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In Brief

In Brief

Former Fiji head faces charges
Former Fiji Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase, who was ousted in a military coup in December 2006, has been charged with corruption and released on bail, officials said yesterday.
Qarase appeared in court Monday night charged with three counts of abuse of office and one of failing to declare his interest when his family company bought shares in Fijian Holdings Ltd.
Qarase pleaded not guilty to all four counts before Magistrate Aruna Prasad. He faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted.
Fraud charges
Thailand's Election Commission charged the speaker of parliament with vote fraud yesterday, setting the stage for a Supreme Court battle that could see him sacked.
Yongyut Tiyapairat, a close ally of ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra, has repeatedly denied charges that he bribed local officials in northern Thailand to campaign for his People Power Party in December elections.
If convicted, Yongyut could be stripped of his seat in parliament. A conviction could also open the door to a broader investigation by the Election Commission into the operations of the PPP itself.
Ban on turbans
An Australian school refused entry to a Sikh student yesterday because he was wearing a turban, saying it would not change its rules despite the threat of legal action.
The family of the 12-year-old boy, who will not be named, have complained to the Anti-Discrimination Commission in Queensland state after Ormiston College ordered the boy to cut his hair and remove his turban as a condition of entry.
Glacier graffiti
A German tourist caught spraying graffiti on the rocks and ice face of New Zealand's Franz Josef Glacier was forced to clean up his handiwork, local media reported yesterday.
English tourists caught Jan Philip Scharbert on camera as he spray-painted the glacier last week, "The Press" newspaper reported.
The Whataroa village police constable said Scharbert took 1-1/2 days to clean up his handiwork, and was reprimanded by visitors.


Updated : 2021-04-16 08:27 GMT+08:00