Science 

Thai court drops royal insult charges against academic

Sulak Sivaraksa, center, arrives at the outside of a military court in Bangkok, Thailand, Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018. A Thai military court has dropped royal insult charges against the 84-year old Thai historian who questioned whether a Thai king had actually defeated a Burmese adversary in combat on elephant-back over 500 years ago. (AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit) BANGKOK (AP) — A Thai military court on Wednesday dropped royal insult charges against an 84-year old historian who questioned whether a Thai king had actually defeated a Burmese adversary in combat on elephant-back…

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Top Stories World 

Death toll in California mudslides climb to 20 as four remain missing

Santa Barbara officials have warned that they need to clear debris from drainage basins and channels following this week’s deadly mudslides or risk possible further mud flows if another storm hits Southern California. Rob Lewin, director of the Santa Barbara County Emergency Management Office, said Saturday that the blocked drainage channels in the Montecito area of the county meant that even if a storm of less intensity hit, the area could see “more mud and flow.” The warning came as the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office announced that the death…

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Science 

Thailand seizes large elephant tusks worth over $450,000

Thai customs officials display seized ivory during a press conference in Bangkok, Thailand, Friday, Jan. 12, 2018. Thai authorities seized 148 kilograms full elephant tusk and 31 tusk fragments originating from Nigeria destined for China worth over 15 million baht ($469,800). (AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit) BANGKOK (AP) — Thai authorities have seized 148 kilograms (326 pounds) of African elephant ivory, including three large tusks, worth around 15 million baht ($469,800) from a Bangkok airport. The haul from Nigeria consisted of the tusks and 31 tusk fragments that were seized Jan. 5…

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Top Stories World 

Briton arrested in death of Thai prostitute who fell off balcony during ‘extravagant’ sex

Police pounced on Reece Vella, 25, at 4pm (local time) yesterday following the death of bar girl Wannipa Janhuathon, 26, in the early hours of Saturday morning in Pattaya, Thailand. The prostitute suffered severe head injuries and multiple fractures after falling naked along with a half-empty packet of sex drugs from an apartment in the notorious tourist resort.  Police searched the empty room – finding clothes and used condoms – then began a manhunt for the foreign tourist amid suspicions that he had fled the scene following the death of…

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Top Stories World 

‘My book will end his presidency’ Author says ‘Fire and Fury’ book will bring down Trump

US President Donald Trump has criticised Michael Wolff’s new book ‘Fire and Fury – Inside the Trump White House’. The astonishing book has questioned the President’s mental state and said that Mr Trump’s staff regard him as a “child”.  Mr Wolff has now claimed that the new book could bring down Mr Trump’s presidency, as he nears his second year as US leader.  He said: “I think one of the interesting effects of the book so far is a very clear ‘emperor has no clothes’ effect.  GETTY•NBC Michael Wolff said his…

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Suspect in murder of Philippine environmentalist freed

Joel Reyes, accused of killing a prominent environmental activist, was caught in Thailand in 2015 (AFP Photo/NOEL CELIS) More Manila (AFP) – A former Philippine official charged with the murder of a prominent environmentalist has been freed after a court voided the case against him, his lawyer said Saturday. Joel Reyes, the ex-governor of the western island of Palawan, was arrested in 2015 for the killing of Gerry Ortega, a prominent campaigner and radio host who frequently accused Reyes of massive corruption. Demetrio Custodio said his client was released late…

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Top Stories World 

Penis whitening: What is it? Why are men doing it? And what are the dangers?

Around 100 men a month undergo the treatment which costs £500 for five sessions and is carried out by plastic surgeons at the Lelux Hospital in Thai capital Bangkok. Bleaching procedures are particularly sought after in Thailand but the latest skin-whitening ads have caused outrage, accusations of racism and now public health warnings. Health officials have urged people to think twice before undergoing the procedure, which they warn can lead to scarring, inflammation and “nasty looking spots.” Dr Thongchai Keeratihuttayakorn of the Thai health ministry said: “Penis laser whitening is…

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Top Stories World 

Fireworks and flag-waving: World welcomes 2018 with huge New Year’s Eve celebrations

Samoa was the first country to welcome 2018 with celebrations including fireworks, dancing and juggling. The South Pacific island has been the first to see the New Year since 2011 when it moved from the eastern side of the international date line to the west side. Auckland in New Zealand followed soon. An estimated 1.6 million people then gathered to see the iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge and Opera House lit up by one of the world’s most technologically advanced fireworks displays.  In Japan, revellers welcomed the Year of the Rat…

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Lifestyle 

Facebook WARNING: New virus could takeover over your computer to mine Bitcoin

Facebook users’ machines could be taken over and used to mine cryptocurrency, like Bitcoin and Litcoin, security experts have warned. The new malware – dubbed Digmine – affects desktop versions of Facebook Messenger when running inside the Google Chrome web browser, Trend Micro researchers have claimed. Digmine works by hijacking the processing power in a desktop computer and using it to generate coins and confirm digital transactions.  This process is known as mining. According to a blog post by Trend Micro researchers, “If the user’s Facebook account is set to…

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Lifestyle 

Sarah Ferguson, Prince Andrew’s ex wife, reveals ‘the one thing she has done well’

Sarah Ferguson, 58, has spoken out about her mothering skills in an interview. The Duchess of York is a mother to Princess Beatrice, 29, and Princess Eugenie, 27, with Prince Andrew, a son of the Queen. Sarah Ferguson married Prince Andrew in 1986, however, they divorced in 1996 after officially separating in 1992. The couple famously still share a close relationship, and Sarah told the Telegraph in August 2013 in reference to Andrew: “He’s still my handsome prince, he’ll always be my handsome prince.” The former-royal has now revealed further…

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