Africa

40 Trees in 1: The Tree with 40 Kinds of Fruit

Image: Sam Van Aken

This tree is a little peculiar to look at. It’s because this isn’t an ordinary tree, one might argue that it’s actually closer to 40 trees all wrapped up into one. Indeed, when this tree is in full bloom (as shown in the picture), you can find about 40 different types of fruit on its branches, from peaches to plumbs, ... Read More »

The Detail In This Hummingbird Photograph Is Unreal

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Scotland-based photographer Chris Morgan captured this remarkable macro shot of a hummingbird while visiting Bosque De Paz Nature Reserve in Costa Rica. In case you were wondering: Yes, that is Morgan’s reflection in the hummingbird’s eye. Morgan tells io9 the key to capturing this photograph was patience: My main method of taking the pictures was patience. I used a canon 100mm ... Read More »

3 dead, nearly 100 saved as migrant boat sinks off Libya

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Libya’s navy said it retrieved the bodies of three would-be migrants and rescued almost 100 others after their boat sank on Thursday. “One of the migrants called us on a satellite telephone to tell us that their boat was about to sink off Garabulli,” east of Tripoli, navy official Issa Zarruk told AFP. “We have saved more than 90 migrants. ... Read More »

Israel, Hamas prepare for brief humanitarian ceasefire

Father and brother of a Palestinian boy from Baker family, whom medics said was killed with other three children from same family by shell fired by Israeli naval gunboat, mourn during their funeral in Gaza City

(Reuters) – Israel and Hamas said they would cease fighting for five hours on Thursday for a humanitarian truce requested by the United Nations, though Israel remained poised to expand its offensive in the Gaza Strip if rocket fire persisted. Just a few hours before the temporary truce was due to take effect at 10 a.m. (0800 BST), Israel’s military ... Read More »

Is the world economy booming until it hurts?

Are the storm clouds gathering over London's overheated house prices? Photograph: Matthew Lloyd/Getty Images

A growing concern that overheated asset and equity prices could cause another crash is a good thing … and a bad thing In recent months, concern has intensified among the world’s financial experts and news media that overheated asset markets – real estate, equities, and long-term bonds – could lead to a major correction and another economic crisis. The general ... Read More »

Wealthy Somalis Flout Kenyan Law to Have Daughters Circumcised

Qali Hassan began her practice three decades ago and says her fees are now so high she only serves Somali clients from abroad. Local girls can no longer afford her services./Photographer: Abjata Khalif/Bloomberg

Halima Abdi charges foreign visitors at least $1,000 for a tour of remote northeastern Kenyan villages that most people wouldn’t dream of making. Her clients are young girls sent by their parents to undergo traditional circumcision. Most of her customers are ethnic Somalis who arrive from countries such as the U.K., Sweden and the Netherlands, Abdi explained in an interview at her ... Read More »

Nadine Gordimer, Novelist Who Took On Apartheid, Is Dead at 90

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Nadine Gordimer, the South African writer whose literary ambitions led her into the heart of apartheid to create a body of fiction that brought her a Nobel Prize in 1991, died on Sunday in Johannesburg. She was 90. Her family announced her death in a statement. Ms. Gordimer did not originally choose apartheid as her subject as a young writer, ... Read More »

Civil Society and the South Sudan Crisis

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The inclusion of civil society in efforts to defuse the South Sudan crisis has so far been fraught. The parties to the conflict (see our recent report South Sudan: A Civil War by Any Other Name) all have their own ideas about what civil society is; and each party tends to believe the most legitimate civil-society representatives are those that think just as ... Read More »