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Police brutality gets spotlight at Toronto film festival

TORONTO: “The Hate U Give” held its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on Friday, shedding a light on how police brutality affects the lives of black communities. Based on the 2017 young adult novel of the same name, the movie tells the story of Starr, a black teenager, whose life is changed when she witnesses the killing of her childhood best friend by a white police officer. The film follows scores of police shootings in the United States in recent years that have given rise to the Black Lives…

UK private prisons in spotlight after ‘crisis’ jail takeover

LONDON: The British government seized control of a squalid contractor-run prison on Monday where inspectors said officers were locking themselves away as protection from prisoners, raising questions about its privatisation programme. The justice ministry was forced to take over HMP Birmingham from private security company G4S, following a damning inspection that reported "squalor, violence and the prevalence of drugs and looming lack of control". In a first since Britain began contracting the running of some prisons to…

With K-pop back in US spotlight, Korean-American stars take hope

LOS ANGELES: Tens of thousands of fans eagerly rode the wave of Korean pop or K-pop this weekend at a convention in Los Angeles, the world’s entertainment capital, at a time when a boy band’s success in America is giving new hope to many stars in the music genre. Several Korean-Americans were among the performers at the seventh annual KCON, an event for all things tied to “Hallyu,” or the “Korean Wave” of popular culture. Many Americans were given their first taste of K-pop via the viral success of rapper Psy’s music…

Mystery Qatari sheikh pushed into Gulf crisis spotlight

DUBAI: Two months into a bitter Gulf crisis, Saudi Arabia's use of a previously unknown Qatari royal family member has opened a new -- and bizarre -- front in the conflict. On August 17, it was announced that Saudi Arabia's King Salman had ordered the reopening of the Qatar border to allow pilgrims from the emirate to join the annual hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. The decision, at first glance an apparent thawing in a crisis ongoing since June 5, was apparently taken after Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman met an obscure…