to “maintain a presence” in the area. The Philippines said the vessels only meant to resupply food to troops stationed at the grounded ship. Despite China’s blockade, Manila will continue sending ships, saying it does not want “to starve our people to death.”

    Read two related stories on Rappler here and here.

  2. Cop who led Lee arrest ‘sacked’

    Photo by Bea Cupin/Rappler

    The police officer who led the team that arrested developer Delfin Lee expressed disappointment that he was “relieved” from his post. Former Task Force Tugis head Conrad Capa was dismayed with his assignment as the third in command in Cebu’s regional police office but Philippine National Police chief Alan Purisima insisted it was a “promotion.” Capa though said it will take time for him to be promoted in Cebu, and he could have used the momentum to catch the rest of the “big 5” high-profile fugitives.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  3. US: Search for missing jet shifts west

    Photo from AFP

    The search for the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner shifts west in the Indian Ocean as investigators examine data appearing to show the plane might have been functional hours after controllers last heard from it. White House spokesman Jay Carney said the US was consulting Malaysia on resources to be deployed in the new search area. Yet officials told the BBC the information was “not concrete enough to merit a rise in expectations” nearly a week after the plane with 239 people on board went missing.

    Read more on BBC and The New York Times.

  4. Aquino sorry for aid delay but hits Tacloban

    Malacañang Photo Bureau

    For the first time in 4 months, President Benigno Aquino III apologized for the delay in aid distribution after Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan). Yet the President again criticized Tacloban city, taking a swipe at political rival Mayor Alfred Romualdez. Aquino said Tacloban was ill-prepared and slow to respond to the disaster. He said local officials also refused to come up with an ordinance splitting functions with the national government. Aquino slammed Romualdez for being “more interested in press conferences, interviews, appearing before hearings, etc.”

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  5. Russia faces UN showdown over Crimea

    Screengrab from the Aljazeera video

    Western diplomats are preparing a draft resolution against Russian actions in Crimea to isolate Moscow. Al Jazeera reports the US planned to circulate the draft at the end of a Security Council meeting on Syria. Diplomats want to vote on the resolution Friday or Saturday, a day before a planned referendum asking Crimeans if they want to leave Ukraine and join the Russian Federation. Western powers said Russia’s actions in Ukraine are illegal and violate international agreements.

    Read more on Al Jazeera.

  6. Aquino: Don’t vote for ‘ampaw’ candidates

    President Benigno Aquino III urged high school students not to vote for candidates who are all talk and no substance or ampaw (rice puffs). Aquino said voters must look at competence as politicians begin jockeying for the 2016 polls. Aquino said Filipinos should also value selflessness and humility in a leader, and use the Internet to research on candidates’ background. Aquino has yet to endorse a potential successor from his ruling Liberal Party.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  7. Igorota is UN rapporteur for IP rights

     Photo from Corpuz's Facebook page

    Filipino Vicky Tauli-Corpuz became the first woman and first indigenous person from the Philippines to be named United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous People. A proud Igorot from the Kankana-ey tribe in Besao, Mountain Province, Corpuz is known for her work as an indigenous activist since the 1970s. She was chosen among 14 nominees. She said IP’s rights to their lands, territories and resources are the main issues she will face.
    Read the full story on Rappler.

  8. Zuckerberg calls Obama to complain about NSA

    Photos from AFP

    Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg called US President Barack Obama to express frustration about government spying and hacking programs. Zuckerberg revealed the phone conversation through a Facebook post and the White House confirmed it. The tech founder was concerned about an investigative report showing the National Security Agency “weaponized the Internet,” making it possible to inject bad software into innocent people’s computers en masse. Zuckerberg said, “The US government should be the champion for the Internet, not a threat.”

    Read the full story on Rappler.
    Read more on CNN.

  9. ‘Diana gave royal directory to tabloid’

    Photo from AFP

    Former News of the World royal editor Clive Goodman said Princess Diana leaked a royal phone book to him. Goodman told a British phone-hacking trial that Diana sent him a “green book” to see the scale of the staff and household of Prince Charles, compared with others. The journalist said, “She was in a very bitter situation with the Prince of Wales at the time, she felt she was being swamped by the people close to him.” Goodman is accused of paying police for royal phone books, which he denied.


    Read more on BBC.

  10. Movie trailer voice over master dies

     Screenshot from YouTube

    The man who lent his vocal gravitas to hundreds of Hollywood movie trailers died. Hal Douglas died of pancreatic cancer at 89. Douglas was part of a generation of top voiceover artists, creating a career voicing trailers of movies ranging from the somber “Philadelphia” to “Meet the Parents” to the epic “Waterworld.” Douglas was featured in the 2002 Jerry Seinfeld documentary “Comedian.” In October, he suffered a stroke, losing most of his ability to speak.

    Read more on Variety.

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