Philippine basketball

March 18, 2014 Edition

Valerie Castro

This is AI generated summarization, which may have errors. For context, always refer to the full article.

  1. China tells PH on Ayungin dispute: prepare for consequences

    File photo by AFP

    China warned the Philippines to prepare for “consequences” for breaking its promise to withdraw a stranded ship from the disputed Ayungin Shoal. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said the Philippines, under previous administrations, promised to tow away the ship grounded in the shoal. It was only under President Benigno Aquino III that the Philippines filed a historic case against China over disputed maritime territories. China said the Philippines should fulfill its promises even if they were made under a previous administration. Otherwise, Hong said the Philippines will risk its “credibility.” The Philippines’ Department of Foreign Affairs did not deny China’s claim, but said the stranded ship was placed in Ayungin before the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea was signed in 2002.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  2. Zero phone calls or social media posts from MH370

    File photo by Francis Silvan/AFP

    More than a week since Malaysia Airlines Flight MH 370 disappeared en route to Beijing, investigators are still in the dark about the fate of the plane and the 239 people on board. Many were left puzzled about the absence of communication: there have been no calls or social media posts from anyone aboard the plane since it was diverted. Citing experts and analysts, The New York Times said the plane may have been flying too high for passengers’ cellphones to connect to base stations on the ground. If someone deliberately disabled communications equipment – as investigators theorized – then air phones built into the plane’s entertainment system would also not work. 25 countries are now involved in the massive hunt for the plane, with the search operations concentrating on two huge arcs: one stretching north from Malaysia up to central Asia, and the other south, deep into the Indian Ocean towards Australia.

    Read the full story on Rappler and NY Times.

  3. Last verbal communication came from co-pilot

     MH370 file photo by AFP

    Investigators believe the last words spoken to air traffic control from the missing Malaysian plane came from the co-pilot. Officials said Fariq Abdul Hamid was believed to have said the words “All right, goodnight” to Malaysian air traffic controllers at 1:19am, two minutes before the plane’s transponder stopped. Investigators earlier said the plane’s communications systems were deliberately turned off before the plane deviated from its flight path. Because of this, the probe has now turned to the missing plane’s crew, particularly the pilots.

    Read the full story on The Guardian.

  4. PH state auditor to sue 100 officials for cash advances

    Photo by Ayee Macaraig/Rappler

    The Commission on Audit (COA) will file malversation charges against 100 officials for unliquidated cash advances that reached P5 billion in 2011. COA chair Grace Pulido-Tan said the amount spans 20 to 40 years, and is on top of the funds involved in the pork barrel scam where lawmakers allegedly funneled public money through fake NGOs in exchange for kickbacks. Although Tan sasaidys “millions” of people did not liquidate cash advances, COA and the Ombudsman decided to set the threshold at P1 million and above to ensure they go after people whom they could still recover the money from. Tan first announced in January that COA intended to sue agencies and officials for unliquidated cash advances. Tan said the COA issued a “final demand” in 2012 for the officials to liquidate their cash advances, with P1.6 billion liquidated. Those who did not liquidate the remaining P3.4 billion will now be sued.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  5. Haiyan relief ops “chaotic and crazy” – state auditors

    Photo by Ayee Macaraig/Rappler

    The Commission on Audit (COA) described the relief operations in the aftermath of super typhoon Yolanda or Haiyan as “chaotic and crazy.” In a Senate hearing Monday, COA chair Grace Pulido-Tan said the agency will come up with a report on disaster response systems following the typhoon that killed more than 6,000 people in November 2013. COA’s findings confirmed what many observers long pointed out but the government dismissed. Tan said, “There was really no one calling the shots, doing coherent coordination…Everybody was at a loss.” In the aftermath of the typhoon, international aid poured in but Tan said most went straight to beneficiaries, instead of through agencies like the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  6. PH orders internet providers to block child porn sites

    The government ordered Internet service providers (ISPs) in the Philippines to block access to child pornography. In a memorandum issued January 30, the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) ordered ISPs to install filters that will block identified child porn websites. The ISPs have until June to install the filters. They should also submit a list of child porn websites that subscribers attempt to access to the Inter-Agency Council Against Child Pornography.  ISPs are also required to preserve customer data records for investigation. The government’s move came following reports the Philippines has become a key hub of the billion-dollar global child cybersex industry.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  7. Russia recognizes Crimea’s independence

    Photo by Dimitar Dilkoff/AFP

    Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree recognizing Ukraine’s autonomous region Crimea as a sovereign state. This comes after Crimea voted to leave Ukraine and join Russia, following weeks of pro-Moscow sentiment and opposition towards the new leaders in the capital Kiev. Putin’s decree paves the way for Crimea to be absorbed into Russia. Under Crimea’s declaration of independence, the peninsula will adopt the Russian currency and use Moscow time. Crimean lawmakers also appealed to the “all countries of the world” to recognize their independence, but the West has denounced the referendum as illegal.

    Read the full story on BBC.

  8. Gun dealer says Olympic athlete knew law

    File photo from AFP

    On the third week of the trial of South African Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius, a gun dealer said the athlete knew gun safety laws before buying firearms and obtaining a license. Gun dealer Sean Patrick Rens said Pistorius knew when it is legal and not legal to fire at unknown persons breaking into his home. These details are significant in the athlete’s trial, where he is accused of shooting his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp through a bathroom door on Valentine’s Day last year. Pistorius claimed the death was an accident, saying he thought Steenkamp was a burglar and he mistakenly acted in self-defense.

    Read the full story on CNN.

  9. Portrait of Filipino painter Elmer Borlongan

    Artist Elmer Borlongan has made a name for himself in the Philippine art scene with his paintings of the daily Filipino struggle. He paints everyday scenes of poverty and despair, Filipinos’ survival and endurance – scenes he has witnessed firsthand. His work has been featured in several countries, and he has been recognized as one of the Cultural Center of the Philippines’ 13 Artists Awardees in 1992. While he now prefers the quiet life in Zambales, twenty years’ worth of his works are currently featured at the Ayala Museum in his exhibit, In City and Country. Get to know more about his artistic journey in Rappler’s video feature.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  10. Novel gadget oPhone lets you send smells

    Photo from Vapor Communications website

    A new device introduces a novel form of messaging: smell-center communication. Biomedical engineer David Edwards has developed the oPhone, which allows users to mix and match smells and send the resulting composition as a message. With the help of perfumers, Edwards has created a ‘menu’ for users to choose from, with up to 356 combinations possible. The phones are set to be launched in July, accompanied by the launch of the first olfactory social network. A free app will soon allow anyone to send ‘smell notes.’

    Read the full story on CNN.

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