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Colbert: Praise banks since ‘they have not destroyed the world economy in four years’

On the Colbert Report on Wednesday night, the host discussed the recent HSBC banking scandal but took aim not at banks, but at “the people who are angry at our banks.” “And I’m not the only one who feels this way,” he said, going on to show clips of business…

600 cats stuffed in wooden crates saved from cooking pot after truck crash in China

BEIJING — Around 600 cats stuffed into wooden crates and destined for dinner plates in southern China were rescued by animal protection volunteers after a truck crash, a volunteer said on Thursday. Volunteers hauled the felines from the lorry on Monday after the accident in the central city of Changsha,…

Several killed as Algerian troops strike gas complex hostage site

Algerian troops launched strikes on Thursday on a desert gas plant where radical Islamists are holding dozens of foreigners hostage, killing several people, kidnappers said. The Islamists were trying to “ferry some hostages in vehicles to a safer place” when Algerian forces launched air strikes “killing both the hostages and …

Notorious Russian mafia boss killed by sniper

Notorious Russian criminal boss Aslan Usoyan, known as Grandpa Hassan, was shot by a sniper in central Moscow from a sixth-floor stairwell in a neighbouring building, investigators said Thursday. Investigators were piecing together the dramatic last moments of Usoyan before he was gunned down on Wednesday, as a bystander caught…

France adopts words of war by vowing to ‘destroy terrorists’

With its talk of “destroying” enemies and confronting “jihadi terrorists”, France has adopted a language of war for its intervention in Mali that few expected from Socialist President Francois Hollande. As French warplanes carry out airstrikes and French troops clash with Islamist rebels in the West African country, Hollande and…

Obama’s Kenyan half brother running for political seat

President Barack Obama’s Kenyan half brother has launched his own political career by announcing his intention to run for a Kenyan county gubernatorial seat in the upcoming March 4 elections. Malik Obama, 54, who shares a father with the US president, told AFP in an interview late Wednesday that the…

Tucson shooting survivor heartened by Obama’s gun plan: ‘Now is the time’

Two years ago Patricia Maisch gained first-hand experience of America’s epidemic of gun violence. She was attending a street rally called by Tucson politician Gabby Giffords when shooting erupted, and she helped disarm the gunman by grabbing his second magazine thus preventing him from reloading. Unharmed in the incident that…

Gene study hopes to settle debate over origin of European Jews

Jews of European origin are a mix of ancestries, with many hailing from tribes in the Caucasus who converted to Judaism and created an empire that lasted half a millennium, according to a gene study. The investigation, its author says, should settle a debate that has been roiling for more…

American to be executed by electric chair for first time since 2010

An American who murdered two fellow inmates to speed up his execution faces death on the electric chair Wednesday, the first execution of its kind since 2010, authorities said. Robert Gleason, 42, is due to be executed at 9:00 pm local time (0300 GMT) after a year on death row,…

Assault weapons ban likely to die in GOP-dominated House

The assault weapons ban proposed by US President Barack Obama on Wednesday faces quicksand in Congress, where Republicans are in a position to defeat any such a measure. Instead, lawmakers in the House and Senate could address some of Obama’s other proposals, including a universal background check for all gun…

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