Women still earn less than men. 6 leaders explain what’s needed to close the gap

The gender pay gap stubbornly persists. What needs to be done in order to close it? It is no secret that the gender pay gap is a legacy of structures and systems that have denigrated and devalued the work that women have historically done. It therefore stands to reason that it would have to be systems and structures like media, government and corporations — not individuals — that must drive change. But if rates of violence against women have not improved, if the denigration of women in the media remains par for the course, if our most storied institutions remain…


Holi 2022: Photos capture the festival of color

That celebration is Holi, the Hindu festival of love, color and spring. It’s a time when Indians don simple, inexpensive clothes and take to the streets to drench each other in clouds of colored powder and buckets of water. There’s singing, dancing, and of course, food. Holi this year falls on Friday. But in some parts of India, communities begin the festivities by lighting bonfires the night before in a celebration known as Holika Dahan, or Choti Holi. The bonfires are a nod to one of the most well-known legends associated with the festival. The story goes something like this:…


What we know about the earthquake off Japan’s Fukushima coast

For some, the incident brought back painful memories of 2011, when an earthquake triggered a tsunami causing a nuclear meltdown at the Fukushima power plant, a disaster that’s still being felt to this day. Though the earthquake struck a similar area, Wednesday’s quake hasn’t prompted a national emergency — for a number of reasons. Here’s what you need to know. The quake hit around 12:30 a.m. local time (11:30 a.m. ET) off the coast of Fukushima, north of the capital Tokyo. It was originally designated a 7.3-magnitude quake, but was upgraded to 7.4 on Thursday. As of Thursday, all tsunami…


Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe ‘on way home’ to UK after 6 years’ detention in Iran, British lawmaker says

On Wednesday, Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s local UK Member of Parliament Tulip Siddiq tweeted a photo of her on board a plane saying she is now on her way home. “It’s been 6 long years – and I can’t believe I can FINALLY share this photo,” wrote Siddiq. “Nazanin is now in the air flying away from 6 years of hell in Iran.” UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said in a tweet that Zaghari-Ratcliffe and fellow British Iranian national Anoosheh Ashoori “will be reunited with their families later today.” UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson hailed their release as “huge achievements” for British diplomacy….


Tokyo schools drop controversial dress code on hair and underwear color

For decades, being a student in Tokyo meant you had to look a certain way. Under the public school system’s dress code, all students had to dye their hair black, certain hairstyles were prohibited and even their underwear had to be a designated color. But these rules, which have recently come under scrutiny and been criticized as outdated, will now be abolished, the city’s authorities announced this week. A total of five rules will be dropped by nearly 200 public schools across the Japanese capital, including regulations on hair and underwear color, and a ban on “two block” hairstyles, which…


Chelsea made plea for ‘sporting integrity,’ despite oligarch owner being sanctioned after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

Despite Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich being sanctioned by the UK government for his close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin following the invasion of Ukraine, the club had called for its FA Cup tie against Middlesbrough to be played behind closed doors for “matters of sporting integrity.” Abramovich’s sanctioning means Chelsea is unable to sell any more away tickets for Saturday’s match due to the restrictions on the club. “Chelsea FC recognizes that such an outcome would have a huge impact on Middlesbrough and its supporters, as well as our own fans who have already bought the limited number of…


Economic growth in 2022: China had a surprisingly good start, but it may not last

Retail sales rose 6.7% in the first two months of 2022 compared to a year ago, according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Tuesday. That was well above the estimated 3% increase in a Reuters poll of economists. Industrial production jumped 7.5% during the same period, surpassing the forecast of 3.9%. And investment in fixed assets, such as infrastructure and machinery, jumped 12.2% from a year earlier. “Under the combined effect of macro policies and the efforts of businesses, the momentum of China’s economic recovery has improved in January and February, laying a solid foundation…


Ethiopia pledges action after video shows uniformed men burning civilians alive

The Ethiopia Government Communication Service said in a statement on its Facebook page that the incident occurred in the Ayisid Kebele of Metekel Zone in the Benishangul-Gumuz region, a site of frequent ethnic violence for more than a year in which hundreds of civilians have died. “A horrific and inhumane act was recently committed… In a series of horrific images circulated on social media, innocent civilians were burned to death,” the statement read. It did not say when the events took place or who was responsible. “Regardless of their origin or identity, the government will take legal action against those…


Opinion: As a child of war, I know what the Ukrainians are going through

Like those children who are being awakened by sirens in the Eastern European nation these days, I, too, woke up to that sound in the middle of the night and rushed to the basement. The eight-year Iran-Iraq war started in 1980 when I was just four years old. In February 1984, nearly exactly 38 years prior to Russia’s attack on the Ukrainian capital, Iraq’s strategic bombing against cities — including Tehran — began, making every house and every child in my vicinity a potential target. It always happened at night, when the sky was dark, when the houses switched on…


Thailand Elephant Day: Thailand lays out fruit buffet for elephants in national celebration

(Reuters) — Nearly 60 elephants enjoyed a huge fruit banquet at a Thai botanical park on Sunday as the Southeast Asian country marked its annual Elephant Day. Elephants are a source of national pride and cultural identity for Thailand and are used for labor, transport, and battlefield triumphs by warriors and kings. The event is commonly observed in various other parts of the country, but due to the pandemic and economic woes, some have scaled down celebrations this year. At Nong Nooch Tropical Garden in eastern Chonburi province, elephants were treated to two tons of fruits and vegetables laid out…


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