6 world news stories you might have missed over Christmas

You may have spent the last few days in a festive bubble, and who could blame you. So in case you missed what’s going on around the world, here are a few world news stories to bring you up to date.

1. A Russian Military plane crashed, leaving all 92 passengers dead.

On Christmas Day a Tu-154 plane operated by the Russian military crashed two minutes after taking off at 5:25 a.m. from the southern Russian city of Sochi. All 84 passengers and eight crew members on board are believed to have been killed.

The plane belonging to the Defence Ministry was taking its world famous choir, the Alexandrov Ensemble, to a New Year’s concert at Hemeimeem air base in Syria’s coastal province of Latakia. Those on board also included nine Russian journalists and a Russian doctor famous for her work in war zones.

More than 3,500 rescue workers are involved in the operation to find the remains of those on board and several fragments of the plane one mile away from the shore have been found. Pilot error or a technical fault – not terrorism – was being held as the most likely cause of the crash.

2. There was a devastating typhoon in the Philippines.

Typhoon Nock-Ten killed at least six people on Christmas Day and forced more than 380,000 others to abandon celebrations at home to find safe shelter.

People died from drowning or by being pinned by fallen trees, poles and a collapsed concrete wall in the provinces of Quezon and Albay, south-east of Manila.

It cut power to five entire provinces, damaged homes, uprooted trees and knocked out communications.

3. Mass graves have been discovered in Aleppo

Russian troops have discovered mass graves in Aleppo with bodies showing signs of torture and mutilation, said the Russian Defence Ministry.

The Russians “found mass graves of several dozens of Syrians who suffered atrocious torture and massacre,” said ministry spokesman Major General Igor Konashenkov.

He said some of the bodies have been mutilated and some had gunshot wounds.

The Russian Air Force has helped Syrian president Bashar Assad to capture Syria’s largest city after weeks of a siege. Russia has since dispatched military police to the city.

4. A powerful earthquake happened in Chile

A powerful earthquake has shaken southern Chile, prompting the evacuation of some 4,000 people for fear of a possible tsunami. The alert was eased about 90 minutes after the quake struck, said national emergency director Ricardo Toro.

He said there was no information of loss of life although some highways were damaged. Power was cut to about 22,000 customers, the local electric company reported.

The US Geological Survey said the magnitude 7.6 quake struck near the southern tip of Chiloe Island, about 25 miles south-south-west of Puerto Quello and at a depth of 22 miles. The area, some 800 miles south of the capital of Santiago, is relatively sparsely populated.

5. Thousands of people were evacuated from a German town after a Second World War bomb was found.

Some 32,000 homes with 54,000 residents in the German town of Augsburg left Christmas presents and decorations behind after being forced to evacuate their homes while authorities disarm a Second World War bomb.

The bomb was uncovered last week during construction work in the city’s historic central district. Police said Christmas Day was the best time to defuse it because there is less traffic and it is more likely people can stay with relatives.

6. An investigation into the Colombia plane crash found that the plane ran out of fuel.

A preliminary investigation found that the plane which carried a Brazilian football team which crashed on November 28 came to the conclusion based on the plane’s black box and other evidence.

The statement by the Civil Aeronautics agency in Colombia said the evidence pointed to human error rather than technical problems or sabotage.

Seventy one people died and six survived when the British Aerospace 146 operated by the Bolivia-based LaMia charter company crashed as it was trying to approach the airport in Medellin, Colombia.

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