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‘Happy Feet Jr.’ found stranded 1,250 miles from home in New Zealand

A penguin dubbed Happy Feet junior has been found stranded 2,000 kilometres (1,250 miles) from home in New Zealand, reviving memories of another wayward penguin that washed up in 2011. The latest wandering stray was discovered close to death on the coast south of Wellington over the weekend and taken…

Horsemeat scandal spreads to Hong Kong

Fears over a Europe-wide food fraud scandal concerning horsemeat sold as beef have spread to Hong Kong after an imported brand of “beef” lasagne was pulled from shelves, officials said Wednesday. Hong Kong authorities last week ordered a top local supermarket chain to remove the lasagne made by frozen food…

Sea Shepherd environmental activists say Japanese whalers ‘rammed’ their ships

Environmental campaigners from the militant Sea Shepherd group said on Wednesday a Japanese whaling ship had “rammed” its vessels in a skirmish in the Southern Ocean. Sea Shepherd director Bob Brown said the Japanese factory boat the Nisshin Maru had deliberately collided with boats crewed by anti-whaling campaigners, the Steve…

World’s first home for transgender elderly

A dozen elderly women are gathered inside the pink house, set on a narrow dirt road in a dusty suburb of Jakarta. Together they sew, bake and chat. On first sight they look like a group of benevolent grandmothers, but the sunken cheeks and deep lines on some of their…

Massive 300 million-year-old asteroid impact zone discovered in Australian outback

Scientists have discovered a massive 200-kilometre (124-mile) impact zone in the Australian outback they believe was caused by an asteroid which smashed into Earth more than 300 million years ago. Andrew Glikson, a visiting fellow at the Australian National University, said the asteroid measuring 10 to 20 kilometres in diameter…

Mentally handicapped inmate Warren Hill granted stay of execution

Warren Hill, an intellectually disabled prisoner, has been spared the death chamber just 30 minutes before he was due to die by lethal injection in Georgia despite a US supreme court ban on executions of people with learning difficulties. Hill, 53, had already taken an oral sedative of Ativan to…

Indian workers plan nationwide strike against anti-labor policies

Millions of Indian workers were expected to join a two-day nationwide strike starting Wednesday in protest against “anti-labour” economic reforms introduced by the embattled Congress government. Premier Manmohan Singh has appealed to unions to abandon the strike, the latest in a string of protests against liberalisation, warning it would cause…

Forget feathers and beads: At Basel’s carnival Fasnacht, it’s all about politics

Forget feathers and beads: At Basel's carnival Fasnacht, it's all about politics New Orleans, Rio de Janeiro, Venice: All play host to the annual glittering, colorful, and wild extravaganza known as Carnival. But in Basel, Switzerland, the world’s only Protestant masque, celebrations take on a new twist – they get…

Copernicus and the Church: What the history books don’t say

Copernicus and the Church: What the history books don't say Legend has it that Nicolaus Copernicus and the church were at odds over his development of the heliocentric theory, a principle that disputed the widely held belief that Earth was the center of the universe. Unlike Galileo and other controversial…

Supreme Court declines to hear Sixth Amendment case on unanimous juries for criminal convictions

Unanimous juries for criminal convictions? Supreme Court declines case. The US Supreme Court declined on Tuesday to take up a case examining whether the Sixth Amendment right to a jury trial requires that juries in criminal cases reach their verdicts unanimously. Two states, Louisiana and Oregon, permit convictions on less…

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