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The Year of the Pig begins on February 5, 2019, and many people will travel to Asia to celebrate the Lunar New Year. If you plan to travel to Asia to visit friends or relatives or participate in the festivities, you can take some simple precautions to help you stay safe and healthy.
ASTRONOMY PICTURE OF THE DAY: IC 342: The Hidden Galaxy. Image Credit & Copyright: Arturas Medvedevas. IC 342 is a mere 10 million light-years in the northern constellation Camelopardalis. IC 342’s light is dimmed and reddened by intervening cosmic clouds, obscuring the galaxy’s own dust, young star clusters, and glowing pink star forming regions along spiral arms that wind far from the galaxy’s core. IC 342 may have undergone a recent burst of star formation activity and is close enough to have gravitationally influenced the evolution of the local group of galaxies and the Milky Way.
Three members of the International Space Station’s Expedition 57 crew, including NASA astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor, returned to Earth Thursday, safely landing at 12:02 a.m. EST (11:02 a.m. local time) in Kazakhstan.
A 65 million-year-old species keeps being found in unusual places.
IMAGO DEI: Orang Asli are the indigenous people and the oldest inhabitants of Peninsular Malaysia. Officially, there are three main groups according to their different languages and customs: Semang or Negrito, generally confined to the northern portion of the peninsula; Senoi, residing in the central region; and, Proto-Malay or Aboriginal Malay, in the southern region.
Last Update: Reissued after periodic review with changes to Level 4 areas and U.S. government restrictions on personnel. Reconsider travel to Turkey due to terrorism and arbitrary detentions. Some areas have increased risk. Read the entire Travel Advisory. Level 4 Areas - Do not travel to: Areas near the Syria and Iraq borders due to […]
Last Update: Reissued after periodic review with updates to information on consular access and neighborhoods within Caracas. Reconsider travel to Venezuela due to crime, civil unrest, poor health infrastructure, and arbitrary arrest and detention of U.S. citizens. Some areas have increased risk. Read the entire Travel Advisory. Do not travel: On roads after dark outside […]
NATIONAL FLAG OF PAKISTAN: The national flag of Pakistan was adopted on August 11, 1947. The flag is a green field with a white crescent moon and five-rayed star at its centre, and a vertical white stripe at the hoist side. The green represents Islam and the majority Muslims in Pakistan and the white stripe represents religious minorities and minority religions. In the centre, the crescent and star symbolizes progress and light respectively.
Latest update: Summary - updated information and advice relating to the terrorist attack in the Riverside area of Nairobi on 15/16 January; the British High Commission Nairobi will reopen for routine business on Thursday 17 January; addition of link to information on support available to those affected by the incident
Latest update: Entry requirements section (Visas) - correction to existing information on maximum duration of visa-free stay in Cape Verde; from 1 January 2019, if you have a British Citizen passport you can enter Cape Verde as a visitor for stays of up to 30 days without a visa
WORK OF ART: This ancient Byzantine Nativity picture, Mosaics of the Capella Palatina in Palermo, Sicily, has survived as a fresco made from coloured glass and stone fragments, on a high wall, and hence not subject to damp or vandals. Dated 1150 AD, the artist is simply labelled as Master of the Palace Chapel. Mary and Jesus are central in this composite picture, surrounded by singing angels, shepherds with gifts, the Three Wise Men, a perturbed Joseph waking from his dream of danger, and Salome and the midwife.