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Hip hop festival highlights how the genre took root in France

Celine Lefevre doesn’t come from the ghetto, she’s white, and female. Not your typical rapper. But when she tells the story of hip hop in a snap, crackle and pop of a dance solo, it all falls into place. The sunny 35-year-old could stand as an emblem of hip hop…

Iraq unearths 1,400-year-old gold coins

Iraqi archaeologists have found 66 gold coins that are at least 1,400 years old, officials said on Monday, adding that they hope to put them on display in Baghdad’s National Museum. The artefacts, which date back to the Sassanid era that extended from 225 BC to 640 AD, will be…

Prince Charles determined to fight climate change for his unborn grandchild

The prospect of becoming a grandfather to the baby of Prince William and his wife Catherine has strengthened Prince Charles’s determination to fight climate change, he said in an interview broadcast Monday. The heir to the British throne, an outspoken environmental campaigner, said he did not want his first grandchild…

Bank of America to pay $11.6 billion in Fannie Mae settlement

Bank of America said Monday it would pay $11.6 billion to settle agency mortgage repurchase claims on soured loans sold to mortgage finance giant Fannie Mae. The settlement covers residential mortgage loans originated and sold directly to Fannie Mae from January 1, 2000, through December 31, 2008, the big US…

Rapper Azealia Banks apologizes for homophobic slur against Perez Hilton

Rapper slammed by US gay rights organisation after she used homophobic language to attack celebrity blogger One of the biggest gay advocacy organisations in the US has criticised Azealia Banks for her use of a homophobic slur. Banks, who called blogger Perez Hilton “a messy faggot”, had initially refused to…

China ‘re-education’ labor camp reform revealed — then deleted

China will stop using its long-criticised “re-education” labour camps this year, state media quoted a senior official saying Monday — only for reports of the news to disappear within hours. The fate of the announcement — at once historic but also short-lived — offered a rare glimpse behind the tightly…

Thailand to extradite hacker wanted by the FBI

An Algerian computer hacker wanted by the FBI for allegedly stealing millions of dollars from American banks to fund a lavish lifestyle has been arrested in Bangkok, Thai police said Monday. Hamza Bendelladj, 24, appeared unruffled by his looming extradition to the United States as he was paraded before the…

Egypt’s Morsi backs calls for Assad war crimes trial

Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi told CNN Sunday he backs Syrian calls for Bashar al-Assad to be tried for war crimes, and predicted Assad’s regime would fall in the country’s bloody civil war. “The Syrian people, through their revolution, and through the movement will, when the bloodshed stops, move to a…

California’s ‘urban’ sled dogs are cool with no snow

California’s lack of snow is no problem for Obi, a sled dog a thousand miles from the North Pole, pulling an “urban sled” to the delight of his devoted human owner, Rancy Reyes. Reyes mushes on a two-wheeled cart through Fairview Park in Costa Mesa, south of Los Angeles, pulled…

Court to hear details of Aurora, Colorado theater massacre

The alleged gunman behind the Colorado theater massacre is due in court Monday for a week-long preliminary hearing likely to hear chilling details about the shooting at a Batman film premiere. A judge will decide if there is enough evidence to stage a full trial for James Holmes, accused of…

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