President Declares State Of Emergency + 8 Confirmed Dead As Explosion Rocks Popular 5-Star Hotel

President Declares State Of Emergency
Sri Lanka President Gotabaya Rajapaksa Friday declared a state of emergency for the second time in five weeks, giving security forces sweeping powers as a nationwide strike demanding his resignation brought the country to a standstill.

A spokesman for the president said he invoked the tough laws to “ensure public order” after shops closed and public transport was halted Friday by unions blaming him for the unprecedented economic crisis, which has ignited weeks of unrest.
Earlier Friday, police used tear gas and water cannon to disperse students attempting to storm the national parliament demanding Rajapaksa resign.
The emergency gives sweeping powers to security forces to arrest and detain suspects for long periods without judicial supervision.
It also allows the deployment of troops to maintain law and order in addition to police.
“The President used his executive powers to invoke emergency regulations to ensure the maintenance of essential services and public order,” the spokesman said.


Explosion Rocks Popular 5 Star Hotel, 8 Confirmed Dead
A large explosion damaged a hotel in the Cuban capital and left at least eight people dead and several others injured, according to media reports.

At least eight people have been killed and several others have been injured following an explosion at a hotel in downtown Havana, Cuba.
Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel ruled out a bombing on Friday but added that authorities were still investigating what caused the explosion.
The blast ripped away large sections of the outer wall at the Hotel Saratoga, a 19th-century structure in Old Havana, apparently due to a gas leak, according to the Twitter account of the office of the Cuban president.
Authorities said search and rescue efforts were under way for people possibly trapped.

Photos showed much of the hotel’s outer wall blown away, exposing interior rooms, with clouds of dust billowing into the sky.
A school next door had been evacuated.
Police cordoned off the area as firefighters and ambulance crews worked inside.
Photographer Michel Figueroa said he had been walking past the hotel when “the explosion threw me to the ground, and my head still hurts…. Everything was very fast.”

Yazira de la Caridad, mother of two, said the explosion shook her home a block from the hotel: “The whole building moved. I thought it was an earthquake,” she said. “I’ve still got my heart in my hand.”
Mayiee Pérez said she had rushed to the scene after receiving a call from her husband, Daniel Serra, who works at a foreign exchange shop inside the hotel. She said he told her, “I am fine, I am fine. They got us out,” but had been unable to reach him since.
The five-star, 96-room hotel in Old Havana has two bars, two restaurants and a rooftop pool, according to its website.



Domestic Airlines Set To Shut Down Operations From Monday
Nigerian airline operators have issued a notice that with effect from Monday, 9th May, they will shut down their operations due to the high cost of aviation fuel which has hit 700 naira per litre.
A statement issued and signed by all the airline operators yesterday advised the traveling public who intend to fly to make alternative arrangements to avoid being stranded at the country’s airports.

The statement read: ” It is with a great sense of responsibility and patriotism that the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) have carried on deploying and subsidizing their services to our highly esteemed Nigerian flying public in the last four months despite the steady and astronomical hike in the price of JetA1 and other operating costs.”
“Overtime, aviation fuel price (JetA1) has risen from N190 per litre to N700 currently. No airline in the world can absorb this kind of sudden shock from such an astronomical rise over a short period. While aviation fuel worldwide is said to cost about 40% of an airline’s operating cost globally, the present hike has shut up Nigeria’s operating cost to about 95%. “.
” In the face of this, airlines have engaged the Federal Government, the National Assembly, NNPC and Oil Marketers with the view to bringing the cost of JetA1 down which has currently made the unit cost per seat for a one hour flight in Nigeria today to an average of N120,000. The latter cannot be fully passed to passengers who are already experiencing a lot of difficulties.”
“While AON appreciates the efforts of the current government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure air transport in Nigeria grows, unfortunately, the cost of aviation fuel has continued to rise unabated thereby creating huge pressure on the sustainability of operations and financial viability of the airlines. This is unsustainable and the airlines can no longer absorb the pressure.”
“To this end therefore, the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) hereby wishes to regrettably inform the general public that member airlines will discontinue operations nationwide with effect from Monday May 9, 2022 until further notice.”