9 things that happened around the world this week you should know about

Nov 20 2016, 2:57 am

Each week, we bring you a roundup of some of the biggest stories making headlines around the world.

Here are nine things that happened last week that you should know about (in no particular order):

1. 7.8-magnitude earthquake hits New Zealand

A 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck New Zealand on Monday killing two people. A second 6.2-magnitude quake struck soon after, leaving thousands of people stranded. The earthquake was so strong that it lifted the seabed two metres, leaving sea life exposed above tide-level.

“Much of the northeastern coast of the South Island was uplifted during the earthquake. We know this from photos of rock platforms covered in seaweed and marine animals such as crayfish and paua (sea snails) stranded above tide levels,” said GNS Science, a New Zealand government research institute.

2. All remaining hospitals in Aleppo destroyed by airstrikes

All remaining hospitals in Aleppo, Syria, have been destroyed or damaged by airstrikes, according to aid groups. “All the hospitals in eastern Aleppo are now out of service,” said the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Syria representative Elizabeth Hoff. Doctors Without Borders (also known as Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)) released a statement condemning the hospital attacks. “The message is simple and I don’t know how to say it any louder: stop bombing hospitals,” said MSF emergency coordinator Teresa Sancristoval.

3. US-born pandas experience Chinese culture shock

Two giant panda twins transferred from their home at an Atlanta zoo to China are experiencing serious culture shock. According to Chinese state media, Mei Lun and Mei Huan prefer eating American-brand crackers and only understand English. When the pandas are spoken to in Sichuan dialect, they do not respond.

4. Great Barrier Reef claims three lives this week

An English tourist became the third fatality at Australia’s Great Barrier Reef this week. The man, who police say was in his 60s, was scuba diving at the reef when he died. Police have not released the cause of his death. On Wednesday, two French tourists in their 70s suffered heart attacks while snorkelling at the reef.

5. WHO says Zika virus no longer an emergency

The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared that Zika virus is no longer an international medical emergency. However, the WHO stresses that long-term effort is needed to address the virus, which has been found in 60 countries and is linked to birth defects and neurological complications. Brazil has been hardest hit by the mosquito-borne virus, as 2,100 cases of nervous-system malformations have been reported there alone.

6. Argentina to eradicate 100,000 beavers

Argentina plans to eradicate 100,000 beavers that have chewed through thousands of acres of the Patagonian forest. Beavers were introduced to Argentina in 1946, but with no natural predators the creatures have rapidly reproduced and are now chomping away at the country’s forests. A team of elite hunters will be hired to cull the beavers. Experts say the eradication could take more than a decade to complete.

7. UN says 2016 will be the hottest year on record

This week, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) released its Statement on the Status of the Global Climate in 2016 forecasting 2016 to be the hottest year on record. “It is very likely that 2016 will be the hottest year on record,” said the report. If the statement is true, 16 of the 17 hottest years since 1880 will have been in the 21st century

8. India cancels 500 and 1,000 rupee notes

On Tuesday, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that the government would be cancelling the 500 and 1,000-rupee notes (equivalent to $10 and $10 Cdn) in an effort to combat corruption and tax evasion. The announcement has resulted in chaos across India where millions of people are trying to exchange old currency notes.

9. Broadway’s Hamilton cast sends message of diversity to Mike Pence

The cast of the Broadway musical “Hamilton” had some choice words for Vice President-elect Mike Pence on Friday evening. Pence was in the audience and after the performance cast member Brandon Victor Dixon took a moment to directly address Pence and by calling on him and Trump to be inclusive of all Americans.

“We, sir, are the diverse America who are alarmed and anxious that your new administration will not protect us, our planet, our children, our parents, or defend us and uphold our inalienable rights,” said Dixon to Pence. “We truly hope this show has inspired you to uphold our American values and work on behalf of all of us. All of us.”

After the show, Trump took to Twitter to address the comments. “The theater must always be a safe and special place. The cast of Hamilton was very rude last night to a very good man, Mike Pence. Apologize!” wrote Trump.

Simran SinghSimran Singh

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