Daily News Highlights – April 12, 2015 Edition


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

  1. Landmark meeting: Obama, Castro meet in Panama

    US President Barack Obama and Cuba’s Raul Castro held unprecedented face-to-face talks in Panama on Saturday, April 11, soothing decades of Cold War-era antagonism in a historic effort to restore diplomatic ties.

    In the first sitdown between leaders of both nations since 1956, Obama thanked Castro for his “spirit of openness and courtesy” during their interactions, while the communist leader stressed that the negotiations will require patience.

    Read more about the historic meeting on Rappler.

  2. Yemen insurgent toll hits 500, Saudi says


    Saudi Arabia said Saturday, April 11, at least 500 Shiite insurgents have been killed in border clashes since the coalition it heads launched air strikes against the Huthi rebels in war-battered Yemen. The statement gave the first reported death toll for border clashes since the coalition launched air strikes against Shiite Huthi rebels in Yemen last month.

    With the air campaign and fighting on the ground in Yemen showing no sign of easing, the Red Cross on Saturday delivered a second planeload of aid to Sanaa in as many days.

    Read more on Rappler.

  3. 21 new infections every day in the Philippines – DOH

    A total of 646 new cases of HIV infections were reported in February – the highest number since the Philippines’ first case in 1984, according to the Department of Health (DOH). The number – 33% higher than in February 2014 – translates to 21 new infections every day, according to Dr Jose Gerard Belimac, program manager of DOH’s National HIV/STI Prevention Program.

    The DOH also warned that an HIV “concentrated epidemic” in 6 Philippine cities – half found in Metro Manila – may reach “uncontrollable” levels in a couple of years without the active cooperation of the public.

    Read more on Rappler.

  4. Filipino maid saved from abusive employer, thanks to Facebook

    The Philippines said Friday, April 10, it rescued a Filipina maid from her employer in Bahrain after she posted a desperate cry for help on her Facebook page.

     Staff at the Philippine embassy were alerted to the plight of Abby Luna, who claims she was raped and beaten by her employer’s son, after she posted the video on her Facebook page on Thursday morning, April 9. The video attracted about 78,000 shares and 19,000 likes.

    “The rescue was prompted by the video message… She is now under the care of our embassy,” foreign ministry spokesman Charles Jose told Agence France-Presse.

    Read more on Rappler.

  5. Only a few nations able to provide universal basic education – UNESCO

    The UN gave a third of the world’s countries a passing grade Thursday, April 9, for efforts to provide universal basic education, but said most governments had failed on a pledge made 15 years ago.

    In 2000, 164 countries agreed at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO) World Education Forum to ensure basic education for all by 2015. But in its latest annual report, the UN body said that only a minority had passed the test.

    Read more on Rappler.

  6. Ice cream top seller in PH convenience stores – study

    Food, particularly ice cream, comprise the bulk of convenience stores’ fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) top sales, a Kantar Worldpanel study showed.

    The study revealed Friday, April 10, that food items are the most bought from convenience store FMCG items at 59.3% as of January 2015, from 58.8% in the same period last year. “While Filipinos spend the most amount of money for food purchases, the personal care category experienced the biggest growth at 2.2% compared to 2014’s figures,” Kantar Worldpanel study cited.

    Read more on Rappler.

  7. Grades? Not the 1st thing employers look for, survey says


    When you’re a fresh grad with no previous full-time work experience, the job hunt can feel really intimidating. Jobstreet’s recently released Jobs and Salary Report had an interesting sidebar about what employers value – and grades are NOT at the top of the list.

    Instead, internships come into the spotlight – 80% of the surveyed Philippine employers said that this was what they would like fresh grads to highlight in their interviews.

    Read more on Rappler.

  8. Underwater ‘sinkhole’ recovering?

    Time and tide may have restored a portion of the shoreline in General Santos that “sank” in February and created a deep blue hole just feet away from houses of informal settlers in an urban poor community right in the middle of this city.

    In a new aerial photograph by Ronald Velasquez taken on Thursday, April 9, the deep portion of the area where the sinkhole first appeared in February seemed to have been covered by sand and mud. Velasquez took photographs and videos anew after two foreign nationals dove and investigated the phenomenon which city disaster official Dr Agripino Dacera Jr had already declared as a “coastal subsidence.”

    Read more on Rappler.

  9. PBA greats share their most unforgettable moments

    The PBA officially enshrined its 40 Greatest Players on Wednesday, April 8 in a grand ceremony celebrating 4 decades worth of greatness and legends in Philippine basketball. Watch some of the 15 newly minted Greatest Players – including Jimmy Alapag, Asi Taulava, Marc Pingris, and Eric Menk – share their most unforgettable PBA moments and what they believe makes them great.

    Watch on Rappler.

  10. Sean O’Pry talks ‘Teardrops On My Guitar’


    Sean O’Pry, the model who played the victimized boyfriend in the music video of Taylor Swift’s song “Blank Space,” talked to Rappler as he visits the Philippines. The song’s video – which showed a crazy Tay-tay preying on Sean – may have catapulted the supermodel to a different level of fame, but his Taylor song pick is a sweeter, sadder ballad that involved Drew, a lone guitar, and a lot of crying: “Teardrops On My Guitar.”

    Watch Rappler’s interview, where he also talks about having his shirt cut open again, and jokes about finding another name for Rappler.

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