China's Xi heads to Islamabad to unveil $46 billion investment

Pakistani labourers decorate the roadside in front of a billboard with pictures of Chinese President Xi Jinping (C), his Pakistani counterpart Mamnoon Hussain (L) and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif (R) in Islamabad on April 18, 2015Chinese President Xi Jinping heads to Islamabad Monday for a rare visit to unveil a $46 billion investment plan that Pakistan hopes will end its chronic energy crisis and "transform" the country into a regional economic hub. With the plan, known as the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), Beijing hopes to ramp up investments in Pakistan as part of its ambitions to expand its trade and transport footprint across Central and South Asia, while countering US and Indian influence. Pakistan, a Muslim majority country of 200 million that has been battling an Islamist insurgency for over a decade, hope the investments will spur its long-underperforming economy, which the IMF projects is set to grow 4.3 percent this year. "The real opportunity of this China Pakistan Economic Corridor is that it changes the scope of the relationship from geopolitics to geoeconomics," Ahsan Iqbal, the minister overseeing the projects, told AFP.



Tank named "Beautiful Bulldog" in Iowa contest

Tank, owned by Duane Smith, of Des Moines, Iowa, sits on the throne after being crowned the winner of the 36th annual Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest, Sunday, April 19, 2015, in Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The pups came from as far away as New Jersey and Tennessee in hopes of landing a new nickname: "Beautiful Bulldog."



Pope urges world action to stop more migrant disasters

Pope Francis, speaking after some 700 migrants were feared dead in the Mediterranean, on Sunday appealed to the international community to take swift and decisive action to avoid more tragedies. "I make a heartfelt appeal to the international community to react decisively and quickly to see to it that such tragedies are not repeated," he said, before asking the crowd to pray "for these brothers and sisters".
Fury as 700 feared dead in 'avoidable' Med shipwreck

In this video grab released by the Italian Coast Guard on April 19, 2015, a helicopter and a ship take part in a rescue operation off the coast of Sicily following a shiprwreck last nightMore than 700 people are feared to have drowned after an overcrowded boat smuggling them to Europe capsized off Libya, officials said Sunday, prompting demands for the European Union to react to the Mediterranean's deadliest migrant disaster to date. Italy's coastguard, which was coordinating the search for survivors and bodies, said only 28 people had survived a wreck that triggered fresh calls from Pope Francis and others for European leaders to act over what many saw as an avoidable tragedy. The UN refuguee agency (UNHCR) said survivors' testimonies suggested there had been around 700 people on board the 20-metre (70-foot) fishing boat when it keeled over in darkness overnight, officials said. "It seems we are looking at the worst massacre ever seen in the Mediterranean," UNHCR spokeswoman Carlotta Sami said.



Don Draper is a 'very weak man' says 'Mad Men' creator

US scriptwriter, director and producer Matthew Weiner, creator of "Mad Men", poses in the Forum des Images in Paris during the "Series Mania" festival, on April 19, 2015Don Draper, the central and serially seductive character of the hit TV show "Mad Men", is actually a "very weak man", his creator told a Paris audience on Sunday. "Shame is his lifeblood," Matthew Weiner said of his intriguing main character, who is the engine of his influential and stylish series about an ad man of the 1950s and 1960s that has won multiple awards for its cinematic quality and near-literary writing. Weiner, who was notoriously cagey about "Mad Men" during its run, let loose about its creative input now that the landmark programme is coming to an end. While viewers have watched the alcohol-dependent, womanising but brilliantly perceptive Don Draper try to invent himself several times, Weiner warned against seeing the protagonist, played with suave nuance by Jon Hamm, as a hero or anti-hero.





Close Window