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Revellers die in ferry collision

A boat packed with revellers on a long holiday weekend collided with a ferry and sank off Hong Kong, killing at least 36 people in the deadliest accident to strike the Chinese territory in years.

The boat was carrying utility company workers and their families to famed Victoria Harbour to watch a fireworks display in celebration of China's National Day and mid-autumn festival.

The two vessels collided last night near Lamma Island off the southwestern coast of Hong Kong Island.

More than 100 people were rescued and sent to hospitals, and nine had serious or critical injuries.



¤1m gems haul in museum raid

ThieveS made off with an estimated $2m (¤1.5m) in precious gems and gold from a mining museum in California during a brazen daytime robbery.

But they didn't get away with the biggest prize of all -- the nearly 14lb (6.35kg) Fricot Nugget, a giant crystalline gold mass unearthed in the Gold Rush era.

During their attempt to grab the rock, the robbers triggered an alarm that alerted authorities but they were unable to catch them.



¤24m payout



for reef oil spill

A Greek shipping company has agreed to pay the New Zealand government up to $31.5m (¤24m) towards the clean-up costs of a cargo ship's grounding on a reef near popular beaches last year.

The Daina Shipping vessel Rena ran onto the Astrolabe reef near Tauranga on a calm night last October.

It spilled hundreds of tons of oil and killed thousands of sea birds in New Zealand's worst maritime environmental disaster.



Clarkson rap



over car quip

Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson breached BBC guidelines by comparing a Japanese car to people with growths on their faces, a standards report from the broadcaster says.

A member of the public complained about the "offensive" remarks after Clarkson likened the shape of a Prius camper van to someone with "a growth on their face" and referred to it as the "elephant car".


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