Recently in International Category

First extragalactic planet identified

By: Andrew Krammer

A Jupiter-like planet has been found orbiting a dying star on the edge of our own Milky Way galaxy, Universe Today reported.

The planet is orbiting a star 2,000 light years from Earth; both are believed to be part of the Helmi stream, which is a group of stars that remains after its mini-galaxy was devoured by the Milky Way, Yahoo reported.

The planet is slightly larger than Jupiter and its home galaxy is believed to have been devoured some six to nine billion years ago, scientists said.

"Because of the great distances involved, there are no confirmed detections of planets in other galaxies. But this cosmic merger has brought an extragalactic planet within our reach," Rainer Klement, of the Max Planck Institute of Astronomy, said.

Seven killed and many injured during an explosion in Mexico

By: Andrew Krammer

At least seven people were killed and twenty others injured Sunday during an explosion at a resort in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, CNN reported.

Four of the dead were Canadian tourists and one minor was also killed, authorities said.

The incident was likely caused by a buildup of natural gas that somehow ignited, but the official cause is still under investigation, BBC reported.

Two Americans were among the injured and have been hospitalized, police said.

Former Israeli prime minister has been moved home

By: Andrew Krammer

Ariel Sharon, the former Israeli prime minister, has been in a coma since 2006 and has been moved from a hospital to his home in southern Israel, BBC reported.

The 82-year-old suffered a series of strokes four years ago and has since been comatose with no change in his condition, Al-Jazeera reported.

The move is a result of a change in medical thinking that prefers to see long-term patients treated 'in the community' rather than in hospitals, hospital officials said.

Sharon is expected to be returned to a hospital for regular check-ups.

Three abducted boys found safe in the Netherlands

By: Andrew Krammer

Three boys, who are believed to have been abducted by their fathers, have been found safe in the Netherlands, police said.

Brothers John and George Silah were arrested and accused of abducting their three sons from their homes in Los Angeles, California in July of 2008, CNN reported. Alexander, 14, Greg, 12, and Zaven, 11, were taken to a shelter in the Netherlands to be reunited with their mothers, police said.

John is the father of one of the boys and George is the father of the other two, ABC reported.

30 tons of marijuana siezed in California-Mexico border tunnel

By: Andrew Krammer

Approximately 30 tons of marijuana was discovered Wednesday in a drug-smuggling tunnel in the Otay Mesa section of San Diego, the New York Times reports.

The smuggling operation ran a ventilated and lit tunnel with a rail system, authorities said. The 600-yard tunnel connects a warehouse in Tijuana, Mexico with one in the Otay Mesa industrial area of San Diego, CNN reports.

About 26 tons of marijuana, 10 of which were intercepted by authorities Tuesday, had been transported through the tunnel to San Diego, officials said. An additional five tons were found by the Mexican military inside the Tijuana warehouse, officials said.

At least 32 wounded in Istanbul suicide bombing

By: Andrew Krammer

In an apparent suicide bombing in the center of Istanbul, at least 32 people were wounded on Sunday, police said

Those injured included 15 police officers and 17 civilians; five police officers are in serious condition, CNN reported. The bomber tried to get into a parked police van, but when he failed he detonated the bomb just outside of the vehicle, according to Istanbul police chief Huseyin Capkin.

The explosion happened at Taksim Square, which is a popular spot for street demonstrations and has shops and restaurants that are usually packed, MSNBC reported.

Death toll at 311 from Indonesian earthquake, tsunami.

By: Andrew Krammer

At least 311 people are dead after a magnitude-7.7 earthquake and the following tsunami struck the coast of Indonesia on Wednesday, officials said.

Another 410 people are missing and aid workers have been struggling to reach the victims located in remote, hard-hit Mentawai Islands region of Indonesia, CNN reported. There were faults with an early warning system designed to alert local residents of the incoming 10ft wave, officials said.

The president of Indonesia has cut short a trip to Vietnam because of the disaster, BBC reported.

By: Andrew Krammer

The incident occured Saturday at Nyayo National Stadium in Nairobi, BBC reported. Six people were killed at the stadium, while another person died later in a hospital, Kenyan officials said. The stampede started after a group of people without tickets tried to storm through a stadium entrance, CNN reported.

"When the gate fell, people were pushed down and others stepped on them in their rush to get in," Frank Okoth, a manager at Kenyan Premier League, said.

Many others were injured, but it is unknown how many, authorities said.

U.S. confirms massive $60bn arms deal with Saudi Arabia

By: Andrew Krammer

A deal worth $60 billion in arms, including helicopters and jets, has been confirmed between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia, BBC reported.

Details of the deal have been sent to Congress, who has 30 days to object, the state department said. The sale is meant to further align the Saudi military relationship with the United States and to help them defend threats to their oil structure, CNN reported.

The deal is to occur over a 20 year period and includes the sale of 84 F-15 aircraft, the upgrade of 70 older-model F-15 aircraft and almost 200 helicopters.

An officer was convicted for shooting young boy in Greece

By: Andrew Krammer

A Greek police officer shot and killed a 15-year-old boy in December of 2008, which sparked nationwide riots.

The officer, Epaminondas Korkoneas, 38, was found guilty Monday of culpable homicide and given life in prison, BBC reported. After the shooting, students across the country led demonstrations and riots against what they called police brutality.

These riots continued for several days afterward and police arrested hundreds, according to CNN. Many local businesses were damaged as well.

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