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Nearly half of Swedes think cancer is contagious

Nearly half of Swedes aged between 16 and 20 think cancer is a contagious disease, according to a study by a Swedish charity supporting young patients published Wednesday. Ung Cancer found that 44 percent of young people thought that leukaemia could be transmitted via contact with someone’s blood. “We didn’t think their knowledge would be…

YouTube launches ‘elections hub’

YouTube launched a 2012 “elections hub” Wednesday devoted to the November vote in the United States, which will include live coverage from the two major party conventions and other political news. The Google-owned video service said this would be “a one-stop channel for key political moments from now through the upcoming…

DOJ seizes three websites distributing pirated material in Android app store

US authorities have seized three website domain names involved in distribution of pirated Android phone apps, in the first such action involving mobile app marketplaces. The Justice Department announced late Tuesday that they acted under a court order in coordination with international law enforcement, including Dutch and French officials, against applanet.net, appbucket.net and…

Military postpones Guantanamo-9/11 trial due to Hurricane Isaac

The US military said Wednesday it has postponed preliminary hearings for the trial of alleged September 11 plotters held at Guantanamo Bay because of Tropical Storm Isaac. Already postponed due to the Muslim holy month of Ramadan and a technical glitch, the hearings were to have begun Thursday and run through August…

Record spike as West Nile cases climb to 43 deaths

The United States is experiencing the worst outbreak of West Nile virus since the mosquito-borne disease was first detected in 1999, health officials said Wednesday. At least 41 people have died so far this summer and health officials have identified a total of 1,118 cases across the country. The entire year of 2011…

French prison garden program found to contain pot

Warders in a French jail where prisoners are allowed to grow their own produce have been left red-faced after the discovery of cannabis plants among the flowers and vegetables. The plants, which had reached a height of around 80cm (two and a half feet) before being spotted at the weekend,…

Kiss rockers back ‘pretty’ Pussy Riot’s rights, but not their music

Members of veteran rock band Kiss said Tuesday they back Russia’s punk rockers Pussy Riot even if they don’t think much of their music. “They’re very pretty girls. It is not a good band, but they have the right to do whatever they want to do,” Kiss bassist and singer-songwriter…

Ikea to build entire district in German city

Swedish furniture giant Ikea announced plans on Wednesday to build a brand-new district with shops, flats and office space for thousands of people in the northern German city of Hamburg. “We want to build a new city district for the benefit of Hamburg,” Harald Mueller, head of the firm’s property…

Forbes names Merkel and Clinton world’s most powerful women

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are the world’s most powerful women, according to Forbes magazine’s annual survey. Following the two stateswomen in the 2012 rankings was Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff. The list covers women in fields as diverse as politics, business, media, entertainment and…

Human rights group holds summit in repressive Equatorial Guinea

Its president is known as one of the most despotic in Africa, his heir stands accused of squandering millions of public funds on Michael Jackson memorabilia and the majority of its people live on less than $1 per day. Yet Equatorial Guinea this week finds itself in the unlikely position…

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