While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Feb 2

AirAsia crew members pose for a photograph in front of an Airbus A320-200 plane at Kuala Lumpur International Airport. PHOTO: REUTERS

Malaysia probes allegations that Airbus bribed AirAsia bosses

Malaysia's anti-graft agency is investigating allegations by Britain's Serious Fraud Office (SFO) that Airbus paid a bribe of US$50 million (S$68 million) to win plane orders from Asia's largest budget airline group, Malaysia-based AirAsia, it said on Saturday.

The SFO said on Friday that Airbus had failed to prevent individuals associated with it bribing executives linked to AirAsia Group and its long-haul arm, AirAsia X .

AirAsia said it had never made any purchase decisions that were premised on an Airbus sponsorship, and that it would fully cooperate with Malaysia's Anti-Corruption Commission.

In a statement, it said it had not been involved with the SFO's investigation of Airbus or given any opportunity to provide clarification.


Palestinian Authority cuts ties with Israel and US

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The Palestinian Authority has cut all ties with the United States and Israel, including those relating to security, after rejecting a Middle East peace plan presented by US President Donald Trump, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said on Saturday.

Abbas was in Cairo to address the Arab League, which backed the Palestinians in their opposition to Trump's plan.

The blueprint, endorsed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, calls for the creation of a demilitarised Palestinian state that excludes Jewish settlements built in occupied territory and is under near-total Israeli security control.


Suspected Hindu radical fires at protesters in India

A suspected Hindu nationalist opened fire at an anti-government protest in India's capital on Saturday, police said, just days after an armed teenager shot and injured a student at a rally in the same city.

The gunman fired into a large crowd of female demonstrators at a non-stop protest in New Delhi against Prime Minister Narendra Modi's contentious citizenship law that critics say discriminates against Muslims.

No injuries were reported. Footage broadcast on local television stations showed a man in his 20s being taken away by police as he shouted that "only Hindus will prevail in the country."


Amazon's Jeff Bezos sued for defamation by brother of girlfriend Lauren Sanchez

Jeff Bezos was sued for defamation by his girlfriend's brother in a lawsuit accusing the Amazon.com chief executive officer of falsely claiming the brother provided lurid photographs to the National Enquirer.

The lawsuit was filed late on Friday in Los Angeles County Superior Court by Michael Sanchez, the brother of Lauren Sanchez and subject of media reports that he was a source for the Enquirer's splashy report last year revealing the affair between his sister and Bezos.

The story has expanded into an international controversy, now involving allegations that Saudi Arabia's crown prince participated in a hack of Bezos' phone and an investigation by federal prosecutors in New York.


Football: Klopp hails Liverpool's focus after Reds power 22 points clear

Jurgen Klopp saluted Liverpool's steely focus after they surged 22 points clear at the top of the Premier League with a 4-0 rout of Southampton on Saturday.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Jordan Henderson put the runaway leaders in control at Anfield before Mohamed Salah's double made it an astonishing 100 league points from the last 102 available to them.

A 24th victory in 25 league matches this season and ninth clean sheet in 10 games underlined how Klopp's side have turned the title race into a procession.


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