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  • A small step for China: Mars base for teens opens in desert

    A small step for China: Mars base for teens opens in desert

    A Mars base simulator sits in the middle of nowhere in China's Gobi desert, but instead of housing astronauts training to live on the Red Planet, the facility is full of teenagers. Surrounded by barren hills in northwest Gansu province, "Mars Base...

  • Valley of the dolls: scarecrows outnumber people in Japan village

    Valley of the dolls: scarecrows outnumber people in Japan village

    In the tiny village of Nagoro, deep in the mountains of western Japan, the wind howls down a deserted street with not a living soul to be seen. But yet the street appears busy, dotted with life-sized dolls that outnumber humans 10 to one, the...

  • Dog pulled from seas 220km off Thai coast to be adopted by rescuer

    Dog pulled from seas 220km off Thai coast to be adopted by rescuer

    An exhausted dog found paddling 220 kilometres off the Thai coast is set for a new lease on life after an oil rig worker who rescued him promised to adopt the plucky pooch. The tan-coloured dog, named Boonrod by his rescuers - Thai for "survivor...

  • YouTube accidentally links Notre-Dame fire to 9/11 attacks

    YouTube accidentally links Notre-Dame fire to 9/11 attacks

    A YouTube fact-check feature which is meant to tackle misinformation accidentally tagged live broadcasts of a fire engulfing Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris with details about the 9/11 terror attacks. The blaze erupted in the UNESCO world heritage...

  • Brazil flooding unleashes caimans in Rio neighborhood

    Brazil flooding unleashes caimans in Rio neighborhood

    Residents of a hillside Rio de Janeiro favela risk finding hungry caimans at their front door after the city was hit hard by heavy flooding caused by torrential rain. The cold-blooded creatures - smaller relatives of alligators - belong to a...

  • World's largest air purifier choked on debut

    World's largest air purifier choked on debut

    Red-faced Hong Kong officials admitted on Tuesday that a record-breaking air filter for a new bypass under the city broke down shortly after it began operating. Hong Kong opened a long-awaited $4.6 billion tunnel under a 3.7 kilometre (2.3 mile)...

  • Canada couple, brewer create Atlantic Ocean salt beer

    Canada couple, brewer create Atlantic Ocean salt beer

    A Canadian couple that harvest Atlantic sea salt has teamed up with a brewmaster friend to create a new salt beer - which could become the first drink of its kind to be widely distributed. Salty-sour gose beers had been brewed for about a thousand...

  • 'Mikhail Gorbachev' running for office in Indonesia polls

    'Mikhail Gorbachev' running for office in Indonesia polls

    Mikhail Gorbachev is running for office in Indonesian elections next week, but it's not the octogenarian ex-Soviet leader who helped bring an end to the Cold War. The 32-year-old - full name Mikhail Gorbachev Dom - is vying for a seat in...

  • No playing around: French authorities halt game with house as prize

    No playing around: French authorities halt game with house as prize

    A French couple hoping to sell their luxurious countryside resort via a quiz has been forced to suspend the competition after France's online gaming authorities stepped in. Brigitte and Christophe Demassougne originally put their sprawling guest...

  • Eye'll bee damned: woman finds insects in eye

    Eye'll bee damned: woman finds insects in eye

    Four "sweat bees" that had been living in a Taiwanese woman's eye were removed by a doctor who described his surprise at finding a "leg with hair, protruding from the eyelid". The tiny insects, which are just three milimetres long, were discovered...

  • Brazil flooding unleashes caimans in Rio neighbourhood

    Brazil flooding unleashes caimans in Rio neighbourhood

    Residents of a hillside Rio de Janeiro favela risk finding hungry caimans at their front door after the city was hit hard by heavy flooding caused by torrential rain. The cold-blooded creatures - smaller relatives of alligators - belong to a...

  • Air purifier in Hong Kong breaks down weeks after launch

    Air purifier in Hong Kong breaks down weeks after launch

    Red-faced Hong Kong officials admitted on Tuesday that a record-breaking air filter for a new bypass under the city broke down shortly after it began operating. Hong Kong opened a long-awaited $4.6 billion tunnel under a 3.7 kilometre long section...

  • Frenchman in a barrel closing in on trans-Atlantic crossing

    Frenchman in a barrel closing in on trans-Atlantic crossing

    A 72-year-old Frenchman floating across the Atlantic in a custom-made barrel says he is in high spirits as he approaches the end of his journey, after nearly 100 days alone at sea enjoying "magnificent sunrises and sunsets." "The days are going by...

  • Nepal expedition to remeasure height of Everest: officials

    Nepal expedition to remeasure height of Everest: officials

    Nepal is sending a team of government-appointed climbers up Mount Everest to remeasure its height, officials said Monday, hoping to quash persistent speculation that the world's tallest mountain has shrunk. Four government surveyors will depart...

  • What the elk is that? Match delayed by deer droppings

    What the elk is that? Match delayed by deer droppings

    The kick-off in a Scottish football match was delayed on Saturday after a herd of wild deer left excrement all over the pitch, one of the clubs involved said. "Kick off suspended due to the ref being delayed, the pitch currently waterlogged - and...

  • Poacher killed by elephant then eaten by lions in South Africa

    Poacher killed by elephant then eaten by lions in South Africa

    A suspected poacher was killed by an elephant and then eaten by lions, South Africa’s national parks agency has said. The man was hunting rhino inside Kruger National Park when the elephant attacked him. His accomplices contacted the man’s...

  • Brussels boy to pee-cycle after landmark leak inquiry

    Brussels boy to pee-cycle after landmark leak inquiry

    Brussels' famous landmark, the Manneken-Pis, is an insouciant celebration of going with the flow - but even carefree little boys can go too far. City authorities recently discovered that a fault in the 400-year-old statue's plumbing was causing...

  • Africa's richest man withdrew $10 million just to look at it

    Africa's richest man withdrew $10 million just to look at it

    Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote, known as Africa's richest man, told a forum in Ivory Coast on Saturday how he once took $10 million in cash out of the bank just to look at it and get it into his head that this was real money, not just figures...

  • Trump tweet trolls Biden's apology on touching

    Trump tweet trolls Biden's apology on touching

    US President Donald Trump deployed his trademark blend of crude humor and Twitter to mock potential election rival Joe Biden's apology for having touched women without permission. Biden, an undeclared frontrunner for the Democratic nomination to...

  • Robbers steal $1m in three-minute Mexico airport heist

    Robbers steal $1m in three-minute Mexico airport heist

    A gang of armed thieves stole about 20 million pesos ($1 million) from an armoured truck that was about to load the money onto a plane at an international airport in central Mexico, authorities and reports said. The brazen robbery took place...