Belarus Is Isolated as Other Countries Move to Ban Flights

MOSCOW — The tray tables were being raised as passengers on Ryanair Flight 4978 prepared for the scheduled landing in the Lithuanian capital, Vilnius. Then the plane made an abrupt U-turn.

For many passengers, it initially seemed like one of those unexpected delays in airline travel. But after the pilot announced the plane had been diverted to Minsk, the capital of Belarus, one passenger — Roman Protasevich, a prominent Belarusian opposition journalist who had been living in exile since 2019 — grew terrified, certain that he faced arrest.

“He panicked because we were about to land in Minsk,” Marius Rutkauskas,

Train Collision in Malaysia Injures Over 200 People

More than 200 people were injured in Malaysia’s largest city, Kuala Lumpur, on Monday when a train full of passengers collided head-on in a tunnel with another train on a test run, the authorities said.

A preliminary investigation indicated that the collision occurred because the driver operating the test was going the wrong direction, Malaysia’s transportation minister, Wee Ka Siong, told reporters on Tuesday afternoon.

The trains were traveling at speeds of 12 to 25 miles an hour when they crashed on Monday evening. The authorities said all 213 passengers were hurt, including 47 who suffered serious injuries. No fatalities

What Happened at Adrian’s Kickback?

A week ago, Adrian Lopez, 17, was just an average high school student in Eastvale, Calif. But after a digital flyer he made inviting friends to Huntington Beach for his birthday went viral — to the point of attracting thousands of strangers to the beach and to an event space in Los Angeles — he’s become a household name on social media.

He made the invitation on Monday, specifying a time (7:30 p.m.), place (fire pits) and date (May 22). “Slide tru this Saturday we finna turn up!!!!” read the bottom of the image, which was titled “Adrian’s Kickback.”


14 Dead After Cable Car Accident in Italy

STRESA, Italy — The crash of a cable car near picturesque Lake Maggiore in northern Italy, killing 14 people, occurred after a cable snapped and an emergency brake failed, investigators said Monday.

The cable car had almost reached the end station on Mottarone mountain, a nearly 5,000-foot peak, on Sunday afternoon when it suddenly started sliding backward. It slid for hundreds of meters at a height of nearly 40 feet, hitting a pillar and plunging to the ground. There was only one survivor, a 5-year-old boy.

Hikers and local residents said they heard a hissing sound, presumably when the cable

Aung San Suu Kyi Makes First Court Appearance Since Coup

Over the weekend in the country’s borderlands, ethnic armed groups claimed that they had killed dozens of Tatmadaw soldiers in offensives, even as the army’s shelling claimed lives of civilians sheltering in a church in eastern Myanmar. In the big cities, including Yangon and Mandalay, protesters organized flash mobs of dissent, scattering quickly as security forces drew near.

“We still have a situation which is very bad on the ground,” Christine Schraner Burgener, a Swiss diplomat who is the United Nations special envoy for Myanmar, told journalists Monday via video link from Bangkok, where she has been trying for nearly …

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Belarus Forces Down Ryanair Flight Carrying Journalist

In Russia — where the state media described last year’s uprising against Mr. Lukashenko as a Western plot — the arrest met with approval among Mr. Putin’s supporters. Margarita Simonyan, editor of the pro-Kremlin RT television network, wrote on Twitter that Mr. Lukashenko “played it beautifully.” And Vyacheslav Lysakov, a member of Parliament allied with Mr. Putin, described Mr. Protasevich’s arrest as a “brilliant special operation.”

The Belarusian authorities said they had ordered the plane to land after receiving information about a bomb threat, though Vilnius, the plane’s destination, was much closer than Minsk when the jetliner turned around, flight-tracking …

Yuan Longping, Plant Scientist Who Helped Curb Famine, Dies at 90

SHANGHAI — Yuan Longping, a Chinese plant scientist whose breakthroughs in developing high-yield hybrid strains of rice helped to alleviate famine and poverty across much of Asia and Africa, died on Saturday in Changsha, China. He was 90.

The cause was multiple organ failure, China’s main state-run newspaper, People’s Daily, reported. An earlier report from an official news service in Hunan Province, of which Changsha is the capital, said Mr. Yuan had been increasingly unwell since a fall in March during a visit to a rice-breeding research site.

Mr. Yuan’s research made him a national hero and a symbol of

Jewelry Success After Struggle ‘Feels Pretty Incredible’

Jameel Mohammed’s Cinderella moment arrived in the nick of time.

In 2018 the designer had achieved a modicum of success with his distinctive jewelry, which pays homage to the African diaspora. The fledgling line, called Khiry, had been picked up by Barneys New York, but Mr. Mohammed was not making enough to survive in New York City, or in the industry.

“I felt like I was pushing a boulder up a hill,” Mr. Mohammed, 26, said in a recent interview from his studio in Brooklyn.

So he was on a Greyhound bus — with a ticket supplied by his parents,

Italy Wins 2020 Eurovision Song Contest

The Eurovision Song Contest, the first major global cultural event to be held in person since the coronavirus pandemic hit last year, ended in a triumph for Italy’s Maneskin, who won with a hard-rocking song called “Zitti E Buoni.”

The song received 524 points in voting from national juries and the public, beating France’s entrant, Barbara Pravi, by 25 points, and was cheered to victory by over 3,500 Dutch fans at the Ahoy Arena in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

“We just want to say to the whole Europe, to the whole world, rock ‘n’ roll never dies!” said Damiano David, the