September 2017

Indonesia: Bali volcano highest alert issued

Image copyrightReutersImage caption Mount Agung last erupted in 1963, killing more than 1,000 people Indonesia has issued its highest level alert for a volcano on Bali, warning that an eruption on the popular tourist island could be imminent. About 10,000 people have already been evacuated, with officials urging people to stay at least nine kilometres (5.6 miles) away from Mount Agung. Tremors have been reported, and there are indications that

McCain torpedoes Republican Obamacare repeal plan again

Image copyrightGetty ImagesImage caption Healthcare affects one-fifth of the US economy Senator John McCain has said he cannot support his fellow Republicans’ latest effort to repeal Obamacare, dealing it a potentially fatal blow. The Arizona senator, who is battling brain cancer, said he “cannot in good conscience” vote for the new plan, which President Donald Trump backs. Mr McCain said it was wrong to pass such far-reaching legislation without input

Slaves in modern Britain: 'Living in the dark'

Image caption Maria and Kim say they were paid nothing for their work One woman clutches a tissue. Then, a simple question: “What happened to you?” That’s when the tears come. “My employer is not good for me…” Maria has barely got her first words out when the emotion overwhelms her. She continues her tale, weeping, sniffing. You can barely make out what she is saying. But you do not

UK's credit rating downgraded by Moody's

Image copyrightReuters The UK’s credit rating has been cut over concerns about the UK’s public finances and fears Brexit could damage the country’s economic growth. Moody’s, one of the major ratings agencies, downgraded the UK to an Aa2 rating from Aa1. It said leaving the European Union was creating economic uncertainty at a time when the UK’s debt reduction plans were already off course. Downing Street said the firm’s Brexit

Puerto Rico dam failure 'imminent' after Hurricane Maria

Image copyrightGetty ImagesImage caption Floodwaters from Hurricane Maria have destroyed homes in Puerto Rico and knocked out the island’s electricty A failing dam is causing “extremely dangerous” flooding on a Puerto Rico river in the wake of Hurricane Maria, authorities say. The National Weather Service (NWS) said the “imminent failure” of the Guajataca Dam is a “life-threatening situation”. More than 70,000 people live in the nearby areas of Isabela and

Bosnia's war-ravaged Olympic track comes back to life

Image caption Mirza Nikolaev, 16, joined Bosnia’s junior luge team after seeing an item about it on the TV news A summer luge may look like a plastic tray on wheels. But at full speed it hurtles around the concrete banking of Sarajevo’s Olympic bobsleigh track with the roar of a Star Wars TIE fighter swooping in for the kill. There are no barriers to prevent encroachment on the track,

Speed teens

Image caption Mirza Nikolaev, 16, joined Bosnia’s junior luge team after seeing an item about it on the TV news A summer luge may look like a plastic tray on wheels. But at full speed it hurtles around the concrete banking of Sarajevo’s Olympic bobsleigh track with the roar of a Star Wars TIE fighter swooping in for the kill. There are no barriers to prevent encroachment on the track,

Iraq's minorities fear for their future

Image copyrightYolande KnellImage caption Sheikh Mirza, many of whose Yazidi community have been killed or enslaved A slight octogenarian dressed in loose white garments, Sheikh Mirza looks an unlikely warrior against the fighters of so-called Islamic State (IS). Nevertheless, the Yazidi leader says that when they approached his ancestral village two years ago he left Lalish – the holy site where he usually resides – for the frontline. “I picked

Fear for the future

Image copyrightYolande KnellImage caption Sheikh Mirza, many of whose Yazidi community have been killed or enslaved A slight octogenarian dressed in loose white garments, Sheikh Mirza looks an unlikely warrior against the fighters of so-called Islamic State (IS). Nevertheless, the Yazidi leader says that when they approached his ancestral village two years ago he left Lalish – the holy site where he usually resides – for the frontline. “I picked

Where would FC Barcelona be in an independent Catalonia?

Image copyrightGetty ImagesImage caption All FC Barcelona’s fans are passionate about football… and many are passionate about Catalan independence FC Barcelona has been anything but a neutral bystander on the question of Catalan independence in recent years. It has firmly nailed its colours to the mast of the movement planning a referendum on the issue on 1 October – a referendum declared illegal by the central government in Madrid. But