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Pakistan re-elects former PM Sharif amid election violence

22 killed as violence, intimidaton and vote rigging mar poll many had feared would never be held Fourteen years after he was overthrown and exiled by a military dictator, the former Pakistani prime minister known to his supporters as “the Lion” claimed victory on Saturday night in one of most…

Doctors design ‘food memory’ phone app to combat obesity

Using a simple smartphone application to photograph one’s meals is a useful slimming aid for the overweight, according to an experiment reported on Sunday. The app, designed by British doctors, aims at promoting “food memory” so that people recall what they have eaten and are encouraged not to snack on…

Controversial mural by Banksy back up for sale

A work by renowned British graffiti artist Banksy that was withdrawn from a controversial auction is being put up for sale again in London, auctioneers said Saturday. The mural, called ‘Slave Labour’, mysteriously vanished from its original site on a wall in north London in February before appearing on an…

Family album of Tsar Nicholas II resurfaces in museum exhibition

Held a virtual prisoner by the Bolsheviks months before his execution, Russia’s last Tsar Nicholas II pasted informal snapshots of his family into an album which has now come to light in a Russian provincial museum. The photographs, most of which have never been seen before, show the last of…

Netanyahu to meet Putin amid reports of missile sales to Syria

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will visit Russia for talks with President Vladimir Putin, officials said Saturday, amid concerns Moscow may be about to deliver advanced missiles to Syria. Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed the visit to AFP, but declined to give details, although he told the Interfax news agency…

Chinese state media reports 22 killed in mine accident

An accidental explosion at a coal mine in southwest China killed 22 miners on Saturday, state media said, in the latest deadly incident to hit the country’s troubled industry. Nine others were trapped after the blast at the Taozigou coal mine in Sichuan Province, Xinhua reported, citing the country’s work…

Iran allows Reuters to re-open its Tehran bureau

Iran has given Reuters news agency permission to reopen its Tehran bureau after work there was suspended in March 2012 over one of its video reports, a culture ministry official said on Saturday. “The court authorised Reuters to open its Tehran bureau,” deputy culture minister Mohammad Jafar Mohammadzadeh told the…

Sudan shuts down local TEDx conference

Sudan’s security service on Saturday ordered the closure of a community forum, one of the independently run TEDx events held around the world, even though it was non-political, the organiser said. “They unplugged the electricity,” Anwar Dafa-Alla, who founded Sudan’s version of TEDx two years ago, told AFP. He said…

Skyping with elephants: a new paradigm for education

Think Elephants, a Thailand-based organization that promotes conservation through education, published the results of a study that found that elephants could follow vocal commands telling them to find food hidden in one of two buckets. This suggests…  …

Germany probes suspected potato price fixing

The chips are down as Germany launches a probe into suspected potato price fixing over the past decade which may have cost consumers and farmers hundreds of millions of euros, according to local media. The culprits face a roasting after the national competition regulator has investigated allegations that at least…

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