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Why the Indian Government is tackling Twitter posts rather than the pandemic



As India records record numbers of new Covid cases, the country’s government is moving to censor social media in a bid to prevent people from seeing the full picture.

Anger is growing throughout the nation, with one Twitter user saying authorities are “finding it easier to take down tweets than ensure oxygen supplies”.

A recent blocked post by an opposition government member says the people of India will “never forgive” Prime Minister Narenda Modi “for underplaying the corona situation in the country and letting so many people die due to mismanagement.”

India saw more than 352,000 new infections on Monday and over 2,800 deaths – the highest single-day spike so far.

It has been confirmed by Twitter that India’s government has made an emergency order to censor tweets.

Twitter has not specified which content it had taken down, but at least 52 tweets from prominent figures have been removed to date. They were published by a range of people including opposing politicians, journalists and filmmakers.

“When we receive a valid legal request, we review it under both the Twitter Rules and local law. If the content violates Twitter’s Rules, the content will be removed from the service. If it is determined to be illegal in a particular jurisdiction, but not in violation of the Twitter Rules, we may withhold access to the content in India only.”

twitter/the washington post

Although these tweets are blocked in India, they still remain visible on the platform when viewed from other countries around the world.

To add to the panic, as case numbers continue to soar, health experts are worried that most are being undetected. This follows India’s test positivity rate has growing from 6 percent on April 1 to 20 percent by April 25.

Tedros Adhanom of the World Health Organisation says “the situation in India is beyond heartbreaking”, and the organisation is “doing everything it can” to help alleviate pressure on the health care system, and drive case numbers down.


Four dead in Russian military plane crash



Four people have been killed after a Russian military plane suffered an engine malfunction

The plane reportedly crashed in the city of Ryazan, which is located southeast of Moscow.

It’s believed five others are also injured. However, it is unclear how many were on board.

The Ilyushin IL-76 military cargo plane is a long-range aircraft, which can reportedly carry over 100 troops.

An Ilyushin IL-76 aircraft, which is similar to the one involved in the incident.

Local authorities say the plane suffered a malfunction while on a training flight.

Russia’s Defence Minister is yet to give any further details on the crash, or about the victims.

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Double election defeat for UK Conservatives



British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservatives have suffered defeat in two parliamentary by-elections

UK Conservatives have lost two crucial seats in England, which could spark concerns about Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s future.

The centrist Liberal Democrat party won the seats of Tiverton and Honiton.

The seats are in a Conservative part of south-west England, where a majority of 24,000 has been overturned.

The Liberal Democrats say it is their biggest ever majority turn around at a parliamentary by election.

“Tonight, the people of Tiverton and Honiton have spoken for Britain. They’ve sent a loud and clear message: It’s time for Boris Johnson to go, and go now.”

winning candidate Richard Foord

The losses have renewed calls for Prime Minister Boris Johnson to resign after a police investigation into gatherings at his Downing Street offices.

Johnson recently survived a vote of no-confidence, which secured his term as Prime Minister for another 12 months.

It also follows the Conservatives winning a landslide majority in three decades during the last national election.

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Protestors disrupt Chinese ambassador’s speech in Sydney



Protesters are causing disruptions during an address by China’s Ambassador to Australia

Xiao Qian is in Sydney, where is he speaking about how to improve ties between the two countries.

One protester described Mr Xiao as a “representative of a dictatorship” and accused the Chinese Government of committing genocide against Uyghur Muslims.

Others were heard shouting “Free Tibet”, and another was asked to leave the venue prior to the event because he was dressed in a military costume.

The speech was widely seen as an attempt to ease relations between the two countries.

China has put trade sanctions on Australia, while a recent encounter took place between a Chinese fighter jet and an Australian maritime aircraft over the South China Sea.

Security guards reportedly ushered the protesters.

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