The liberation of the bar of the Ritz Hotel in Paris by the writer Ernest Hemingway 70 years ago, as the French capital was freed from its Nazi occupiers, is the stuff of legend. Hemingway, a war correspondent for the American "Collier's" magazine who went on to win the Nobel prize for literature in 1954, was embedded with US 4th Division troops that landed on the Normandy beaches on June 6, 1944. Over the next two months he stuck with the foot soldiers as they marched towards Paris in support of the French 2nd Armoured Division, which entered the capital on August 25. Hemingway had a special attachment to the luxurious Ritz hotel, and its bar, where he had spent a great deal of time before the war.
By Stephanie Nebehay GENEVA (Reuters) - At least 191,369 people have been killed in Syria's conflict through April, more than double the figure documented a year ago and probably still an under-estimate, the United Nations human rights office said on Friday. The U.N. report, based on data from four groups and the government that were cross-checked, reflects a reality of killing and torture while the civil war has "dropped off the international radar", U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said.
More than 191,000 people have died in Syria, United Nations rights chief Navi Pillay said Friday, hitting out at "international paralysis" on the nearly three-and-a-half year conflict. Pillay said the death toll of 191,369, recorded between March 2011 when the war broke out and April this year, was nearly double that given a year ago, and was likely an underestimate. After on Thursday lashing out at the UN Security Council for what she called a lack of resolve in ending crises, Pillay said in a statement the dwindling global interest in Syria was "scandalous". "I deeply regret that, given the onset of so many other armed conflicts in this period of global destabilisation, the fighting in Syria and its dreadful impact on millions of civilians has dropped off the international radar," said Pillay.
A Nigerian woman with cancer who died in the Emirati capital this week has tested negative for Ebola, the Health Authority of Abu Dhabi said. The 35-year-old woman with advanced cancer had been travelling via Abu Dhabi airport when her health deteriorated. When medics tried to resuscitate her, the patient had shown signs that may have been consistent with the Ebola virus. "Some of her signs during resuscitation, although explainable by her medical condition, could also have been caused by Ebola virus, and hence this diagnosis needed to be excluded," the authority said in a statement according to the state WAM news agency on Thursday.
By Dmitry Madorsky DONETSK-IZVARINO BORDER CROSSING Russia (Reuters) - Russia ordered a convoy of aid trucks across the border into eastern Ukraine on Friday apparently without Kiev's permission, raising the danger of direct confrontation with the Ukrainian military which is fighting pro-Russian rebels. An unnamed Ukrainian official told Interfax news agency it was not escorted by the International Committee for the Red Cross (ICRC), one of the terms previously agreed by Kiev and Moscow. Kiev and Western capitals have expressed concern that the convoy, held up by wrangling over the terms of passage, the content of the cargo and the role of the ICRC, could be used as a pretext for some form of direct Russian military intervention.
By Reiji Murai TOKYO (Reuters) - Suppliers to Apple Inc are scrambling to get enough screens ready for the new iPhone 6 smartphone as the need to redesign a key component disrupted panel production ahead of next month's expected launch, supply chain sources said. It's unclear whether the hiccup could delay the launch or limit the number of phones initially available to consumers, the sources said, as Apple readies larger-screen iPhones for the year-end shopping season amid market share loss to cheaper rivals. Cupertino, California-based Apple has scheduled a media event for Sept. 9, and many expect it to unveil the new iPhone 6 with both 4.7 inch (11.94 cm) and 5.5 inch (13.97 cm) screens - bigger than the 4-inch screen on the iPhone 5s and 5c. Two supply chain sources said display panel production suffered a setback after the backlight that helps illuminate the screen had to be revised, putting screen assembly on hold for part of June and July.
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraqi government forces and Kurdish peshmerga fighters attempted on Friday to recapture two towns in the north from Islamic State militants, security sources said. The Kurdish forces, backed by U.S. airpower, took one district near the eastern entrance to Jalawla, 115 km (70 miles) northeast on Baghdad, the site of weeks of clashes, the sources said. Iraqi troops supported by Iraqi fighter planes were advancing towards the nearby town of Saadiya, the security sources said. Both towns are near the Iranian border and the semi-autonomous Kurdish region. ...
The trial of a German police officer accused of murdering a willing victim he met on a website for cannibalism fetishists starts on Friday in the eastern city of Dresden. In a macabre case that captured global attention, prosecutors say the 56-year-old defendant, Detlef Guenzel, killed the man at his home last November, then cut his body into small pieces and buried them in his garden. The dead man, 59-year-old Polish-born Wojciech Stempniewicz, had met Guenzel the month before on a website where users share slaughter and cannibalism fantasies. Guenzel is a three-decade veteran of the police force, the father of an adult daughter, and had been married to his male partner in a civil union for a decade at the time of the killing.