While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Aug 16 edition

White supremacists clash with counter protesters at a rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, US on Aug 12, 2017.
White supremacists clash with counter protesters at a rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, US on Aug 12, 2017. PHOTO: REUTERS

Donald Trump says both left- and right-wing groups to blame in Virginia clashes

US President Donald Trump insisted on Tuesday (Aug 15) that not all of the facts were known yet about the aftermath of a white supremacist rally in Virginia that turned violent at the weekend and that both left- and right-wing groups used force.  

Trump, taking questions from reporters in the lobby of Trump Tower in New York, reverted to his initial comments on Saturday (Aug 12) blaming “many sides” for the violence in Charlottesville, but on Monday (Aug 14) had explicitly condemned neo-Nazi groups.

“They came at each other with clubs ... it was a horrible thing to watch,” Trump told reporters at what was supposed to be an announcement of his administration’s infrastructure policy.

He said left-wing protesters “came violently attacking the other group.”

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Falling tree kills 13 at Portugal religious festival

Thirteen people were crushed to death and 49 injured on Tuesday (Aug 15) when a 200-year-old oak tree fell on them at a religious festival on the Portuguese island of Madeira, doctors said.  

A dozen people, four of them children, were seriously injured, Miguel Reis, chief surgeon at the hospital in Madeira’s capital Funchal, told a press conference.  Four of the injured are foreigners, with French, German, Dutch and Hungarian citizenship, he said.  

Tragedy struck at noon when the massive tree toppled into a crowd gathered near Funchal for the Lady of the Mount festival in honour of Madeira’s patron saint, Mary.  

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Battered by waves, British coastguard completes daring sea rescue

A British rescue worker was battered by waves but still completed a daring sea rescue after three people got into difficulty on the west coast of England, a video released by British coastguard service on Tuesday (Aug 15) showed.

Footage shot from a helicopter showed a man clinging to a rock in the sea near Bude, 200 miles (321.87 km) southwest of London, after he became cut off by a rising tide on Saturday (Aug 12) evening.

Mark Hughes, a winchman for the coastguard who is known as"Spike", was lowered from the helicopter to save him when he was caught blindsided by a wave.

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Bill Gates makes largest donation since year 2000 with US$4.6 billion pledge


Mr Gates has made the majority of his donations to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the charity he and his wife use to direct their philanthropic efforts. PHOTO: AFP

Bill Gates made his largest gift since the turn of the century, giving away Microsoft Corp. shares that accounted for 5 per cent of his fortune, the world's biggest.

The billionaire donated 64 million of the software maker's shares valued at US$4.6 billion (S$6.26 billion) on June 6, according to a Securities & Exchange Commission filing released Monday. While the recipient of the gift wasn't specified, Mr Gates has made the majority of his donations to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the charity he and his wife use to direct their philanthropic efforts.

It's the largest gift of Microsoft shares that Mr Gates has made since 2000. The 61-year-old gave away US$16 billion worth of Microsoft shares in 1999 and US$5.1 billion a year later, according to calculations by Bloomberg.

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SEA Games 2017: Tan Sze En hurts ankle, Games debut in doubt


Singapore's Tan Sze En executing her floor routine at the Singapore Open Gymnastics Championships held at the Bishan Sports Hall on June 5, 2016. PHOTO: ST FILE 

The women's artistic gymnastics team suffered a blow just 48 hours before they depart for the Kuala Lumpur SEA Games, as Tan Sze En hurt her ankle during a training session on Tuesday (Aug 15).

The injury has left the 16-year-old in doubt to compete in her maiden Games.

If she is forced to sit out, it will be another round of disappointment for the United States- based gymnast, as she had to miss the last edition on home soil in 2015 because she was too young to meet the event's minimum age of 16.

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