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New Zealand Bans Semi-Automatics...Flooding from Cyclone Continues...May Blaming Parliament

CHRISTCHURCH, New Zealand (AP) – New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has announced a ban on “military-style” semi-automatic firearms and high-capacity magazines like those used in the shootings at Christchurch mosques last week. Ardern said a sales ban was effective immediately to prevent stockpiling and would be followed by a complete ban on the weapons after new laws were enacted. An amnesty for owners was planned while officials develop a formal buyback scheme.

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) – The chairman of Indonesia’s transportation safety agency has confirmed that a third pilot was in the cockpit as the flight crew struggled to keep the plane aloft during the next-to-last flight of a Lion Air Boeing 737 Max 8 that crashed in October. However, Soerjanto Tjahjono, chairman of the National Transportation Safety Committee, on Thursday disputed reports citing recordings of cockpit discussions during the aircraft’s final, fatal flight.

CHIMANIMANI, Zimbabwe (AP) – A week after Cyclone Idai hit coastal Mozambique and swept across the country to Zimbabwe, the death, damage and flooding continues in southern Africa, making it one of the most destructive natural disasters in the region’s recent history. Still rising floodwaters are rushing across the plains of central Mozambique, submerging homes, villages and entire towns.

BRUSSELS (AP) – British Prime Minister Theresa May is facing a backlash from lawmakers who have taken umbrage with her decision to blame lawmakers for the country’s inability to forge a consensus on a divorce deal with the European Union. May told a frustrated public in a televised address to the nation that she was on their side in efforts to carry out the results of the 2016 referendum to leave the EU. But many lawmakers – whom she needs to win over to get her deal passed – are infuriated.

RENO, Nev. (AP) – A detective says a Salvadoran immigrant charged with four Nevada murders told police he robbed and killed his elderly victims during a 10-day rampage in January because he needed money to buy methamphetamine. According to a grand jury transcript obtained by The Associated Press, the Reno detective testified last week that Wilber Ernesto Martinez-Guzman broke into tears and repeatedly called himself an “idiot” before confessing to the murders hours after his arrest on Jan. 19.