Friday 24 November 2017

Death penalty row

European Union leaders have warned Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban not to restore the death penalty. EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said Orban "should immediately make clear that this is not his intention. Would it be his intention, it would be a fight."

The issue was raised by Orban after last week's murder of a 22-year-old tobacco shop attendant in a southern Hungarian city.

New drug craze

A popular designer drug has been blamed for a series of bizarre crimes in Florida. Police say one man ran naked through his neighbourhood, tried to have sex with a tree and called himself the Norse god Thor. Another ran nude down city streets in broad daylight, convinced a pack of dogs was after him. Two others separately tried to break into the Fort Lauderdale Police Department, desperate for help from imaginary mobs.

Officers said all of them had used "flakka", a synthetic drug with an active ingredient called alpha PVP.

Angrier birds

Angry Birds are getting angrier, because some of their real-life counterparts in the South Pacific are facing extinction.

Rovio, the creator of the hugely popular Angry Birds games, says it's teaming up with nature conservationist group BirdLife to disseminate information and help collect funds to protect birds in the region that are particularly vulnerable to attacks by non-native predators introduced by humans.

Auschwitz barber dies

Jozef Paczynski, a Polish political prisoner at Auschwitz who became the personal barber to camp commander Rudolf Hoess, has died aged 95. The Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum confirmed Paczynski died on Sunday in the nearby city of Krakow, where he lived.

Mr Paczynski was transported to the camp in 1940 by the Germans.

Handle with care

A two-tonne rhino struggling to mate with her partner has undergone a delicate ultrasound. Lucy, a southern white rhino, moved to Blair Drummond Safari Park near Stirling in 2012 and was paired to mate with mature bull Graham. Lucy was sedated but vets had to keep her upright by strapping her to a metal frame.

Irish Independent

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