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Ramadan ‘police’ go after Pakistan’s cafe culture

With its wooden floors, leather sofas and customers peering at their Apple laptops as they sip their coffees, Mocca Cafe is the not the den of iniquity that might normally attract a police raid. But Islamabad’s police have suddenly found cause to turn their attention to the capital’s poshest eateries…

DreamWorks plans $3.2 billion China tourist attraction

DreamWorks Animation on Tuesday said it plans to build a $3.2 billion “entertainment zone” in Shanghai, as the US film giant seeks to bolster its presence in the booming Chinese market. The studio’s newly-formed China joint venture, Oriental DreamWorks, is set to open the tourism attraction in 2016, the creator…

Malaysian toddler dies in ‘exorcism’

A three-year-old Malaysian girl died of suffocation during a lengthy exorcism ritual in which seven family members and a maid piled on top of her, a police official said Tuesday. The ritual, which included the child’s parents, was held by the ethnic Chinese family late Sunday in the northern town…

Nigeria school offers hope for young women fleeing abusive marriages

The clattering sewing machines at this northern Nigeria school offer hope of a better life for a group of young women who fled abusive marriages that for some prove inescapable. In Nigeria’s deeply impoverished north, which has some of the worst gender disparities in the world, millions of girls who…

Argentina imposes more restrictions on U.S. dollars

Argentina has imposed another restriction on the sale of US dollars, barring travelers from purchasing them unless the dollar is the currency of their destination, the government said Monday. The restriction, which takes effect next week and was detailed in the official gazette, is the latest twist in the government’s…

Megaupload boss says New Zealand police beat him

Megaupload boss Kim Dotcom on Tuesday accused New Zealand police of kicking and punching him when they raided his Auckland mansion earlier this year to arrest him for alleged copyright piracy. Dotcom told the Auckland High Court he tried to surrender peacefully to police during the raid in January, when…

‘Fifty Shades’: sado-masochistic romance novel now a global hit

It’s a literary phenomenon: with nearly 40 million copies sold, “Fifty Shades of Grey”, an erotic romance spiced up with sado-masochism is well on its way to breaking all the records. What sets the book apart is that it is written for women by a woman — British author EL…

Tropical Storm Ernesto heads for Honduras, Mexico

Tropical Storm Ernesto headed towards Honduras and Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula early Tuesday, with US forecasters predicting it would reach hurricane strength before making landfall. The Miami-based National Hurricane Center (NHC) said Ernesto was packing winds of 65 miles (105 kilometers) per hour as it powered across the Caribbean toward the…

China pulls newspaper over flood story: human rights group

China has pulled a Beijing newspaper from the newsstands after it criticised the official handling of the July floods and said the government had underreported the death toll, a rights group said Tuesday. Authorities in China’s capital have faced strong public criticism over their response to the heaviest rains in…

Samsung launches its new super-size Galaxy Note

South Korea’s Samsung Electronics said it had launched a super-size version of its Galaxy Note smartphone, the latest salvo in its battle with Apple for the multi-billion-dollar handheld market. The Galaxy Note 10.1, which went on sale on Monday in Germany and the United Arab Emirates, is almost twice as…

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