Intelligencer Journal/Lancaster New Era
Rebels capture air base in northern Syria Caribbean nations sell citizenship Zimbabwe faces crayfish crisis
BEIRUT -- Rebels captured a military air base near Aleppo on Tuesday, their second straight day of major strategic conquests, activists said.
In New York, U.N. human rights chief Navi Pillay said the death toll in Syria's civil war is probably approaching 70,000, up from an estimate of more than 60,000 made less than six weeks ago.
The airfield, which is located near the Furat dam captured on Monday, housed fighter jets used in airstrikes on rebel held-areas.
"These warplanes are now in the hands of Ahrar al-Sham Islamic movement," one fighter says in the video, referring to a rebel unit.
KINGSTON, Jamaica -- Hadi Mezawi has never set foot on the Caribbean island of Dominica, has never seen its rainforests or black-sand beaches. But he's one of its newest citizens.
Without leaving his home in the United Arab Emirates, the Palestinian man recently received a brand new Dominican passport after sending a roughly $100,000 contribution to the tropical nation half a world away.
Turmoil in the Middle East and North Africa has led to a surge of interest in programs that let investors buy citizenship or residence in countries around the world.
Nowhere is it easier or faster than in the minuscule Eastern Caribbean nations of Dominica and St. Kitts & Nevis. Officials in both countries declined to answer questions about the citizenship programs.
HARARE, Zimbabwe -- Scientists in Zimbabwe say a freshwater crayfish brought from Australia is breeding out of control in the northern Lake Kariba, devouring the food sources of other fish and putting the nation's entire aquatic ecosystem at risk.
Officials at the Zimbabwe University lakeshore research station say the red claw crayfish, introduced a decade ago for a fish farming project, produces clusters of eggs up to half the size of a tennis ball that hatch prolifically.
Chief ecologist Crispen Phiri said the exploding, migrant crayfish population is infesting rivers, dams and ponds.
The red claw crayfish, scientifically Cherax quadricarinatus, survives and multiplies in virtually any fresh water supply and though its flesh is high in protein it is not popular in the diet of ordinary Zimbabweans.