Here are nine things that happened last week that you should know about (in no particular order):
1. Gorilla at Cincinnati Zoo shot and killed after toddler falls into enclosure
A 17-year-old gorilla at the Cincinnati Zoo was shot and killed after a three-year-old fell into its enclosure. Harambe was an endangered western lowland gorilla. Zoo officials argued that they had no choice but to kill Harambe because tranquilizers would not have worked in time to stop the animal from seriously hurting the boy. However, the death of the gorilla has sparked outrage as many say the zoo did not use the right protocol. The boy’s parents have also been criticized for neglecting to watch their child carefully while he was around the gorilla enclosure.
2. Japanese boy, 7, found alive after spending six nights alone in forest
The seven-year-old Japanese boy who went missing in a forest after his parents left him there for punishment, has been found alive. Yamato Tanooka was discovered by military officials by chance near a training base located 5 km from where he was believed to have gone missing six days ago. Tanooka’s parents left him in the bear-inhabited forest as a punishment for throwing rocks at cars. When they returned several minutes later to get him, he was gone. In a press conference, Yamato’s father, Takayuki Tanooka, apologized for his actions. “Our behaviour as parents went too far, and that’s something I’m extremely regretful about. I thought that what I was doing was for his own good, but, yes, I realise now that I went too far,” he said.
3. Airstrikes on Syrian hospital kills dozens, including children
At least 50 people were killed and dozens were injured after airstrikes hit the Syrian city of Idlib on Monday. The airstrikes were targeted at the city’s hospital in a busy civilian area. At least 15 children were killed in the attack. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Russian aircraft carried out the bombings. But Russia denies responsibility for airstrikes. “Russian planes did not carry out any combat missions, to say nothing of any air strikes, in the province of Idlib,” said Igor Konashenkov, a representative for Russia’s Ministry of Defense.
4. Paris’ Louvre Museum shuts down due to floods
Rising flood waters have prompted authorities in Paris to shut down the Louvre. Officials are working to remove some of the world’s most famous artwork from the museum in order to prevent damage to the pieces. Torrential rain has caused Paris’ Seine River to rise five metres above normal water levels. The floods have left 25,000 Parisians without power. More rain and flooding is expected across France over the weekend.
5. Mass sexual assaults reported at German music festival
Nearly 26 women were reported to be sexually assaulted at the Schlossgrabenfest music festival in Darmstadt, Germany, last weekend. According to police, the women said they were groped and harassed by several men. Darmstadt police have arrested three asylum seekers from Pakistan, and they have been charged with sexual assault. Police are still looking for at least two other men involved in the incident.
6. 40 dead tiger cubs discovered in freezer in Thailand temple
40 dead tiger cubs were found in a freezer in Thailand’s Tiger Temple. The Buddhist temple in Kanchanaburi province is a favourite with tourists. However, animal advocacy groups have been calling for the closure of the temple for years. The temple has been accused of animal trafficking and has been closed to the public since the raid.
7. Chinese television ad receives outpouring criticism for racist message
A Chinese TV ad for laundry detergent has received an outpouring criticism for being racist.
The advertisement features a black man flirting with a Chinese woman. She responds by putting a laundry detergent tab into his mouth and stuffing him into a washing machine. When she opens the machine, he emerges as a Chinese man. The global outrage over the commercial has resulted in the ad firm Quaobi issuing two apologies: “We regret that our advertisement led to controversy. We strongly oppose and condemn racial discrimination,” they said in a statement.
8. Iranian students lashed 99 times for attending coed party
— The New York Times (@nytimes) May 27, 2016
Over 30 male and female students from Iran were given 99 lashes each last week as punishment for attending a coed graduation party. The students were at a party in the city of Qazvin when they were stopped by local authorities. According to the Qazvin prosecutor, the girls at the party were dressed inappropriately and not adhering to the dress code outlined by Iran’s Islamic moral rules. The students were also penalized for dancing together. The prosecutor ordered each student receive 99 lashes as punishment for their actions.
9. Japan’s oldest elephant dies after spending life in captivity
At 69-years-old, Japan’s oldest elephant died on Thursday after a life spent in captivity. Hanako was an Asian elephant. In 1949, she was sent to Tokyo’s Inokashira Park Zoo, and she spent the rest of her life there in a concrete enclosure. Last year, nearly 500,000 people signed a petition to free Hanako. Zoo officials argued that if she was set free, she would not be able to survive. Hanako’s body will be donated to Japan’s National Museum of Nature and Science for research.