A Malaysia Airlines flight carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew is presumed to have crashed off the Vietnamese coast on Saturday. There were no reports of bad weather and no answers as to why the plane, traveling from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, vanished from radar screens an hour after it took off. Adding to the confusion, an Italian and an Australian on the manifest match the names of two passports stolen in Thailand. Vietnamese officials spotted what they suspect to be one of the doors of the missing Boeing 777 early this evening.
Russian President Vladimir Putin defended pro-Russian groups in Crimea, having increased Russian military presence in the area. Ukrainian interim Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said he would not give up “a single centimeter” of Ukrainian territory. He will be visiting the United States this week to discuss the crisis in Crimea.
A new study released by Ohio State University researchers suggest that many of the long-term benefits of breastfeeding may be an effect not of breast milk itself but of the good health and wealth of women who choose to breastfeed.
Designer Nickolay Lamm created a “Normal Barbie” using the average proportions of a 19-year-old woman. To find out more about Lamm’s project, check out his crowd-funding video, entitled “Average is Beautiful” here.
Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) won the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) presidential straw poll, garnering 31% of the vote. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Tx.) finished second with 11% of the vote.
Scientists genetically altered 12 H.I.V.-positive people’s cells to make them resistant to the AIDS virus, a new report released today shows. If enough cells can be engineered to repel the virus, AIDS in these patients may in effect be cured. Researchers announced at a Boston conference today that a baby born with H.I.V. had been cured. A clinical trial in which 60 babies born infected will be administered drugs within 48 hours is set to begin soon.
The Boston Supreme Court ruled today that a man who took cellphone pictures up the skirts of women riding the Boston subway did not violate state law. “A female passenger…wearing a skirt, dress, or the like… is not a person who is ‘partially nude,’ no matter what is or is not underneath the skirt,” the court said in its ruling.
Pope Francis announced in a newspaper interview published today that the Catholic Church could support some types of civil unions, but maintained the church’s longstanding view that marriage is between a man and woman.
Israeli naval commandos seized an Iranian shipment of rockets in international waters today. Israeli officials believe the rockets were intended for Palestinian militant groups in Gaza.
The European Union offered $15 billion in aid to Ukraine over the next two years. Russia’s foreign minister and defense minister both denied today that there were Russian troops in Crimea.
Ukraine told the United Nations today that 16,000 Russian troops have been deployed in the Crimea region. Ukraine’s U.N. ambassador Vitaly Churkin said that ex-president Viktor Yanukovych requested the use of Russian armed forces. The Russian military gave Ukrainian forces until 3 p.m. GMT on Tuesday to surrender or face assault, according to Ukrainian officials. Russia’s Internet monitoring agency are responsible for blocking 13 Internet pages linked to the Ukrainian protests.
President Obama warned Russia that if “they continue on the current trajectory that they’re on… we are examining a whole series of steps—economic, diplomatic–that will isolate Russia and will have a negative impact on Russia’s economy and its status in the world.” Shares of Russia’s two largest banks are 12 and 10 percent at the closing bell. However, U.S. stocks, following the world market, have also plummeted due to the crisis in Ukraine. The Dow closed down nearly 1% today.
Japan’s National Institute of Informatics is attempting to create a robot smart enough to pass the University of Tokyo’s entrance exam. Google’s director of engineering, Ray Kurzweil, said in a recent interview that computers would outsmart humans by 2029.