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Starbucks employees to write ‘come together’ message to politicos on coffee cups

If you order a cup of coffee at a D.C.-area Starbucks in the next few days, your pumpkin spice latte may come with a political missive directed at Washington’s elected officials, reported CNN. Starbucks’ CEO Howard Schultz asked employees in the District of Columbia to write “Come Together” on coffee…

Egypt’s Morsi signs disputed constitution into law

Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi has signed into law a new constitution voted in despite weeks of opposition protests, but on Wednesday he was left facing an economic crisis and international disquiet over his rule. The Islamist-dominated senate convened on Wednesday to swear in 90 new members appointed by Morsi. It…

India announces gang-rape inquiry

India’s government ordered a special inquiry Wednesday into the gang-rape of a student which sparked mass protests, as police announced the arrest of 10 men over another multiple sex assault. While a wave of angry protests over the December 16 assault on the student in New Delhi subsided, news of…

Over 45,000 killed in Syria conflict, says watchdog

More than 45,000 people have been killed in Syria since the outbreak in March 2011 of an anti-regime revolt that became a bloody insurgency after a brutal crackdown on dissent, a watchdog said Wednesday. “In all we have documented the deaths of 45,048 people,” Rami Abdel Rahman, head of the…

‘Yak insurance’ plan saving Nepal’s endangered snow leopard

The remorse felt by Himali Chungda Sherpa after he killed three snow leopard cubs in retaliation for his lost cattle inspired him to set up a scheme to prevent other herders from doing the same. Sherpa lost his cattle near Ghunsa village at the base of Mount Kangchenjunga on the…

Actor Charles Durning dies at 89

Prolific American actor who was Oscar nominated for roles in The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas and To Be Or Not to Be The American actor Charles Durning, who has died aged 89, first grabbed audience attention as the crooked Lieutenant Snyder in The Sting (1973). He makes an explosive…

Bangladesh slaughters 150,000 birds over avian flu

Bangladesh’s livestock authorities are slaughtering around 150,000 chickens at a giant poultry farm near Dhaka after the worst outbreak of avian flu in five years, officials said Wednesday. The deadly H5N1 strain of flu was detected at Bay Agro farm at Gazipur, 40 kilometres (25 miles) north of Dhaka, on…

Director Werner Herzog relishes rare acting role in Tom Cruise flick ‘Jack Reacher’

German filmmaker Werner Herzog is taking a rare turn in front of the camera as a cold-blooded murderer in the new thriller “Jack Reacher”, portraying a character he calls “the epicenter of evil.” “Jack Reacher,” the Christopher McQuarrie film which just opened in North America, sees Tom Cruise back in…

Emerging China, Brazil and India agree to increased United Nations dues

China, Brazil, India and other emerging powers agreed to major increases in their United Nations payments as the global body hammered out a new budget deal this week to avoid its own fiscal cliff. The boom countries will pay more as economic crisis allows European nations, such as Britain, Germany…

World’s longest bullet train service launched in China

China launched service on Wednesday on the world’s longest high-speed rail route, the latest milestone in the country’s rapid and — sometimes troubled — super fast rail network. The opening of the new 2,298-kilometre (1,425-mile) line between Beijing and Guangzhou means passengers will be whisked from the capital to the…

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