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Six dead in Wellington hostel fire

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Emergency services are still searching for 11 people, with “several dozen” others saved

Multiple people have died following a massive blaze at a hostel in Wellington, New Zealand.

Emergency services are still searching for 11 people, with “several dozen” others saved.

Fifty-two people have been accounted for so far, but it is unclear how many were residing in the building during the fire.

A relief fund has now been set up to support both the survivors who have lost their homes and accommodation, as well as the families of those who have died.

Wellington’s Mayor says “It is a truly tragic situation [and] the worst outcome.”

Rescue efforts have been tricky given there remains a risk of the roof caving in.

Many of the building’s residents are shift workers, making it harder to track who was in the facility at the time of the blaze.

One resident says there appeared to be two fires when he fled the building.

Evacuees were taken to a centre at nearby Newtown Park, where charities supplied them with blankets, clothes and breakfast.

New Zealand Prime Minister Chris Hipkins has addressed the situation, acknowledging first responders desperately trying to save those inside.

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Ukraine’s bold counteroffensive dreams shattered: Security official

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The ambitious hopes of a Ukrainian counteroffensive have failed to materialize as anticipated, according to a high-ranking security official.

The nation had been eagerly anticipating a resurgence in their military operations to reclaim lost territories, but the recent turn of events has cast a shadow of uncertainty.

The security official, speaking on condition of anonymity, revealed that despite meticulous planning and intense preparations, the counteroffensive has encountered unforeseen challenges, pushing back the timeline for its execution.

This setback has left Ukrainian citizens anxious, hoping for a swift resolution to the ongoing conflict that has plagued their country for far too long.

The disappointment in Ukraine’s counteroffensive ambitions raises crucial questions about the nation’s military strategy, the level of external support, and the overall stability of the region.

The international community watches with bated breath as Ukraine navigates this critical juncture, wondering what the future holds for this war-torn nation.

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Zara pulls ad over Gaza boycott uproar

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Fashion giant Zara has withdrawn one of its advertisements from the front page of its website after facing calls for a boycott over its alleged insensitivity to the situation in Gaza.

The controversy erupted when Zara featured an ad showcasing its latest collection on its website’s front page, coinciding with a period of heightened tensions in the Gaza Strip. Critics argued that the timing was inappropriate, given the ongoing conflict and suffering in the region.

Social media campaigns and online petitions quickly gained traction, with thousands of people expressing their disapproval and calling for a boycott of Zara products. The hashtag #BoycottZara trended on various platforms, putting immense pressure on the clothing retailer.

In response, Zara issued a statement announcing the removal of the controversial ad. The company expressed regret over any offense caused and reaffirmed its commitment to corporate responsibility.

However, this incident has sparked a broader debate about the intersection of fashion and political sensitivity in an increasingly interconnected world.

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BTS stars take a break to serve military time

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The world-renowned South Korean megaband BTS has announced an indefinite hiatus, with all seven members set to fulfil their mandatory military service obligations.

The news has sent shockwaves through the global entertainment industry and left fans wondering what the future holds for the chart-topping group.

This decision comes after the septet’s unprecedented rise to fame, conquering international music charts, and amassing a dedicated fan base known as the ARMY.

The group’s management agency, Big Hit Entertainment, released a statement confirming that the hiatus is aimed at allowing each member to complete their military service without interruption. This move is seen as a testament to their commitment to fulfilling their civic duties despite their immense success.

While BTS fans are undoubtedly disappointed by the hiatus, it raises intriguing questions about the group’s future. Will their time away from the spotlight allow them to explore new musical directions?

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