At least 16 people died and dozens fell ill from drinking contaminated cider in the western Russian region of Ulyanovsk, its governor said on Monday."Sixteen people died" from drinking adulterated cider, governor Alexei Russkikh said.
A Citroen 2CV made of wood, thought to be the only one of its kind, has sold for 210,000 euros ($225,000) at auction in France, setting a new price record for the iconic vehicle.The previous high for a 2CV was set in 2016, when an extremely rare 1961 2CV Sahara in almost mint condition was sold for 172,800 euros by Paris-based auction house Artcurial.
Not to be outdone by US-style spelling bee extravaganzas, Paris's most famous street the Champs-Elysees was transformed into an open-air mass "dictation" spellathon Sunday, pitting thousands of France's brainiest bookworms against one another.Revealing a very French love affair with words, over 50,000 applied to participate in the event, a world first, in which hopefuls attempt to faithfully and without error transcribe a text read to them. Over 5,000 applicants aged 10-90 were chosen to participate in three sessions led by novelist Rachid Santaki.With 1,779 desks laid out on Paris' most famous boulevard in each session, organisers had sought to break the world record for a dictation spelling competition. In the first round, an excerpt of La Mule du Pape by renowned French writer Alphonse Daudet was read by journalist Augustin Trapenard, of Libraries Without Borders. Silence fell when the first session started, but for 10-year-old Samson, the dictation was "too fast". He gave up. In his final year of primary school, top student Antoine attended with his father and, despite being a star pupil, he had struggled to fill his page. "It was impossible! The dictation was for adults," he said. His father Adrien Blind, 42, was equally relieved when the session wrapped, saying he "was in a state of stress and worry".But 65-year-old retiree Touria Zerhouni was more upbeat. "I only made two mistakes! I expected it to be much harder," she said. The competition went beyond the French classics, with a sport themed round read by rugby player Pierre Rabadan, and another with a contemporary flavour read by writer and journalist Katherine Pancol. Marc-Antoine Jamet, president of the Champs-Elysees Committee which hosted the dictation during , said the event went beyond spelling. "Dictation helps us to live together. It's unifying," he said.is/cel/rhl/cls/cpy/nas/gw
From a boat you can eat to a crime-busting canine...The border collie won the Palm Dog -- cinema's "pawmost" award for canine actors -- for his role in "Anatomy of a Fall", which went on to win the festival's top prize, the Palme d'Or. Hailed as "one of the best performances we have ever seen" by jury president Toby Rose, the dog plays a key role in solving a crime at the heart of the tense drama.
Sprawled nonchalantly across the doorstep, a large tomcat welcomes visitors to Tehran's cat museum and cafe, a curious establishment where some 30 friendly felines roam freely throughout the exhibition space.It is a place where visitors and cats coexist peacefully in the exhibition rooms and on the cafe terrace.
If you ever thought yoga looks too hard and ascetic, think again."It's totally basic yoga exercises.
Snapping pictures with cell phones, hundreds of New Yorkers and tourists gathered in the streets to watch the sun set in perfect alignment between rows of the skyscrapers for which the city is famous.She said she would remind them that "it's not the sun actually setting.
The spectacular transformation of a stretch of Venice's Grand Canal to fluorescent green was due to fluorescein, a non-toxic substance used for testing wastewater networks, local authorities said on Monday. Residents noticed a stretch of Venice's Grand Canal turned bright green Sunday, prompting police to investigate amid speculation it could be a stunt by environmentalists.
A harness-wearing Beluga whale that turned up in Norway in 2019, sparking speculation it was a spy trained by the Russian navy, has appeared off Sweden's coast, an organisation following him said Monday.Directorate officials said Hvaldimir may have escaped an enclosure, and may have been trained by the Russian navy as it appeared to be accustomed to humans.
France's enfant terrible of the tennis courts Benoit Paire thrilled the Roland Garros crowd in a battling five-set defeat against Cameron Norrie on Monday.AFP Sports admires some of the great beards in sports: - BENOIT PAIRE - There is no mistaking the wildly hirsute figure of explosive and controversial tennis player Paire who lost a French Open rollercoaster 7-5, 4-6, 3-6, 6-1, 6-4 against Cameron Norrie on Court Suzanne Lenglen.
The US state of Connecticut has exonerated 12 people convicted of witchcraft in colonial America almost 400 years ago following a campaign to clear their names.States and countries have made moves in recent years to clear the names of accused witches.
Around 400 years ago, two groups of runners -- one Dutch, one French -- are said to have set off from the same point on the Caribbean island of Saint Martin to trace the border between their nations.The Dutch claimed all the waters of the bay, while the French pointed to modern international law which posits that the border should run through the mid-point of the natural harbour.
Diplomats from 175 countries gathering in Paris for plastics treaty talks on Monday may want to pack an umbrella, but not just because there's a chance of rain.Last year, 175 nations agreed to forge a legally binding treaty to curb plastic pollution, aiming to complete negotiations by 2024.
More than 130 firefighters battled towering flames and thick smoke Thursday as a huge blaze consumed an unoccupied seven-storey building in central Sydney.More than 130 firefighters and 30 fire trucks were at the scene, he said, dousing the blaze from the ground, ladder trucks and crane-like aerial ladder trucks.
A Patek Philippe wristwatch once owned by China's last emperor sold for more than $6 million at auction in Hong Kong on Tuesday. A Patek Philippe "Grandmaster Chime" sold for $31 million in 2019.
Climate activists in Italy turned Rome's famous Trevi Fountain black on Sunday, saying floods that have killed 14 people in the country's northeast were "a warning".the activists shouted, as tourists packed in around the fountain in Rome's historic centre snapped photographs, applauded or booed.
An elderly US man has been charged with the theft nearly 20 years ago of a pair of red slippers that Judy Garland wore in the classic film "The Wizard of Oz." The sequined shoes -- indelibly associated with the character Dorothy clicking them together and saying repeatedly, "there's no place like home" -- were stolen in 2005 from the Judy Garland Museum in the actress's hometown of Grand Rapids, Minnesota.The slippers are among four pairs that Garland wore during the making of the beloved 1939 f
The Austrian village of Hallstatt -- popular among selfie-seekers for its similarity to the backdrop of the Frozen film series -- has installed wooden barriers to obstruct the Alpine view in an effort to curb overtourism.Grappling with a revived influx of tourists thronging its narrow streets, the village acted on complaints by residents and erected temporary wooden fences last week to partially obstruct the vista, a community official told AFP. The barriers were put up in the hope that droves o
The scales of justice have caught two anglers found cheating during a fishing tournament in the midwestern US state of Ohio.Professional fishing tournaments are popular in the United States with tens of thousands of dollars often at stake.
The Champs-Elysees in Paris will hold the world's biggest spelling test next month, organisers said Wednesday.Competitors taking part in "the world's largest dictation" on June 4 will have to correctly write down a passage of French text read out by the organisers.
The storied Moulin Rouge cabaret in Paris said Tuesday that it had dropped a long-running snake act under pressure from animal rights groups.The cabaret, founded in 1889, has now bowed to pressure from Paris officials and campaigners who said it was cruel to submerge terrestrial snakes.
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg took part in his first jiu-jitsu martial arts tournament on Saturday and went home with silver and gold medals, he posted on social media."Competed in my first jiu-jitsu tournament and won some medals for the Guerrilla Jiu-Jitsu team," Zuckerberg wrote on Facebook and Instagram.
Every morning for the last 42 years, Piet Kempenaar has cast a careful eye over the Dutch sky before releasing a brake and "steering" the giant blades of his centuries-old mill into the wind.Kempenaar has leased De Kat from the local milling association since 1981 for his pigment-making business, which attracts thousands of buyers every year.
GRAND-HALLET, Belgium (Reuters) - The colourful tins piled high around Belgian collector Yvette Dardenne used to contain goods ranging from chocolates, toffees, coffee and rice to tobacco, talc and shoe polish, and come from as far away as India. Yvette Dardenne, 83, has accumulated almost 60,000 vintage tin boxes from all over the world since starting her collection some 30 years ago. The collection, which now occupies four houses, all began with a Cote d'Or chocolate box illustrated with a painting of a blonde girl in a blue hat, Dardenne told Reuters, standing amid the carefully arranged tin boxes in the medieval watermill she owns next to her home.
The flip flop sound of penguin feet rang out at an empty zoo in Thailand on Thursday as a parade of birds waddled out of their enclosure for their daily splash in a pool to keep them healthy during a COVID-19 lockdown. Thailand is fighting its biggest coronavirus outbreak yet and has introduced strict movement curbs that have seen many public places, including zoos, shuttered. "I noticed that they felt a bit confused because when they walk out, there's usually a lot of people waiting for them," said Tossapol Kosol, a penguin specialist at the Khao Kheow Open Zoo just outside Bangkok, the Southeast Asian country's capital.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Tuesday that his dog Dilyn had "romantic urges" and was "endlessly at people's legs" in Downing Street. Johnson and Carrie Symonds revealed in 2019 that they had adopted a rescued Jack Russell-cross puppy named Dilyn. "Do you have to worry about his romantic urges?" Johnson asked a police dog handler with an Alsatian.
Cat owners who love to take pictures of their furry friends now have a new excuse to pull out their smartphones and take a snapshot: it may actually help the cat. A Calgary, Alberta, animal health technology company, Sylvester.ai, has developed an app called Tably that uses the phone's camera to tell whether a feline is feeling pain. A 2019 study published in peer-reviewed journal Scientific Reports found that the so-called 'feline grimace scale,' or FGS, is a valid and reliable tool for acute pain assessment in cats.
Australia's strict hotel quarantine requirements leaves most people frustrated and angry, but a group of quarantined seasonal workers from Samoa sang from their hotel room balconies in Hobart to say thank you instead. They were also doing this to thank the Australian Defence Force, police and government for their efforts, according to Dennie Teniseli, who filmed the video on June 18 not long after the group flew in. Australia has since March 2020 shut its international border to non-citizens but it has allowed just over 1,500 people from the Pacific to temporarily enter and work on farms in a bit to ease labour shortages.
A man in the Australian city of Perth escaped mandatory quarantine in a hotel by scaling down a rope made of tied together bedsheets from a fourth-floor window, police said on Tuesday. After arriving in the West Coast city on an interstate flight from Brisbane, the man had his application for entry refused under the state's tough border entry rules intended to stop the virus entering from elsewhere in the country. The man was told to leave the state within 48 hours and taken to a hotel for temporary quarantine, but just before 1:00 a.m. on Tuesday (17:00 GMT on Monday) "he climbed out a window of the fourth floor room using a rope made of bed sheets and fled the area", Western Australia Police said in a Facebook post.
Four German tightrope walkers have set a new world highlining distance record by crossing a 2.1 km-long valley in Swedish lapland on a line suspended at a height of 600 metres. Reuters' video footage showed a barefoot man sway and teeter as he delicately tiptoed across the line between two mountain peaks in a snow-capped valley. "I just focused on being very slow, being extremely clean and just reaching the end," said Quirin Herterich, who was first to cross the line before compatriots Lukas Irmler, Ruben Langer and Friedi Kuehne successfully followed.
The massive bubble Kurth Reis conjured last month, rising like a genie from a bucket of soap, startled a small girl visiting San Francisco's Embarcadero, almost enveloping her as she scampered away. Reis was in the military and later did jail time, burning bridges before a motorcycle crash hospitalized him in 2018, he recounted. His girlfriend, Kelly Sullivan, deserves much of the credit, or blame, for what she calls his soapy "addiction."
A 19-acre (7.7-hectare) lot for sale in a protected bay on the Canadian side of Lake Erie may look like a steal at C$99,000 ($80,292), especially with the average home in Canada now worth C$688,000, but there is a catch. The vacant lot on Brock Street in the village of Shrewsbury, Ontario, about 65 miles (105 km) east of Detroit, has no actual address, though the neighborhood gets high marks for being quiet and car-friendly. Canada's housing market has been on a tear through the COVID-19 pandemic, with the average selling price of a home up 38.4% in May from a year earlier.
A pet lion that authorities seized from a house in Cambodia's capital last week was reunited with its owner on Monday - after a personal intervention by Prime Minister Hun Sen. Police and wildlife officials initially raided the property on June 27, saying they were rescuing the animal after videos of it appeared on the social media app TikTok, and neighbours raised the alarm. In the days that followed, social media posts appeared saying the lion should be returned to the owner, who had denied accusations of mistreating the animal.
As demand for plant-based alternatives to meat rises, Barcelona-based startup Novameat is using its 3D printing technology to manufacture vegetarian "steaks" that it hopes will reach the mass market next year. Novameat plans to sell its "steaks" directly to consumers and to businesses such as restaurants interested in producing plant-based meat, business development manager Alexandre Campos told Reuters on Tuesday. The Spanish company, which developed its technology in 2018, was showing how its latest 3D printer produced food at Barcelona's Mobile World Congress (MWC).
Meatpacker JBS SA said on Thursday it will give away beef, pork and chicken for the next year to 50 U.S. families that participate in company-sponsored vaccination clinics over the coming weeks. The Brazilian company's arm in the United States and Pilgrim's Pride, a U.S. chicken company mostly owned by JBS, came under fire last year as thousands of meatpacking workers fell sick with COVID-19. "We've made great progress, and our vaccination rates are much higher than the rates in the communities that we call home," said Andre Nogueira, JBS USA chief executive.
Ancient Egypt met modern medical technology when a mummy underwent a CT scan at an Italian hospital as part of a research project to discover its secrets. The mummy of Ankhekhonsu, an ancient Egyptian priest, was transferred from Bergamo's Civic Archaeological Museum to Milan's Policlinico hospital, where experts will shed light on his life and the burial customs of almost 3,000 years ago. "The mummies are practically a biological museum, they are like a time capsule," said Sabina Malgora, the director of the Mummy Project Research.
After 123 days handcuffed together to save their on-again off-again relationship, Ukrainians Alexandr Kudlay and Viktoria Pustovitova have split up, shedding their bonds on national TV and saying the experiment had brought home uncomfortable truths. The young couple from the eastern city of Kharkiv decided to handcuff themselves together on Valentine's Day, in a last-ditch attempt to break the cycle of breaking up and making up. Pustovitova said personal space is what she missed most, although she also felt her boyfriend did not pay her enough attention while they were chained together.
With one eye on the lucrative Chinese market just across the border, an entrepreneur has launched Kyrgyzstan's first cricket farm and is producing high-protein insect flour and fried cricket snacks. Accompanied by loud chirping from his one tonne of crickets at the farm, Adyl Gaparov said his idea was inspired by online articles about breeding crickets. "Our main business is producing cricket flour with high protein content," Gaparov said.
Supermarket chain Carrefour SA said on Friday it had notified local police after employees at one of its Warsaw stores had found suspicious parcels in a delivery of bananas, which police later confirmed to be cocaine. "They immediately notified the police, who quickly secured the batch of goods and started an investigation that is currently underway," Carrefour said in an email to Reuters, adding that it was cooperating with the investigation. Warsaw police said the packages contained over 160 kilograms (352.74 lbs) of cocaine worth 30 million zlotys ($8.14 million).
For some in the U.S., the emergence of billions of red-eyed cicadas this spring after a 17-year slumber has been met with annoyance - particularly over their loud buzzing calls. But for David Rothenberg, a professor of philosophy and music at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, it has presented a unique opportunity for collaboration. "We're combining human musical ideas with nature's musical ideas," he explained as he gathered fellow musicians at a nature preserve in Princeton, New Jersey.
Chinese social media platform WeChat on Thursday published a list of activities and "violations" it is banning in a bid to clean up its livestreaming service, including "indecent" nose-picking and spanking games. WeChat, owned by Tencent Holdings, is ubiquitous in China, where it is used by around 1 billion people for everything from sending instant messages to ordering pizzas. China closely regulates its internet and has been increasingly clamping down on content that is politically or socially sensitive.
GUANIMAR (Reuters) - "Michel the noble" and "Panchito the affectionate" are some of the names Leonardo Carrillo has given the pelicans that flock each year to his wooden hut on the southern coast of Cuba. For the past two decades, the 62-year-old has cared for the colony of around 100 brown pelicans that land in his village of Guanimar in December to spend the winter months there before heading back north in May. Carrillo said he does actually have three (human) children - two who live in the Isle of Youth and one who lives in a nearby town.
Laurent Veyet's tasting menu is not for the faint-hearted, but may point to the future of feeding a booming world population - there is a prawn salad with yellow mealworm, crunchy insects on a bed of vegetables and chocolate-coated grasshoppers. "It's the ideal dish for first-timers," the Parisian chef said, preparing a serving of pasta made with mealworm flour, sweet potato and sauteed insect larvae. The European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) in January deemed the mealworm fit for human consumption and in May approved its sale on the market.
Peruvian shamans, with rattles, smoke and pictures of the Andean country's two presidential candidates, are trying to read the tea leaves ahead of a polarized run-off election on June 6 with polls showing what could be a tight contest. On a stony hillside in Lima, shamans burned incense and played musical instruments in colorful, traditional outfits to predict the winner from between socialist front-runner Pedro Castillo and conservative Keiko Fujimori. The vote could tip copper-rich Peru sharply to the left, with Castillo pledging to rewrite the constitution and levy larger portions of mining wealth.
BANGKOK (Reuters) -A district of northern Thailand has launched a raffle campaign for inoculated residents to win a live cow per week for the rest of the year, in a bid to boost the local COVID-19 vaccination drive. From next month, one lucky vaccinated villager in the Mae Chaem district of Chiang Mai province will be randomly chosen every week to win a young cow worth around 10,000 baht ($319). "Our vaccine registration numbers have gone from hundreds to thousands in a couple of days," district chief Boonlue Thamtharanurak told Reuters.
“The challenge of dethroning Trump is going to require extreme measures.”
“The Ron DeSantis boomlet is done. He consistently trails Donald Trump by double-digits.”
“To have a chance of besting Trump, DeSantis has to convince Republicans that as president he would deliver better results.”
“He’s slowly devolved into an older kind of Republican — the kind without answers to the party’s problems.”
“Many predicted that his hard-charging first term in office would provoke a backlash. Instead the opposite occurred.”