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VERIZON BUYING TRACFONE WIRELESS: Verizon Communications Inc. agreed to buy TracFone Wireless Inc. from America Movil SAB for as much as $6.9 billion, as the largest US wireless carrier seeks to expand its mobile business into the so-called prepaid market. Verizon will pay $3.125 billion in cash and $3.125 billion in stock, with as much as $650 million additional tied to performance goals, it said in a statement Monday. TracFone, a US prepaid mobile service, is a subsidiary of Carlos Slim Domit's Mexico-based America Movil wireless. It's the largest US prepaid service, with 21 million subscribers.
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NAVALNY CONDITION IMPROVED: Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny's condition is improving and he is able to get out of bed for brief periods, the German hospital treating him said Monday. "The patient has been successfully removed from mechanical ventilation," Berlin's Charite hospital said in a statement. "He is currently undergoing mobilisation and is able to leave his bed for short periods of time." Two European laboratories have corroborated German findings that Navalny was poisoned with a Novichok nerve agent, Berlin said on Monday, increasing pressure on the Kremlin to shed light on the incident.
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AMAZON SAYS WILL HIRE 100,000 NEW PEOPLE: Online giant Amazon on Monday announced it would create 100,000 new jobs in the United States and Canada as it opens 100 new facilities in the two countries. "Amazon will be hiring for 100,000 new, regular full- and part-time jobs in our operations network as we expand our footprint to better serve customers in communities where they live," the company said in a statement.
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4 of 15
GOLD SEIZED AT KOZHIKODE AIRPORT: The Air Intelligence Unit at Kozhikode International Airport (south Indian state of Kerala) seized 100-grams of gold, 100 packets of tobacco from a passenger who was travelling from the UAE, said the Commissionerate of Customs (Preventive), Kochi, on Monday. According to the officials, an iPhone was also seized from the passenger.
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KERALA GOLD SMUGGLING CASE: The Enforcement Directorate on Monday instructed Life Mission CEO UV Jose to appear at its office as part of the proceedings in the Kerala gold smuggling case. A notice in this regard has been sent to him. The case pertains to the smuggling of gold in the state through diplomatic channels, had come to light after 30 kg gold worth Rs 14.82 crores, smuggled in a consignment camouflaged as diplomatic baggage, was busted by the Customs in Thiruvananthapuram (capital of the south Indian state of Kerala) on July 5.
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CZECH POST DELIVERS PENSIONERS FREE MASKS: Czech Post will deliver face masks and respirators to millions of senior citizens this week as the country scrambles to stem a steep rise in COVID-19 cases, a spokesman said Monday. Around three million Czech pensioners will get envelopes containing five face masks and a respirator as part of a government initiative criticised by the opposition as a populist campaigning ploy ahead of October regional elections. "It's a standard envelope. We will deliver them to the mailboxes of people aged over 60 between Tuesday and Friday," Czech Post spokesman Matyas Vitik said.
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7 of 15
'HOTEL RWANDA' HERO DECLINES TO PLEAD TO TERRORISM CHARGES: Paul Rusesabagina, portrayed as a hero in a Hollywood movie about Rwanda's 1994 genocide, declined to plead to all the 13 charges facing him in court on Monday, demanding he be allowed to plead to each separate count. Rusesabagina told the court he had contributed 20,000 euros to the FLN, a militant wing of one of the leading opposition groups, and apologised for any wrongdoing that may have been caused by the movement.
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SHOOTING OF MAN, 27, UNDER INVESTIGATION IN PENNSYLVANIA: An investigation into the shooting of a 27-year-old man in Lancaster, Pennsylvania is ongoing after news of the incident sparked protests in the small city on Sunday night, a spokesman for the local district attorney's office said. The Lancaster City Bureau of Police said that one of their officers shot the man - identified by the district attorney's office as Ricardo Munoz - late on Sunday afternoon after responding to a report of a domestic disturbance. The city's police department, which released body camera footage of the incident, said the man chased after the officer brandishing a knife in his right hand. "The officer fired several shots from his firearm, striking the subject," the police department said in a statement, adding that the man did not survive the shooting and was pronounced dead at the scene.
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9 of 15
TROPICAL STORM SALLY: Tropical storm Sally will move over the north-central Gulf of Mexico on Monday before becoming a hurricane as it heads toward southeastern Louisiana, the US National Hurricane Center (NHC) said. "Strengthening is expected over the next day or so, and Sally is forecast to become a hurricane by tonight, with additional strengthening possible before the center crosses the northern Gulf Coast," the Miami-based weather forecaster added. The second storm in less than a month to threaten the region, Sally is forecast to strengthen on Monday and bring heavy rains and winds of up to 85 miles per hour (137 km/h). Mississippi and Louisiana issued mandatory evacuation orders to residents of low-lying areas, and Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards appealed for a federal disaster declaration and advised people living in Sally's path to flee.
Image Credit: Courtesy: NOAA/via REUTERS
10 of 15
RUSSIA COMPLETES VOLUNTEER RECRUITMENT: Russia has recruited sufficient participants for its large-scale COVID-19 vaccine trial, known as a Phase III trial, the head of Russia's sovereign wealth fund, which is backing the vaccine, said on Monday. "In just two weeks, 55,000 volunteers have already been recruited in Moscow," Kirill Dmitriev, head of the Russian Direct Investment Fund said. Russia began recruiting for what was billed as a 40,000-strong Phase III trial on August 26. Initial results are expected in October or November this year, officials have said.
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NETFLIX ARGUES FOR FREE SPEECH: An Indian court's decision to stall the release of a Netflix Inc series on four Indian tycoons facing fraud allegations "freezes free speech" and hurts the company financially, the US streaming giant has argued in a court. "Bad Boy Billionaires" is a documentary series about liquor tycoon Vijay Mallya, Sahara group's Subrata Roy, Indian IT executive Ramalinga Raju and jeweller Nirav Modi. Netflix put the show on hold this month on order of a state court where Sahara alleged violation of Roy's privacy rights.
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12 of 15
MIDDAY BREAK RULE IN UAE ENDS: The UAE Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation, MoHRE, has announced that the midday break rule period, which started on 15th June, prohibiting any outdoor labour work between 12.30pm and 3pm, will end on 15th September. The mandatory annual midday work break, which first introduced 15 years ago, aims to ensure the wellbeing and safety of labourers working under direct sunlight and to protect them from heat exhaustion, heatstroke during peak summer.
Image Credit: Ahmed Ramzan/ Gulf News Archives
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UBER APPEAL: US ride-hailing giant Uber began an appeal hearing in Britain on Monday after London's transport authority refused to renew its operating licence on safety grounds. Transport for London (TfL) had revoked Uber's London licence late last year, blaming "unacceptable" safety risks for passengers. However, Uber - which has 3.5 million customers and 45,000 drives in the British capital - was allowed to continue operating pending the appeal.
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DELHI COVID-19 TESTS: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday said that maximum COVID-19 tests per day per million population are being conducted in the national capital when compared to the rest of the world. Kejriwal said that 21 lakhs people in Delhi have been tested for COVID-19 so far, equals to 11 per cent of the total population of the city.
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CHESS CAN REALLY BE A SPECTATOR SPORT: India captain Vidit Gujrathi is on cloud nine after leading the team, comprising of greats such as Viswanathan Anand and Koneru Humpy, to the historic gold at the recently concluded FIDE Online Chess Olympiad where India was declared joint winner alongside Russia. Gujrathi believes that Olympiad has shown that chess can really be a spectator sport. "Previously chess streaming used to be looked down upon. In India nobody used to stream. Gradually people realised it's good and it is growing every day. The Olympiad has shown that chess can really be a spectator sport," Gujrathi said.
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