Hourly News 2013-08-14
    2013-08-16 10:30:36     CRIENGLISH.com       Web Editor: Han



China cracks down on extravagance in official galas

The Chinese government is now cracking down on official gala's.
A new circular from the central authorities is ordering all departments bring luxurious and extravagant galas to a halt.
It says galas that are organized with public funds and are held just to show off an extravagant production have damaged the image of the government.
It is widely believed to be another step taken by the central government to cut back on extravagance and waste.

Precautions underway as Utor appraoching S China

Precautionary measures are being taken as a massive typhoon approaches southern China.
Typhoon Utor, the strongest typhoon so far this year, is forecast to make landfall in southeast Guangdong sometime Wednesday evening.
As such, shipping and train services on the Qiongzhou Strait, which runs between the mainland and Hainan, have been suspended.
Utor rolled through the northern Philippines over the weekend, killing at least one person and leaving some 40 others missing.

4 killed as Heilongjiang seeing worst flooding in decades

Four people have been killed in some of the worst flooding to hit Heilongjiang in decades.
The 4 were killed after the car they were travelling in was washed away in the Nen River, around 300-kilometers north of the provincial capital, Harbin.
The local meteorological bureau is forecasting the river will see its worst flooding in some two decades in the coming days.
Over 2-thousand people living along the river have been moved out of harms-way.

26 Palestinian prisoners relased from Israeli prison

Israel has released 26 Palestinian prisoners as part of a deal to resume peace talks.
The release forms part of a goodwill gesture by the Israeli government, amid the resumption of peace talks with the Palestinians.
The 26 men, arrested between 1985 and 2001 are among a total of 104 prisoners that Israel has agreed to free in four stages.
Meanwhile, Israeli authorities have approved the building of more than 1,000 homes in settlements on land claimed by the Palestinians.
The move has angered the Palestinian side.
Three years ago talks broke down when Israel pressed ahead with settlement construction in the occupied West Bank and east Jerusalem, despite Palestinian opposition.

PNA to get report on Arafat's corpse test in September

Meanwhile, a Palestinian official has confirmed that the test results of late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat's corpse will be ready next month.
The official said they haven't received any initial reports on the conditions of Arafat's death.
But they would delcare the test results as soon as they are completed.
Arafat died at a French military hospital from an undisclosed or unknown condition in 2004.
The cause of his death was contested after lab tests found traces of radioactive polonium on Arafat's personal belongings.
Arafat's body was exhumed from his graveyard last year and samples of it were sent to the Swiss lab for further investigation.

Chinese national appointed as UN assistant secretary-general

UN chief Ban Ki-moon has appointed Xu Haoliang as an Assistant Secretary-General for the world body.
Xu has also been named as the bureau chief of the UN Development Program in the Asia-Pacific region.
The Chinese national has long served as a senior UN official in Kazakhstan.
Before joining the UN, Xu was a bridge engineer and a lecturer at China's Tongji University.

China-Russia joint drill to enter final phase

Anti-terrorism drills between China and Russia are entering the last phase of live-fire field maneuvers.
The joint practice codenamed Peace Mission-2013 is being held in Russia's Chelyabinsk.
The simulated combat is set to last for two days.

U.S. gov't to challenge proposed merger of AMR, U.S. Airways

The U.S Department of Justice has filed a lawsuit challenging the proposed merger between of U.S Airways Group Inc. and American Airlines' parent corporation, AMR Corp.
The 11-billion-dollar merger would create the world's largest airline.
The Justice Department says the deal would hurt consumers by leading to higher fares and fees and its lawsuit seeks to preserve competition.

Zhang Yimou makes first foray into Peking Opera

Chinese movie director Zhang Yimou will make his first Peking Opera "Allegiance Under Heaven".
The story is adapted from a Chinese statesman's filial piety in the Spring and Autumn Period.
Zhang has become increasingly interested in directing on-stage performances.
The upcoming "Allegiance Under Heaven" is still in preparation.
It will be staged at China's National Center for the Performing Arts from Sept. 30 to Oct. 7.

Chinese researchers breakthroughed in creating stem cells

Chinese researchers have made a breakthrough in making stem cells.
Reseachers have successfully found a method to generate cells with the ability to differentiate into any other type of cell in the body.
Stem cells are key in the so-called therapeutic cloning technology used to generate tissues and organs for treatment of diseases.
Medical experts say diseases like heart failure or Parkinson's are really in need of replacing tissue function.




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