Monica Jackson obituary

My mother, Monica Jackson, who has died aged 99, was a mountaineer whose passion for the peaks was nurtured by her childhood in India and her adulthood in Scotland. Among her most notable feats was her participation, in the 1950s, in the first all-female expedition to the Himalayas, about which she wrote a book.

Monica was born in Kotagiri, India, to Scottish parents, Heather (nee Kinloch) and her husband, Ralph Morris, who had bought land in the state of Mysore, where they set up a coffee plantation.

Continue reading...
Coronavirus live news: Spain’s daily death toll drops below 300 as children allowed out for first time in weeks

WHO clarifies ‘immunity passport’ advice; global deaths pass 200,000; Russia case tally passes 80,000; Sweden’s deputy prime-minster admits problems with strategy

Malta is the latest european country to announce the lifting of some anti-coronavirus measures, after recording no new cases of the disease in the past 24 hours for the first time since the crisis began.

On Sunday, health minister Chris Fearne told a news conference that “decisions on lifting measures will be taken on the basis of science and numbers”.

A woman was allegedly gang-raped in a school in India where she had been quarantined for a night by the police.

The incident was said to have happened in the desert state of Rajasthan last week after the woman sought shelter at a police station.

Continue reading...
Marama Davidson: parliament is a little, insulated bubble of disconnection

The co-leader of New Zealand’s Green party is uneasy with power, but is embracing the chance to make a difference

When Marama Davidson, ahead of an official trip to New Zealand’s Hawkes Bay, found out that low-income families living in motels there would be evicted to make way for visiting dignitaries like her, she refused to be part of it.

After Davidson – co-leader of the left-leaning Green party that is part of New Zealand’s power-sharing government led by Jacinda Ardern’s Labour – saw the headlines, she cancelled the booking and packed a tent in her suitcase instead.

Continue reading...
Kim Jong-un’s train possibly spotted at North Korean resort

As rumours persist that ruler is in poor health, satellite images emerge showing train parked at Wonsan’s ‘leadership station’

A special train possibly belonging to the North Korean ruler, Kim Jong-un, has been spotted at a resort town, according to satellite images reviewed by a Washington-based North Korea monitoring project, amid conflicting reports about Kim’s health and whereabouts.

The monitoring project, 38 North, said in its report on Saturday that the train was parked at the “leadership station” in Wonsan on 21 April and 23 April. The station is reserved for the use of the Kim family, it said.

Continue reading...
Hong Kong arrests and Taiwan flybys: China’s advances its interests during Covid-19 crisis

Beijing has drawn accusations it is using the distraction of the coronavirus pandemic to advance regional interests. Here are some examples

China has been accused of using the coronavirus pandemic as an excuse to take some bold and provocative actions, including expansions in the South China Sea, crackdowns on activists in Hong Kong and further detention of activists in the mainland. Some analysts have suggested Beijing is sending a message that China’s aggressive foreign policy is still business as usual, or testing its adversaries for weaknesses.

Continue reading...