News Wrap: Delta computer outage cancels flights; 67 killed in Pakistan suicide bombing

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Departure boards show some Delta flights as cancelled flights after Delta Air Lines' computer systems crashed on Monday, grounding flights around the globe, at Hartsfield Jackson Atlanta International Airport in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S. August 8, 2016.  REUTERS/Tami Chappell - RTSLUJF

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JUDY WOODRUFF:  Delta Air Lines canceled more than 400 flights today, after a global crash of its computer systems.  Hours later, the carrier resumed limited service.  But the glitch also delayed more than 1,000 flights, and left passengers stranded.  Some complained they’d been given little information.

LARRY SUTTON, Delta Passenger:  When I got here, I waited.  I got here like 8:37 flight, and then it kept going, you know, delayed, delaying it.  And then they never announced that it was canceled.  So I had to call the service and they told me it was canceled.  So they gave me another flight, but now I got a flight tomorrow.  So, it was the fact that they didn’t let me know what was going on.

JUDY WOODRUFF:  The trouble was caused by a power outage in Atlanta.  The utility Georgia Power said a kind of industrial circuit-breaker called a switch gear failed.  Just last month, Southwest Airlines was hit by an equipment failure that canceled 2000 flights.

GWEN IFILL:  In Southwestern Pakistan, a suicide bombing killed at least 67 people today, and wounded scores more.  It happened in a hospital in the city of Quetta.

Jonathan Rugman of Independent Television News reports.

JONATHAN RUGMAN:  Ambulances usually arrive at hospitals in a hurry.  In Quetta this morning, they were leaving, ferrying the injured away from an attack on a hospital itself.  As smoke filled the corridors, it quickly became clear the timing was deliberate.

First, men on a motorbike had shot dead Bilal Kasi, a senior lawyer on his way to court.  Then the group waited for his fellow lawyers to gather here before blowing them up, the so-called double tap, as cynical as it was cruel.

MERAJ TAREEN, Lawyer:  After our bar association president was targeted, we all came to the hospital.  We were leaving the hospital after Kasich’s autopsy and the media were interviewing lawyers when the blast took place.  For many minutes, there was darkness all around us, and then we heard gunshots.

JONATHAN RUGMAN:  Lawyers complained to visiting army chiefs that, while they haven’t been allowed to drive their cars into the hospital, a suicide bomber had managed to get through, while the hospital’s director told the press that just one guard armed with a baton was in charge of security, which might seem all the more scandalous, given that these pictures from January show the same hospital, this time receiving survivors from another deadly suicide bombing on another medical facility in the town.

So, once again, Pakistanis are crying out for security, putting pressure on their Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, and his army chief, who visited the hospital this evening.

“For God sake, don’t back off,” this survivor told the prime minister.  “It’s a handful of people we must fight with all our might.  Don’t lose courage.”

GWEN IFILL:  Both the Islamic State group and a breakaway Taliban faction claimed responsibility for the attack.

JUDY WOODRUFF:  Japan’s Emperor Akihito signaled today he’d like to step down.  His position is symbolic, and he has no political power, but his abdication would require a constitutional change.  He spoke in a rare 10-minute address pre-recorded and broadcast nationally.

EMPEROR AKIHITO, Japan (through translator):  I am already more than 80 years old, and fortunately I am now in good health.  However, when I consider that my fitness level is gradually declining, I am worried that it may become difficult for me to carry out my duties with my whole being as the symbol of the state, as I have done until now.

JUDY WOODRUFF:  Over the years, Akihito has had heart surgery and been treated for prostate cancer.  He is the 125th emperor in a dynastic line that goes back more than 2,700 years.

GWEN IFILL:  Parts of Eastern Mexico are reeling after the remnants of Hurricane Earl touched off deadly mudslides over the weekend, killing 40 people.  Surging rainwater uprooted buildings and tore through concrete walls on Saturday.  Soldiers and first-responders worked Sunday to clear debris caked in mud.

JUDY WOODRUFF:  Wal-Mart is moving to muscle up in online sales, buying online retailer  The deal announced today includes $3 billion in cash and $300 million in stock.  Wal-Mart is looking to strengthen its Web presence and capitalize on a growing group of customers who want to buy in bulk online.

GWEN IFILL:  On Wall Street today, the Dow Jones industrial average lost 14 points to close at 18,529.  The Nasdaq fell about eight points, and the S&P 500 slipped two.

JUDY WOODRUFF:  And Russia fired back today, after its entire Paralympic team was banned from next month’s games for athletes with physical disabilities.  The Russian Organizing Committee said the ban for alleged doping amounts to a human rights abuse.  The same doping scandal barred more than 100 Russian athletes from the current Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.  The Paralympics will also be in Rio.

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