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Saudi Gazette, Thursday, July 19, 2018


Police in Philippine town on

the rack for anti-rape advice

WhatsApp seeks to stem fake

news ahead of Pakistan polls

Air China flights cut over

vaping pilot emergency


collapse in

India kills 5

Modi to face vote

of no-confidence

Musk says sorry to UK caver

Rescued Thai cave boys recount

ordeal in first public appearance


Police in a Philippine

town have told women to shun

skimpy clothing to avoid rape,

sparking outrage in a country

that prides itself as an early Asian

adopter of liberal Western cultural


Women’s groups demanded

that police take down Tuesday’s

“victim-blaming” anti-rape ad-

vice. But it remained on a police

social media site on Wednesday,

with the national police chief

calling it “brotherly advice”.

“Don’t wear skimpy cloth-

ing,” warned the 10-point posting

on the official Facebook page

of the police force of Angono, a

town on Manila’s outskirts.

“Clothes don’t cause rape,

rapists do,” Senator Risa Honti-

veros said in a statement.

“Instead of ‘teaching’women

how to dress ‘appropriately’ and

limit our choices, our police force

should help in educating the pub-

lic, especially men,” she added.

The mainly Catholic Philip-

pines, a former US colony, prides

itself on its culture of promoting

gender equality.

But critics allege it took a

step backward by electing Presi-

dent Rodrigo Duterte, known for

his inflammatory remarks about


During the 2016 election

campaign Duterte joked during a

speech that he “should have been

first” while recalling the rape and

murder of anAustralian female

lay minister in a 1989 prison riot.

Early this year Duterte said

he would tell soldiers to shoot

female communist rebels in their

private parts because “if there is

no vagina, (the woman) has no


Philippine police chief Oscar

Albayalde sought to play down

the rape advice controversy.

“They (women) can have it

their own way, they just have to

make precautions and probably

you should dress in accordance

with the place, with the occa-

sion,” he said.

“I think that’s what our

policemen are trying to say, just

brotherly advice,” saidAlbay-


He said nationwide rape

cases were down 29 percent from

a year earlier in the first three

months of 2018 but did not give




The hugely popular

WhatsApp messaging service began

a week-long publicity campaign in

Pakistan onWednesday offering tips

to spot fake news, days before the

country holds a general election.

“Together we can fight false in-

formation,” says the full-page ad in

Dawn, Pakistan’s leading English-

language daily, listing ten tips on

differentiating rumors from fact.

“Many messages containing

hoaxes or fake news have spelling

mistakes. Look for these signs so

you can check if the information is

accurate,” it says.

“If you read something that

makes you angry or afraid, ask

whether it was shared to make you

feel that way. And if the answer is

yes, think twice before sharing it


WhatsApp also announced the

implementation in the country of

a new feature allowing recipients

to see if a message is original or


The company had bought full-

page advertising in India on July

10 after a wave of lynchings in the

country were linked to viral “fake

news” spread byWhatsApp about

alleged child kidnappings.

WhatsApp, owned by Face-

book, had come under pressure

from Indian authorities to put an

end to the spread of rumors, which

have caused the deaths of more than

20 people in the past two months.

Millions of people use WhatsApp

in neighboring Pakistan, where

rumors, false information and

conspiracy theories are ubiquitous.

Such messages spread quickly, with

no real way for recipients to check

their veracity.

Pakistan also has a history of

mob violence, and videos such as

the murder of Mashal Khan — a

journalism student accused of blas-

phemy who was killed by a mob in

April 2017 — circulate rapidly.

Parliamentary elections are

scheduled for July 25.



Chinese authorities

have cut flag carrier Air China’s

737 flights and revoked the fly-

ing licenses of the cockpit crew

involved in a mid-air emergency

sparked by a co-pilot’s vape

smoke, state media said on


An Air China 737 made a

rapid emergency descent last

week after the co-pilot mistak-

enly turned off air-conditioning

systems in a bid to conceal his

e-cigarette smoke.

The incident, which resulted

in the deployment of passenger

oxygen masks, occurred on a

flight from Hong Kong to the

northeastern city of Dalian.

The Civil Aviation Admin-

istration of China (CAAC) has

cut the carrier’s 737 flights by

10 percent and ordered it to

undertake a three-month safety

overhaul, China Central Televi-

sion (CCTV) said.

The aviation watchdog also

fined Air China 50,000 yuan


Boeing 737s accounted for

more than 40 percent of Air

China’s fleet as of the end of

last year, company reports have


Air China shares slipped

more than two percent in Shang-

hai on Wednesday morning

following the punishment.

The CAAC has said the

drama was triggered when the

co-pilot, trying to prevent his

vape smoke from spreading into

the main cabin, accidentally

switched off air conditioning.

That led to a decrease in

cabin oxygen levels which in

turn set off an emergency warn-

ing system indicating the jet

may have flown too high and

instructing the pilots to quickly


Smoking is not allowed

aboard Chinese commercial pas-

senger flights.

Chinese media reports quot-

ed passengers and flight-tracker

sites as saying the plane may

have quickly descended as much

as several thousand meters.

There were no injuries to the

153 passengers and nine crew,

the CAAC has said.



More than 100 Indian

rescue workers were using steel

cutters and drills onWednesday to

try and free a dozen people feared

trapped under the rubble of a col-

lapsed six-story building outside


Five bodies have been pulled

so far from under tons of concrete

and metal from the building, which

was still under construction when

it gave way late Tuesday in Greater

Noida just east of the capital.

Eyewitnesses and neighbors

said one of those still missing was a

one-year-old child from one of two

families thought to be under the

debris and who had moved in only

days before.

“My friend was living here

with his family since last Saturday.

I spoke to them last night but have

not had any contact with them

since 9:00 p.m.,” local resident

Sandesh Kumar told Indian televi-

sion news channel NDTV.

“I am just hoping they are

alright,” he said.

“We don’t know exactly how

many are trapped inside. We

believe there are 12 people who

may be trapped under the debris,”

regional chief fire officer Arun

Kumar Singh said.

Sniffer dogs were also being

brought in to assist with the search.

The building collapsed onto

an adjacent newly constructed

four-story residential building,

authorities said. Both are part of a

residential complex in one of the

many satellite towns dotted around

Delhi growing fast to house the

fast-expanding population of the

20-million-strong megacity and its




India’s parliament

will debate a no-confidence mo-

tion against Prime Minister Nar-

endra Modi’s government moved

by the opposition, the house

speaker said on Wednesday.

With a majority in India’s

543-seat lower house of par-

liament, Modi’s coalition is

expected to defeat the no-confi-

dence vote. But the opposition,

including the Congress party

led by Rahul Gandhi, will use

the debate to pressure Modi on

issues including women’s safety,

mob lynchings and the restive

state of Jammu and Kashmir.

Since December, Modi’s

ruling Bharatiya Janata Party has

faced numerous challenges, after

a relatively smooth first couple

of years in office. He narrowly

won his home state of Gujarat

in December with a wafer-thin

majority, lost crucial by-elections

in some states and failed to form

the government after winning the

most seats in Karnataka’s state

election in May.

He also lost two key regional

allies in his ruling coalition: the

Telugu Desam Party in Andhra

Pradesh and the People’s Demo-

cratic Party in Kashmir. Adding

to his woes, Modi’s other coali-

tion partners are becoming un-

settled, while opposition parties

have begun to form alliances in

an attempt to check his influence.

He’s also had to deal with a num-

ber of large protests by students,

farmers and Dalits -- once known

as ‘Untouchables.’

On Wednesday as the latest

session of parliament began,

house speaker Sumitra Mahajan

accepted notices demanding a

no-confidence debate and vote

from Congress party and Telugu

Desam Party lawmakers.

Opposition parties had tried

to push the no-confidence mo-

tion in the last budget session

in March and April, but were

prevented by the continuous

disruption of the lower house

of parliament, which frequently

descends into shouting matches.

Parliamentary Affairs

Minister Ananth Kumar said the

government is ready to face the

non-confidence motion — and

will win it, because of the major-


A leader of the Congress

party, Jyotiraditya Scindia,

said the opposition will use the

opportunity to raise the issues

of women’s safety and farmer


— Agencies


Elon Musk has

apologized for calling a Brit-

ish caver who helped rescue

12 Thai boys from a cave a

“pedo”, retracting a comment

that had drawn widespread

outrage and briefly sent shares

in Tesla tumbling.

Tesla CEO Musk issued

the apology on Wednesday

to Vernon Unsworth, who

worked on the rescue of the

“Wild Boars” football team

and had ridiculed Musk’s plan

to recover the trapped group

using a miniature submarine.

“(H)is actions against

me do not justify my actions

against him, and for that I

apologize to Mr. Unsworth and

to the companies I represent

as leader,” Musk wrote on

Twitter. “The fault is mine and

mine alone.”

“Pedo” is short for pedo-


Musk’s extraordinary

tirade against Unsworth was

widely condemned, raising

concerns over the entrepre-

neur’s leadership following a

series of previous social media

attacks on Wall Street analysts,

journalists and employees.

His spat with Unsworth

began after the British caving

expert dismissed Musk’s plan

to rescue the Thai football

team from the Tham Luang

cave as a “PR stunt”.


CHIANG RAI, Thailand —


boys and their football coach who

were rescued after being trapped

for over a fortnight in a flooded

Thai cave spoke publicly of their

incredible ordeal for the first time

on Wednesday at a press confer-

ence beamed around the world.

The “Wild Boars” team

members looked healthy and

happy as they answered questions

about the nine days they spent in

the dark before being discovered

by members of an international

rescue team.

A packed crowd greeted the

youngsters — some of whom

were trapped in the cave for 18

days — after they were dis-

charged from hospital in Chiang

Rai, and watched as they played

with footballs on a small make-

shift pitch before taking their


“It is a miracle,” Wild Boars

footballer Adul Sam-on, 14, said

of the rescue, as the boys were

gently quizzed about their terrify-

ing experience.

The team had no food at all

until they were found deep in the

complex, surviving only on water

that dripped down the side of the


“We tried to dig out as we

thought we cannot only wait for

authorities to get us,” coach Ekka-

pol Chantawong said.

But doctors said all 13 were in

good physical and mental health

after recuperating in hospital.

The briefing was tightly con-

trolled, with experts warning of

possible long-term distress from

the more than two weeks they

spent trapped inside a cramped,

flooded chamber of the Tham

Luang cave in northern Thailand.

The public relations depart-

ment in Chiang Rai solicited

questions from news outlets in

advance, which were forwarded to

psychiatrists for screening.

Thailand’s junta leader Prayut

Chan-O-Cha urged the media on

Wednesday to be “cautious in ask-

ing unimportant questions” that

could cause unspecified damage.

Interest in the saga has been

Air China planes are

parked at the Beijing

Capital International

Airport in this April 6,

2017 file photo. — AFP

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, center, stands with senior

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders as he addresses media

representatives after arriving for the monsoon session of Parliament in

New Delhi on Wednesday. — AFP

The twelve boys and their football coach, dramatically rescued from deep inside a Thai cave after being

trapped for more than a fortnight, hold boxes of gifts after a press conference in Chiang Rai on Wednesday,

following their discharge from the hospital. — AFP

grandmother of 13-year-old Dom,

one of the boys rescued from the

cave, said in an interview at their

family shop in Mae Sai near the

Myanmar border on Wednesday

that she was very excited.

“This is the happiest day of

my life,” she said.

The daring Thai-led interna-

tional effort to rescue the team

captivated the world after the

football team walked into the cave

on June 23 and were trapped by

rising floodwaters.

After nine days without food,

they were found emaciated and

huddled in a group on a muddy

ledge by British divers several

kilometers inside Tham Luang.

Rescuers debated on the

best plan to bring them out but

ultimately decided on a risky op-

eration that involved diving them

through waterlogged passages

while they were sedated to keep

them calm, and carrying them out

in military-grade stretchers.

Not even the foreign cave div-

ing specialists who took part were

sure the mission would work.

Many expressed huge relief after

the final five were rescued on July



intense, with film production

houses already eyeing a Holly-

wood treatment of the drama.

Doctors have advised families

of the players, aged 11 to 16, that

they should avoid letting them

contact journalists for at least one


The boys, who were expected

to return to their families on

Wednesday night, announced

their plan to temporarily ordain

as monks to honor the death of

Saman Kunan, a Thai Navy SEAL

who died during the rescue.

Khameuy Promthep, the