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New Zealand man hospitalized after lighting fireworks in butt

A 23-year-old man in New Zealand suffered serious injuries on Saturday after he set off a firework between his buttocks. “It appears a party was in full progress when a young male decided to place a firework between the cheeks of his bottom and light it,” Senior Sergeant Garry Smith…

U.S. and Europe block ‘treaty for blind people’ due to copyright concerns

The US and the EU are blocking a treaty that would give the world’s blind and visually impaired people – 90% of whom live in the developing world – easier access to published works in formats they can use. A “treaty for blind people” has been under discussion at the…

Chinese party newspaper says leaders must listen after riots

China’s most influential newspaper on Monday urged authorities to listen to people’s worries about pollution, after fears over a new waste water pipeline sparked weekend riots. “The public’s awareness of environmental issues and their rights is increasing at a rapid pace,” said an editorial in the People’s Daily – the…

Russian PM: Syria must decide its own future

Russia’s differences with the West on Syria are not as great as they appear, as both agree on the need to prevent civil war, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said in an interview published Monday. Russia has repeatedly vetoed UN Security Council action against the regime of President Bashar al-Assad, but…

Israel prepares to vote on sweeping austerity measures

Ministers in Israel’s cabinet were on Monday preparing to vote on a package of sweeping economic austerity measures in a bid to cut the budget deficit, in a move expected to hit the underprivileged hard. Central to the plan is a hike in income tax and VAT, as well as…

At least 32 dead in Indian train fire

At least 32 people were killed Monday when a fire ripped through a coach on an express train as it carried sleeping passengers to the southern Indian city of Chennai, officials said. The accident, on a long-distance service from New Delhi, occurred in the early hours of the morning near…

Police lose keys to Olympic soccer venue

Police guarding Wembley Stadium where Olympic soccer matches are being played revealed Monday that they have lost a set of keys to the venue. Officers searching the stadium in London ahead of the start of the Games misplaced the keys, prompting an investigation by Scotland Yard, but organizers insisted that…

Geithner visit stirs hope for Eurozone

The top US finance official meets his German counterpart and the head of the European Central Bank Monday, fueling hopes Europe is about to take decisive action to save the crisis-wracked Eurozone. US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner was to meet Wolfgang Schaeuble to raise the pressure on Berlin and push…

Bolivian government to consult with Amazon natives on controversial highway

LA PAZ — The Bolivian government of President Evo Morales Sunday met with indigenous Amazon basin lowland residents to discuss plans for a controversial highway that would run through their their homeland. Angry protests last year by indigenous residents of the Isiboro Secure National Park and Indigenous Territory (called TIPNIS),…

North Korea battered by fresh storms after fatal flooding

SEOUL — North Korea said Sunday it was being lashed by severe thunderstorms that could cause major damage, just days after flooding that killed scores and left tens of thousands homeless. State media reported strong winds and heavy rains were battering parts of the country, including the capital Pyongyang, with…

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