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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…

Global food prices fell 1.5 percent in November: UN agency

Global food prices fell 1.5 percent in November to their lowest level since June, with sugar, oils and cereals seeing the sharpest drops, the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation said on Thursday. The Rome-based FAO’s Food Price Index averaged 211 points, down from 213 in October. The index had risen…

Dutch granny prostitutes celebrate red-light life

In a busy passage in Amsterdam’s red light district a crowd is gathering as fans jostle to have their picture taken with the city’s most famous great-grannies: Twins Louise and Martine Fokkens, the Dutch capital’s oldest prostitutes. Decked out in matching red leather jackets and boots, red jeans and crocheted…

Freak tornado kills three in New Zealand: reports

A freak storm described by police as a tornado hit New Zealand’s largest city Auckland Thursday causing “utter devastation”, with three people reportedly killed in ferocious winds. The storm, which officials said packed wind gusts of up to 110 kilometres (70 miles) per hour, struck suburban Hobsonville in the afternoon,…

Canada busts Romanian human smuggling ring

Canada’s immigration minister on Wednesday identified a human-smuggling ring that brought 85 Romanian nationals into Canada in waves over the past year, via Mexico and the United States. Immigration Minister Jason Kenney described the operation as “very well organized,” explaining how the illegal migrants flew from Romania to Mexico, where…

European Union and U.S. resist making pledges at climate talks

The European Union and United States said on Wednesday they would not make concrete near-term funding pledges at UN climate talks to help developing countries cope with the fallout from global warming. The EU said tight finances prevented it from taking on new commitments as a bloc, while Washington insisted…

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