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Kiwi One of 4 Mystery Deaths at Thailand Hotel

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© Unknown
Sarah Carter (right) died after suffering from food poisoning in Thailand
Thai police are investigating the unexplained deaths of three others who stayed in the same Chiang Mai hotel as New Zealand tourist Sarah Carter.

Auckland-born Miss Carter died in mysterious circumstances on February 6, and police now say an elderly British couple and a female Thai tour guide died after staying in the Downtown Inn last month.

Miss Carter, 23, died in a Thai hospital and her friends Amanda Eliason, 24, and Emma Langlands, 23, were violently ill.

Initial reports said they were hit by food poisoning but tests had proved inconclusive, said Thai police.

The tour guide died the day before Ms Carter fell ill and the two British tourists [died] several days later.

Police said there was nothing to indicate the deaths were linked.

Megaphone

Thousands take to Yemen's streets for new Day of Rage

Tens of thousands of demonstrators took to Yemen's streets on Tuesday, dedicating a new "Day of Rage" to the people killed in protests in recent months and calling for an end to President Ali Abdullah Saleh's three-decade rule.

Huge crowds poured onto the streets of the Yemeni capital Sanaa on Tuesday in what the opposition hailed as the biggest protest yet against President Ali Abdullah Saleh's three-decade rule.

The veteran leader, whose supporters staged a large counter-demonstration, dismissed the opposition rally as a copycat action mimicking protests in other Arab countries that he charged had been fanned by Israel and the United States.

He then sacked the governors of five provinces where anti-regime protests have been raging, mostly in the regions that made former South Yemen.

An official announcement said Saleh has removed the governors of Aden, Lahij and Abyan in the south, as well as Hadramut in the southeast and Hudayda in the west.

Saleh's opponents massed from early morning in streets leading to a square near Sanaa University, where students and pro-democracy demonstrators have been camped for more than a week.

"The people want Ali Abdullah Saleh to leave," the protesters chanted. "The people want to overthrow the regime."

Eye 1

Face recognition scanners at Manchester Airport suspended after man re-enters Britain on his WIFE'S passport

Hi-techface recognition gates at a busy airport were suspended after they allowed a man back into the country on his wife's passport.

It is understood an immigration officer double-checking the data on a computer picked up the blunder and the man was stopped before he left Manchester Airport's Terminal One.

The couple are thought to have swapped passports accidentally. The woman could not pass through the gates, which match a face to a digital photo stored on 'chipped' passports.

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© Manchester Evening News Syndication
Blunder: High-tech face recognition gates at Manchester Airport were suspended after they allowed a man back into the country on his wife's passport

Arrow Down

Canada: Toronto Community Housing Corporation Citizen Board Members Resign En Masse

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© CBC News
TCHC CEO Keiko Nakamura is not assenting to Mayor Rob Ford's demands that she resign. Chair David Mitchell, right, tendered his resignation with six other citizen board members on Thursday.
Spending shows 'blatant disregard': auditor general

Seven of the nine citizen board members of the Toronto Community Housing Corporation have tendered their resignations in the wake of a scathing report that uncovered questionable spending and millions in improperly tendered contracts.

The seven, including TCHC Chair David Mitchell, said they were stepping down at a public meeting Thursday morning.

"The appointees take full responsibility for the finding in the ... report," Mitchell said, adding the members felt they couldn't work with Mayor Rob Ford, who has demanded their resignations.

X

France: Ban on Wearing Face Veils to Come into Effect April Despite Concerns

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© Reuters / Amit Dave
Indian Muslims wearing niqab (face veils).

French authorities will begin enforcing a new ban on wearing full Islamic veils in public in April, officials said Thursday. Women wearing coverings that hide the face will be asked to remove them or pay a fine.

France will start enforcing a ban next month on full Islamic face veils, officials said on Thursday, meaning any veiled woman can be summoned to a police station and asked to remove her face-covering or pay a fine.

Officials say the law is mainly symbolic and police will not call in every veiled woman they see to avoid stigmatising Muslims.

But a Paris imam said forcing veiled women to present themselves at a police station would be just as uncomfortable.

When France passed the ban on full face veils last year, Muslim leaders voiced concern it could lead to veiled women being unfairly treated by police or singled out for harassment.

Heart - Black

Belgium: Toddler Found Wandering Streets: While Mother Attended Parenting Class

Police say a 2-year-old boy was found wandering on the streets of Charleroi.

The toddler had no shoes or jacket when a passer-by noticed him walking into the street as a car approached.

Investigators say they went door-to-door and found the people who were supposed to be watching the child.

The boy's mother told police she'd left the boy and a 4-month-old girl in the care of two others while she attended parenting classes. She is not charged but police say endangerment charges are pending against her boyfriend's father and sister.

Crusader

US: Paterson Pastor Accused in Stabbing Attack on Fellow Minister

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© unknown
The Rev. Edward Fairley, right, is accused of stabbing The Rev. Simone Shields
Both are ministers - he, a popular preacher, respected by his peers but bearing a violent past; she, a former schoolteacher with a taste for poetry.

They worked at the same church at some point and, according to police, were in a relationship.

It took a brutal turn Tuesday morning when, authorities and a witness say, the Rev. Edward Fairley stormed into an Eastside home and, without a word, stabbed the Rev. Simone Shields several times in the face and torso, leaving her to lie in a pool of blood on the kitchen floor.

Shields, 52, was eventually rescued by police and taken to St. Joseph's Regional Medical Center. She remains in critical but stable condition, police said.

Arrow Down

US: New York Man Convicted of Stabbing Motivational Speaker to Death

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© The Associated Press
Prosecutors said Locker had been looking for someone to kill him
A New York man has been convicted of murdering an indebted motivational speaker who prosecutors said paid his attacker to stab him dead in his car.

Kenneth Minor testified that he held the knife against the steering wheel while author and business coach Jeffrey Locker plunged his body on to it.

Locker was deep in debt and hoped to stage his own murder so his family could collect $18m (£11m) insurance.

"This was murder for money, not a mercy killing," prosecutor Cyrus Vance said.

Minor faces life in prison after a jury found him guilty on Thursday of second-degree murder.

On 16 July 2009, Locker, 52, was found stabbed to death in his car in the East Harlem neighbourhood of New York City's Manhattan borough, his hands tied behind his back.

Minor was arrested five days later. Surveillance video showed him entering Locker's car the night of the killing and using the dead man's bank card later.

Heart

An Inseparable Pair: Dog Collapses and Dies After Army Handler is Killed

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© Ministry of Defence/PA
Liam Tasker training his spaniel, Theo, last month at Camp Bastion, Afghanistan.
Tributes flow in to the British soldier who worked with his dog to defuse bombs in Afghanistan

Colleagues said army dog handler Liam Tasker was inseparable from his spaniel, Theo, and so it was to the end. When Lance Corporal Tasker was shot dead in southern Afghanistan, his dog survived the shooting only to suffer a fatal heart attack when it returned to the British base at Camp Bastion.

Tasker, 26, was on patrol north of Nahr-e-Saraj in Helmand province on Tuesday with the spaniel, which was trained to search for arms and explosives, when they were caught in gunfire. He died from his injuries.

He was described as having a "natural empathy with dogs". His successful operations "undoubtedly saved many lives", the Ministry of Defence said. The army has about 400 dogs trained to sniff out explosives and weapons but the ministry declined to say how many were deployed in Afghanistan.

Born in Kirkcaldy, Fife, Tasker joined the Royal Army Veterinary Corps after starting his career as a vehicle mechanic. A member of 1st Military Working Dog Regiment, he was attached to 1st Battalion Irish Guards in Afghanistan.

Attention

Gaddafi's Forces Capture Dutch Marines on Rescue Mission

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© John Moore/Getty Images
Libyan rebel fighters celebrate after driving back Gaddafi's forces in Brega.
Three marines seized in Libyan port while trying to evacuate Dutch workers

Three Dutch marines are being held in Libya after they were captured by forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi while trying to rescue Dutch workers.

The marines were surrounded by armed men and captured on Sunday after landing near Sirte in a Lynx helicopter that was on board a navy ship, HMS Tromp, which is anchored off the Libyan coast to help evacuations, Dutch defence ministry spokesman Otte Beeksma said.

Dutch officials were in "intensive negotiations" with the Libyan government to secure the marines' release, he said.

"We have also been in contact with the crewmen involved. They are doing well under the circumstances and we hope they will be released as quickly as possible."

Asked if the Dutch government considered the marines hostages, Beeksma said: "They are being held by Libyan authorities."