Soccer ball travels to Alaska: David Baxter and wife Yumi, found a soccer ball belonging to 16-year-old Misaki Murakami — in Alaska. The Japanese teenager lost his ball after the devastating tsunami that ravaged the island nation last March. The ball, which had Japanese characters written on it and which were translated by Baxter’s wife, traveled about 3,000 miles to reach Alaska. The Baxter’s will travel to Japan to return the ball. They later found a volleyball belonging to Japanese teenager Shiori Sato.
Spanish king apologizes for trip: King Juan Carlos of Spain apologized to Spaniards last Wednesday for taking a luxurious hunting trip in Africa. The country is currently facing a recession. The public found about the trip because the king had to be transported back to Spain to receive hip replacement surgery. Some have called for his abdication.
French elections: French President Nicolas Sarkozy and his opponent Francois Hollande will face each other during the May 6 presidential runoff election. Hollande captured 27 percent of the vote while Sarkozy received 26 percent—the first time in a long time since an incumbent came in second. If Sarkozy fails to win re-election, he will be the first one-term French president since 1981.
In Latin America
‘Popo’ rages on: Mexico’s Popocatepetl volcano has been noticeably active. Although residents residing near the volcano have not been asked to evacuate the area, authorities are preparing an emergency plan in case the volcano becomes a threat. Almost 20 million people — including from Mexico City — could be affected.
Earthquake in Chile leaves dead: A magnitude-6.7 earthquake stuck near Chilean capital Santiago last week. Two people reportedly died after suffering heart attacks. Both victims were in the Valparaiso area, the earthquake’s epicenter.
Wal-Mart bribery allegations: The New York Times reported bribery allegations against Wal-Mart de México. According to the report, bribes were made in order to obtain permits and to open stores quicker. Executives are under investigation for allegedly knowing of the bribes and for blocking an internal probe. If found to be true, Wal-Mart could be found in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
In North America
Secret Service scandal: Twelve Secret Service agents and 12 military personnel are under investigation for alleged misconduct in Colombia prior to President Obama’s arrival for the Summit of the Americas. It is expected that more Secret Service agents will resign their post, following suit to the already nine members who’ve left the agency.
Remembering Clark: Legendary broadcaster Dick Clark died from a massive heart attack. He was 82. Clark underwent prostate surgery the day prior to his death, reported TMZ. In 2004, he suffered a stroke, which limited his ability to speak clearly. Clark is remembered for his youthful looks and as the host of “American Bandstand” and “New Year’s Rockin’ Eve.”