Coroner: nurse in British royal hoax found hanging

Updated 13 December 2012
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Coroner: nurse in British royal hoax found hanging

LONDON: A nurse who passed a hoax call into the hospital room of the pregnant Duchess of Cambridge apparently killed herself three days later, with a coroner’s officer saying Tuesday she was found hanging by the neck and a detective saying she left three notes.
Coroner’s officer Lynda Martindill said nurse Jacintha Saldanha was found hanging by a scarf from a wardrobe in her room by a colleague and a member of the security staff at London’s King Edward VII Hospital last week.
Police detective chief inspector James Harman said Saldanha also had injuries to her wrists. He told the coroner’s inquest that three notes were found in the room. Police have said there were no suspicious circumstances, meaning nobody else was involved in Saldanha’s death.
As well as examining the notes, he said police were interviewing her friends, family and colleagues and looking at e-mails and phone calls to establish what led to her death. The case is being treated as an apparent suicide.
Saldanha answered the phone last week when two Australian disc jockeys called to seek information about the former Kate Middleton, who was being treated for severe morning sickness. The DJs impersonated Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles, and Saldanha was duped into transferring them to a nurse caring for the duchess.
Australia’s media watchdog, the Australian Communications and Media Authority, said on Thursday it was launching an official investigation into whether the radio station, 2DayFM, breached its broadcasting license conditions and the industry code of practice
Coroner Fiona Wilcox opened and adjourned the inquest until March 26.


Afghan leaders ‘optimistic’ over Taliban peace talks

Updated 24 June 2018
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Afghan leaders ‘optimistic’ over Taliban peace talks

  • The Taliban last week rejected Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s offer to extend the truce, but a government spokesman said on Saturday that the government was optimistic the militants were willing to engage in peace talks.
  • After ending the truce, the Taliban said its attacks against foreign troops and Afghans supporting them would continue.

KABUL: The Afghan government is confident of holding peace talks with Taliban militants despite a recent surge of attacks by insurgents, a palace spokesman said.

Shah Hussain Murtazawi said the announcement last week of a brief truce by the Taliban over Eid, the increasing movement of extremists and some field commanders to government-held areas, and a call for peace by the Imam of Makkah and the Saudi monarch were the basis of the government’s optimism.

The Taliban last week rejected Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s offer to extend the truce, but Murtazawi said on Saturday that the government was optimistic the militants were willing to engage in peace talks.

“A new chapter has been opened and the broad support for a cease-fire and an end to the war are the causes for our optimism,” he told Arab News.

“The fact that Taliban announced a truce and their commanders came into towns and celebrated Eid with government officials are positive signs that the extremists will be ready for talks with the government.”

However, no contact has been established with leaders of the group since the militants called off their truce, Murtazawi said.

After ending the truce, the Taliban said its attacks against foreign troops and Afghans supporting them would continue. Scores of Afghan troops have been killed in a spate of attacks, including assaults on military bases where the insurgents joined government forces to celebrate Eid.

Some tribal chiefs and local officials are calling for “safe zones” where extremists can hold initial talks with the government, according to a local official who refused to be named.