World News: Sri Lanka defaults on debt for the first time
Updated: 2022-05-20 09:32:39 KST
Let's take a look at what's going on in 'The World Now'.
Sri Lanka has defaulted on its debt for the first time, as the country struggles with its worst financial crisis in over 70 years.
This comes after a 30 day grace period, to pay 78 million-US-dollars of unpaid debt interest expired Wednesday.
The country's central bank governor said Thursday that Asia's oldest democracy was now in a (quote) "pre-emptive default".
Last month the island country announced it would stop international debt repayments to conserve dwindling foreign currency reserves.
Plagued by an economic crisis, triggered by the pandemic and Ukraine war, Sri Lanka has also witnessed a 40% inflation rate surge, alongside food, fuel, and medicine shortages.
In Mexico, a bus accident on a highway in the western state of Jalisco has left 14 dead and about 20 injured, according to state emergency services on Wednesday.
A statement made by the state's Civil Protection agency on Twitter said they suspect that the bus brakes failed while it was carrying berry producer workers, ultimately causing it to crash into a highway wall.
The injured, have since been transferred to medical facilities and are receiving medical attention.
Meanwhile in Israel, authorities put an early end to a religious bonfire festival on Thursday.
The move was made after dozens of ultra-Orthodox Jews attempted to cross police lines and barricades, put in place to stop a repeat of a deadly crush in 2021, which killed 45 people.
Since Israel's worst civilian disaster, authorities have limited the number of people allowed to enter the holy Meron tomb at once, and mandated that they need to arrive by authorized buses.
Footage on social media shows pilgrims knocking down safety barricades and confronting police, whilst others threw water bottles.
Organizers have said that bus services were shut down in the afternoon, hours before the festival's end.
In Jordan, King Abdullah II has placed his half-brother under house arrest.
Following a strongly worded public letter published on Thursday, the king said he made the move due to Prince Hamzah??s (quote) ??erratic behavior and aspirations.??
This means that although Hamzah will be provided with daily necessities, he'll no longer be afforded the same luxuries he once enjoyed.
It marks the latest development in an ongoing palace feud, that saw the prince placed under a form of detention in 2021.
Originally King Abdullah had appointed Hamzah crown prince upon his succession, but later stripped that title, installing his own son as prince instead, in accordance with the country??s constitution.
Football's governing body FIFA announced on Thursday that female referees will officiate matches at the men's World Cup for the first time in Qatar this year.
Taking place from November 21st to December 18th, football's biggest sporting event will see three female referees and assistant referees oversee matches.
Hailing from countries around the world, the 6 officials will join the 36-strong referee team, and 69 assistant referees selected for the tournament.
According to the FIFA Referees Committee chairman, the selection criteria used was 'quality first', with the process having started several years ago.