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The first residents have moved into a new housing scheme that mixes seniors, young people and foreigners who came to Sweden as unaccompanied minors seeking asylum. They are required to socialize with each other.

Pyongyang says it successfully completed another test ahead of a US envoy's visit this weekend. Kim Jong Un has threatened a "Christmas gift" for the US if an agreement on sanctions isn't reached by the new year.

The former president is also wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) on charges of war crimes and genocide linked to the Darfur conflict. The Sudanese military said it would not extradite Bashir to the ICC.

Online shopping is an increasingly popular option in rural Africa for those who wish to avoid a very long trip to the nearest store. The e-commerce sector has great potential in Africa but has many hurdles to overcome.

[Vanguard] The National Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, has denied reports that he was placed under house arrest in Edo

[Vanguard] Abuja -The All Progressives Congress (APC) has been enjoying relative peace within its ranks since it came to power in 2015 until the crisis that engulfed the party towards the end of the tenure of the then National Chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, which led to the exit of the former President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki and some governors. During the Oyegun era, there were already factions in some APC states including Rivers, Imo, Zamfara and few other states.

[Vanguard] Abuja -... insist his action belated, face-saving

[Premium Times] The frightening scale of impunity and arbitrary conduct under the presidency of General Muhammadu Buhari plumbed new depths on Friday, December 6 when armed operatives of the State Security Service (often called the Department of State Services - DSS), invaded Federal High Court No. 7 in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.

Online shopping is an increasingly popular option in rural Africa for those who wish to avoid a very long trip to the nearest store. The e-commerce sector has great potential in Africa but has many hurdles to overcome.

[This Day] Chimezie Okonkwo has joined Cheki, the online car marketplace company as Chief Executive Officer. He replaces Gbenro Dara, who left the company in August 2019.

[This Day] The Federal Government has been urged to expedite action on the rehabilitation of roads across the country in order to save the travelling public the agony of taking their vehicles through some bad routes in parts of the country.

[This Day] Six companies listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) were recognised for their outstanding performances in the 2018 financial year despite the challenging operating environment. The companies were recognised with the Capital Market Correspondents Association of Nigeria (CAMCAN) Capital Market awards, for coming out tops in their respective sectors. Also, FMDQ Securities Exchange won an award for sustaining the debt capital market development.

For 45 minutes on Saturday, Bayern Munich looked in danger of repeating the mistakes made in recent defeats against Leverkusen and Gladbach. Until Philippe Coutinho produced his best Bayern performance to date.

[Nation] Visiting Ghana Hockey Association League men's champions Exchequers will start their series of test matches with a tie against Sikh Union at the Sikh Union Club on Saturday at 4pm.

[Daily Trust] Calabar -A former international and national U-23 goalkeeper coach, Etta Egbe has declared that Nigeria is suffering from lack of talented goaltenders. In this exclusive interview with Trust Sports, the technical director of Calabar Rovers said in his days, they were so talented that it required little efforts and time by coaches to take them to the peak. He also spoke on life in the Green Eagles and Nigerian football in general.

[News24Wire] Cape Town -The Springbok Sevens team continued their good form at the Cape Town Sevens by finishing top of Pool A on Saturday, beating Fiji by 26-14 and USA by 21-15 after a 49-0 demolition of Japan on Friday.

Left to right: Mona Lisa (AFP), Monna Vanna (Alamy)Image copyright AFP/Alamy
Image caption Have art experts just undressed (right) the Mona Lisa (left)?

A charcoal drawing housed in another art collection for more than 150 years may have been a sketch for the Mona Lisa, a French art expert says.

The charcoal portrait of a nude woman, known as the Monna Vanna, was previously attributed only to Leonardo da Vinci's studio.

But experts have found enough clues to suggest the artist worked on both.

After tests at the Louvre Museum in Paris, curators believe the sketch is "at least in part" by Leonardo.

It has been held since 1862 in the collection of Renaissance art at the Conde Museum at the Palace of Chantilly, north of the French capital.

Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) was one of the great painters of the Italian Renaissance, and his Mona Lisa oil painting (also known as La Gioconda) remains one of the world's most recognisable and valuable works of art.

It is believed to have been a commission from cloth merchant and Florentine official Francesco del Giocondo for a portrait of his wife, Lisa Gherardini.

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But was Leonardo right-handed?

"The drawing has a quality in the way the face and hands are rendered that is truly remarkable," curator Mathieu Deldicque told AFP news agency.

"It is not a pale copy. We are looking at something which was worked on in parallel with the Mona Lisa at the end of Leonardo's life.

"It is almost certainly a preparatory work for an oil painting."

Louvre conservation expert Bruno Mottin confirmed it dated from Leonardo's lifetime at the turn of the 15th Century and was of a "very high quality".

The Chantilly Estate posted a photo of the work being done on the sketch.

Skip Twitter post by @chantillydomain

Analyse de la Joconde nue au @c2rmf avec Bruno Mottin, conservateur du @c2rmf et @mathieudeldicqu conservateur du @chantillydomain pic.twitter.com/alMMSu09nP

— Domaine de Chantilly (@chantillydomain) September 28, 2017

End of Twitter post by @chantillydomain

Among clues proffered by Mr Deldicque:

  • The hands and body are almost identical
  • The portraits are almost the same size
  • Small holes pierced around the figure suggest it may have been used to trace its form on to a canvas

However, Mr Mottin pointed out that hatching on the top of the drawing near the head had been done by a right-handed person while Leonardo drew with his left hand.

"We must remain prudent," he told AFP, as work continued.

"It is job that is going to take some time," he said. "It is a very difficult drawing to work on because it is particularly fragile."

Rohingya crisis: UN chief warns of 'humanitarian nightmare'

Rohingya refugees arrive at a camp in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. Photo: 28 September 2017Image copyright Reuters
Image caption More than 500,000 Rohingya have fled Myanmar to Bangladesh since late August

Violence in Myanmar has spiralled into the "the world's fastest-developing refugee emergency" and a "humanitarian nightmare", the UN chief has warned.

Secretary General Antonio Guterres called on Myanmar to end its military operation, which has sparked the exodus of over 500,000 Rohingya since August.

He also demanded "unfettered access" to the region to deliver humanitarian aid.

Earlier, at least 14 Rohingya, all women and children, drowned after their boat capsized off Bangladesh's coast.

Survivors say the boat overturned after apparently hitting a submerged object near the coastal city of Cox's Bazar.

Image copyright AFP/Getty Images
Image caption The boat capsized a short distance from the coast near the city of Cox's Bazar

In the past 48 hours, about 2,000 Rohingya have arrived in Bangladesh by boat, fleeing violence in Myanmar's Rakhine state.

In Thursday's briefing to the UN Security Council, Mr Guterres said: "The situation has spiralled into the world's fastest developing refugee emergency, a humanitarian and human rights nightmare."

"We have received bone-chilling accounts from those who fled - mainly women, children and the elderly.

"These testimonials point to excessive violence and serious violations of human rights, including indiscriminate firing of weapons, the use of landmines against civilians and sexual violence."

Mr Guterres also warned that "the failure to address the systematic violence could result in a spill over into central Rakhine where an additional 250,000 Muslims could potentially face displacement".

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionMyanmar: Who are the Rohingya?

UN aid personnel were forced to leave Rakhine when the military began a crackdown on Rohingya militants behind attacks on security personnel in August.

Fleeing Rohingya - the majority of whom are Muslim - accuse Myanmar's military, backed by Buddhist mobs, of trying to drive them out with a campaign of beatings, killings and village burnings.

Images and reports from journalists confirm many villages have been razed.

But the military say they are targeting only militants.

'New Baghdadi tape' posted by Islamic State group

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. speaking in Mosul, 5 July 2014Image copyright AFP
Image caption Russian and Iranian officials have said the IS leader is dead but the US has disagreed

Islamic State militants have released what appears to be an audio recording of their leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

A speaker who sounds like the IS leader seems to refer to recent North Korean threats against Japan and the US.

He also talks of battles for IS strongholds like Mosul, which was regained by Iraqi forces in July.

Baghdadi, who has a $25m (£19m) US bounty on his head, has not been seen in public since July 2014, leading to much speculation about his fate.

The last time he appeared was to preach at the Great Mosque of al-Nuri in Mosul after IS overran the city and a "caliphate" was proclaimed.

Asked about the audio, a spokesman for US forces fighting IS, Ryan Dillon, said "without verifiable evidence of his death, we have continued to assume that he is alive".

A defence department spokesman told the BBC: "We are aware of the audio tape purported to be of Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi and are taking steps to examine it. While we have no reason to doubt its authenticity, we do not have verification at this point."

The militant Sunni Muslim group IS, which earned notoriety for its brutal violence towards civilians and prisoners, has been steadily pushed back in Iraq and Syria this year.

The 46-minute recording was posted by a website with links to the group and is the first such speech to appear since November.

As well as Mosul, the speaker refers to battles in Raqqa and Hama in Syria, and Sirte in Libya, saying the bloodshed would not be in vain. He also talks of Russian-brokered peace talks on Syria. Much of the tape consists of religious references.

Baghdadi may be hiding in territory still controlled by IS along the Iraqi-Syrian border.

Less than a handful people would know his whereabouts, Hassan Hassan of the Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy wrote in a recent article for BBC News.

That makes it hard for the US, which has dedicated special forces constantly on the look-out for him.

In June, Russia reported that it was "highly likely" Baghdadi had been killed in a Russian air force strike on Raqqa on 28 May, and an Iranian official asserted he was "definitely dead" shortly afterwards.

However, claims of his death had been made before and the reports were treated with scepticism by US officials.


Analysis: A morale boost for IS

By Frank Gardner, BBC security correspondent

So the IS leader al-Baghdadi is still alive, or at least it appears he was still alive at least as recently as August.

This concurs with the views of western intelligence agencies and Iraq's government, which were always sceptical of Russian claims to have killed him an air strike.

His apparent survival to date will give some small morale boost to the beleaguered IS fighters still clinging on in Raqqa, but it is unlikely to make any strategic difference.

Like the al-Qaeda leader Dr Ayman al-Zawahiri, the IS leader is so circumscribed by the need to keep his location secret that he communicates rarely, and is unlikely to be in a position to personally direct any ongoing operations - other than to give them his blessing.

Veep star Julia Louis-Dreyfus reveals breast cancer diagnosis

Julia Louis-Dreyfus at the Emmy Awards in Los Angeles, California, 17 SeptemberImage copyright Reuters
Image caption Ms Louis-Dreyfus won another Emmy earlier this month

Julia Louis-Dreyfus, the award-winning star of US TV comedy series Veep, has announced she has breast cancer, in a message posted on social media.

"1 in 8 women get breast cancer," she wrote. "Today I'm the one."

"The good news", she added, was she had a "glorious group" of family and friends supporting her and "fantastic" insurance through her union.

The actress, 56, has also featured in Saturday Night Live, The New Adventures of Old Christine and Seinfeld.

Skip Twitter post by @OfficialJLD

Just when you thought... pic.twitter.com/SbtYChwiEj

— Julia Louis-Dreyfus (@OfficialJLD) September 28, 2017

End of Twitter post by @OfficialJLD

Earlier this month, Louis-Dreyfus picked up a record-breaking sixth Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a row for her role in HBO series Veep.

In Veep, her character begins as an ineffectual US vice-president whose attempts to expand her role are continually thwarted.

Louis-Dreyfus' announcement was met with an outpouring of support from other actors and celebrities.

Her Veep co-star Tony Hale retweeted the announcement, appending the message: "We love this woman."

Christina Applegate, who had a double mastectomy in 2008 following her own breast cancer diagnosis, told Louis-Dreyfus to contact her if she wanted to talk.

HBO, the network behind Veep, also issued a statement, saying: "We have every confidence she will get through this with her usual tenacity and undaunted spirit, and look forward to her return to health and to HBO for the final season of Veep."

'Universal healthcare'

The US actors' union SAG-AFTRA provides health insurance as a membership benefit, which union members earn credits toward as they work on accredited productions.

"The bad news is that not all women are so lucky," Louis-Dreyfus said in her statement, "so let's fight all cancers and make universal health care a reality".

Her call for universal health care - at a time when US President Donald Trump is pushing through healthcare reforms - is not the first time she has made targeted political comments.

Accepting the award for outstanding performance for a female actor in a comedy series at the SAG Awards earlier this year, she referenced Mr Trump's controversial travel ban, saying: "I am the daughter of an immigrant. My father fled religious persecution in Nazi-occupied France."

"I'm an American patriot, and I love this country... this immigrant ban is a blemish and it's un-American."


Breast cancer: The facts

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women in the world.

The rates of breast cancer vary from country to country - about one in eight women will get breast cancer during their lifetime in the US and the UK.

About 55,000 people are diagnosed with the condition in the UK every year - about 150 people a day. It is far more common among women, affecting just one in every 870 men.

Image copyright Science Photo Library
Image caption Mammograms are recommended on a regular basis for women over 50

Medical experts recommend women be aware of what their breasts normally look and feel like, so they can be aware of any abnormal changes.

Possible signs of breast cancer include:

  • Changes in the outline or shape of the breast, especially those caused by arm movements or by lifting the breast
  • Changes in the look or feel of the skin, such as puckering or dimpling
  • Any new lumps, thickening or bumpy areas in one breast or armpit, with or without pain, that differs from the same part of the other breast and armpit
  • Discharge from the nipple (may be bloodstained)
  • Moist, red areas on the nipple that don't heal easily
  • Any change in nipple position, such as being pulled in or pointing differently
  • A rash on or around the nipple

Recovery chances are good if the cancer is discovered in its early stages. Breast screening programmes use a mammogram - a type of X-ray - to sweep for small cancers in their infancy.

Sources: World Health Organization, NHS, Cancer Research UK


[Ghanaian Times] Ghana embarked on a move to widen pension coverage and also improve upon retirement income for workers with a pension reforms programme some ten years ago. This was a response to an agitation from the working population.

[Concord] Street Sports Hope Sierra Leone (SSHSL), an organization that focuses on taking vulnerable children out of the streets through sports, has on 26th November given out business grants of le 500,000 each to five parents of vulnerable children under their watch.

[Nation] Members of the Ogiek community have protested the impending harvesting of trees in Mariashoni, Elburgon, by private investors.

[Ghanaian Times] A seven-member Birim North Local Management Committee to implement mining community development schemes under the Mineral Development Fund was on Wednesday inaugurated at New Abirem in the Eastern Region.

[CIO] A new ITU case study offers an evaluation of the Key Performance Indicators for Smart Sustainable Cities developed by the United for Smart Sustainable Cities Initiative (U4SSC), an initiative supported 16 United Nations bodies. U4SSC develops practical tools to support cities' application of digital technologies to become smarter and more sustainable, with the aim of achieving SDG 11: "Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable".

[Vanguard] To provide stakeholders in the Nigerian payment system with information on how to maximise the boundless opportunities it presents, E-payment Company, Global Accelerex, is set to host its 7th edition of PoS Innovation Summit Wednesday, in Lagos.

[Innovation in Africa] Migo (formerly Mines.io), a startup reinventing the way people access and use credit in emerging markets, has completed a Series B equity round of $20 million led by Valor Capital Group, a Brazil-focused venture capital firm. Existing investors, The Rise Fund (managed by TPG Growth) and Velocity Capital, also joined the funding round along with new investors, Africinvest and Cathay Innovation. This financing will support talent acquisition and Migo's launch into the Brazilian market, as well as its continu

[UNHCR] The African Union today named Ugandan firm WeKonnect as the winner of its 2019 Humanitarian Innovation Challenge for developing a mobile App that will make it easier for forcibly displaced people to get access to vital services.


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