News ID: 90472
Publish Date : 22 May 2021 - 21:36

MUMBAI (AFP) – Hackers have stolen data on about 4.5 million Air India passengers around the world in the latest breach reported by a major airline. Names, credit card numbers and passport information were among the data stolen, Air India said in a statement released late Friday. The state-owned giant said it was “securing the compromised servers” and using “external specialists” on data security as well as working with credit card companies. “We deeply regret the inconvenience caused and appreciate continued support and trust of our passengers,” the airline said. A number of airlines have been hit by data breaches in recent years. British Airways was fined $28 million last year by a British watchdog after details of 400,000 passengers were lost in a 2018 cyberattack. Cathay Pacific was fined $700,000 after details of more than nine million clients were lost in 2018. And low-cost carrier EasyJet said last year that hackers had taken the email and travel details of about nine million customers.

ATHENS (AFP) – Hundreds of Greek firefighters battled a forest fire near Athens for a third day on Saturday, but brought the main front of the blaze under control as weather conditions improved. The fire, on the Geraneia mountain range, some 90 kilometers (55 miles) west of the capital, is “one of the biggest in the past 20 to 30 years, and has come early in the season,” fire chief Stefanos Kolokouris told ANT1 television. More than 270 firefighters, backed by 16 aircraft and by the army were fighting the blazes, the fire service said. No injuries have been reported, but a number of houses have been damaged or destroyed and a dozen villages and hamlets have been evacuated. Better weather conditions allowed firefighters to bring the main front of the outbreak under control late on Friday, but there remain “several active and scattered” blazes, Kolokouris said.

SYDNEY (AFP) – Chinese-born Australian academic and author Yang Jun will go on trial in China on espionage charges next week, after spending more than two years in detention, Canberra’s foreign minister has confirmed. Yang is one of two high-profile Australians detained in China on spying allegations amid escalating tensions between Canberra and Beijing. The trial for Yang, who also goes by his pen name Yang Hengjun, will begin on Thursday, Australia’s Foreign Minister Marise Payne said in a statement late Friday. Yang was arrested on a rare return to China from his home in the United States in January 2019. Another Australian, TV anchor Cheng Lei has been held since August accused of “supplying state secrets overseas”.

THE HAGUE (Xinhua) – A stabbing incident that took place in Amsterdam, capital of the Netherlands, on Friday night has led to one dead and four wounded, police said on Saturday. The incident occurred around 11 p.m. local time in the Ferdinand Bol street near the city center. Police has arrested a 29-year-old man from Amstelveen as suspect. Police are investigating the incident and keeping all options open. “So far there has been no direct indication of a terrorist motive,” the Amsterdam police declared in a statement.

BEIJING (AP) – A strong, shallow quake shook southwestern China near the border with Myanmar, killing at least three people and injuring more than two dozen as authorities rushed relief goods including tents to the area.
A second, 7.3-magnitude quake hit early Saturday the southern part of Qinghai province in central China, about 1,000 kilometers (621 miles) north of the first quake, but there were no reports of casualties or damage in the sparsely populated area. U.S. Geological Survey geophysicist Jonathan Tytell said the two quakes were not related. The Yunnan province seismological bureau gave the magnitude of the Friday night quake as 6.4 and said it struck 8 kilometers (5 miles) below the surface northwest of the city of Dali. Shallow quakes often cause more damage, especially in populated areas. The earthquake caused strong shaking around Dali, but Chinese news reports showed relatively little damage. Three people died and 27 were injured, local authorities told state broadcaster CCTV on Saturday. Relief efforts were underway, with the provincial authorities sending emergency rations and tents to the affected areas. Last year, a magnitude 5 earthquake in Yunnan killed four people and injured 23. China’s worst earthquake in recent years struck the mountainous western portion of Sichuan province to the north of Yunnan in 2008, killing nearly 90,000 people.

KATHMANDU (AFP) – Nepal’s parliament was dissolved for the second time in five months Saturday and new elections called for November as the Himalayan country battled political turmoil alongside the coronavirus pandemic. President Bidhya Devi Bhandari made the order after declaring that neither Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli nor Sher Bahadur Deuba, leader of the opposition Nepali Congress, had a majority to form a new government. Political rivalries between the communist prime minister and his former Maoist allies hit a new peak as the country battles a severe coronavirus wave with acute shortages of oxygen and vaccines. Authorities have been reporting about 200 deaths a day, but experts say there are a lot more and the United Nations has launched an emergency Covid-19 appeal saying that Nepal is at “breaking point”.

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