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12 Years a Slave’ makes history with best picture Oscar

LOS ANGELES: The slavery drama “12 Years a Slave” won the Academy Award for best picture on Sunday, making history as the first movie from a black director to win the film industry’s highest honor in 86 years of the Oscars. British director Steve McQueen’s unflinching portrayal of pre-Civil War American slavery won two other Oscars, including best supporting actress …

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Oil prices edge higher as Ukraine tensions mount

New York (AFP):  Global oil prices pushed higher Thursday as tensions mounted over Russia’s incursion into Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula. New York’s main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for April delivery, added 11 cents, finishing at $101.56 a barrel. Brent North Sea crude for April gained 34 cents at $108.10 a barrel in London deals. WTI prices were lower in early …

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China ‘will not stop increasing’ military spending: Media

BEIJING (AFP): Chinese state-run media backed the country s military spending Thursday, after the government announced a 12.2 percent increase in its defense budget for 2014. The plans should not be regarded as evidence of a mounting “China threat”, newspapers said, arguing that Beijing s steady raises in the defense budget were rooted in a desire for peace rather than conflict. Beijing …

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Fatima Bhutto nominated for fiction prize

LONDON (AFP) – Fatima Bhutto, the niece of assassinated Pakistani former prime minister Benazir Bhutto, has been nominated for the Women’s Prize for Fiction, the judges announced Friday. Bhutto is among 20 women on the long list for the award, which was formerly known as the Orange prize and is open to English-language novels from anywhere in the world. She …

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Chinese woman world’s youngest billionaire

HONG KONG (AFP) – A 24-year-old Hong Kong-based woman has been named the world s youngest billionaire, replacing a former Facebook co-founder and spurring gossip in the city. Perenna Kei, a graduate from the University of London who lives in Hong Kong, was ranked by Forbes as the world s youngest tycoon in its annual super-rich list, with a net worth of …

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“Violence against women is a reflection of gender inequality”:Mikael Gustafsson

Brussels: This year’s International Women’s Day, which is always held on 8 March, is dedicated to preventing violence against women. Facebook fans asked why this was chosen as the theme. Gustafsson said they wanted to send a strong message to the European Commission and the member states to prioritise this issue. Many people also asked how to make people think …

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K. C. EU condemns expulsion of Kashmiri students from an Indian University

Brussels (PR): Kashmir Council EU has condemned the framing of sedition charges against the Kashmiri students studying at an Indian university for cheering Pakistan’s victory in the ongoing Asia Cup in Bangladesh. In a statement issued from Brussels, Chairman Kashmir Council EU Ali Raza Syed said, the expulsion of the Kashmiri students from the university in Meerut in Utter Pradesh …

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Delhi HC blocks release of ‘Gulaab Gang’

DELHI:The Delhi High Court Wednesday stayed the release of forthcoming Hindi movie “Gulaab Gang”, reportedly based on the life of activist Sampat Pal, who formed Gulabi Gang, a group of pink sari clad women vigilantes in Uttar Pradesh. Justice Sanjeev Sachdeva stayed the release of the film, starring Madhuri Dixit and Juhi Chawla, saying that if it is allowed to …

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Britain’s first Muslim MEP to chair European Parliament ethics committee

BRUSSELS (PR):Britain’s first Muslim MEP has been appointed Chairman of the European Parliament watchdog body which has been set up to stop unethical behaviour by MEPs. Conservative Legal Affairs spokesperson Dr Sajjad Karim will lead the European Parliament Advisory Committee on the Conduct of Members which is responsible for ensuring all MEPs follow the Code of Conduct which prohibits receiving …

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“Military aggression not the solution”

BRUSSELS:Belgian key ministers discussed the situation in the Ukraine. The government is concerned about the situation in the southern Crimea region, but retains hopes of a peaceful outcome. Meanwhile, Belgium is not taking any individual sanctions yet against Russia. Belgium joins the European position on the matter. Diplomacy is the key word, the crisis should be solved by negotiating and …

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