Sunday, 1 May 2016



China Muslims Ramadan
Muslims pray before breaking fast on the first day of the holy fasting month of Ramadan at the Niujie Mosque in Beijing, China, June 18, 2015.KIM KYUNG-HOON/REUTERS
Islam is the most popular religion in China among young people despite a government crackdown on Ramadan and historic persecution of the Muslim Uighur minority, according to a new survey.
Of the five religions recognised by the atheist state, Islam has the largest proportion of followers under 30, with 22.4% of Chinese Muslims fitting this age bracket, according to the China Religion Survey carried out by a research centre at Beijing's Renmin University.
Around 23.3 million Muslims live in China, making up 1.8% of the total population, according to Pew Research Center data from 2010. The Center predicts the Muslim population to grow to around 30 million by 2030.
The new statistics come on the back of China imposing controversial measures on Muslims observing the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.
The Communist Party has reportedly banned teachers, students and government employees in Xinjiang province from fasting, though Chinese authorities have denied these accusations.
The government has also reportedly instructed Muslim shopkeepers and restaurant owners to sell alcohol and cigarettes in order to combat "religious extremism" in Xinjiang, which is the largest of China's administrative regions and has a majority Uighur Muslim population.
Xinjiang is a hotly-contested area of China. Hundreds have died in recent years in clashes which China has blamed on Islamist terrorist groups, while the Uighurs say they are repressed by Beijing's policies.
Despite such restrictions, the survey also found that 60% of people working at places of worship considered government regulations on religious freedom to be fair.
In addition to Islam, Catholicism, Protestantism, Buddhism and Taoism are the other officially recognised religions in China.
Catholicism was the second-most popular religion among under-30s, while traditional Chinese religions Buddhism and Taoism were most popular among over-60s. Overall, Buddhism has the highest amount of followers in China, according to the survey.
Wei Dedong, a professor of Buddhist studies at Renmin University, told the state-run newspaper the Global Times that the primary reason for the growth in Islam among young Chinese was demographic.
"Most believers of Islam belong to ethnic minority groups and it is common for a woman to give birth to several children. The children would also become Muslims while it is very rare to have an adult converting to Islam," said Dedong.
According to Pew, the fertility rate for Muslims is higher than non-Muslims in China, with believers having an average of 1.7 children compared to the national average of 1.4 children. The research centre found that Chinese Muslims are generally less educated and tend to live in rural areas, two factors which are associated with higher fertility rates.
Islam has a long but chequered history in China. The Uighurs, an indigenous ethnic population who are mostly Muslim, inhabit the northwestern province of Xinjiang but consider themselves culturally closer to central Asian nations than Chinese.
Xinjiang became part of China in the 18th century and an independence movement, which declared a state of East Turkestan in the region, was crushed by Chinese authorities in 1949.
The latest Chinese census puts the Uighur population, who have lived in the region for thousands of years, at more than 11 million, although the Uyghur American Association estimates it to be above 15 million.
On Monday, the Chinese consulate in Istanbul issued a travel warning to its citizens after protests were held over the weekend as Turkish Muslims turned out in solidarity with the Uighurs, who they believe are suppressed by Beijing.
Ankara also summoned the Chinese ambassador last week about the reports that Uighurs in Xinjiang have been banned from fasting during Ramadan. A Chinese government statement said reports of a ban were "completely at odd with the facts".

No toilet in groom’s house, Kanpur woman refuses to tie knot

No toilet in groom’s house, Kanpur woman refuses to tie knot

The woman's family members backed her decision to not marry the man over the lack of a toilet at his residence, they added.


By: PTI | Kanpur | Updated: April 17, 2016 10:27 pm
Kanpur, Kanpur toilet, kanpur marriage, bride refuses to marry, kanpur bride refuses to marry, marriage, no toilet no marriage, kanpur news, trending news Although the woman’s family members claimed that police were approached in this regard, officials at Barra police station said they were not aware of any such matter. (Source: ANI photo)
A woman refused to tie the knot with a man in Kanpur because he failed to get a toilet built at his residence in time for the wedding, agreeing instead to a match with another suitor who had a toilet at home.
Facilitated by a local NGO, the match between the 25-year-old woman hailing from Lucknow and the man was finalised after he agreed to her demand for a toilet to be ready at his house by the date of the wedding, which was to be organised as part of a mass ceremony on Sunday.
However, the woman, who has completed high school education, on Saturday called off the wedding after she found that the toilet had not been built, the NGO said. The woman’s family members backed her decision to not marry the man over the lack of a toilet at his residence, they added.
 Although the woman’s family members claimed that police were approached in this regard, officials at Barra police station said they were not aware of any such matter. The NGO, after hearing about the woman’s stand against marrying if there was no toilet at her future husband’s place, found another match for her and she gave her consent for the same as there was a toilet at the new suitor’s residence. - 

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Wednesday, 12 August 2015

GM crops: What do the new rules mean?

The legislation will give governments more power to decide whether to grow GM crops, after years of deadlock.
Some see the move as "a victory for common sense". Others warn it may prove detrimental, by undermining innovation and the single market.
Only one GM crop - a type of maize used for animal feed - is grown commercially in the EU.
There have been no new GM crops approved since 1998, apart from a type of GM potato, which was withdrawn, as countries opposed to GM have been able to block Europe-wide approval.
Under the new legislation, agreed on Tuesday in Strasbourg, any new GM crops in the pipeline would still go through the European risk approval process.
Once deemed safe, individual countries would be able to decide for themselves whether to plant them. But experts are divided on whether it will lead to the planting of fewer or more GM crops in Europe.

Innovation concerns

Prof Huw Jones of Rothamsted Research in Hertfordshire, which carries out research on GM crops, described the vote as "a step forward".
"As a scientist who uses GM as a research tool, I think it's a step forward, it's a step in the right direction because it could engage the big biotech companies in Europe again," he says.
But some warn that the move is a "stop sign for innovation in Europe".
"Member states will receive a licence to ban safe products which have been approved at European level, and they will be allowed to base these bans on non-scientific grounds," says Jeff Rowe, chairman of the Agri-Food Council of Europabio, the European Association for Bioindustries.
"This sets a dangerous precedent for the internal market and sends a negative signal to innovative industries considering investing in Europe."

Practical hurdles

Peter Melchett, policy director of the Soil Association, says that countries wishing to grow GM crops face "a huge risk". Political leaders in Scotland and Wales are opposed to GM crops and can now ban them from the fields, despite the crop being cleared on health and safety grounds at the EU level.
"It will help Scotland and Wales consolidate their opposition to GMOs by banning them," he says. "In England it's unclear because there are currently no GM crops that could be grown in England and it's not clear if any will be developed, but what is clear is there is still no demand for GM food from supermarkets and others in England."
Friends of the Earth campaigner Clare Oxborrow says while the decision is "good news" for nations like Scotland and Wales, it is a "double-edged sword that could open the door to GM crops being grown in England".
The new rules also raise practical questions, such as how to deal with land borders in neighbouring countries, and whether companies will be willing to spend hundreds of millions on regulatory requirements when not all nations will buy them.
GM crops are used widely in the US and Asia, but nine countries have opposed their cultivation in the EU (Austria, Bulgaria, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Luxembourg and Poland).
For some EU nations, GMO foods are seen as a potential threat to the reputation of its agricultural produce, while in others, ministers argue it is an essential technology to feed a growing world population.

Monday, 1 December 2014

At least 50 ISIS fighters killed in Syria’s Kobane

At least 50 Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group jihadists have been killed in the past 24 hours in clashes, suicide bombings and U.S.-led air strikes in Syria’s Kobane, Agence France-Presse reported a monitor as saying Sunday.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights described number of deaths as one of the highest daily tolls for the Sunni Muslim extremist group since it launched an assault on the strategic town on the Turkish border in September.
Meanwhile, a U.S.-led coalition on Saturday carried out at least 30 air strikes in Syria against ISIS in the northern province of Raqqa, the Observatory reported.
The air strikes hit ISIS positions in the northern outskirts of Raqqa city, a major stronghold of the hardline Islamist militants.
The areas hit by the strikes included the 17th Division, a Syrian army base that ISIS seized in July, the Observatory said.

Fighting in Aleppo

In a related story, fighting between rebels and government’s forces continued in Aleppo, Syria's second city and former industrial powerhouse.
A Syrian woman and her three sons were killed overnight by rebel fire in the government-held side of Aleppo, the Observatory reported.

The woman and her children were killed when a homemade rocket fired from the rebel-held east of the city hit their home around midnight in the Ashrafiyeh district.

The Britain-based monitor said rebels were firing homemade explosive devices often using gas canisters that were even more damaging than regular mortar fire.

Aleppo has been divided between rebel control in the east and regime control in the west since shortly after fighting began there in mid-2012.

Since the end of 2013, the Syrian air force has regularly dropped explosive-packed “barrel bombs,” which rights groups criticize as particularly indiscriminate, on the rebel east and surrounding province.

The barrel bomb attacks have killed several thousand people in Aleppo province, according to the Observatory.

In recent months, rebels have intensified their mortar attacks on the government-held west of the city, killing nearly 300 people in four months, the group said.

Friday, 21 November 2014

Face to face with walruses in Norway

Photographer Paul Souders comes face to face with walruses in Norway

Walruses swim in shallow water near Lagoya Island in Svalbard, Norway. Wildlife photographer, Paul Souders, 50, from Seattle in the US to join a three week-long sea expedition on one of the world's most remote and northern islands, Spitzbergen. 'As the pack ice recedes in summer, the walruses haul out onto gravel beaches, sometimes in massive belching, farting and fighting piles,' says Paul. 'When they're not resting and sleeping onshore, most will swim out from shore to their shallow feeding grounds. From here they dive and feed on mollusks on the ocean floor. They also love their beachside naps and like the rest of us - they hate to be disturbed.' Paul says that working with such large and unpredictable creatures is not without its dangers - and sometimes his only protection was his £8000 worth of camera equipment.
American wildlife photographer Paul Souders went on a three week-long sea expedition off one of the world's most remote and northern islands - Spitzbergen, in the Svalbard archipelago, Norway - to photograph walruses.

Two walruses sleeping on sea ice near Lagoya Island in Svalbard
Each blubbery sea beast can weigh up to one and a half tons - the same as a small truck - and is armed with foot-long tusks. Walruses use their huge tusks for fighting other walruses, defence against whales and sharks and hauling their fat-laden bodies on and off their ice platforms.

Walruses resting on a gravel beach on Lagoya Island in Svalbard
"As the pack ice recedes in summer, the walruses haul out onto gravel beaches, sometimes in massive belching, farting and fighting piles," says Paul. "When they're not resting and sleeping onshore, most will swim out from shore to their shallow feeding grounds. From here they dive and feed on mollusks on the ocean floor. They also love their beachside naps and like the rest of us - they hate to be disturbed."

Paul Souders takes pictures of a walrus with his underwater camera in Svalbard
Paul says that working with such large and unpredictable creatures is not without its dangers - and sometimes his only protection was his £8,000 worth of camera equipment. "The first time I slid off the iceberg into the water, my pulse was racing, my teeth were chattering," Paul said. One of the walruses took notice and swam over, doing a slow, cautious pass beneath me. Then he swam right up to the dome of my underwater camera. I finally had to give him a little shove to push him back. I took a couple of good head butts- where the guys back on my boat could hear a loud "clack" from ivory on my glass dome."

A walrus swims close to the surface off the Tiholmane Islands in Svalbard, Norway
"The water is ice-cream-headache-inducingly cold - your lips will turn blue and go instantly numb," says Paul. "It's an incredibly vulnerable feeling, floating in ice water and facing off against a set of tusks and a beast that weighs more than my car. It puts me in my place - flailing around in an awkward dry suit and with the safety line wrapped around your neck, you are completely at their mercy...

A walrus sits on sea ice near Kapp Lee in midnight sun on Edgeoya Island in Svalbard, Norway
"...I do wonder what is says about me that I'm drawn to the coldest, bleakest, more expensive, lonely and remote destinations on Earth!"

A walrus on sea ice near Wahlberg Island in Svalbard
A walrus on sea ice near Wahlberg Island in Svalbard

Walruses swimming together underwater off the Tiholmane Islands
Walruses swimming together underwater off the Tiholmane Islands

A walrus sleeping on sea ice near Wahlberg Island in Svalbard
    A walrus sleeping on sea ice near Wahlberg Island in Svalbard

A walrus swimming underwater off the Tiholmane Islands in Svalbard
A walrus swimming underwater off the Tiholmane Islands in Svalbard

A walrus splashing in the shallow sea off Lagoya Island
A walrus splashing in the shallow sea off Lagoya Island

Walruses sparring in shallow waters off Lagoya Island in Svalbard, Norway
Walruses sparring in shallow waters off Lagoya Island in Svalbard, Norway

A walrus on sea ice near Kapp Lee in midnight sun on Edgeoya Island
A walrus on sea ice near Kapp Lee in midnight sun on Edgeoya Island

A walrus swims underwater off the Tiholmane Islands
A walrus swims underwater off the Tiholmane Islands

Walruses swimming together underwater off the Tiholmane Islands
Walruses swimming together underwater off the Tiholmane Islands

Thursday, 16 October 2014

world photos

Spanish bullfighter Manuel Jesus and literally standing on the horns of a bull during the second day of the Winter Fair in Madrid. 

News Photos of the week (71 photos + text) 

Boy coated with mineral mud on the beach, the Dead Sea in Israel. Dead Sea - the salt pond on the 
border with Jordan in the east and the West Bank and Israel to the west. Its surface and shore 
are at 422 meters below sea level - is the deepest depression on the land of the Earth. (AP Photo / Ariel Schalit) 

Chihuahua dressed in a hanging basket during a Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans. The parade of dogs and their owners has passed 
in honor of the charity "animal" organizations. (AP Photo / Gerald Herbert) 

A man in a suit moss monster with children during the parade of Mardi Gras in New Orleans. (AP Photo / Gerald Herbert) 

A child brandishing a fiery ball during a ritual in honor of the festival in the village of Mesnil Zagovezni Lozen, 
near Sofia, Bulgaria. People in this region believe that such rituals can drive off the fire 
evil spirits. (AP Photo / Valentina Petrova) 

People are trying to find their belongings after a landslide caused by rains, which have been destroyed 
100 homes in Vale de Flores, La Paz, Bolivia. (AP Photo / Juan Karita) 

People in search of his property after the landslide in Vale de Flores, La Paz, Bolivia. (AP Photo / Juan Karita) 

A man carrying a wooden cabinet in a landslide destroyed the road near the capital of Bolivia, La Paz. (AP Photo / Juan Karita) 

The Philippine Student lipstick in anticipation of presentations during the annual festival of "Caracol" in the commercial 
district of Makati, south of Manila. The festival is held to raise awareness of environmental issues 
environment and cultural heritage of the country. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila) 

Pelicans (below) and cormorants on the lake Dojran in the southeastern part of Macedonia. (AP Photo / Boris Grdanoski) 

A woman walks under an umbrella after a heavy snowfall in the capital of Belarus. (AP Photo / Sergei Grits) 

Hindu priest throws a duck at sea as an offering to the gods during religious ceremonies under the name 
Melasti Beach Parangkusumo in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. Melasti, celebrated a week before the Day of Silence, clears 
the universe from the bad influences, actions and thoughts. (AP Photo / Gembong Nusantara) 

Baleniziyskie Hindu priests walk around a long table with offerings during a religious 
Melasti ceremony in Yogyakarta. (AP Photo / Gembong Nusantara) 

Libyan face painted in the colors of the old royal flag during a demonstration against the leader of Libya 
Muammar Gaddafi in Benghazi. (AP Photo / Kevin Frayer) 

Anti-government demonstrantki with a broken poster Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh during 
demonstrating for the resignation of the president in Sana'a. The Yemeni president has suffered from a double blow in the back: there are thousands 
people urged him to resign, and his two powerful supporter left him. (AP Photo / Muhammed Muheisen) 

A woman reads a message to the wishes of reuniting the two Koreas on the fence near the border village of Panmunjeom, 
in the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas since the Korean War. (AP Photo / Lee Jin-man) 

Indian weeding paddy field in Panihayti, about 25 km east of the Indian city of Guwahati. 
Indian Finance Minister P. Mukherjee took three per cent of the budget for subsidies to farmers in 2011-12, respectively. (AP Photo / Anupam Nath) 

Space Shuttle Discovery on the background of the earth covered with clouds seen in this photo taken by a member of the crew 
Expedition 26, while the shuttle approached the ISS during an operation to dock on Sunday. (AP Photo / NASA) 

Duel between two camels in Sanave, near the Pakistani city of Multan. Thousands of spectators gathered 
in order to observe the traditional fighting camels, which were attended by hundreds of specially 
trained animals. (AP Photo / Khalid Tanveer) 

Burning truck in the city of Sohar, Oman, which caught fire after protesters set fire to the previously plundered 
supermarket. Protests in Sohar, Oman's main industrial center, became a rare manifestation of popular discontent 
for the Arab States, which for four decades ruled by Sultan Qaboos Bin Said, and against the backdrop of sweeping 
Arab popular uprisings. (AP Photo) 

Bangladeshis in Dhaka are transported by hand truck steel reinforcing bars. (AP Photo / Themba Hadebe) 

80-year-old Mohammad Hanif holds her two-year grandson, Vasif sitting on railroad tracks near his home, 
which is located in the slums of the Pakistani city of Karachi. (Akhtar Soomro / Reuters) 

A man looks at the mines, which must be destroyed. The picture was taken near the village of Tifariti 
in Western Sahara. (Arturo Rodriguez / Associated Press) 

Anti-government activists prepare ammunition on the basis of formulating the rebels in Benghazi, Libya. (ASMAA WAGUIH / Reuters) 

Subjected to natural mummification of the body of "Oetzi" inside the cold room at the exhibition entitled "20 years of Oetzi", 
which openly to the public in Yuzhnotirolskom Museum of Archaeology of the Italian city of Bolzano. (ROBERT PARIGGER / EPA) 

Students Stavropol State University, a few hours ago, were actively discussing how to verify trust the site and other issues related to seo, take part in the celebration of Carnival. Millions of Russians celebrate Pancake Day, which marks the end of winter. (EDUARD KORNIYENKO / Reuters) 

An elderly woman looks at the models participating in the promotion of "fair trade fortnight in London. (KERIM OKTEN / EPA) 

In this photo, published by the Panamanian Institute of Culture, you can see the two archaeologists who pick up from the bottom 
artillery gun. Scientists theorize that the gun found in the mouth of the Rio Chagres in Panama, Cologne, 
could belong to a British pirate, Captain Henry Morgan. (Donnie Reid / AP) 

A man who suffered from the regime of Ferdinand Marcos, former Philippine dictator in power with the 1965-1986 years, crying, 
looking at the check, which he gave at the office of the Commission on Human Rights in Manila. 20 years ago, thousands of Filipinos 
filed a class action lawsuit, accusing the regime of Marcos for torture, summary executions and abductions. Last Thursday, a judge of the federal 
Manuel Real of the court in Hawaii ruled that the compensation will receive 7.526 of victims during the Marcos regime. 
Each will receive approximately $ 1,000 from the US-based friend of Marcos assets acquired for him 
lands. (Erik De Castro / Reuters) 

Sells flowers gypsy wiped film that protects the product from freezing. The picture was taken in cold 
night on March 1 in the Romanian capital. (Vadim Ghirda / AP) 

Anti-government protester shouting slogans during a rally in Sana'a, Yemen, during which the people demanded 
resignation of President Ali Abdullah Saleh. (Muhammed Muheisen / AP) 

This little dog named Hercules, survived the accident, after which she was paralyzed hind legs. 
The photo was taken in Bucharest, Romania during the demonstration activists fighting for animal rights, which 
opposed the decision of the authorities of stray dogs put to sleep. According to local media in the Romanian capital is 
he lives about 50 thousand stray dogs out of which 60 percent sterilized. (Vadim Ghirda / AP) 

Undermined once a mine Ahmed Dzhatari at the center for the disabled «Martyr El Sherif» near 
refugee camps in Rabun, Tindouf, Algeria. (DOMINIQUE FAGET / AFP / Getty Images) 

Union of Times Square, presented to the public five sculptures in the Week of martial arts, including sculpture, "Considering the sheep" 
Brooklyn artist Qiu Seok Oh, consisting of 24 paper sheep. (TIMOTHY A. CLARY / AFP / Getty Images) 

A visitor inspects the aircraft on the first day of the International exhibition of aircraft and air and space 
space in Melbourne. (PAUL CROCK / AFP / Getty Images) 

Holstein cow on a dairy farm in Manchester, Michigan. The proposal the governor of Michigan Rick Snyder 
turn the research program of dairy farm into a new sphere of the industry has raised concern among dairy producers 
and consumers. (Bryan Mitchell / Detroit News / AP) 

Libya's insurgent anti-aircraft missile from the SAM-7 at the ammunition depot at a military base in the Libyan city Adzhdabiya, 
control over which captured the anti-government forces. (GORAN TOMASEVIC / REUTERS) 

Spanish soldiers on guard near the building where they were arrested four members of the Basque separatist group ETA. 
Police found the building more than 150 kilograms of explosives and several types of weapons. (Alvaro Barrientos / Associated Press) 

Director and actor Bartabas are trained 12-year-old horse, Le Tintoret on stage «Sadler's Wells Theatre» 
on the eve of the show, Centaur and Man "in which Bartabas and four horses demonstrate the interaction between man 
and animals during exercise. (Peter Macdiarmid / Getty Images) 

The man basking in the sun on a bench on a frozen lake Zell am See in Austria. (Kerstin Joensson / Associated Press) 

Concept Car «BMW Vision» during a press conference on the eve of the International Motor Show in Geneva, which 
will be held from 3 to 13 March. (Adrian Moser / Bloomberg) 

Northern Lights in the sky over the Russian Orthodox Church of St. Nicholas in Kenai, Alaska. Geophysical Department 
University of Alaska announced that tonight northerners will be able to see not a single Northern Lights. (AP Photo / Peninsula Clarion, M. Scott Moon) 

In sub-Antarctic penguins at Edinburgh zoo began a period of mating. Zoo keepers have just 
installed in enclosures special slot. Males will gather stones and bring them to females. Thus, eggs 
will not lie on the cold ground. So penguins take care of their offspring. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images) 

Sculpture of Spanish artist Salvador Dali's "jubilant angel" on the top floor of the new museum building Soumaya in Mexico City. 
The new museum building, was solemnly opened on Tuesday, Mexican President Felipe Calderon, will open to the public 
March 29. There will be a rapidly growing art collection of Mexican 
billionaire Carlos Slim collector. (AP Photo / Dario Lopez-Mills) 

Hindu demon in the form of participating in a procession on the eve of Shivratri festival in Jammu. Festival 
Shivratri is dedicated to the Indian god Shiva. (AP Photo / Channi Anand) 

Kashmiri student returns home after school on the Dal Lake in Srinagar, India. Schools in the Kashmir region 
India opened up after a long three months of the winter break. (AP Photo / Mukhtar Khan) 

The orchestra plays samba shed the image of the sky during the 442nd anniversary of the Rio de Janeiro. (AP Photo / Silvia Izquierdo) 

A visitor touches a robot dinosaur Pleo with special technology and a price tag of 490 Euros at the Fair 
Technology CeBIT in Hannover. (Photo by Sean Gallup / Getty Images) 

Libyan soldiers are trying to load the ammunition into the antiaircraft gun on the border with the eastern city of Adzhdabiya. (AP Photo / Tara Todras-Whitehill) 

The car sticks out from the wall of the garage in Chongqing, China. The driver lost control and crashed into a wall. (ChinaFotoPress / Zuma Press) 

Footballer «Nebraska Huskers» Prince Amukamara is preparing to run a 36-metrovku during a competition in 
Indianapolis. (Darron Cummings / Associated Press) 

Indian student in a yoga pose at the opening ceremony of the International Festival of Yoga in Rishikesh, 
India. (Tauseef Mustafa / Agence France-Presse/Getty Images) 

Bottles with Molotov cocktail in the Libyan city Adzhdabiya. "Libya was and is on the brink of civil war. 
And our goal was to save the lives of our citizens "- said Medvedev at a meeting on 3 March, the head of Emergency 
Sergei Shoigu. On the eve of Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations has completed the evacuation of Russians from Libya. (Marco Longari / Agence France-Presse/Getty Images) 

What remained of the house after the explosion. The picture was taken in Saffild, Ohio. 
From official sources it became known that propane tank exploded, resulting in 
killed 63-year-old woman and her 25-year-old grandson. (Stan Myers / The Repository via Associated Press) 

NASA astronauts Steve Bowen and Alvin Drew during the first spacewalk of the mission STS-133. (NASA) 

Spotsmeny from Canada - Devon Kershaw, left, and Alex Harvey - rejoice in victory in the team sprint in men in the final at 
World Championship FIS Nordic Skiing in Oslo. (HAAKON MOSVOLD LARSEN / EPA) 

Little gorilka asleep in the arms of his mother. The picture was taken at the zoo in Zurich. (WALTER BIERI / EPA) 

Ballerina State Ballet of Georgia during a dress rehearsal of ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky "Swan Lake" 
in Taipei, Taiwan. (NICKY LOH / Reuters) 

The opening of the carnival in Lucerne, Switzerland. (SIGI TISCHLER / EPA) 

The Marines returned to base after a patrol with Afghan National Army military in Lucky. (ADEK BERRY / AFP) 

A resident of Kabul, Ali Khan in the candy industry in the Afghan capital. (Dar Yasin / Associated Press) 

The model shows the dress from Manish Arora during a demonstration clothing collections prêt-à-porter season 
Fall-Winter 2011 in Paris. (Francois Mori / Associated Press) 

Northern Lights over the residential house in Ken in Alaska. (AP Photo / Peninsula Clarion, M. Scott Moon) 

Carriage of goods on a motorcycle in Port-au-Prince. (Ramon Espinosa / AP) 

Rehearsal for the Chinese military brass band before the opening session of the National Committee of People's Political 
Advisory Council of China (CPPCC), held at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. (Ng Han Guan / AP) 

Local residents look into the huge crater that remained after the attack in Hangu, in the north-west Pakistan. 
A suicide bomber detonated a car packed with more than 800 kilograms of explosives outside a police 
plot. Among the dead - four police officers. Injuring over 30 people. (Mohammad Iqbal / AP) 

Cub pygmy hippo named Oliver near his mother, Krakuney in Park Zoo in the Swedish town 
Eskilstuna. Krakunya received numerous congratulations on the day of parturition and delicious gifts from employees 
zoo. (Parken Zoo / Reuters) 

Mass baptism ceremony in the Cathedral of the Blessed Trinity (Sameba) in Tbilisi, during which 
baptized 400 infants. (Shakh Aivazov / AP) 

"Training" elephant in the Burmese village of the Karen. Trainers aims to break the spirit of the animal, for that 
Wild elephants are usually tied, starved and beaten for three days. Karen from Myanmar, who live nearby 
from the Thai border are preparing so animals that are later smuggled to Thailand, where they 
used in the Thai tourism industry. According to official figures weekly Karen illegally trafficked 
across the Thai border at least one elephant. (Brent Lewin / Redux Pictures)