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Last updateThu, 19 Oct 2017 8am

World News

California hepatitis A outbreak death toll climbs to 19


The death toll from California's hepatitis A outbreak has reached 19, one week after the state's governor issued a health state of emergency.More than 500 people in California have contracted the viral disease since November, many of whom are homeless.Hepatitis A, which attacks the liver, is usually spread through faecal matter, transmitted through sex or by touching contaminated food or objects.It is the second-largest US outbreak of hepatitis A in the past 20 years.

The Chinese president pledges to lead China to realize “socialist modernization” by 2035.

Chinese president Xi Jinping said today that the Communist Party of China will lead the country to realize “socialist modernization” by 2035. Xi made these remarks in a report to the 19th National Congress of The Communist Party of China, held at The Great Hall of the People, in central Beijing. Xi called the plan, The Communist Party's "strategic vision for developing socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era."

Catalan Separatists in Spanish Custody

A Spanish judge has jailed two key members of the Catalan independence movement. Jordi Sánchez and Jordi Cuixart, who lead prominent separatist groups, are being held without bail while they are under investigation for sedition. The men were leading figures in the October 1st independence vote, which the Spanish Government regarded as illegal. Their detention led to protests overnight, with more expected across Catalonia today. They are being investigated over a protest on the 20th of September in which a crowd blocked Civil Guard officers inside a building in Catalonia's regional capital, Barcelona.

A painting by Leonardo Da Vinci themed as “Salvator Mundi” to be unveiled at a New York auction, tomorrow

A painting by Leonardo Da Vinci themed as “Salvator Mundi”, which translates to English as “Saviour of the World”, is due to be unveiled at the Christies New York Auction House, tomorrow.  Da Vinci painted this image of Jesus Christ at about the same time as Mona Lisa, which is around the year 1500. It was identified as a work of Da Vinci in 2011. “Salvator Mundi” is a painting of the most iconic figure in the world by the most important artist of all times.

Trump aims blow at Iran and threatens landmark nuclear deal

US President Donald Trump has condemned Iran as a "fanatical regime" and refused to continue signing off on a landmark international nuclear deal. Speaking at the White House, Mr Trump said he was acting in order to deny Iran "all paths to a nuclear weapon". In a combative speech yesterday, Mr Trump accused Iran of sponsoring terrorism and proposed new sanctions, accusing Iran of breaching the nuclear agreement. However, International observers say Iran has been in full compliance with the nuclear agreement.

Spain celebrates National Day amid political turmoil

Spain's royal family is attending National Day celebrations amid a political crisis sparked by Catalonia's disputed independence referendum. The public display of unity comes a day after Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy told parliament the country was facing the most serious threat to its 40-year-old democracy.


California wildfires kill 21 including elderly couple

A couple who recently celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary are among the 21 dead in some of California's worst-ever wildfires. Charles Rippey, 100, and his wife, Sara, 98, perished in one of 22 blazes that have destroyed 115,000 acres and 3,500 buildings. The couple, originally from Wisconsin, first met in primary school, their sons told the New York Times. Officials in the hard-hit Sonoma County say 380 people are still missing.

US bombers overfly Korean peninsula in show of force.

The US has flown two supersonic heavy bombers over the Korean peninsula in a show of force against Pyongyang, staging the first night-time joint aviation exercises with Japan and South Korea. Two B-1B Lancers based in Guam flew a mission in the vicinity of the Sea of Japan late Tuesday, the US Pacific Air Forces said in a statement. South Korean defence authorities on Wednesday said the bombers staged a simulated air-to-ground missile firing drill with two South Korean fighters over the Sea of Japan.

Catalonia independence declaration signed and suspended

Catalan President Carles Puigdemont and other regional leaders have signed a declaration of independence from Spain, following the disputed referendum. However, they say the move will not be implemented for several weeks to allow talks with the government in Madrid. The document calls for Catalonia to be recognised as an "independent and sovereign state". The move was immediately dismissed by the Spanish central government in Madrid.

North Korean hackers steal US-South Korea war plans

Hackers from North Korea are reported to have stolen a large cache of military documents from South Korea, including a plan to assassinate North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un. The compromised documents include wartime contingency plans drawn up by the US and South Korea. They also include reports to the allies' senior commanders. The South Korean defence ministry has so far refused to comment about the allegation. Some 235 gigabytes of military documents have been stolen and 80 percent of them have yet to be identified.

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