Police's composite drawing of acid attacker is actually a random photo from the Web

The image of this man was shared widely on Wednesday by many Iranian news sites, including Mehr News, an official state press agency. Described as a computer-generated composite drawing of a man accused of attacking four women with acid in Isfahan last week, it was actually a random photo from the Web. Read more...

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Burkina Faso: ‘Protester shot dead’


In Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, protests against a proposed change to the constitution descended into violence this morning. At least one protester was killed near the house of François Compaoré, the president’s brother. One of our Observers was there.
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Hawaii lava flow creates 'slow-motion disaster'

It took four months, but the lava flow from the June eruption of Kilauea volcano, on Hawaii’s big island, has reached an inhabited area: the village of Pahoa, where it is expected to swallow up at least a dozen homes over the next few days. The lava river, which is over 1,000 degrees celcius, will slowly destroy the heart of this small community of 950 residents. Read more…

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IS jihadists taunt Turkish army at Syrian border


A video showing fighters from the group calling itself Islamic State talking to Turkish soldiers near the embattled city of Kobane has widely circulated online. The video has angered Kurdish activists, who see it as proof of collusion between the Turkish army and the jihadist group. However, the scene appears to be the result of provocation on the part of the IS fighters. Here’s why…
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Reality TV star shines spotlight on ‘trash islands’


In early October, an American woman posed for a series of striking photos to promote cleaning up the Maldives Islands. This photo campaign – which includes her wearing a bikini made of old bottles and surfing in a pile of trash – has received mixed reactions in the Maldives. Read more...
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Tehran tries to inspire residents to follow 'Islamic lifestyle' via comics


This week, the city of Tehran has rolled out an advertising campaign aimed at getting people to adhere to what its leaders consider a proper Islamic lifestyle. The comics, which have been put up in buses across the city, have amused some of our Observers and angered others, but either way, they’ve missed their mark. Read more...
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Five minutes: the length of a protest in Angola


Angolan law stipulates that anyone who organises a protest must inform the authorities, who are supposed to “provide protection” for the demonstrators. But when activists do this, authorities use this information to arrest them as soon as they arrive at the designated location. To circumnavigate the situation, a group of young people have been organising “flash mob” protests to gain a least a few minutes of activism before being shut down. Read more...

Machete-armed locals patrol cities after Beni massacre


After rebel attacks in the past few weeks killed 80 people, residents in numerous cities in the province of North Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo have set up self-defence groups. These armed militias patrol at night and say that they are compensating for the powerless Congolese army and police force. But not everyone agrees. Read more...
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