April 18, 2014 Edition

Valerie Castro

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

  1. Korean ferry captain: I’m sorry, ashamed

    Photo by AFP

    The captain of a sunken South Korean ferry apologized to relatives of the victims of the country’s biggest maritime disaster. Amid reports he was one of the first to jump to safety, captain Lee Joon-seok said, “I am so sorry and I am ashamed. I’m lost for words.” Authorities are investigating whether Lee indeed abandoned the vessel, and what caused the sinking. There are reports the ferry went off course and took a sharp turn. Poor weather conditions hampered efforts to find survivors and to pump air into the vessel.

    Read the full story on Reuters and CNN.

  2. Two Filipinos rescued from Korean ferry

    Two Filipinos were rescued from a sunken South Korean ferry carrying 475 passengers and crew. The Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs confirmed that the Filipinos working as entertainers in the vessel were safe. The search continues for about 270 people still unaccounted for in the ferry that capsized Wednesday en route from Incheon to the holiday island of Jeju. The death toll climbed to 25 Friday morning. Students on a high school trip reportedly sent harrowing messages to their parents while the ferry was sinking.

    Read full stories here and here.

  3. Gabriel Garcia Marquez dies at 87

    Nobel prize-winning Colombian author Gabriel Garcia Marquez died in Mexico Thursday aged 87, his family said. The author of One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera achieved fame for using magical realism to tell epic stories of love, family and dictatorship in Latin America. He was considered one of the greatest Spanish language authors. Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos called him “the greatest Colombian of all time” while former US President Bill Clinton said he “captured the pain and joy of our common humanity.”

    Read the full story on Rappler and BBC.

  4. DOH asks OFW’s co-passengers to check for MERS

    The Department of Health asked 418 passengers on the same flight as a man infected with the MERS virus to undergo medical examination immediately. A Filipino who arrived in Manila on a flight from the United Arab Emirates tested positive for the virus. As a precautionary measure, his co-passengers will be asked if they have fever or flu-like symptoms. The MERS virus is considered a deadlier but less-transmissible cousin of the SARS virus that infected 8,000 in Asia in 2003.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  5. DOTC plans bus rapid transit, more walkways

    The Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) said it will heed calls to improve public transportation by building bus rapid transit (BRT) systems and walkways. Officials said the BRT systems planned for Manila and Cebu will help lessen cars on the road. The government also has a project with the Asian Development Bank to construct walkways in Ortigas that will connect key shopping malls to MRT stations. Yet the DOTC conceded that the projects’ impacts are limited.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  6. Commuters burdened with lines, EDSA traffic

     Photo by Raisa Serafica/Rappler.com

    Commuters leaving for the provinces for the Holy Week break and those staying in Metro Manila have to bear with heavy traffic. Long lines snake around bus terminals as commuters spent hours waiting for rides. Traffic at EDSA southbound was heavy Thursday, with road work being done from Wednesday to Friday. Repair in EDSA northbound will begin on Friday and finish on Monday. The LRT and MRT are also not operational until Monday.

    Read the full story here and here.

  7. West, Russia, Ukraine reach deal to end violence

    Photo by AFP

    The United States, European Union, Russia and Ukraine reached an agreement on easing the crisis in Ukraine. Foreign ministers meeting in Geneva agreed on concrete steps to restore security and urged “all illegal armed groups” to disarm and vacate “seized buildings” in eastern Ukraine occupied by pro-Russian separatists. The deal also puts on hold the West’s additional economic sanctions on Russia. Yet US President Barack Obama said it is still uncertain if Moscow will stand by the deal.

    Read the full story on Al Jazeera and BBC.

  8. Revilla, Estrada undergo ‘spiritual renewal’

    Senators Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr and Jinggoy Estrada said they are undergoing a “spiritual renewal” during the Holy Week amid allegations they plundered taxpayers’ money. The two said they turned to prayer to deal with the pork barrel scam, and are not capable of committing the crime because of “fear of the Lord.” Revilla and Estrada face an impending arrest after their indictment for plunder. Revilla remained unfazed, saying “The truth will prevail and I leave all to the Lord.”

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  9. Pope on washing Muslim’s feet: We must serve

    Photo by Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

    Pope Francis washed the feet of elderly and disabled people in Rome as part of a Catholic tradition for Maundy Thursday. The hugely popular Francis though carried on with his own tradition of washing the feet of Muslims after becoming the first Catholic leader to do so last year. This time, Francis washed the feet of a Libyan Muslim, two other foreigners, and 9 Italians. He said, “Jesus performed this action – a work, a service of a slave, of a servant, and this he leaves like an inheritance among us. We must be servants of each other.”

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  10. Chelsea Clinton pregnant with first child

    Photo by AFP

    Former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said she just got her most exciting title yet: grandmother-to-be. Chelsea Clinton announced that she is expecting her first child with husband Marc Mezvinsky. Honoring her mother, Chelsea said, “I feel certainly feel all the better whether it’s a girl or a boy that she or he will grow up in a world full of so many strong, young female leaders.” Former US President Bill Clinton was also thrilled. He tweeted, “Excited to add a new line to my Twitter bio… grandfather-to-be!”

    Read the full story on CNN.

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