International

US rejects Turkey's offer to release pastor: report

President Donald Trump's administration has rejected Turkey's offer to condition the release of an American pastor on clearing a top Turkish bank of billions of dollars in US fines, media reported Monday.

Spanish police kill knife attacker shouting Islamic slogan

Spanish officers on Monday shot dead an Algerian man who tried to attack them with a knife at a police station while shouting "Allahu akbar", police said.

Business & Tech

France's Total has officially left Iran: oil minister

French energy giant Total has officially quit its multi-billion-dollar gas project in Iran, Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said on Monday, following the reimposition of US sanctions.

PepsiCo to buy SodaStream for $3.2 bn

PepsiCo said Monday it plans to buy SodaStream, an Israeli maker of carbonation products, for $3.2 billion as the beverage and snacks giant makes further inroads with in-home goods.

Middle East

An aerial view from August 31, 2017 shows Muslim pilgrims gathering on Mount Arafat, also known as Jabal al-Rahma (Mount of Mercy), southeast of the Saudi holy city of Mecca, for the climax of the hajj pilgrimage

Muslim pilgrims climb Mount Arafat for peak of hajj

Muslim pilgrims on Monday began ascending Mount Arafat for the climax of the annual hajj which brings together more than two million people from around the world.

US welcomes Afghanistan's latest ceasefire offer to Taliban

The United States on Sunday welcomed the announcement by Kabul of a provisional ceasefire with the Taliban, saying the plan "responds to the clear and continued call of the Afghan people."

Africa

The power of the word: A professional storyteller in action at the 'Memories of Africa' festival

Once upon a time... preserving folk tales in Benin

Dusk settled on Sainte-Cecile square and the oil lanterns cast a soft yellow light as a storyteller took to the stage and bound the audience with a magic spell of words.

South Africa inquiry into top-level state graft opens

A judicial inquiry into alleged corruption at the top of government in South Africa is scheduled to open on Monday when the first public hearings begin.

Business

Earthmover tyres, the pattern matters

Earthmovers tyres allow these big industrial vehicles designed to operate in challenging conditions, moving smoothly anytime. Tyre pattern and features are essential in order to ensure maximum control and stability for high productivity while keeping safety at the highest level

Business

China box-office back to strong growth in 2017

China's box-office revenues surged in 2017 after slowing sharply the preceding year, official media reported, as the world's second-largest movie market edges closer to overtaking the US.

China's Ant Financial drops MoneyGram deal as US approval fails

Ant Financial, an affiliate of Chinese internet titan Alibaba, has been forced to abandon a $1.2 billion deal to buy US remittances firm MoneyGram after failing to get approval from regulators in Washington.

US-Russia relations

Russia to make US media register as «foreign agents»

Russian lawmakers raced Friday to draft measures requiring US media outlets to register as foreign agents, saying they could be adopted as early as next week.

US Politics

Republicans run from Senate hopeful accused of sexual contact with minor

Several Republicans on Thursday urged their party's candidate for a vacant US Senate seat to quit the race if an explosive report that he had a sexual encounter with a 14-year-old girl is true.

US-Russian relations

Putin refuses to expel US diplomats, Trump applauds

President-elect Donald Trump praised President Vladimir Putin for refraining from tit-for-tat expulsions of Americans in response to US punitive measures over alleged Russian interference in the November election.

US economy

New US home construction tumbles in November

New US home construction fell precipitously in November after a spike in October, but a big drop in condos and apartments helped drive the move, the Commerce Department reported Friday.

Emergency migrants

Tired of waiting in Greece, Syrians bid to return home

«I want to go back to Syria. There is war in my country, but we've been living for seven months in Greece like prisoners.» Adan, from Aleppo, has abandoned his dream of building a new life in Europe, like thousands of other Syrians trapped in Greece.

Life & Style

US actor Danny DeVito is to be awarded a lifetime achievement at next month's San Sebastian film festival, organisers say

US actor Danny DeVito is to be awarded a lifetime achievement at next month's San Sebastian film festival, organisers say

US actor DeVito to get lifetime achievement award in Spain

US comic actor Danny DeVito, the star of "Twins" and "Batman Returns", will receive a lifetime achievement award at the San Sebastian film festival in Spain next month, organisers said Monday.

Drugs and late nights: micro-engraver carves out niche

Using Botox, beta-blockers and the stillness of the night, Graham Short produces miniature engravings like nobody else.

BBC drop football pundit Trevor Sinclair after racial abuse

Former England international Trevor Sinclair has been dropped as a football pundit by the BBC after he racially abused a policeman who arrested him for drink-driving.

Sports

Nepali swimmer Gaurika Singh's destiny could have taken a tragic turn three years ago after an earthquake struck her home country. Nepali residents took part in a vigil earlier this year in memory of those killed.

Nepali swimmer Gaurika Singh's destiny could have taken a tragic turn three years ago after an earthquake struck her home country. Nepali residents took part in a vigil earlier this year in memory of those killed.

Quake survivor Singh puts Nepal on Asian swim map

Having survived a killer earthquake and an embarrassing wardrobe glitch at the 2016 Rio Olympics, Nepali swimmer Gaurika Singh is not your typical 15-year-old.

Britain's Joshua to defend heavyweight title against Molina

Britain's Anthony Joshua will defend his International Boxing Federation (IBF) world heavyweight title against Eric Molina of the United States in Manchester on December 10, it was announced Tuesday.

SciTech

An earthquake in early August 2018 on the Indonesian island of Lombok damaged tens of thousands of homes, mosques and businesses on the island and displaced more than 350,000

An earthquake in early August 2018 on the Indonesian island of Lombok damaged tens of thousands of homes, mosques and businesses on the island and displaced more than 350,000

Fresh 6.9-magnitude earthquake hits Indonesia's Lombok: USGS

A strong earthquake rocked Indonesia's Lombok Sunday, two weeks after a quake killed more than 480 people on the island and hours after another tremor triggered landslides, damaged buildings and sent people fleeing.

US Library of Congress backtracks on complete Twitter archive

The US Library of Congress has scaled back plans to archive every message ever sent on Twitter, sparking debate on the importance of social media in historical records.

Health

"An ability to detect sick people would allow people to avoid being close to sick people, and hence minimise the risk of becoming sick if the person is a carrier of contagious disease," study co-author John Axelsson of Stockholm University

"An ability to detect sick people would allow people to avoid being close to sick people, and hence minimise the risk of becoming sick if the person is a carrier of contagious disease," study co-author John Axelsson of Stockholm University

That's sick! Humans identify infected peers from a photo

Human beings can spot a sick person, on a photo, a mere two hours after he or she was infected by a germ, researchers said Wednesday.