Splainer

Wednesday, August 5 2020


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The largest number of players are from Ghana, Ivory Coast and Liberia. There are players from Sierra Leone and Nigeria as well... These are young boys hailing from villages in Africa which don’t even have electricity connections… The ticket rates are too high as it is and with no income earned this year, they have no means.”

That’s the manager of Kerala football club, Fit Well FC Kozhikode, putting out a desperate appeal for help. The problem: More than 155 African football players—who are recruited to play in the local league—are stranded in the state without money for rent or food. And they can’t afford to buy tickets to go home. Illustration: Parth Savla.

Big Story

A great explosion in Beirut

The TLDR: A powerful explosion rocked the Lebanese capital killing at least 78, and leaving more than 4,000 injured. The tragedy—whose causes are still unknown—is the cruelest blow to a nation in economic ruin, and reeling from the pandemic.

 

What happened here? 

A massive blast located at the port—which struck with the force of a 3.5 magnitude earthquake—flattened great parts of the city. The reverberations were felt as far as Cyprus, which is 200+ km away.

 

What caused the blast?

Government officials say the explosion was caused by 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate stored in a warehouse at the dock. The materials had been confiscated from a cargo ship in 2014. But it isn’t clear whether it was deliberately blown up, or went off due to negligence or an accident.

 

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In today’s edition

Headlines That Matter

  • TikTok’s American drama continues
  • Vivo says no to IPL
  • A big breakthrough in suicide prevention
  • An awesome ‘Got Milk?’ challenge
  • WhatsApp has a new ‘fake news’ tool

 

Reading Habit

  • Kashmir In Literature

 

Smart And Curious

  • People are using their smartphones to, er, jack off
  • Scientists have discovered how human sperm really ‘swim'
  • Did you know that most red wines ought to be served slightly chilled
  • Yes, there is such a thing as ‘snack meditation’
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