April 1, 2014 Edition

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

  1. Damaged undersea cables affect Internet in Asia Pacific

    Damaged submarine cables connecting 9 countries, including the Philippines, affect Internet connectivity in the Asia-Pacific region. Philippine Internet service providers Eastern Telecommunications and PLDT said damage to the Asia-Pacific Cable Network 2 last week caused the problem. While Internet traffic was rerouted, the damage caused slower connections across the region. Eastern said it expects repairs to be completed on April 4 while PLDT says services will be restored mid-April.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  2. Janet Napoles transferred to Makati hospital

    Photo by Bea Cupin/Rappler

    Alleged pork barrel queen Janet Lim-Napoles was transferred from her detention cell in Laguna to the Ospital ng Makati Monday night to undergo surgery. Accompanied by a police convoy, Napoles was moved into a small air-conditioned room with its own bathroom. On Tuesday, April 1, Napoles will go through a medical “workup period” to determine if she is healthy enough to undergo surgery. On March 28, a Makati court granted Napoles’ petition for hospital treatment to remove a myoma in her uterus. She had wanted to be confined at the more posh St Luke’s Medical Center in Taguig City, citing her “bad experience” at government facilities, but was instead allowed to stay at the Ospital ng Makati. The prosecution opposed her stay in St Luke’s.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  3. 2 stories of angry plane passengers

     File photo by Goh Chai Hin/AFP

    Bad weather forced the cancellation of two separate flights, leading to confrontations between disgruntled passengers and flight crews. On Sunday, hundreds of passengers were locked inside a grounded Dragonair plane when a massive storm prevented their landing in Hong Kong. Flight KA875 took off from Shanghai, China, but was diverted to nearby Shenzhen airport when Hong Kong was deluged by rain and hail. The stranded passengers were left with little food and water, leading some to shout at the flight crew while others were restrained from leaving by attendants guarding the cabin door. More than 500 flights have been delayed since the storm began. In the Philippines, angry Chinese passengers reportedly surrounded and blocked the two pilots of a Cebu Pacific flight bound for Shanghai when the plane was forced to return to Kalibo because of bad weather. The passengers were demanding free hotel accommodations. The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines said it was investigating the incident.

    Read more here and here.

  4. New last words from missing plane

     Photo by Richard Wainwright/AFP photo/Pool

    Malaysia’s civil aviation department said Monday the last words spoken by one of pilots of missing Flight MH370 were “Good night Malaysian three seven zero”, and not the more casual “All right, good night” originally reported. It has yet to determine whether the last words were from the pilot or co-pilot. The admission does not impact much on the investigation except on the credibility of Malaysian authorities. Chinese relatives of those on board the missing plane accuse Malaysia of incompetence and even a cover-up. Ten military planes, a civilian jet and nine ships are part of Tuesday’s Indian Ocean search. Four orange objects spotted by search aircraft and earlier described as promising turned out be nothing more than old fishing gear. The Malaysian government told relatives satellite analysis said the plane went down in the southern Indian Ocean, but relatives say they want hard evidence.

    Read more on Rappler and CNN.

  5. China rejects historic pleadings filed by PH

    Photo by Jay Directo/AFP

    China rejected the historic pleading filed by the Philippines Sunday that challenges Beijing’s claims to disputed territories in the South China Sea. The Philippines raised the two countries’ dispute to a United Nations backed tribunal, but China claimed the arbitral tribunal has no right to hear the case. Beijing said the disputes involve land, which is not covered by the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea or UNCLOS. Philippine Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonio Carpio said the case concerns the right of the Filipino fishermen to fish in the disputed sea. Manila said China’s claims encroach on the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone. Despite China’s warnings, Manila filed its 10-volume pleading to end decades of alleged bullying by Beijing. The Philippines considers the historic case its last resort, after it exhausted more than 17 years of dialogue. On Monday, President Benigno Aquino said the decision to file the pleading is not meant to “provoke” China.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  6. North and South Korea trade live fire over sea border

    North Korea and South Korea trade live fire across their disputed maritime border Monday. Seoul said Pyongyang fired more than a hundred rounds into South Korea’s waters. North Korea regularly conducts live-fire drills but, in an unusual move, notified the South of Monday’s exercise in advance. South Korean Defense Ministry spokesman Wi Yong-Seop said it indicates the North’s “hostile intention.” Wi added, “The aim is to threaten us and rack up tension on the Yellow Sea border and the overall Korean peninsula.”

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  7. Egypt court rejects Al Jazeera journalists plea for bail

    File photo by Khaled Desouki/AFP

    An Egyptian court on Monday rejected a plea for bail by jailed Al-Jazeera journalists, who denied links with the blacklisted Muslim Brotherhood. Prosecutors said the journalists colluded with the Islamist movement of deposed president Mohamed Morsi and falsely tried to portray Egypt in a state of “civil war.” The trials sparked international outrage and fueled fears of a media crackdown. Media watchdog Reporters Without Borders urged officials to release the journalists, adding, “The authorities must stop invoking the fight against terrorism in order to persecute dissident journalists.” The court adjourned the trial to April 10.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  8. Is this Jesus’ cup?

     Cesar Manso/AFP

    Visitors flocked to the San Isidro Basilica in the north-western city of León after two historians published a book saying the ancient goblet was the mythical chalice of Christ’s last supper. Made of agate, gold and onyx and encrusted with precious stones, the cup was formed by two goblets joined together. It has been known until now as the goblet of the daughter of Fernando I, King of León from 1037 to 1065. The two historians – León University medieval history lecturer Margarita Torres and art historian José Manuel Ortega del Rio – identified it as the grail in their book, Kings of the Grail, published last week. The grail is one of the most prized relics in Christianity. In Europe alone, there are 200 supposed holy grails. The historians attempted to debunk the authenticity of some of the better known chalices in their book.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  9. You can die of a broken heart

    In 1986, a 44-year-old woman was admitted to Massachusetts General Hospital. It looked, from the outside, like a heart attack, but it wasn’t. Earlier that day, she had been informed that her 17-year-old son had committed suicide. Could the woman have suffered from a broken heart?

    In their book Zoobiquity, Kathryn Bowers and Barbara Natterson-Horowitz said the evidence that extreme emotions can impact the heart goes back decades – only not among humans. Wildlife biologists and veterinarians say that an animal caught by a predator experiences “capture myopathy,” when adrenaline floods the bloodstream it’s becomes like poison, damaging the animal’s muscles, including the heart. In the 1990s Japanese researchers coined the term “takotsubo cardiomyopathy” to describe a stress-induced apparent heart attack.  After consulting with veterinarians at the Los Angeles Zoo, Natterson-Horowitz put the heart-related aspects of capture myopathy with takotsubo cardiomyopathy side by side.

    Read the full story on BBC.

    Broken Heart Image from Shutterstock

  10. JK Rowling says 3 Potter spin-offs in the making

    Fans can expect not just one, but 3 “megamovies” set in the same magical world of Harry Potter. Back in September 2013, author JK Rowling confirmed that a Potter spin-off was in the making– called Fantastic Beasts and Where to find Them, a book by Rowling released in 2001. In a New York Times profile on Warner Bros CEO Kevin Tsujihara, Rowling went on to detail the key role Tsujuhara played in convincing Rowling to work on the film projects. Rowling said, “When I say he made Fantastic Beasts happen, it isn’t PR-speak but the literal truth.” Fantastic Beasts features “magizoologist” Newt Scamander as the protagonist. In September 2013, JK Rowling said in a statement that the story, “neither a prequel nor a sequel,” will begin in New York, about 70 years before Harry Potter’s time.

    Read more on Rappler and NY Times.

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