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Yasser Arafat body exhumed and reburied in six-hour night mission

Samples taken from corpse of late PLO leader will be used to investigate claims he was poisoned with a radioactive substance Yasser Arafat was buried eight years ago to a chorus of gunfire before a crowd of thousands amid the rubble of his Ramallah headquarters. On Tuesday, his corpse was…

Worldwide helium shortage grounds Mickey Mouse at Disneyland

Tokyo Disneyland has stopped selling helium balloons shaped like Mickey Mouse and other characters because of a worldwide shortage of the lighter-than-air gas, the park’s operator said Tuesday. The popular balloons were withdrawn from sale last week, a spokesman said, because the company was having difficulty securing a stable supply.…

Bill Gates joins Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote to fight polio in Nigeria

The richest man in Africa and the wealthiest man from the United States joined forces Monday in the battle against polio, which has seen a resurgence in Nigeria despite efforts to eradicate it. Microsoft founder Bill Gates’ foundation and that of Aliko Dangote, the Nigerian businessman labeled Africa’s richest by…

Global first: British man visits all 201 sovereign states without flying

A British adventurer has become the first person to travel to all 201 sovereign states in the world without flying, ending his four-year odyssey early Monday when he arrived in South Sudan, the world’s newest nation. Graham Hughes has used buses, boats, taxis, trains, and his own two feet –…

Britain ready to back Palestinian bid for statehood at UN

Britain is prepared to back a key vote recognising Palestinian statehood at the United Nations if Mahmoud Abbas pledges not to pursue Israel for war crimes and to resume peace talks. Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority, has called for Britain’s backing in part because of its historic responsibility for…

UN passes first resolution condeming female genital mutilation

UNITED NATIONS — The UN General Assembly on Monday passed its first resolution condemning female genital mutilation, which opponents say more than 140 million women worldwide have had to endure. Though outlawed in most nations, the measure represents the first time the traditional practice in African and Middle East nations…

Mexico police unearth 20 bodies in violence-torn north

CIUDAD JUAREZ, Mexico — The bones of nine people were found in desert graves in violence-plagued northern Mexico, raising the number of remains found there since the weekend to 20, authorities said Monday. The 20 male remains were discovered in 15 graves in the Juarez Valley, near the border city…

Toronto mayor ousted over conflict of interest

OTTAWA — A court ordered the mayor of Toronto, Canada’s largest city, to be removed from office for violating conflict of interest rules when soliciting donations for his football charity. Mayor Rob Ford got into legal trouble when he spoke out at a city council vote in February against a…

UN: Migrants send double the amount of foreign aid back but little of it benefits the country

Migrant workers from the world’s poorest countries sent home $27 billion (21 billion euros) in 2011 despite the global financial slowdown, but developing nations are failing to benefit fully from the cash, the UN said Monday. Remittances “could prove particularly valuable for capital-scarce developing countries,” by helping to reduce poverty,…

UN: HIV infections in Arab countries have more than doubled in 8 years

The United Nations said on Monday that the number of people in Arab countries infected with HIV more than doubled to 470,000 in the eight years to 2009. “The number of adults and children living with HIV has more than doubled between 2001 and 2009 from 180,000 to 470,000,” according…

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