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A magnitude-7.8 earthquake hit the central coast of Ecuador Saturday night, killing 233 people and injuring more than 1,500 others. Homes and buildings were destroyed and power lines completely ravaged. A state of emergency is in effect for six provinces — Guayas, Manabi, Santo Domingo, Los Rios, Esmeraldas and Galapagos. Authorities urged those who left their homes in coastal areas to return after a tsunami alert was lifted. [CNN]

UC Berkeley senior Khairuldeen Makhzoomi, an Iraqi refugee, was kicked off a Southwest Airlines flight this week for speaking Arabic during a phone call. The passenger said the word “inshallah,” which means “if God is willing.” A fellow passenger thought she heard the the word “shahid,” meaning martyr. Makhzoomi was immediately removed from the flight, searched and told he was not allowed to re-board.This is one of many instances where Southwest has been accused of racial profiling against Muslims. [Gawker]

A Brooklyn teenage boy has been blinded when an e-cigarette he given at a mall blew up in his face. The boy was experimenting with the vaporizer at a mall kiosk. When the salesperson gave it to him to test, the pen immediately exploded – sending shrapnel through his nose and eyes. Witnesses say the salesperson failed to ask for ID before approaching the young customer. [CBS New York]

Congratulations are in order for Slick Rick who is finally a U.S. Citizen. The “La-Di-Da-Di” rapper spent five years in jail for a shooting he claims was in self-defense. Immigration officials wanted him out of the country after his sentence concluded, However, Rick continued to fight off deportation until Friday, when he officially gained citizenship status. [The Grio]

If You Don’t Know! News & Politics Roundup: Over 200 Dead In Ecuador Earthquake & More  was originally published on