By Helen Nyambura-Mwaura JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Africa's demand for bandwidth is doubling every year, outpacing the laying of terrestrial telecom fibre links and encouraging commercial satellite operators to launch more units into orbit. The arrival of submarine cables on Africa's eastern shore just five years ago was largely expected to herald the end of satellite connections, which had been the region's only link to the outside world for decades. But the opposite is happening with Africa's political geography - notably its many landlocked countries, such as Zambia, South Sudan and Rwanda - bringing undersea cable plans back to earth. Do you think that it would make economical sense to take fibre to every village in Kenya?" said Ibrahima Guimba-Saidou, a senior executive for Africa at Luxembourg-based satellite operator SES SA. "Satellite is still around and will continue to be around because it's the best medium to extend connectivity to the masses." Hundreds of millions of people on the continent still have no access to the Internet, he said.
PRETORIA, South Africa (AP) — The prosecutor at the murder trial of Oscar Pistorius, a double-amputee Olympian, cross-examined one of the defense's forensic experts Thursday after the judge overseeing the case warned spectators watching the televised proceedings in an adjacent room for their "unruly" behavior.
MOKPO, South Korea (AP) — An immediate evacuation order was not issued for the ferry that sank off South Korea's southern coast, likely with scores of people trapped inside, because officers on the bridge were trying to stabilize the vessel after it started to list amid confusion and chaos, a crew member said Thursday.
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday accused Ukraine's new authorities of driving the country towards the abyss but said that dialogue was the only way out of the intensifying crisis. "Only through dialogue, through democratic procedures and not with the use of armed forces, tanks and planes can order be imposed in the country," Putin said at the start of a major nationwide phone-in broadcast on Russian television. "It is very important today to think about how to get out of this situation and offer people a genuine dialogue and not one just for show," added Putin, saying he believed the talks opening Thursday in Geneva between top diplomats on the crisis were "extremely important". He accused the Ukrainian authorities who took over after the fall of president Viktor Yanukovych of driving the country to the abyss.
By Norihiko Shirouzu, Paul Lienert and Yoko Kubota TOYOTA CITY, Japan/IRVINE, California (Reuters) - In 1997, Toyota caught its competitors by surprise with the revolutionary Prius, the first commercially successful gasoline-electric hybrid car. Toyota Motor Corp will next year launch a hydrogen-powered car in the United States, Japan and Europe. For now, people at Toyota are calling it the 2015 FC car, for fuel-cell. Their only emission, bar heat, is water vapor, they can run five times longer than battery electric cars, and it takes just minutes to fill the tank with hydrogen - far quicker than even the most rapid charger can recharge a battery electric car.