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$20,000 pet lion lives on Kabul rooftop

For Kabul’s wealthy elite some things are de rigueur: armed guards, a marble-clad mansion, a blacked-out SUV. But one man has taken the flamboyant lifestyle a step further and bought a lion. Mohammad Shafiq, a 42-year-old businessman, is very proud of his growling pet, which spends its days prowling a…

Mandela in ‘serious’ condition in hospital

By David Dolan and Peroshni Govender JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – Former South African President and anti-apartheid hero Nelson Mandela was in a “serious but stable” condition after being taken to hospital early on Saturday with a recurrence of a lung infection, the government said. The 94-year-old, who became the first black…

Detroit’s mountains of petroleum coke (petcoke) are ‘dirtier than the dirtiest fuel’

Byproduct of tar sands production is piling up in Detroit, and environmentalists fear Keystone XL pipeline will bring more It was the dirty secret of Alberta’s tar sands – until the black mountain of petroleum coke on the banks of the Detroit River grew to occupy an entire city block…

How supermarkets get your data – and what they do with it

It doesn’t matter if you are part of a loyalty scheme, pay by card or even cash, ‘Big Brother’ supermarkets know your every move We all know supermarkets use information about our shopping habits to target us with personalised vouchers and offers – but how would you feel about sitting…

Gunman kills four in Santa Monica, shot dead by police

By Dana Feldman SANTA MONICA, California (Reuters) – A gunman dressed in black killed four people in a string of shootings through the seaside California town of Santa Monica on Friday before he was shot dead by police in a community college library, law enforcement officials said. Five other people…

Kiefer Sutherland cast as lead in ‘Metal Gear Solid’ film adaptation

Metal Gear Solid V starring role will go to Kiefer Sutherland (via The Christian Science Monitor) The role of Snake in in Metal Gear V will go to Kiefer Sutherland, Konami announced today. (Konami) The starring role in Metal Gear V: The Phantom Pain, the forthcoming game from Konami, will…

Government likely to open criminal probe into NSA leaks: officials

By Mark Hosenball WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s administration is likely to open a criminal investigation into the leaking of highly classified documents that revealed the secret surveillance of Americans’ telephone and email traffic, U.S. officials said on Friday. The law enforcement and security officials, who were not authorized…

NSA Internet spying foiled plot to attack New York subways: sources

By Mark Hosenball WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A secret U.S. intelligence program to collect emails that is at the heart of an uproar over government surveillance helped foil an Islamist militant plot to bomb the New York City subway system in 2009, U.S. government sources said on Friday. The sources said…

Kerry renews $1.3 billion aid package for Egypt

Secretary of State John Kerry last month approved $1.3 billion in annual US military aid to Egypt, despite concerns over democratic progress by the country’s new government, a US official said Friday. All such aid is “carefully considered,” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters, but it was felt the…

Visitors shrug off unrest as tourism in Turkey takes a hit

Hotel reservations may be down after a week of violent mass protests in Turkey, but plucky tourists on the ground have taken the unrest in their stride. “There was tear gas everywhere. It was quite an adventure,” said one visitor from Iceland. Eva Carla Thorisdottir’s arrival in Istanbul in the…

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