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International

Teacher who saved hundreds of young Jews during Holocaust dies at 107

Johan van Hulst, a former Dutch senator and teacher renowned for his efforts to save hundreds of Jewish children during the Holocaust, died March 22 at the age of 107, the Dutch Senate announced this week. As principal of the Reformed Teachers Training College, van Hulst found himself at the center of a growing operation to smuggle Jewish children out ...

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Mauritania court gives toughest sentence for slave owners

Two slave owners in Mauritania have been jailed in a country where slavery remains widespread but convictions rare, activists say. The sentences of 10 and 20 years are said to be the toughest-ever for the crime in the West African country. Slavery was outlawed in 1981 but 1% of the population are still living in bondage, human rights groups say. ...

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Sierra Leone votes in run-off between Maada Bio and Kamara

Voters in Sierra Leone choose their new president on Saturday in a run-off poll which pits a coup leader against the president’s hand-picked successor. The vote was delayed after an allegation of electoral fraud in the first round earlier this month. Former military coup leader Julius Maada Bio received the most votes in the first round. He now faces ruling ...

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Pay cut for ‘cursed prince’ of Belgium

Prince Laurent of Belgium has had his monthly allowance docked for a year, after a vote by the country’s federal parliament. The sanction was imposed after the prince attended a Chinese embassy reception last year without government permission, in full naval uniform. Lawmakers voted for a 15% cut to his €307,000 (£270,000; $378,000) annual allowance. The move was suggested by ...

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Afghanistan sets October date for delayed elections

Afghan President, Ashraf Ghani

Afghanistan aims to hold parliamentary and local district elections in October, more than three years late, a senior election official said, although much work needs to happen quickly to meet that timeline in the war-ravaged country. The elections are considered a dry run for the presidential vote to be held in 2019 and a test of whether Afghanistan’s Western-backed government ...

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Judge orders Starbucks to put cancer warnings on coffee in California

Starbucks

Starbucks and other coffee sellers must put a cancer warning on coffee sold in California, a Los Angeles judge has ruled, possibly exposing the companies to millions of dollars in fines. A little-known not-for-profit group sued some 90 coffee retailers, including Starbucks, on grounds they were violating a California law requiring companies to warn consumers of chemicals in their products ...

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Gold diggers invade Grace Mugabe’s farm

Grace Mugabe developed the farm while her husband was president

Illegal workers have invaded the farm of former Zimbabwean first lady Grace Mugabe to mine for gold. Reporters from the Zimbabwean newspaper Newsday found them uprooting lemon trees, digging shafts and loading gold ore into lorries. After unsuccessfully confronting them on Thursday, Mrs Mugabe reported the matter to the police. The farm is in Mazowe, where she had forcefully evicted ...

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Palestinian killed as Gaza protest starts

Palestinians march to mark Land Day east of Gaza City

A Palestinian farmer has been killed by Israeli artillery fire in Gaza, Palestinian officials say, hours before a major protest by Palestinians along the border was due to start. The strike happened near the town of Khan Yunis, in southern Gaza. The Israeli military said a tank had fired at two suspects after suspicious activity near a security fence. Palestinians ...

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France’s ex-president to face corruption trial

Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy is to face trial for corruption and influence peddling, prosecutors say. The case centres on wiretapped phone-calls in 2014, in which Mr Sarkozy allegedly sought to influence a judge who was looking into suspected illegal funding of his 2007 campaign. The judge and Mr Sarkozy’s lawyer have also been ordered to stand trial. They have ...

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Ex Chinese vice mayor sentenced to death for corruption

Zhang Zhongsheng, the former vice mayor of Luliang City in north China’s Shanxi Province, was sentenced to death on Wednesday for taking bribes of more than 1 billion yuan (US$159 million), a court said today, according to Xinhua news agency. Zhang’s personal assets will be confiscated, according to the Intermediate People’s Court of Linfen City in Shanxi. The former official ...

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