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At least 43 killed in monsoon-triggered India landslide

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New Delhi (AFP) – At least 43 bodies have been recovered after a massive landslide triggered by monsoon rains swept away dozens of tea estate workers in southwestern India, police said Sunday.The landslide in Idukki district, around 250 kilometres (155 miles) from Kerala state’s capital Thiruvananthapuram, occurred Friday but the ongoing search and rescue efforts have been hampered by torrential downpours.The toll rose to 43 on Sunday afternoon, Idukki district’s police chief, R. Karuppasamy, told AFP.Twenty-six of the bodies were recovered on Friday night, a police official said earlier Sunda…

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Putin joins Trump as Nobel Peace Prize candidate, report says

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Russian leader Vladimir Putin has reportedly joined President Donald Trump as a dark horse candidate for the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize.According to Newsweek, the state-owned Russian news agency Tass made the announcement and insisted the Russian government wasn’t responsible for nominating its own strongman.A collective of Russian public figures including writer Sergey Komkov were reportedly behind Putin’s nomination. It’s unclear what the former KGB agent — who annexed a neighboring country, is credibly accused of tampering in U.S. elections and has seen his adversaries poisoned — was nominated ... (more…)

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US slaps sanctions on Iran judge over wrestler’s execution

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The United States on Thursday imposed sanctions on an Iranian judge who sentenced a wrestler to death over his role in protests -- an execution that triggered international outrage.

Navid Afkari, 27, who had won national competitions, was hanged earlier this month after being convicted of murder during demonstrations two years ago in the southern city of Shiraz.

The United States said it was taking action against Judge Seyyed Mahmoud Sadati, voicing alarm over allegations that Afkari was tortured in custody to force a confession.

"His killing was an unconscionable act," Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement.

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COVID-19

France sees record in new coronavirus infections, with more than 16,000 cases in 24 hours

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France reported a new record for daily coronavirus infections on Thursday a day after the government announced new restrictions on bars and restaurants in major cities which have provoked an outcry from local politicians and business owners.

Figures from Public Health France showed that 16,096 people had tested positive for Covid-19 over the last 24 hours, a record—even though experts advise that testing during the first coronavirus wave in March-April captured only a fraction of cases.

The centrist government of President Emmanuel Macron announced a series of new measures on Wednesday to try to slow the spread of the disease, including the closure of all bars and restaurants in Marseille and earlier closing times in Paris and elsewhere.

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