Prosecutors Rule Out Arson at Paris' Famous Notre Dame Cathedral
A huge fire swallowed up Paris’ Notre Dame, the world-famous, 850-year-old cathedral on Monday, damaging much of the structure and causing its iconic spire to fall.
According to the Associated Press, the Paris fire brigade told local media that the fire could be linked to a renovation project on the church’s spire. The Paris prosecutors’ office said it was treating the fire as an accident and had ruled out arson and possible terrorist motives, AP said.
The French Interior Ministry said on Twitter that over 400 firefighters were mobilized to the location to battle the blaze. AP reported that the condition had stabilized by late Monday night and that the lights of what were thought to be investigators inspecting the scene could be made out through the windows. One firefighter has been reported injured.
The news agency cited officials who said that most of the artwork in the building had been recovered.
Paris police said the fire did not spread to the northern belfry tower, and Paris fire chief Jean-Claude Gallet told AP the church’s structure had been saved.
French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted that the burning cathedral was the “emotion of a whole nation.”
Eight dead after tornadoes rip across US South
At least eight people have died and dozens were injured after storms triggered tornadoes and flooding across several southern US states.
In Texas, two children died after a tree fell on their family car. The parents, who were in the front seats, were not injured.
Deaths were reported across Mississippi, Texas and Louisiana.
Some of the injured could not be rescued for hours due to debris on roadways, according to US media.
Authorities say at least 11 tornadoes touched down in three states before the storm began moving towards the East Coast.
Tornado warnings have been issued for Monday in Ohio, South Carolina and Virginia.
Suspect posing as delivery man shot woman with concealed crossbow, police say
Police say they're looking for a man they believe posed as a delivery man in order to shoot a woman with a crossbow in Mississauga, Ont.
Peel Regional Police said Monday that, in November, a 44-year-old woman answered her door to the supposed delivery man who was carrying a large box.
They say the woman and the suspect had a short conversation before he shot her with a crossbow he had hidden inside the box. She suffered life-threatening injuries but survived the shooting.
Traditional Japanese carp streamers ‘swim’ over deep gorge
In Oboke Gorge, a scenic area in Tokushima Prefecture sandwiched between sheer cliffs, about 180 colorful koinobori carp streamers in red, blue and many other colors “swim” in the spring breeze.
Carp streamers fly every spring to celebrate Tango no Sekku, Japan’s traditional boys’ festival.
This spring tradition has been held in this fashion at Oboke Gorge since 1982. At the end of March, a local sightseeing ship operator attached six wires from the ship’s landing to the other side of the river, about 120 meters away, and strung up the streamers. They can be enjoyed through mid-June.
Disabled people increasingly feel distanced from Paralympics
Global interest in the Paralympics has soared, but many disabled people are fed up with promotional materials that compare them with “superhuman” athletes and feel the sports extravaganza has moved beyond their daily lives.
One example was a poster commissioned by the Tokyo metropolitan government to build up enthusiasm for the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics.
The poster, displayed in various parts of the capital from last October, featured 23 Paralympic athletes and quotes about their feelings toward their respective sports.
One quote said: “A disability is nothing but an excuse. If I lose, it is because I am weak.”
A 40-year-old man who works at a university saw the poster at a train station and tweeted, “Does that mean that if a disabled person is employed by the Tokyo metropolitan government and is unable to accomplish a task due to his or her disability, that person’s superior can say, ‘That’s just an excuse.’”