October 20, 2014 Edition

Valerie Castro

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

  1. Arroyo faces new trial over ‘Morong 43’ arrest

    The Court of Appeals denied former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s motion to dismiss the P15-million damage suit filed by 6 members of the Morong 43. Morong 43 is the group arrested in February 2010 in Morong, Rizal, tagged by the military as communist rebels. Arroyo argued that the complainants failed to state a cause of action against her. In her motion to dismiss, Arroyo said the case was against the state, not her. Arroyo was still president when the arrest happened. A full trial on the case will now proceed.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  2. Military finds abandoned Abu Sayyaf ‘camps’ in Sulu

    The Philippine military said it discovered 2 abandoned Abu Sayyaf “camps” in Patikul, Sulu, Sunday. Military spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Harold Cabunoc said one was found in barangay Buhanginan, where the German hostages were likely hidden. The other camp, which can house 100 people, was found in Kabuntakas village. Cabunoc said war materials found in the camps could help the military identify the whereabouts of the Abu Sayyaf and their hostages. “The German kidnap victims were released near the abandoned Abu Sayyaf Group camp in Buhanginan village. Heavy rains slowed down the tracking operations but the troops under Colonel Allan Arrojado have remained committed to accomplish the assigned mission,” said Cabunoc in a statement. The Abu Sayyaf released Friday night kidnapped Germans Stefan Viktor Okonek, 71, and Henrike Dielen, 55.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

    Read about the release of the Germans on Rappler.

  3. Big challenges ahead for Indonesia’s Jokowi

    Joko Widodo, Indonesia’s first leader without deep roots in the era of dictator Suharto, will be sworn in as president Monday. US Secretary of State John Kerry and Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, are set to attend the inauguration. Analysts say the euphoria is likely to be short-lived, as Widodo, known by his nickname Jokowi, faces up to the task of leading the world’s fourth most populous country. Growth in Southeast Asia’s top economy is at five-year lows, corruption remains rampant, and fears are mounting that support for the Islamic State (ISIS) group could grow in the world’s most populous Muslim-majority country. Jokowi has set out an ambitious reform agenda to tackle the country’s many problems, but there is concern the notoriously fractious parliament could prove a hindrance.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  4. Britain threatens to jail Internet ‘trolls’

    People found guilty of Internet “trolling” in Britain could be jailed for up to two years under government proposals, following a number of high-profile case of abuse on Twitter. Justice Secretary Chris Grayling said the move marks the government’s determination “to take a stand against a baying cyber-mob.” There has been increasing concern in Britain about the growing scourge of Internet “trolls” who post hate-filled messages on social media.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  5. Jeers for Catholic Church’s gays decision

    Activists lashed out Sunday at the Catholic Church’s failure at a major synod to open its doors to gay people, but praised Pope Francis for getting bishops to confront “taboos.” After two weeks of fierce debate, the prelates approved a final document but sidelined 3 paragraphs touching on the hot-button issues of being more welcoming towards gays and allowing divorced and remarried Catholics to receive communion. That disappointed gay activists who had hoped the liberal-leaning Pope would be able to bring groundbreaking change at the conference of bishops. Observers said the synod was unprecedented in its openness of debate, while Pope Francis, in closing remarks Sunday, called on participants to “overcome their fear in the face of God’s surprises.”

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  6. Pacquiao’s PBA team wins while Donaire loses to Walters

    It was an eventful Sunday for Filipino boxers Manny Pacquiao and Nonito Donaire. The former won, and the latter lost. Pacquiao, who has since ventured into playing and coaching professional basketball team Kia Sorento, defeated Blackwater Elite at 80-66. Donaire, on the other hand, suffered a knockout punch from undefeated World Boxing Association featherweight titleholder Nicholas Walters. This is Donaire’s first-ever knockout.

    Read the full story on Pacquiao.

    Read the story on Donaire.

  7. Charice: “My soul is male”

    It’s been 6 years since Filipino singing sensation Charice Pempengco first appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, but much has changed since then. Pempengco shed her girl-next-door image and came out in 2013. She opened up to Winfrey, saying she identifies as a male but is not thinking about undergoing gender reassignment surgery. “My soul is male,” Pempengco said. “But I’m not going to change everything.” Pempengco gained fame after her videos on Youtube caught the attention of talk show hostsWinfrey and Ellen DeGeneres. Since then, she’s had a best-selling album, and a recurring role in TV show “Glee”. The episode will air Sunday, October 19 at 9pm US time (Monday, October 20 at 9am Philippine time).

    Watch the teaser of the Where Are They Now series here.

  8. Physical toys still in-demand despite gadgets

    Despite the prevalence of gadget-dependent recreation, physical toys are still very much in demand. Local toy distributor Richprime Global Inc. (RGI), which distributes well-known children’s brands such as Barbie and Hot Wheels, still enjoys a 15% to 20% annual growth in sales. RGI’s managing director Liza Yao-Bate said parents with increasing purchasing power are willing to pay for good quality products.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  9. Angry Parisians deflate “butt-plug” sculpture

    A giant inflatable green sculpture resembling a sex toy was reduced to a flaccid heap in Paris on Saturday, October 18.  Called “Tree,” the artwork by American artist Paul McCarthy was unveiled at one of Paris’ upscale districts on Thursday, October 16.
    Resembling a butt-plug, the sculpture triggered outrage on social media. Vandals cut the cables and deflated the sculpture, but the French Institute of Culture and Arts (FIAC) said it intended to resurrect the sculpture as soon as possible.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  10. The first sexual beings

    Evolutionary scientists said sexual intercourse first started around 385 million years ago with armored fish called placoderms. In the journal Nature’s Sunday, October 19 issue, the placoderm species Microbrachius dicki (M. dicki) is the first known species to copulate for reproduction. Male fish had bony, L-shaped genital limbs called claspers which transferred sperm into the female. The females developed small, paired bones with which they locked the male organs in place in order to copulate. Placoderms ruled the world’s oceans, rivers and lakes for around 70 million years.They were wiped out around 360 million years ago in a mysterious mass extinction.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

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