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'The next Hong Kong': Taiwan's foreign minister sounds warning over China

'The next Hong Kong': Taiwan's foreign minister sounds warning over China

Joseph Wu tells visiting US health secretary Taiwan lives under constant threat of its freedoms being quashed by Beijing Agence France-PresseTue 11 Aug 2020 01.01 EDTChina is trying to turn Taiwan into another Hong Kong, the island’s foreign minister warned on Tuesday as he met with aA crackdown on dissent in Hong Kong has gathered pace since China imposed a sweeping security law on the financial hub in June, with opposition politicians disqualified and activists arrested.The security clampdown has caused alarm in Taiwan, a self-ruled island of 23 million people that Beijing claims as its...

August 11, 2020
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Likely active volcanoes found on Venus, defying theory of dormant planet

Likely active volcanoes found on Venus, defying theory of dormant planet

Researchers identify 37 ring-like structures known as coronae that are believed to be living volcanoes Agence France-PresseMon 20 Jul 2020 19.34 EDTScientists have identified 37 volcanic structures on Venus that appear to have been recently active – and probably still are today – painting the picture of a geologically dynamic planet and not a dormant world as long thought.The research focused on ring-like structures called coronae, caused by an upwelling of hot rock from deep within the planet’s interior, and provided compelling evidence of widespread recent tectonic and magma activity on...

July 20, 2020
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UAE successfully launches Hope probe, Arab world's first mission to Mars

UAE successfully launches Hope probe, Arab world's first mission to Mars

A rocket carrying the unmanned probe, known as Al-Amal in Arabic, joins China and US in race to red planet Agence France-PresseSun 19 Jul 2020 21.31 EDTThe first Arab space mission to Mars has blasted off aboard a rocket from Japan, with its unmanned probe – called Al-Amal, or Hope – successfully separating about an hour after liftoff.A live feed of the launch showed the rocket carrying the probe lifting off from the Tanegashima Space Centre in southern Japan at 6.58am (9.58pm GMT).Almost exactly one hour later, the feed showed people applauding in the Japanese control room as the probe...

July 20, 2020
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Mont Blanc melting glacier yields India newspapers that could be from 1966 plane crash

Mont Blanc melting glacier yields India newspapers that could be from 1966 plane crash

Retreating French ice leaves behind newspapers proclaiming Indira Gandhi’s rise to become prime minister Agence France-PresseSun 12 Jul 2020 19.43 EDTThe Mont Blanc glacier in the French Alps is yielding more secrets as it melts – this time a clutch of newspapers with banner headlines from when Indira Gandhi became India’s first, and so far only, female prime minister in 1966.The copies of Indian newspapers the National Herald and the Economic Times were probably aboard an Air India Boeing 707 that crashed on the mountain on 24 January, 1966, claiming 177 lives.The trove of around a dozen...

July 12, 2020
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Bodies donated to science 'left to be eaten by rats at Paris centre'

Bodies donated to science 'left to be eaten by rats at Paris centre'

Inquiry to examine claims remains were found strewn around and dismembered Agence France-Presse in ParisThu 9 Jul 2020 14.10 EDTAuthorities in will investigate claims that human corpses donated for science were left to rot and be eaten by rats at a university research facility, the Paris prosecutor’s office has said.An investigation into “violations of the integrity of a corpse” was handed over to magistrates by prosecutors who handled the initial phase of the investigation after l’Express magazine reported the scandal last November.The newspaper said the remains of thousands of people who...

July 9, 2020
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Queen’s letters on Australian PM’s sacking to be released in full

Queen’s letters on Australian PM’s sacking to be released in full

RED BARBLUE BARQueen Elizabeth II’s correspondence on her role in the 1975 sacking of Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam will be released next week, it was announced Thursday, after a lengthy battle to make the documents public.The British monarch’s representative in Australia, governor-general John Kerr, sparked a constitutional crisis in 1975 when he dismissed Whitlam, the popular leader of the centre-left Labor party, three years after his election.ADVERTISEMENTAustralia’s High Court ruled in May that more than 200 letters between the queen and Kerr over the controversial affair...

July 9, 2020
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Algae turns Italian Alps pink, prompting concerns over melting

Algae turns Italian Alps pink, prompting concerns over melting

Pink snow observed on parts of the Presena glacier believed to be caused by plant that makes the ice darker, causing it to melt faster Agence France-PresseSun 5 Jul 2020 19.57 EDTScientists in Italy are investigating the mysterious appearance of pink glacial ice in the Alps, caused by algae that accelerate the effects of climate change.There is debate about where the algae come from, but Biagio Di Mauro of Italy’s National Research Council said the pink snow observed on parts of the Presena glacier is likely caused by the same plant found in Greenland.“The alga is not dangerous, it is a...

July 5, 2020
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Poland's president plans to forbid adoption by same-sex couples

Poland's president plans to forbid adoption by same-sex couples

Andrzej Duda, who is running for re-election, will propose a constitutional amendment later this month Agence France-PresseSat 4 Jul 2020 13.11 EDTPoland’s president, Andrzej Duda, who is running for re-election in the conservative, Catholic EU member, said on Saturday that he wanted the constitution to explicitly forbid the adoption of children by same-sex couples.He said he planned to propose a constitutional amendment on Monday.The announcement marked the head of state’s latest reference to gay rights in the electoral campaign, after he stoked controversy by likening “” to communism...

July 4, 2020
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Rare 'ring of fire' solar eclipse to cast shadow over Africa and Asia

Rare 'ring of fire' solar eclipse to cast shadow over Africa and Asia

Event will be visible across a narrow band from Congo-Brazzaville to southern China Agence France-PresseSat 20 Jun 2020 04.55 EDTSkywatchers along a narrow band from west Africa to the Arabian peninsula, India and southern China will witness the most dramatic “ring of fire” solar eclipse in years on Sunday.Annular eclipses occur when the moon passes between Earth and the sun, but not quite close enough to our planet to completely obscure the sun’s light.They occur every year or two, and can only been seen from a narrow pathway across the planet.Sunday’s eclipse coincide’s with the northern...

June 20, 2020
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Hong Kong protests: arrests as thousands sing protest anthem on anniversary of clashes

Hong Kong protests: arrests as thousands sing protest anthem on anniversary of clashes

Riot police send snatch squads to detain demonstrators throughout night after declaring gatherings illegal Agence France-Presse in Hong KongFri 12 Jun 2020 21.52 EDTThousands of Hongkongers have sung a popular protest anthem and chanted slogans across the city as they marked the first anniversary of major clashes between police and pro-democracy demonstrators.Riot police declared Friday’s gatherings unlawful assemblies and a breach of anti-coronavirus bans on public meetings of large groups, sending snatch squads to make multiple arrests throughout the evening.The financial hub’s protest...

June 13, 2020
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