World this week
India is on track to surpass China by mid-2023 as the world's most populous nation, United Nations data said this week, raising questions about whether a booming, young Indian population will fuel economic growth for years to come. While India's 254 million people between ages 15 and 24 is the largest number in the world, China is struggling with an ageing population and stagnant population growth. That has sparked expectations that the demographic changes could pave the way for India to become an economic and global heavyweight.
India's young citizenry could drive the country's economic growth for years to come, but it might just as easily become a problem if they aren't adequately employed. Economists have cautioned that even as India's economy is among the fastest-growing as its population rises, joblessness has also swelled. Tech giant Apple, among other companies, hopes to turn India into a potential manufacturing hub as it moves some production out of China, where wages are rising as the working-age population shrinks.
A crowd apparently panicked by gunfire and an electrical explosion stampeded at an event to distribute financial aid during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan in Yemen's capital, killing at least 78 people and injuring at least 77 others, according to witnesses and Houthi rebel officials. The tragedy was Yemen's deadliest in years that was not related to the country's long-running war, and came ahead of the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of Ramadan later this week.
Armed Houthis fired into the air in an attempt at crowd control, apparently striking an electrical wire and causing it to explode, according to two witnesses, Abdel-Rahman Ahmed and Yahia Mohsen. That sparked a panic, and people, including many women and children, began stampeding, they said. Video posted on social media showed dozens of bodies, some motionless, and others screaming as people tried to help. Separate footage of the aftermath released by Houthi officials showed bloodstains, shoes and victims' clothing scattered on the ground. Investigators were seen examining the area.
SpaceX's giant new rocket exploded minutes after blasting off on its first test flight Thursday and crashed into the Gulf of Mexico. Elon Musk's company was aiming to send the biggest and most powerful rocket ever built on a round-the-world trip from the southern tip of Texas, near the Mexican border. The nearly 400-foot (120-metre) Starship carried no people or satellites.
SpaceX later said multiple engines on the 33-engine booster were not firing as the rocket ascended, causing it to lose altitude and begin to tumble. The rocket was intentionally destroyed by its self-destruct system, exploding and plummeting into the water. Instead of a best-case-scenario 1 1/2-hour flight with the spacecraft on top peeling away and taking a lap around the world, the whole thing lasted four minutes. The rocket reached a maximum speed of about 1,300 mph (2,100 kph) and as high as 24 miles (39 kilometres), before going sideways and dropping.
Pulitzer Prize winning digital media outlet BuzzFeed News is being shut down as part of a cost-cutting drive by its corporate parent that's shedding about 15% of its entire staff, adding to layoffs made earlier this year. In a memo sent to staff, Buzzfeed Inc. co-founder and CEO Jonah Peretti said Thursday that in addition to the news division, layoffs would take place in its business, content, tech and administrative teams. BuzzFeed is also considering making job cuts in international markets.
BuzzFeed has about 1,200 total employees, according to a recent regulatory filing, meaning about 180 people will be losing their jobs in the latest cuts. Peretti said in his memo that he "made the decision to overinvest" in the news division, but failed to recognize early enough that the financial support needed to sustain operations was not there.
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