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Missing plane carrying Malawi’s VP found with no survivors




The wreck of a plane carrying Saulos Chilima, Malawi’s vice-president, has been found with no survivors.


President Lazarus Chakwera made the grim announcement in a press briefing on Tuesday.


The aircraft which had the 51-year-old vice-president and nine others aboard went missing after it failed to land at the Mzuzu International Airport in Lilongwe, the capital.


Chilima was on his way to represent the government at the burial of Ralph Kasambara, former minister, who died four days ago.


Shanil Dzimbiri, former first lady, was also on the flight.


The plane, which flew in bad weather, was turned back from landing at the airport because of poor visibility.


After receiving the news of the missing plane on Monday, Chakwera cancelled a trip to the Bahamas and ordered national and local authorities to “conduct an immediate search and rescue operation to locate the whereabouts of the aircraft”.

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“The search and rescue operation I ordered to find the missing plane that carried our vice president and nine others has been completed,” the president said while providing an update.


“The plane has been found. I am deeply saddened and sorry to inform you that it has turned out to be a terrible tragedy.”


The president said the rescue team found the aircraft completely destroyed.


Chilima had been vice-president of Malawi since 2014.

Despite coming from two different political parties, the vice-president and president teamed up to form an alliance during the 2020 elections.


The vice-president left behind a wife and two children.

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Ramaphosa sworn in for second term as South Africa’s president





Cyril Ramaphosa has been sworn in for a second term, despite failing to win the required majority of seats in South Africa’s parliament,


President Ramaphosa was sworn in on Wednesday after his party was forced to strike a merger with other opposition parties to remain in power.


Taking his oath of office during the swearing-in ceremony at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, South Africa’s administrative capital, Ramaphosa reiterated his commitment to respect citizens’ wishes.


“The people have spoken loudly that they choose peace and democracy over violent, undemocratic and unconstitutional methods,” Ramaphosa said in the midst of international dignitaries including President Bola Tinubu.


“In their multitude, in voices that are many and diverse, the people of South Africa have voted and made known their wishes, their concerns and their expectations.


“They did not give any single party the full mandate to govern our country alone. They have directed us to work together to address their plight and realise their aspirations.”

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Ramaphosa added that the people of South Africa have also been “unequivocal in expressing their disappointment and disapproval of our (political parties) performance in some of the areas in which we have failed them”.


The African National Congress (ANC) lost its controlling majority in last month’s election after ruling for 30 years since the end of apartheid.


The party began to witness dwindling support in 2019 due to constant power cuts, rise in violent crimes, widespread poverty, and unemployment.


Ramaphosa said he would do his best to meet the expectations of South Africans, which he says include a transformative society with an inclusive economy.

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Huge fire at oil refinery injures 14





A massive fire at an oil refinery in Iraqi Kurdistan raged for about 20 hours and injured at least 14 firefighters who on Thursday finally brought the blaze under control.


The fire broke out in a major crude oil tank on Wednesday night before spreading to a second refinery on a road southwest of Arbil, capital of the autonomous northern region of Kurdistan, the civil defence agency said.


Thick plumes of black smoke and balls of orange flame rose into the sky above the facility, an AFP photographer reported.


The civil defence agency said the fire, the cause of which remains unclear, “started in one refinery before spreading to another”.


A spokesman for the agency, Shakhwan Saeed, told a news conference on Thursday evening: “The fire has been 100 percent contained, and there is no longer any danger for the surrounding refineries.”


He said 150 rescuers had been mobilised and 14 had been injured, with two in “critical condition”.

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Arbil governor Omed Khoshnaw earlier said three rescuers were being treated in hospital for burns and another 10 suffered breathing difficulties.


The main storage tank that was impacted contained more than 5,000 tonnes of fuel, he said, putting the estimated cost of the damage caused at $8 million.


The Arbil civil defence said four fuel tanks as well as three fire trucks were burned.


“So far, we don’t know what caused it,” said Khoshnaw, adding that it could have been an electrical short circuit.


Saeed noted that the facility did not meet “any of the standards” set by the civil defence agency for safety.


With Iraq experiencing scorching summers, the country has seen multiple fires in recent weeks, affecting shopping centres, warehouses and hospitals.


Iraq is one of the world’s biggest oil producers and crude oil sales make up 90 percent of budget revenues.

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But exports from the Kurdistan region have been halted for more than a year in a dispute over legal and technical issues.


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Biden’s son, Hunter found guilty on all counts in gun case





A federal jury found Hunter Biden guilty on all three federal felony gun charges he faced, concluding that he violated laws meant to prevent drug addicts from owning firearms.


The conviction marks the first time a president’s immediate family member has been found guilty of a crime during their father’s term in office, though his crimes predate Joe Biden’s tenure as president.


President Biden expressed support for his son in a statement, while also saying he “will continue to respect the judicial process as Hunter considers an appeal.”


Hunter Biden could face up to 25 years in prison and a fine of up to $750,000 at sentencing, though he likely will receive far less than the maximum as a first-time offender. The judge said a sentencing is usually set for a120 days following a verdict, which would would put it in mid-October.



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