At Least 54 Killed In Indonesia Boat Sinking

At least 54 people have died in the sinking of an overcrowded boat carrying migrant workers in the sea off the Indonesian island of Batam.

Police and rescue agency officials on Friday provided updates on the incident which happened on Wednesday after rescuers found more bodies.

The speedboat carrying 101 migrant workers and their families from Malaysia capsized in stormy weather and 41 of the passengers were rescued. Six people are still missing.

Officials say two of the three crew who survived the sinking have been arrested on suspicion of a shipping violation.

The head of the local search and rescue agency said strong winds and currents were hampering efforts by rescuers to look below the surface.

Police suspect the trip was illegal and the workers were undocumented because of the high fares that the survivors said they had paid.

Speedboats and ferries are a common form of transport in Indonesia, a sprawling archipelago with more than 17,000 islands.

Maritime incidents are common due to the poor enforcement of safety regulations on boats and ferries, which offer a relatively cheap form of transportation and are often full to the brim.

One of the worst ferry incidents in Indonesia in recent years occurred off the country’s Sulawesi Island in 2009, killing more than 330 people.

Credit: presstv

Italy Quake Renders At Least 15,000 Homeless

Italy’s most powerful earthquake since 1980 has left more than 15,000 people homeless, according to the country’s civil protection agency.

No-one was killed in the quake but 20 were injured and damage to the area round the town of Norcia is extensive.

The 6.6-magnitude quake struck near the central region where nearly 300 people were killed by a quake in August.

Prime Minister Matteo Renzi is chairing a meeting of his cabinet to discuss emergency reconstruction.

The quake struck on Sunday morning, destroying buildings or leaving them structurally unsafe in several towns and villages in the mountainous central region.

Many of those affected are living with relatives or friends, but the civil protection agency said it was providing assistance to 15,000, with 10,000 accommodated in tents and converted sports halls. Thousands spent the night in their cars or under canvas.

Read More: BBC

Huge Fire Kills At Least 23 In Indian Hospital

Around 23 people have been killed by a fire which broke out in a hospital in eastern India, say local officials.

Some 120 firefighter were dispatched to put out the fire which started in the dialysis ward of the SUM hospital in the Indian city of Bhubaneswar, in Odisha state late on Monday.

“Deeply anguished by the loss of lives in the hospital fire in Odisha. The tragedy is mind-numbing. My thoughts are with bereaved families,” India Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a post published on his Twitter account.

According to reports, the majority of victims died from smoke inhalation, and that 20 more people are receiving treatment in neighboring medical facilities.

After arriving, firefighters and police were forced to break windows and doors to evacuate the hospital. During the massive rescue operation, which was carried out with the aid of staff and volunteers, over 500 people were safely removed from the hospital.

“We suspect the fire occurred due to an electric short circuit in the dialysis ward”, said local fire services official Binoy Behera.

Credit: presstv

At Least Two Dead In Florida Nightclub Shooting

At least two people were killed and 14 others wounded in a shooting early Monday at a Florida nightclub, US broadcaster NBC reported.

Police confirmed that the incident occurred at Club Blu in Fort Myers, which US media said was holding a party for teenagers.

A “person of interest” has been detained at another location, the station said.

The Fort Myers Police Department reported that while two individuals were fatally shot, “at least 14-16” more sustained minor to life-threatening wounds during the episode, which occurred at approximately 12:30 am (0430 GMT), according to NBC.

A nearby home and vehicles were also shot at, resulting in one minor injury, CBS news reported.

Police said officers were “actively canvassing the area looking for other persons who may be involved in this incident,” according to a statement obtained by NBC.

The shooting comes just six weeks after an attack on a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida that left 49 dead in the worst gun massacre in recent US history.

Police killed the gunman, Omar Mateen, a 29-year-old US citizen of Afghan origin, after a three-hour standoff.

That rampage and other recent shootings have renewed debate about gun laws in the United States.

Credit: Guardian