Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 7th 2015 Contents A19
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Islamic State (IS) mili-
tants claim that a US female
hostage has been killed in a
Jordanian air strike in Syria.
IS named the woman as aid
worker Kayla Jean Mueller
in statements posted on-
The group provided no
other proof for the claim
beyond pictures of the al-
leged site of the air strike, in
Raqqa, the group s strong-
hold in Syria.
The White House said it
was "deeply concerned" by
the reports but that it has
yet to verify them.
Mueller was working
with Syrian refugees when
she was kidnapped in 2013.
Jordan said it carried out
aerial bombardments on IS
targets in Syria on Thurs-
day, including on Raqqa.
Local activists and IS
sympathisers reported fresh
strikes in the city yesterday,
but these have not been
confirmed by officials.
The strikes were carried
out in response to the
killing of a Jordanian fighter
pilot by IS militants. (BBC)
Deadly blaze 'started by
boy playing with fire'
CHINA---A blaze at a shopping centre that
killed 17 people was started by a nine-year-old
boy "playing with a lighter," Chinese police said
in a statement.
The inferno broke out on the fourth floor of
the building in Huizhou in Guangdong province
on Thursday afternoon.
The young suspect has been detained for
questioning. Rescue efforts took a number of
hours, with four firefighters injured, one of
them seriously. Some 270 firefighters and 45
fire engines were needed to extinguish the
flames, police said.
Footage from the scene showed an
excavator dismantling one wall of the building
to allow trapped people to escape.
Police said the flames quickly spread to the
whole floor. Nine managers at the mall were
also detained by the authorities.
China has a dismal industrial safety record
as some property and business owners evade
regulations to save money and pay off corrupt
officials to look the other way. (BBC)
Brazil police kill 13 suspected
robbers in Salvador
At least 13 people have been killed in a
shootout between police and armed robbery
suspects in the Brazilian city of Salvador.
Officers said they arrived at the scene
following a tip off that a gang were planning
a bank raid, and began to shoot after the
suspects opened fire.
All 16 of the group were hit in the
exchange of bullets and were taken to a
nearby hospital. Thirteen of them died and
two were seriously hurt.
Police said no officers were killed, but one
was slightly injured.
Brazil's police have been criticised in the
past for using excessive force in their bid to
control violent crime in the country's
impoverished neighbourhoods. (BBC)
First Boko Haram attack
in Niger beaten back
NIAMEY---Islamist group Boko Haram for
the first time launched an attack in Niger
yesterday, striking at the town of Bosso just
across the border from Nigeria, witnesses
Fighting broke out around 9 am but troops
pushed back the attack by the end of the
morning, said Yacouba Soumana Gaoh,
governor of the regional capital of Diffa.
"Order has been restored," he told AFP at
noon. "We could hear the sound of weapons
all around the town, often very near our
windows. There was the noise of heavy
weapons and of light arms, making our
houses shake," one resident told AFP.
Niger's army took on the Nigerian armed
jihadists alongside troops from Chad who
have been stationed in Bosso since Monday, a
humanitarian worker said, stating that Boko
Haram "took the municipality" for a time
before being "driven back to Nigeria." (AFP)
TAIPEI---One of the two engines on
TransAsia Airways Flight 235 went idle
37 seconds after takeoff, and the pilots
apparently shut off the other before mak-
ing a futile attempt to restart it, Taiwan s
top aviation safety official said yester-
It was unclear why the second engine
was shut down, since the plane was capa-
ble of flying with one engine.
Taiwan s official China News Agency
said investigators were looking into the
possibility of "professional error."
The details on the engines were pre-
sented at a news conference in Taipei by
Aviation Safety Council Executive Director
Thomas Wang as preliminary findings
from the flight data recorder.
Wednesday s crash into a river in Taipei
minutes after takeoff killed at least 35 peo-
ple and left eight missing. Fifteen people
were rescued with injuries after the acci-
dent, which was captured in a dramatic
dashboard camera video that showed the
ATR 72 propjet banking steeply and scrap-
ing a highway overpass before it hurtled
into the Keelung River.
Wang said the plane s right engine trig-
gered an alarm 37 seconds after takeoff.
However, he said the data showed it had
not shut down, or "flamed out" as the
pilot told the control tower, but rather
moved into idle mode, with no change in
the oil pressure.
Then, 46 seconds later, the left engine
was shut down, apparently by one of the
pilots, so that neither engine was producing
any power. A restart was attempted, but
the plane crashed just 72 seconds later.
Wang said it was too early to draw firm
conclusions about the reasons why the
first engine ceased producing power.
Several Internet aviation sites, including
Flightradar24, questioned whether the
pilots may have mistakenly turned off the
wrong engine in an attempt to restart the
Divers with a local fire agency found
one female and three male bodies yesterday
along the muddy Keelung River bottom
about 50 metres from the crash site, a
Taipei City Fire Department official sur-
named Chen said.
The agency suspects the eight bodies
that are still missing may be in equally
murky areas and has sent 190 divers to
look for them. (AP)
Islamic State says coalition air strike 'kills US hostage'
Search and rescue divers continue to search for missing
people at the site of a commercial plane crash in Taipei,
Taiwan, yesterday. TransAsia Airways Flight 235, with
58 people aboard, clipped a bridge shortly after takeoff
and crashed into a river in the island's capital of Taipei
on Wednesday morning. AP PHOTO
'lost engine power'
Several Internet aviation sites,
questioned whether the pilots
may have mistakenly turned off
the wrong engine in an attempt
to restart the idled one.
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