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Botox developer rues missing out on billions

Botox developer Alan Scott says he rues the day he handed over rights to the best-selling wrinkle-smoothing drug to a US company for just $4.5 million, saying he might have become a billionaire. Botox has become a front-line weapon in cosmetic medicine for erasing wrinkles — while therapeutic applications of…

Australian women reject ‘I love u’ texts

Australian women may have embraced the digital era, but they prefer a face-to-face declaration of affection to an “I love u” text and find men addicted to their mobile phones a major turnoff. That’s according to a study carried out by romance publisher Mills & Boon, timed to coincide with Valentines Day on Tuesday.…

Murdoch’s Sun attacks police ‘witch-hunt’

Rupert Murdoch’s British tabloid The Sun on Monday condemned police raids against its journalists as a “witch-hunt” worthy of former communist states, and won rare support from rival newspapers. The Daily Telegraph and the Daily Mail, both non-Murdoch papers, also questioned the scale of the police operation after another fiveSun staff were arrested at the…

Europe’s new space rocket Vega makes first flight

A lightweight rocket aimed at securing Europe a stake in the market to launch small satellites lifted off from Kourou space base on itsmaiden flight on Monday. Vega, whose development has cost more than a billion dollars, raced into the sky from the launch site in French Guiana in a streak of light, carrying a…

Obama anchors budget on tax hikes for the rich

US President Barack Obama will Monday roll out a populist election-year budget, challenging Republicans to support his job creation drive and to finally agree to hike taxes on the richest Americans. Obama will use his annual spending plan to flesh out his pledge to build a new economy in which…

Syria resumes shelling after rejecting peace force

Regime forces resumed their assault on the Syrian protest city of Homs on Monday, activists said, after Damascus rejected an Arab plan to send a peacekeeping force to the unrest-hit country. Shortly before sunrise, the army launched mortars into Baba Amr, a rebel stronghold in the central city, as forces…

Suspected Bali bomber on trial in Indonesia

A Muslim militant arrested in the same Pakistani town where US commandos later killed Osama bin Laden stood trial in Indonesia Monday on charges including murder for the 2002 Bali bombings. Umar Patek, 45, faces five other counts, including bomb-making and illegal firearms possession, and prosecutors say they will push…

Putin vows to boost Russian population

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin on Monday vowed to reverse Russia’s demographic decline and boost its population to 154 million, as he ramped up his re-election campaign in the face of protests. In a new campaign article addressing his core constituency including employees of state companies and blue-collar workers, Putin also…

Top officer seeks ‘more autonomy’ for elite special ops forces: report

The top US special operations officer, who oversaw the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, is seeking new authority to move his forces faster and outside of normal Pentagon deployment channels, according to The New York Times. The newspaper said Admiral William McRaven, who leads the Special Operations Command, is…

Bob Marley documentary electrifies Berlin

A hotly awaited documentary on Bob Marley has premiered to cheers at the Berlin film festival, tracking his journey from bullied biracial Jamaican boy to reggae superstar. “Marley” by Oscar-winning Scottish film-maker Kevin Macdonald is a two-and-half-hour-long tribute to a child of the Kingston ghettos who made reggae a global…

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