The Tokyo District Court decided Wednesday that Mt. Gox – the trading platform and storehouse for the bitcoin virtual currency – would not be able to resurrect itself under a business rehabilitation process submitted in February. Many of its creditors are unlikely to get their money back and an administrator will try to sell the company’s assets. The CEO of Mt. Gox, Mark Karpeles, said in February that 850,000 bitcoins, worth several million dollars, were unaccounted for and blamed a weakness in the exchange systems. Mt. Gox then found 200,000 bitcoins, stating that only 650,000 had been lost. The exact amount that is still missing is under investigation, with Mt. Gox suggesting they may have been stolen.
A woman Afghan member of parliament was shot and wounded in the capital Kabul, officials said Wednesday. Mariam Koofi was shot in one of Kabul's upscale districts late Tuesday after an argument with a member of the security forces, who was later arrested, Reuters reported, citing an Interior Ministry statement. Her injury was reportedly not life-threatening. Earlier on the same day, gunmen kidnapped Ahmad Shah Wahid, the deputy minister of public works, as he was traveling in his car to work.
Dozens of passengers suffered mostly minor injuries after a train derailed in northeast India early Wednesday, AP reported. The engine and nine of the train’s 13 coaches jumped the track near the Jagiroad station, about 140 kilometers east of Gauhati, the capital of Assam, Indian Railways said. Six of the injured passengers were hospitalized, 36 others were allowed to go home after receiving medical attention, while 170 passengers escaped unharmed. The cause of the derailment was not immediately clear.
The parliament of Transdniester has urged Russia to recognize the independence of Moldova’s breakaway region, Ekho of Moscow radio said Wednesday. A delegation of the republic’s MPs is expected to meet with Sergey Naryshkin, the chairman of the Russian lower house of parliament, the State Duma, in Moscow on Thursday. The lawmakers also asked the UN and the OSCE to recognize the region’s independence, citing the results of a September 2006 referendum in favor of it.
A huge leak in the new cleaning system at Fukushima-1 atomic power plant has led to the loss of 1.1 tons of radioactive water, Itar-Tass reported, citing the operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO). There were reportedly no leaks outside the facilities that house the ALPS system. On Tuesday, TEPCO said that over 200 tons of radioactive water was erroneously pumped into a basement area at the Fukushima between April 10-13.
Syria said that several vehicles destroyed by Jordanian warplanes on Wednesday do not belong to the Syrian Army, Reuters reported. “No vehicles belonging to the Syrian Army moved toward the Jordanian border. What was targeted by the Jordanian Air Force does not belong to the Syrian Army,” Syrian state news agency SANA said. According to the Jordanian security source, the targets were Syrian rebels in civilian cars mounted with machine guns.
An Egyptian court on Wednesday sentenced 119 supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood of former President Mohamed Morsi to three years each in prison. The ruling followed protests last October against his overthrow, judicial sources said. More than 50 people were killed in the October 6 protests called by Morsi supporters. Judge Hazem Hashad acquitted six other people in the case.
Jordan’s air force has destroyed military vehicles trying to cross from Syria, Jordanian state television said Wednesday. “The Royal Air Force destroyed a number of military vehicles which tried to cross the Jordanian-Syrian border,” Reuters said, citing a television report.
An explosion in the Gaza Strip killed three Palestinians and wounded five on Wednesday, AFP reported, citing a medical official. The three killed were in their 20s, Hamas's Health Ministry spokesman Ashraf Qudra said. The other five were in serious condition. The blast reportedly took place at a training camp belonging to Hamas's armed wing the Ezzedine Al-Qassam Brigades east of the city of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip, but the cause of the blast was unclear. Last month, the group said a blast during a “training session in bomb-making” killed a Qassam Brigades member and injured six others.
The UN and aid groups are seeking $272 million to help people fleeing the conflict in the Central African Republic, AP reported. The funds would be used to meet the needs of some 360,000 people who have sought refuge from sectarian violence since December. The aid appeal being launched Wednesday is backed by the UN refugee agency and 14 other humanitarian organizations. Last week, the UN Security Council authorized a nearly 12,000-strong peacekeeping force to bolster French and African Union troops in the country.
Tehran will not discuss its ballistic missiles as part of ongoing talks with world powers, Iran’s Defense Minister Gen. Hossein Dehghan said Wednesday. The US State Department’s nuclear negotiator, Wendy Sherman earlier said that Iran’s ballistic capabilities should be addressed as part of a comprehensive agreement with Iran, AP reported. Washington has argued that a UN Security Council resolution bans Iran from “undertaking any activity related to ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons.” However, Dehghan said Iran’s missile program has “nothing to do” with the nuclear negotiations and that it has no nuclear dimensions.
Israeli police on Wednesday stormed a holy site in Jerusalem to disperse a riot, police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said. Palestinian rioters hurled stones and firecrackers from atop the compound known to Jews as the Temple Mount, the holiest site in Judaism, AP reported. Police then entered the site and dispersed the rioters with tear gas and other non-lethal means, Rosenfeld said. The compound is Islam’s third-holiest site. Israel captured the area from Jordan in the 1967 war. Jews typically pray below at the Western Wall, but an increased number of them have started praying at the Temple Mount as well.
Burundi’s government has demanded the UN provide evidence or apologize after an alleged UN report claimed it was arming young supporters, AFP said. A purportedly leaked internal UN report had sounded the alarm over allegations that members of the Imbonerakure, the youth wing of Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza's party, were being armed and given weapons training. Vice-President Prosper Bazombanza accused the UN Office in Burundi late Tuesday of releasing the report “in bad taste.” The UN also urged the Burundian government Thursday to halt political violence and respect human rights.