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Algerian police seize 19 tons of marijuana

Algerian police have seized 19 tonnes of cannabis resin in the western Tlemcen region, near the Moroccan border, and arrested four suspected traffickers, an Algerian daily reported on Thursday. The seizure was made on Wednesday at a farm in the border village of Akid Lotfi, where four people, including the…

Ecuador says Assange doing ‘fine’ in London embassy

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange endured a “difficult” start to his stay at Ecuador’s London embassy but is now “fine” after living there for more than five months, the country’s ambassador to Britain said Thursday. The former hacker turned up at the embassy in June in a bid to avoid extradition…

Stem cell pioneer sues Nobel assembly over ‘false’ statement

A pioneer of stem cell research is suing the assembly that awards the Nobel medicine prize, in a first such lawsuit, over claims it made about this year’s winners, a spokeswoman said Thursday. Rongxiang Xu, who describes himself as the founder of “human body regenerative restoration science” claims he made…

Russia upset after U.S. vows to punish human rights violators

The US Congress drew a furious response from the Kremlin on Thursday by passing legislation that targeted human rights abusers in the prison death of Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky. Voting 92-4, the US Senate approved establishing permanent normal trade relations with Russia, ending Cold War-era restrictions, but also requiring sanctions…

Typhoon-hit Philippines tells climate talk attendees: ‘Open your eyes’

The Philippines urged bickering UN climate negotiators in Doha on Thursday to take heed of the deadly typhoon that struck the archipelago this week and wake up to the realities of global warming. Philippine climate envoy Naderev Sano made an emotive appeal for action as the annual United Nations gathering…

WHO: Sudan yellow fever outbreak worst in decades

An outbreak of mosquito-borne yellow fever which has killed at least 165 people in Sudan’s Darfur region is Africa’s worst in decades, the World Health Organisation said on Thursday. “Definitely, this outbreak now could be classed as the largest outbreak” since at least 1990, WHO country representative Anshu Banerjee told…

Tests begin on pill that could treat African sleeping sickness

Tests on a new pill that could revolutionise treatment for the tens of thousands of people in Africa infected with life-threatening sleeping sickness have started in two countries, a non-profit pharmaceutical group said Thursday. “This is a major step in research and development for neglected tropical diseases,” said Bernard Pecoul,…

Pregnant royal Kate leaves hospital after four days

Prince William’s pregnant wife Catherine left a London hospital on Thursday, four days after she was admitted for treatment for acute morning sickness, an AFP photographer said. Holding a bouquet of yellow flowers and wearing a dark coat, Kate smiled at waiting media as she left the private King Edward…

Starbucks agrees to pay corporate tax to UK after evading payments

US-based coffee giant Starbucks said Thursday that it will pay around £10 million in corporation tax in Britain in each of the next two years after lawmakers roasted the company for avoiding taxes. Kris Engskov, the managing director of Starbucks UK, made the announcement in a speech in London amid…

Greek schools ‘fertile ground for neo-Nazis’

Schools in crisis-hit Greece are proving fertile ground for Golden Dawn, the neo-Nazi group suspected of orchestrating attacks on migrants whose popularity is on the rise, anti-racism activists warn. Once a secretive group on the fringe of Greek politics, Golden Dawn picked up over 400,000 votes in a June election…

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