Author: Shirzad Kashani

The Czechs have never forgotten that allies handed over their Sudetenland Province to Hitler in 1938 after the German dictator promised it would be “last territorial demand I have to make in Europe.” The Czechs have never forgotten that allies handed over their Sudetenland Province to Hitler in 1938 after the German dictator promised it would be “the last territorial demand I have to make in Europe.” Months later, Nazis occupied their country and waged war in Europe and around the world for seven more years, killing tens of millions. To many today, Ukraine is the next Sudetenland as it…

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Punishing hot weather affects not only a person’s health or work productivity but also affects couples’ fertility and birth outcomes, a project by the National University of Singapore (NUS) found. Rising temperatures could further reduce Singapore’s resident total fertility rate, which dipped below 1 – a record low – in 2023. The rate refers to the average number of babies each woman would have during her reproductive years. Researchers from the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine studied sperm samples from 818 men that were already stored at the National University Hospital’s (NUH) andrology section. The scientists then traced the men’s…

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KATHMANDU: A Yeti Airlines crash in Nepal that killed 72 people almost a year ago was caused by the pilots mistakenly cutting power leading to an aerodynamic stall, a report issued by a government-appointed investigation panel on Thursday (Dec 28) said. The ATR 72, operated by privately owned Yeti Airlines, crashed just before landing in the tourist city of Pokhara on Jan 15 in one of Nepal’s worst airplane accidents in 30 years. There were 72 people on the twin-engine aircraft including two infants, four crew and 15 foreign nationals. There were no survivors. Dipak Prasad Bastola, an aeronautical engineer and…

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Frankfurt (18/12 – 14) That there are remarkable advantages in being ignored is not generally recognized. Central Asian countries, historically under the thumb of Moscow, all through the 70+ years of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, were more or less cut off from the outside world. There was little trade or other exchange. The USSR was in fact a grab-bag of ethnicities, religions and languages, controlled with an iron fist by Stalin and afterwards with unbroken dominance through subsequent regimes. Under Soviet management, Central Asia had stayed poor and ignored; it had not developed any hydrocarbon resources to lure…

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Brussels (3/12) Governments may be doing great while the people suffer. Bombing of the Nordstream 2 pipeline, carrying cheap Russian natural gas to industry and consumers in Europe, is exerting a cascading effect on companies and employment, eventually to be reflected in rising places and sharpening inflation. Russia is steadily experiencing price increases for a variety of goods and services, Russian media report. Is there obviously not a link to the sanctions placed on Russia and the seizure of Russian funds and savings abroad? Punishment for Russia’s “Special Military Operation” to purportedly protect Russian-speaking citizens in eastern Ukraine from state…

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The Palestinians’ longstanding and legitimate grievances have been irrevocably subverted by Hamas’ brazen attack against Israel on Oct 7. Unlike previous rounds of conflicts and clashes between Israel and the Palestinians on the one hand and neighbouring Arab states on the other, Thailand has become a direct casualty like never before, as 30 Thai workers have been killed to date, with at least 16 injured and 17 taken hostage. As a militant political movement motivated by Islamic fundamentalism using methods of terrorism to achieve its objectives, Hamas has made a bad name for the Palestinian cause, eliciting condemnation and opposition…

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Rome (16/11 – 57) Sri Lanka is mired in a deep political and economic crisis and the country’s then President Rajapaksa has flown out of the country, days after a huge crowd of protesters stormed his residence in July 2022. Protesters for months have demanded the resignation of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, whose government has been blamed for chronic mismanagement of the country’s finances. The island nation of 22 million people has suffered months of lengthy blackouts, acute food and fuel shortages, and galloping inflation in its most painful downturn on record. Here is how the crisis unfolded: April 1: State of emergency Rajapaksa declares a temporary state of emergency, giving security forces sweeping powers to arrest and…

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COLOMBO -Sri Lanka’s consumer price inflation rate eased to 0.8% year-on-year in September from 2.1% in August, the statistics department said on Monday. The National Consumer Price Index captures broader retail price inflation and is released with a lag of 21 days every month. Food prices fell 5.2% in September after declining 5.4% in August, from a year earlier, the Department of Census and Statistics said in a statement. Prices for non-food items, however, climbed 5.9% in September after rising 9% year-on-year in August. Sri Lanka experienced record high inflation after its economy was pummelled by the worst financial crisis…

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MALE —Real GDP is expected to grow by 6.5% in 2023, with an average growth of 5.4% from 2024 to 2025, but challenges lie ahead, with growing external and fiscal vulnerabilities posing risks to the economy, particularly if Maldives continues to borrow at high costs during a global economic slowdown, says the World Bank in its twice-a-year update. Released today as a companion piece to the latest South Asia Development Update, the Maldives Development Update titled Batten Down the Hatches presents a positive outlook for the country’s medium-term growth, primarily driven by a thriving tourism sector. But the country is…

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As Nepal commits to gifting two more greater one-horned rhinos (Rhinoceros unicornis) to China, conservationists have called on authorities to exercise caution while selecting individual animals for the purpose. The decision to gift the rhinos was made during Nepal Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal’s visit to Beijing this week. “The Nepali side pledged to provide the Chinese side a pair of Ek Singhe Gaida (unicorn rhino) as a gift from the Government and people of Nepal to the Government and people of China, as a symbol for the long-lasting friendship between the two countries,” said a joint statement. In 2018, Nepal gifted…

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