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A picture made available on Friday shows Andreas Lubitz, co-pilot of Germanwings flight 4U9525, running during the Aerportrace in Hamburg, Germany on September 13 2009. Picture: EPA/FOTO-TEAM-MUELLER

Germanwings pilot hid health condition that would have banned flying

Pilot who crashed aircraft in French Alps had received sick note from doctors showing he suffered health condition that would have prevented him flying day of crash

Middle East

Saudi-led campaign strikes Yemen’s Sanaa, Morocco joins alliance

People sit on ammunition boxes they took from army depots in Yemen's southern port city of Aden on Friday. Yemen's beleaguered government said Saudi-led airstrikes against its Houthi militia opponents would not last long on the second day of a Gulf Arab-led campaign against the Iranian-allied militia that could escalate a proxy conflict spreading through the region. Picture: REUTERS/Anees Manousr

Yemen’s beleaguered government says Saudi-led airstrikes against Houthi militia opponents will not last long on second day of mainly Gulf Arab campaign


US GDP unrevised at 2.2% in fourth quarter


Economic growth cools in fourth quarter, with businesses throttling back on inventory, equipment investment, but robust spending limits slowdown in pace of activity

Middle East

Arab coalition warplanes pounds Yemen rebel camps

Yemenis gather beside a burning vehicle allegedly belonged to Houthi fighters following clashes with tribal militiamen loyal to Yemeni president Abdo Rabbo Mansour Hadi in the southern port city of Aden, Yemen, on Thursday. Picture: EPA/STRINGER

Arab coalition warplanes bomb rebel camps in Yemen in second consecutive day of strikes led by Saudi Arabia, which accuses Iran of ‘aggression’ across region


Co-pilot may have crashed plane on purpose, says prosecutor

An undated file picture of co-pilot Andreas Lubitz as seen on Facebook on Thursday.  Picture:  AFP PHOTO

No grounds to consider crash a terrorist incident, according to French prosecutor, but there is no alternative motive yet as hunt for second black box continues


Hollande and Merkel visit site of plane crash

France's President Francois Hollande (centre) embraces Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy as German Chancellor Angela Merkel  looks on close to the crash site of Germanwings Airbus A320 near Seyne-les-Alpes on Wednesday.  Picture: REUTERS/DIEGO CRESPO

Germanwings cancels a flight and uses 11 aircraft from other carriers for about 40 flights after some of its crew refuse to fly


Study anthropology for your next car

Not surprisingly, Chinese consumers often have radically different ideas of what makes a great car, especially if they are female

A worker walks atop a tanker wagon to check the freight level at an oil terminal on the outskirts of Kolkata in this file photograph. Global markets could be hit by the lifting of sanctions before Iran starts pumping more oil. Picture: REUTERS

Iran stockpiles ‘could flood market’

Oil move expected to follow soon after sanctions are eased, writes Grant Smith

Middle East

Yemen’s Houthi militia poised to take president’s Aden base

Southern People's Resistance militants loyal to Yemen President Abed-Rabbu Mansour Hadi move tanks from the al-Anad air base in the  southern province of Lahej on Tuesday. The base was overrun on Wednesday.  Picture:  REUTERS

Yemen’s slide towards civil war has made the country a crucial front in mostly Sunni Saudi Arabia’s rivalry with Shiite Iran


Macau diversifies tourism as casino sector struggles

Macau CE Fernando Chui Sai-On chats with Las Vegas Sands  CEO Sheldon Adelson (right) during the opening ceremony of Sands Cotai Central in  Macau. The city's gaming revenue is expected to fall for a second year. File picture: REUTERS/TYRONE SIU

Macau city’s CE says ‘adjustment’ period of slower growth will need to be counteracted with a broader range of attractions


Beijing to close more coal-fired power plants

This picture taken last week shows traffic in heavy smog in Beijing. Coal usage in China will fall as cities such as Beijing move to cleaner fuel sources to tackle pollution. Picture: AFP PHOTO

Facing pressure at home and abroad leading polluter China turns to gas-fired stations


NEWS ANALYSIS: Europe may veto new sanctions on Russia

Russia gas. Picture: BLOOMBERG

Europe relies heavily on Russian gas exports, so any energy-related sanctions will be a hard sell for the US, writes Timothy Gardner

International companies


UK offloads shares to cut Lloyds stake to 21.9%


UK government continues to cut its position in nation’s largest mortgage lender before elections in May


Berkshire and 3G Capital to take over Kraft

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway and Jorge Paulo Lemann’s 3G Capital have agreed to buy HJ Heinz, ending the independence of the iconic tomato sauce maker that can trace its roots to the 1860s. File picture: Bloomberg

Merged with HJ Heinz, Berkshire and 3G will invest another $10bn and call the new giant Kraft Heinz Company

Picture: REUTERS

Modular mojo: Toyota re-engineers its appeal

Toyota is looking to cast off reputation for making reliable, but often dull, cars in wide-ranging review of its designs, technologies, factories and supply deals


Ruling on Knox conviction delayed

Raffaele Sollecito, left, arrives at the Supreme Court in Rome on Wednesday for the review of his trial. Picture: AFP

A guilty finding could automatically result in calls for Amanda Knox’s extradition from the US


Speculation swirls around possible takeover of Neptune Orient

Neptune Orient said last month it would sell APL Logistics, its supply and freight-management unit, to Japan’s Kintetsu World Express. File Picture: BLOOMBERG

Global shipping company will benefit from the US’s economic recovery and return to profit in 2015, say analysts


Telefónica to sell Britain’s O2 for $13.83bn to Hutchison

Telefónica. Picture: BLOOMBERG

Spanish telecommunications company Telefónica reaches deal to sell British cellphone operator to Hutchison Whampoa of Hong Kong

Middle East

Israel’s Arab party spurns Netanyahu apology

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu believes the emerging terms of a deal with Iran fail to take Israel’s security concerns into account. File picture: REUTERS

Joint List Arab coalition calls Israeli prime minister’s apology a ‘meaningless act aiming to legitimise his racist reign’


German Airbus crashes in Alps with 150 dead, black box found

Rescue helicopters from the French gendarmerie and the Air Force are seen in front of the French Alps during a rescue operation near to the crash site of an Airbus A320, near Seyne-les-Alpes, on Tuesday.  Picture: REUTERS/JEAN-PAUL PELISSIER

Among the victims are 16 children and two teachers from Germany, as French police confirm no one survived and it will take days to recover the bodies due to difficult terrain, snow and coming storms

Business Times

Yoga to turn round Indian civil service

Narendra Modi.  Picture: REUTERS

India to provide free daily yoga classes for its 3-million government employees and their families as it seeks to promote the ancient practice


Deutsche’s Latter to join Merrill Lynch

Deutsche Bank. Picture: MARTIN RHODES

Former managing director Kevin Latter will run Merrill Lynch’s investment banking unit in Johannesburg


Five wounded in shooting near Tennessee university


Officers respond to report of gunfire in area near Austin Peay State University, police still searching for perpetrators


Judge finds Spain’s ruling party ran secret slush fund

Spain's Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy attends a ruling People's Party executive committee meeting in Madrid on Monday. Picture: REUTERS/ANDREA COMAS

Scandal erupted in 2013 as Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s government fought to drag the eurozone’s fourth-biggest economy out of an economic crisis


Britain to investigate Sharia courts, crack down on extremist preachers

A file image shows Iranian muslim cleric Man Haron Monis bound in chains and holding an Australian flag outside Downing Centre Local Court. Picture: EPA/SERGIO DIONISO

Britain will introduce measures to counter Islamist extremism, including investigation into Sharia courts, crackdown on incendiary preachers, if Conservatives win election


China steel firms seek backing for global deals

Workers at an iron-ore smelter. Picture: REUTERS

Hebei Steel Group, China’s largest steel maker, looks to build a 5-million-tonne-a-year steel project under a joint venture in Africa


Chains make room for lifestyle hotels

InterContinental Davos.  File picture: REUTERS

New generation wants a more local feel, write Victoria Bryan and Neil Maidment


Thai court accepts criminal case against Yingluck

LEADING BY EXAMPLE:  Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra holds up her ballot before casting her vote at a polling  station near her home in Bueng Kum, in Bangkok’s northwest, on Sunday. Picture: REUTERS, CHAIWAT SUBPRASOM

Thailand’s Supreme Court says case against ousted prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra is in its jurisdiction, she is charged with mishandling rice subsidy scheme


Spreading beef bans hit Indian farmers, traders

Rescued cattle are seen at a 'goushala', or cow shelter, run by Bharatiya Gou Rakshan Parishad, an arm of the Hindu nationalist group Vishwa Hindu Parishad, at Aangaon village in the western Indian state of Maharashtra. Picture: REUTERS

Renewed thrust by Bharatiya Janata Party to protect cows closes abattoirs in Maharashtra, making it hard for farmers to sell animals, and restrictions are spreading


We need to work together to bring the internet to the whole world

A man plays a computer game at an internet cafe in Beijing. Chinese government has closed 50 websites and social media accounts for various violations, according to Beijing’s cyberspace watchdog. Picture:   REUTERS / KIM KYUNG-HOON

If you care about boosting local economies, or improving education in poor countries, then access is your issue too

Demonstrators hold placards during a rally near the Israeli consulate in New York earlier this month.  Picture: REUTERS

NEWS ANALYSIS: US-Israel relationship may have passed a turning point

After Benjamin Netanyahu’s victory and Barack Obama’s potential nuclear deal with Iran, the question is whether the US and Israel can ever repair their relationship


Rescuers struggle to recover bodies in French Alps crash

A helicopter of civil security services is seen in Seyne, south-eastern France, on Tuesday, near the site where a Germanwings Airbus A320 crashed in the French Alps. Picture: AFP

Arduous search for victims of worst aviation disaster on French soil in decades set to resume, as European leaders visit site of tragedy to pay their respects


Cheap eurozone takeaway fuels Chinese appetites

Picture: REUTERS

Inexorable decline of common currency offers ambitious Chinese firms bargain buffet of eurozone business, with Pirelli deal latest in acquisition binge


THICK END OF THE WEDGE: With Russia, stories seldom end well

Why would President Jacob Zuma cosy up to easily the least trustworthy leader of a major power in the world?


Microsoft apps to be pre-installed on some Android devices


In bid to get Microsoft’s mobile apps into as many hands as possible, company is teaming up with unlikely allies: companies that make smartphones powered by Android software


IMF ‘Plan B’ on reforms could slash US power

Picture: REUTERS

Washington’s block on crucial IMF reforms pushes crisis lender into discussions of other options, with one proposal potentially slashing US voting power nearly in half


Lufthansa, Airbus shares slide on French Alps aircraft crash

A Germanwings Airbus A320 registration D-AIPX is seen at the Berlin airport in this March 29 2014 file photo. Picture: REUTERS

Shares in European aircraft maker Airbus and German airline Lufthansa tumble after passenger jet in its low-cost division, Germanwings, crashes in French Alps


Much of Singapore shuts down to mourn its founding prime minister

People  pay their respects to the late former prime minister Lee Kuan Yew. Picture: REUTERS

Singapore citizens laud city-state’s ‘godfather’, Lee Kuan Yew


Mexico gets $350m boost as GM Cruze arrives

Chevrolet cars are seen at a General Motors dealership.  Picture: REUTERS

GM so far has identified only three plants that will make the next-generation Cruze, including in China


Glencore’s Japanese coal deal expected to be set at six-year low

Picture: REUTERS

Slump in oil and liquefied natural gas prices, and the prospect of nuclear reactors restarting in Japan, is undermining demand for coal


New drugs from Bristol, Sanofi and Novartis expected to shine


Biggest potential blockbusters launching this year offer new ways of fighting cancer, high cholesterol and heart failure — all markets targeting relatively large numbers of patients

Middle East

Medical source says 126 killed in Yemen mosque bombings

Crime scene investigators at work after a suicide bomb attack at a mosque in Sanaa, Yemen, on Friday.  Picture: REUTERS

In statement on Twitter, Islamic State claims suicide bomb attacks on two mosques in Yemen’s capital Sanaa


Eurozone and US manufacturing expand, China struggles


Eurozone businesses ramp up activity in March as the European Central Bank starts printing money to spur economic growth

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