19 dead in east Russia as bus plunges into frozen river

The bus was traveling from the town of Sretensk to the city of Chita when it skidded off a bridge and plunged into a frozen river. (dtp38rus via AP)
Updated 01 December 2019

19 dead in east Russia as bus plunges into frozen river

  • Russia’s record on road safety is one of the worst in the world
  • Russia traffic police: 18,214 people died in road accidents last year

MOSCOW: Nineteen passengers died when a bus skidded off a bridge in Russia’s far east on Sunday and plunged into a river, local government said.
“According to updated information, 19 people died, 21 have various injuries,” the local government for the Zabaikalsk region said in a statement.
Russia’s emergencies ministry said in a statement on its website that the bus, traveling from the town of Sretensk to the city of Chita, 6,320-km (3,930 miles) east of Moscow, fell from a bridge into the Kuenga river at around 0938 Moscow time (0638 GMT).
It said about 43 passengers and a driver were on the bus.
A police spokeswoman told Russia-24 TV that the cause of the accident was being investigated.
Russia’s record on road safety is one of the worst in the world. According to the country’s traffic police, 18,214 people died in road accidents last year. That is more than the 15,000 Soviet servicemen who were killed during the whole of the Soviet war in Afghanistan in 1979-1989.


Morocco, Spain to hold talks about overlapping territorial waters

Updated 25 January 2020

Morocco, Spain to hold talks about overlapping territorial waters

  • The territorial waters Morocco has claimed include the coast off Western Sahar
  • The territory has been contested between Morocco and the Algerian-backed Polisario Front since the Spanish colonial period ended in 1975

RABAT: The Moroccan and Spanish foreign ministers said on Friday their countries would hold talks about overlapping areas of ocean that they both claim rights to in the North Atlantic.
The territorial waters Morocco has claimed include the coast off Western Sahara, a territory that has been contested between Morocco and the Algerian-backed Polisario Front since the Spanish colonial period ended in 1975.
Morocco’s parliament passed two bills this week to give domestic legal cover to a coastal area the North African country already controls, causing concern in Spain’s Canary Islands, where the government warned of overlaps with Spanish territorial waters.
Morocco’s foreign minister Nasser Bourita said that defining territorial waters was a “sovereign right” and that his country aimed to upgrade domestic law in compliance with the UN law of the sea convention.
“In case of overlaps, international law requires states to negotiate,” said Bourita following talks with his Spanish peer, Arancha Gonzalez Laya.
“Morocco rejects unilateral acts and fait accompli,” he said, adding that Spain was a “strategic partner” and Morocco’s largest trading partner.
Gonzalez Laya said Morocco’s willingness to negotiate “reassures the Canary Islands.”
“Morocco is a source of stability for Spain,” she said, citing “close cooperation” in the fight against jihadists and illegal migration.