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World News April 2019: Get the latest World Headline News with news links and news feeds from major news organizations.

Marine biologist Prof Audun Rikardsen said the harness had a GoPro  camera holder and a label sourcing it to St Petersburg. A Norwegian  fisherman managed to remove it from the whale. He said a Russian fellow scientist had told him that it was not the sort of kit that Russian scientists would use.
Russia has a naval base in the region. The  tame beluga repeatedly approached Norwegian boats off Ingoya, an Arctic  island about 415km (258 miles) from Murmansk, where Russia's Northern  Fleet is based. Belugas are native to Arctic waters.

In the years immediately after World War II, at the Peers' School in  Tokyo, a Quaker teacher named Elizabeth Vining liked to give English  names to her students, all children of the Japanese nobility. "I was Eric," recalls Masao Oda, one of Vining's former pupils. His roommate and classmate, a boy named Akihito, was given the name Jimmy. But Akihito pushed back. "So  he stood up and rejected this name given by Mrs. Vining, 'Jimmy,' " Oda  recalls. " 'I'm not a Jimmy, I'm a crown prince,' he said." Akihito  ascended the Chrysanthemum Throne in 1989, succeeding his father,  Emperor Hirohito. On Tuesday, he is abdicating and handing over the  throne to his son, Crown Prince Naruhito, thus ending the postwar period  formally known as Heisei, "achieving peace."

It may have looked like an impromptu home video, but the most wanted terrorist in the world is nothing if not image conscious. The footage of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi chatting casually to his commanders released on Monday was only the second time he has been seen on film since he became the leader of Isis. And like the one that came before, every part of it was carefully stage managed. “This one was paired back compared to what we have come to expect, but there is no doubt that they will have spent a lot of time thinking about every single thing in that room, the position of everyone in that room, in a way that complements the overarching narrative of that video,” according to Charlie Winter, senior fellow at the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence.  

Boeing has come under scrutiny in recent months for failing to disclose the presence of the Maneuvering Characteristic Augmentation System (MCAS) on its Boeing 737 Max airliners. In fact, the existence of MCAS came to light only after the crash of Lion Air Flight JT610 in October. In a NASA-maintained database, pilots of the Boeing 737 Max expressed outrage at not being alerted to the presence of the system aboard the plane they fly. The furor around MCAS broke out once again in March after the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET302.

Moscow (CNN) - Russian  President Vladimir Putin capped a week of high-profile diplomacy on  Friday, when he appeared at the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing -- and  received an especially warm welcome from Chinese President Xi Jinping. "President Putin is a good friend and an old friend to Chinese people," Xi said. "And he is my closest friend." Friendship was also on the agenda in Putin's summit meeting  Thursday in the Russian city of Vladivostok with North Korean leader  Kim Jong Un. In Vladivostok, Putin positioned himself as an essential  broker for resolving the nuclear crisis on the Korean peninsula, and as a  prominent player on the world stage.

Libya is like "'Game of Thrones' where every house is ruled by Joffrey," one expert said. Libya's latest upheaval comes at the hands of a mustachioed  military strongman who lived in the U.S. for 20 years, has past links  with the CIA, and recently spoke on the phone with President Donald  Trump about their "shared vision" for the country. The  North African nation has been divided, lawless and verging on becoming a  failed state ever since NATO intervention, including American  airstrikes, helped topple dictator Moammar Gadhafi in 2011. Two rival governments continue to claim power in a country destabilized by warring militias and Islamist fighters. Amid  this chaos, experienced warlord Khalifa Haftar earlier this month  launched an offensive on the capital, Tripoli, where the internationally  recognized government is based.

One of two men detained two weeks ago by Turkey on suspicion of spying for the United Arab Emirates has killed himself in prison, prosecutors say. The suspect, identified as Zaki Hasan, was found hanged in his cell in Silivri prison, west of Istanbul, on Sunday. He allegedly confessed during interrogation that he and the other suspect had spied on Arab dissidents. Turkish officials said they were also probing possible links to the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Khashoggi - a prominent US-based critic of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman - was killed by Saudi agents when he visited the Saudi consulate in Istanbul last October.

The oceans hide all kinds of secrets and unknowns in the deep – like  the 195,728 viruses that scientists just found lurking underwater,  during the course of a pole-to-pole expedition carried out to survey  marine life. The researchers say the vast majority have never been seen  before. Prior to this, we only definitively knew about 15,000 of these ocean  viruses - so this study is a huge deal for our understanding of our  planet. The researchers say the findings can teach us more about  everything from the evolution of life on the planet to the potential  consequences of climate change. The research is based on samples  collected between 2009 and 2013 by a crew on board the Tara, a vessel  that's spent more than a decade on the water investigating the science  of the ocean and the clues it can give us to how our world is evolving.

(CNN) - The  59-second video shows eight men clasping hands and pledging allegiance  to the "Emir of the Believers" and the "Caliphate of the Muslims." They  were about to launch a series of devastating attacks in Sri Lanka, an  atrocity that took the lives of more than 250 people and simultaneously  declared that ISIS is far from extinguished as a global threat. Within  days of the attacks, ISIS' online publication al Nabaa crowed about  "raising the Caliphate banner in new arenas... The days are pregnant  with more disappointments for the enemies of Allah." The video was  released by a news agency linked to ISIS. There  is much yet to be learned about the organization behind the Sri Lankan  attacks, but counterterrorism experts are united on one point: the small  Islamist groups on the island could not have carried out such a complex  attack without outside help.

Russian President Vladimir Putin today slammed the US justice department over its handling of the case of NRA spy Maria Butina. Ms Butina, who is a Siberian native, was jailed for 18 months having been convicted of trying to infiltrate the National Rifle Association in order to influence conservatives and republicans. Putin, who is in Beijing, described the sentence as 'an outrage'.  

COLOMBO/KATTANKUDY (Reuters) - Sri Lankan police raided the headquarters of a hardline Islamist group founded by the suspected ringleader behind the Easter suicide bombings of churches and hotels, a Reuters witness said, as Sunday mass was canceled due to fears of further attacks. Armed police in the town of Kattankudy searched the headquarters of the National Thawheedh Jamaath (NTJ) and detained one man at the premises, a Reuters reporter at the scene said. Police did not comment. On Saturday the government banned the NTJ under new emergency laws. The authorities believe Zahran Hashim, the founder of NTJ, masterminded and was one of the nine suicide bombers in the attacks on Easter Sunday which killed 253 people. Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attacks.

Sainthamaruthu, Sri Lanka (CNN)At least 16 people -- including six children -- are dead and two suspected terrorists on the run after a shootout between police and alleged militants in eastern Sri Lanka late Friday, authorities said. At daybreak, a gruesome scene was revealed at the raided house in the town of Sainthamaruthu on the country's eastern coast -- charred bodies and the roof entirely blown off during three explosions. Among those killed, six are suspected terrorists and 10 are civilians -- including one woman who was passing on a rickshaw at the time of the raid. Police are investigating the possible relationship of the civilians to the suspected terrorists.

NICOSIA (Reuters) - Cypriot police searched on Friday for more victims  of a suspected serial killer, in a case which has shocked the  Mediterranean island and exposed the authorities to charges of   “criminal indifference” because the dead women were foreigners. The main opposition party, the left-wing AKEL, called for the resignation of Cyprus’s justice minister and police chief. Police  were combing three different locations west of the capital Nicosia for  victims of the suspected killer, a 35-year-old army officer who has been  in detention for a week. Police sources said the suspect had  confessed to seven killings, making it by far the worst peacetime crime  committed against women on the island in living memory. A team of British detectives is due to arrive on the island on Monday to help with the investigation, police said.

Cryptocurrencies fell amid reignited regulatory worries and questions around the legitimacy of so-called “stablecoin” tether. The entire market shed about $10 billion in value in the space of an hour late Thursday, CoinMarketCap data showed. This after the New York attorney general accused the operator of bitcoin exchange Bitfinex and tether issuer Tether Limited of hiding an $850 million loss. The state’s top lawyer alleges Bitfinex used at least $700 million from Tether’s cash reserves to cover up the apparent loss of $850 million of client and corporate funds. Its findings were detailed in papers filed with the Manhattan Supreme Court.

If North Korea is given security guarantees, Kim Jong Un would be willing to denuclearize, Russian President Vladimir Putin said after talks with Kim Thursday. The two met face-to-face for the first time, on Russky Island in eastern Russia. No major agreements came out of the meeting between the two leaders. But they said they were satisfied with the talks, which lasted two hours — twice as long as originally planned. According to Putin, they exchanged opinions on what should be done to improve the situation on the Korean Peninsula. Kim described the conversation as "candid and meaningful." Russian state TV reported that several bottles of champagne were brought into the room where the delegations were meeting.

NAIROBI, (Reuters) - Billions of dollars’ worth of gold is being smuggled out of Africa every year through the United Arab Emirates in the Middle East – a gateway to markets in Europe, the United States and beyond – a Reuters analysis has found. Customs data shows that the UAE imported $15.1 billion worth of gold from Africa in 2016, more than any other country and up from $1.3 billion in 2006. The total weight was 446 tonnes, in varying degrees of purity – up from 67 tonnes in 2006. Much of the gold was not recorded in the exports of African states. Five trade economists interviewed by Reuters said this indicates large amounts of gold are leaving Africa with no taxes being paid to the states that produce them.

ISIS has claimed responsibility for the Easter Sunday attacks in Sri Lanka, according to a statement put out by the terrorist group's news agency Amaq. "The attackers who targeted citizens of the (anti-ISIS) coalition state members and Christians in Sri Lanka the day before yesterday were fighters of the Islamic State," the claim stated. The statement offered no evidence to support the claim, and there is no direct evidence yet that the terror group was involved. Some of their claims have been false in the past.

The Trump administration will sharply accelerate its goal of driving Iran’s oil exports to zero, ending sanctions exemptions that it previously granted to some of the Islamic Republic’s biggest customers. President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from a 2015 nuclear accord with Iran last May and restored wide-ranging sanctions on the Iranian economy in November. At the time, his administration granted six-month waivers to eight countries that allowed them to continue importing limited quantities of crude oil from Iran. The market widely expected Washington to extend the waivers for five of the countries. However, the administration says that any country still importing oil from Iran will be subject to U.S. sanctions beginning on May 2.

(CNN) - Climate  change is eliminating giant chunks of ice from Greenland at such a  speed that the melt has already made a significant contribution to sea  level rise, according to a new study. With global warming, the island  will lose much more, threatening coastal cities around the world. Forty  percent to 50% of the planet's population is in cities that are  vulnerable to sea rise, and the study published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences is bad news for places like New York, Miami, Los Angeles, Tokyo and Mumbai.

A large hoard of cash has been found at the home of Sudan's ousted president Omar al-Bashir and he is now being investigated for money laundering, prosecutors say.

The rampaging inferno which destroyed the 850-year-old church's Gothic roof  and iconic spire was only found after the second fire alarm was sounded

Hackers and Microsoft seem to disagree on key details of the hack.

The tech giant records people’s locations worldwide. Now, investigators are using it to find suspects and witnesses near crimes, running the risk of snaring the innocent.

No private company has ever achieved what SpaceIL is trying to do.

The supermassive beast lies in a galaxy called M87 more than 50 million light-years away

The Israeli prime minister appears to have won reelection. Now he has to beat legal charges.

Mitiga airport's services suspended as death toll rises amid battles between forces loyal to Haftar and UN-backed gov't.

Assange  hasn't left the country's embassy in London since he sought refuge  there in 2012 to avoid potential extradition to the United States.

Anning suggested a link existed between Muslim immigration and violence following mosque attack that killed 50 people.

Guaidó  was expected to bring a miracle, but he put too much faith in Maduro’s  bad judgment and in outside powers. Now it will take a miracle to regain  the initiative.

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