United Nations

Iceland to replace US on Human Rights Council

UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. General Assembly has elected Iceland to replace the United States on the U.N. Human Rights Council following the Trump administration’s decision to leave the Geneva-based organization last month.

Iceland was nominated by the group of Western nations and received 172 votes Friday while France received one, sparking laughter in the assembly chamber.

U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley said the administration withdrew from the council “because our commitment does not allow us to remain a part of a hypocritical and self-serving organization that makes a mockery of human rights.” She lambasted the council for “its chronic bias against Israel.”


Italy won’t allow boat with 450 migrants

ROME — Italy and Malta squabbled Friday over who was responsible for rescuing 450 migrants crowded aboard a fishing boat in the Mediterranean as the vessel, apparently not seeking help, headed toward a tiny island off Sicily.

Italian Transport Minister DaniloToninelli had tweeted that Malta was obliged under maritime law to rescue the migrants since they were in the Maltese search-and-rescue area earlier Friday and also provide the fishing boat with safe harbor.

But Malta retorted that when Rome’s maritime rescue coordination center informed it about the vessel, the boat was already far closer to the tiny Sicilian island of Lampedusa than it was to Maltese shores.


Iceberg 4 miles wide breaks off from glacier

An iceberg 4 miles wide has broken off from a glacier in eastern Greenland, and scientists have captured the dramatic event on video.

New York University professor David Holland, an expert in atmospheric and ocean science, told The Associated Press that “this is the largest event we’ve seen in over a decade in Greenland.”

A June 22 video of the incident was taken by his wife, Denise Holland of NYU’s Environmental Fluid Dynamics Laboratory.

The time-lapse video is speeded up 20 times and shows “3 percent of the annual ice loss of Greenland in 30 minutes,” David Holland said. “It sounded like rockets going off … a very complex, chaotic, noisy event.”


18-day ordeal meant

to be 1-hour cave trip

CHIANG RAI — The boys trapped in a cave for 18 days and the rescuers who brought them to safety are starting to share stories of the dangers and their survival.

The boys meant to explore the cave for just an hour, a casual jaunt to relax after soccer practice, but the waters rose. The teammates climbed higher, using their hands to feel the walls for a crawl space that would lead to safer, higher ground.

Those handprints were among the first signs of where the boys were, what they had done to escape the floods, and what dangers rescuers would face in their mission to save the boys and their coach.

The hospital where the 12 boys and their soccer coach are quarantined said Friday they are basically healthy, aside from some minor infections. A psychiatrist said their mental state seems fine.

Wire reports