World Briefs: Fires spreading across southern France

Fires spreading across southern France

PARIS • Hundreds of firefighters battled blazes across southern France yesterday, with one inferno spreading across 900ha of forest and threatening homes on the island of Corsica.

Another fire near the resort of Saint-Tropez was still "extremely virulent and difficult to control", according to the authorities.

In an area of lavender fields in Provence, fires consumed around 800ha and around 100 homes were evacuated.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

Venezuelan leader rapped by singers

SAN JUAN • The Puerto Rican duo behind the smash Latin pop hit Despacito have slammed Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro for "illegally" using their song to promote a controversial vote he is organising.

Mr Maduro on Sunday co-opted the dance-friendly pop-and-rap number in a broadcast on state TV, altering the lyrics to urge people to vote for a body to rewrite Venezuela's Constitution.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

Colombia's Farc to become political party

BOGOTA • Colombia's leftist Farc rebels this week said they will officially transform into a political party on Sept 1, a major step in reintegrating the former guerillas into civilian life as part of a historic peace deal.

Although a smaller rebel group, the ELN, has yet to put down its weapons, the transition of Farc into a political party will put a stop to a 50-year conflict that has left 260,000 people dead.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 26, 2017, with the headline 'World Briefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe