GLOBAL SCAN

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Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala appointed as new WTO director-general

GENEVA: Members of the World Trade Organization (WTO) agreed by consensus to appoint Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, a former finance minister of Nigeria, as the next director-general, said the WTO in a press release. The decision was made at a special meeting of the WTO’s General Council at which the World Bank veteran was formally selected, Xinhua news agency reported on Monday. Okonjo-Iweala, 66, is a global finance expert, an economist and an international development professional with over 30 years of experience working around the world.

Australia PM apologises over handling of rape complaint

CANBERRA: Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has apologised to a former political adviser who has alleged that she was raped by a senior colleague in a minister’s office in the Parliament. The 26-year-old woman said she had feared losing her job after the 2019 incident, and had little support from her bosses, the BBC reported on Tuesday. She spoke out in a TV interview on Monday that has prompted shock and outrage over her treatment. Morrison apologised for the government’s handling of her complaint. The allegations are now under a renewed police investigation.

Ex-football chief on trial for war crimes

BANGUI: Patrice-Edouard Ngaissona, the former head of the Central African Republic (CAR) football federation is set to go on trial for war crimes at the International Criminal Court. Ngaissona, who led a mainly Christian anti-Balaka group, also faces crimes against humanity charges, which he denies, the BBC reported on Tuesday. He and Alfred Yekatom are accused of coordinating attacks against the country’s Muslim population in 2013-14. The International Criminal Court alleges Yekatom was responsible for murder, torture, attacking civilians and using child fighters as a former militia leader of the anti-Balaka group. He denies the allegations.

5 sentenced to death in Bangladesh over writer Avijit Roy’s murder

DHAKA: A Dhaka court has sentenced five militants including fugitive sacked army major Syed Ziaul Haq to death in connection with the 2015 writer-blogger Avijit Roy murder case. Another defendant, Safiur Rahman Farabi, has been jailed for life, bdnews 24 reported on Tuesday. Judge Mojibur Rahman of Dhaka’s Anti-Terrorism Special Tribunal delivered the verdict on Tuesday. The judge also fined these convicts 50,000 taka each.

Leader of fake COVID vaccine scam arrested in China

BEIJING: The leader of a multi-million dollar scam that passed off saline solution and mineral water as Covid-19 vaccines has been arrested in China. The man, identified as Kong, had researched the packaging designs of real vaccines before making more than 58,000 of his own concoctions, the BBC reported on Tuesday. A batch of the vaccines were smuggled overseas, but it is not known where they were sent to.