JOHANNESBURG (AP) — A South African deputy Cabinet minister says "a mistake happened" in the hiring of a sign language interpreter for the Nelson Mandela memorial service who experts say was signing gibberish on stage next to world leaders.
The Deputy Minister of Women, Children and People with Disabilities (Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu) said Thursday that government officials have tried to track down the company that provided Thamsanqa Jantjie but that they "have vanished into thin air."
Toronto's City Council has voted to strip scandal-plagued Mayor Rob Ford of many of his powers after a heated debate where he knocked over a woman councilor.
The council voted overwhelming in a series of votes on Monday to cut his office budget by 60 percent and allow mayoral staff to join the deputy mayor. Ford now effectively has no legislative power as he would no longer chair the executive committee.
Ford retains his title and ability to represent Toronto at official functions.
Russian investigators are combing through the charred fragments of a Boeing 737 jetliner as they try to determine what caused its crash that killed all 50 people on board.
The plane belonging to the Tatarstan Airlines crashed Sunday while trying to land at its home port in the Russian city of Kazan, the capital of the oil-rich province of Tatarstan. The son of the provincial governor was among the victims.
Egyptians remain deeply divided about which direction their country should go as supporters and opponents of ousted Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi are turning out Sunday to voice their opinions in separate rallies.
NPR's Greg Dixon filed this story for our Newscast Unit:
"Hundreds of thousands of opponents of deposed President Morsi have come here, Tahrir Square, in the center of Cairo to show their support for the toppling of his government.
Originally published on Wed February 20, 2013 1:41 pm
A neighbor has told investigators that he heard "gunshots ... a female screaming two-three times, then more gunshots" coming from the South African home of Oscar Pistorius in the early morning hours of Feb. 14, a police officer testified Wednesday at a bail hearing for the Olympic and Paralympic athlete.
The witness has also told investigators about "non-stop talking" and sounds "like fighting" coming from Pistorius's home between the hours of 2 a.m. and 3 a.m.