• Q&A: Iranian chess player Sara Khadem

    Sarasadat Khademalsharieh, better known as Sara Khadem, is a 19-year-old chess player from Iran who holds the titles of International Master and Woman Grandmaster. Like most other chess players, Khadem took up chess at an early age. She was eight when she first touched a chess board. Four years later, she was a world champion, winning the under-12 world championships. Women in Iran are traditionally banned from attending many sporting events. On the streets, women need to cover their heads. On the playing field, it is the same. Questions were asked when Tehran was named host of the 2017 women's world championships. Nazí Paikidze, US women's champion, called for a boycott of the games. But Khadem

    Al Jazeera q
  • Inaugural fashion, politics are intertwined this time

    NEW YORK: What’ll she be wearing? It’s a question that fascinates fashion-watchers — and lots of others — every four years: Which designer will the new US first lady choose to wear on Inauguration Day and, more importantly, on Inauguration Night? This year, as never before, the question is a loaded one. Dressing the first lady has long been considered a great honor for a designer — and a huge business boon. But in an industry that leaned heavily toward Hillary Clinton, a number of designers have indicated they have no interest in dressing Melania Trump. So the question is not merely whom she’ll be choosing — if she doesn’t simply buy off the rack — but also, in a sense, who will be choosing her.

    Arab News q
  • Why is there a Saudi market called ‘Souq of the Dead’?

    There is a famous market in Saudi Arabia’s coastal city of Jeddah named “Souq of the Dead” which sells clothing which one belonged to the deceased. The market itself extends within al-Sawarikh market in the western region of Jeddah. The vendors then sell these charitable donations at prices ranging from five to 20 Saudi Riyals per piece. Mohamed Ali Saleem, an economics researcher, said that the shoppers frequenting the market are usually African or Asian immigrants with limited incomes in Saudi Arabia.

    english.alarabiya.net q
  • Mother admits murdering children by driving into Australian lake

    A mother has admitted killing three of her children by driving them into a lake in southern Australia. Akon Guode, 37, killed one-year-old Bol and four-year-old twins Hanger and Madit in Melbourne's south-west in 2015. Another child, six-year-old Alual, was also in the car but survived. In the Supreme Court of Victoria, Guode pleaded guilty to one count of infanticide, two counts of murder and one of attempted murder. She entered her pleas with help from an interpreter. Guode arrived in Australia from South Sudan in 2008. Joseph Manyang, the father of the three children, told a hearing last year that Guode said she felt dizzy before the crash. He described Guode as a "loving mother" who would

    BBC News q
  • ‘Expatophobia’

    Mahmoud Ahmad LAST week, a shocking cartoon was published in a local Saudi daily targeting expatriate workers that sparked anger among many people, mainly expatriates working here in Saudi Arabia. As is my wont of reading local dailies every morning, I was doing just that when I received a phone call from an expatriate friend. He asked me my thoughts on the cartoon that had been published in a particular local daily, which I hadn’t seen at the time of the call. I quickly took out that daily from the bunch and what I saw was really sickening. The cartoon left me totally disgusted. The cartoon displayed what looked like an acrobatic Saudi man riding a unicycle on a rope, like the one we see in

    Saudi Gazette q
  • All aboard the China-to-London freight train

    It's not on a boat, it's not on a plane, it's on a train. The newest way to send your freight from China to Europe involves spending 15 days on a train that doesn't have a buffet car in sight. On 3 January in Yiwu in eastern China, a bright orange locomotive pulling 44 containers laden with suitcases, clothes and an assortment of household goods set off on a 7,500-mile (12,000km) journey to western Europe. Ten containers were taken off at the German cargo hub of Duisburg. The rest made up the first cargo train from China to arrive in London at Barking's Eurohub freight terminal. London is the 15th European city to find its way on to the ever-expanding map of destinations for China's rail cargo.

    BBC News q
  • Kendall Jenner reveals struggle with anxiety but 'is learning to cope'

    Kendall Jenner says she's been struggling with anxiety issues over the last year but is learning to cope. Writing on her own website, the reality TV star and model says she's learnt some breathing exercises which help. "Anxiety was a huge hurdle for me to deal with this past year (and security concerns didn't help), but I think I'm finally learning how to cope. "I once had a really bad attack on a plane and just had to ride it out," she writes. "I felt my heart beating a million miles an hour and I even went a little numb." She says she's now getting better at relaxing while working and travelling. "[I've] learned that it's all mental, so I try to prevent anxiety attacks by bringing my mind somewhere

    BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat q
  • Iran arrests corruption fugitive, Alireza Monfared, after international manhunt

    An Iranian man accused of helping to embezzle billions of dollars while the country evaded international oil sanctions has been arrested after a lengthy international manhunt, media reported Monday. Alireza Zibahalat Monfared, 43, is accused of involvement in Iran’s biggest-ever corruption scandal, working alongside tycoon Babak Zanjani who was sentenced to death last year for pocketing $2.8 billion while helping the country bypass sanctions. The head of Iran’s international police department, Masoud Rezvani, told Mizan Online that Monfared had been extradited via Havana and Moscow before arriving in Tehran on Sunday.

    News q
  • Philippines protests Chinese arms build-up on islands

    MANILA: The Philippines has filed a low-key diplomatic protest with China after a US think tank reported that Beijing appears to have installed anti-aircraft and anti-missile weapons on its man-made islands in the strategically vital South China Sea, the country’s top diplomat said Monday.Foreign Secretary Perfecto Yasay said the diplomatic communication was issued after the report came out last month. The Center for Strategic and International Studies report said anti-aircraft guns and weapons systems designed to guard against missile attacks appear to have been placed on all seven of China’s newly created islands. Yasay told CNN Philippines that Manila had responded, but did so quietly. “We

    Arab News q
  • Istanbul Reina club suspect 'confesses': official

    Istanbul's governor has said a New Year's Eve nightclub attack that killed 39 people was carried out on behalf of ISIL and that the suspect, an Uzbekistan national, has confessed. Vasip Sahin told a new conference on Tuesday it was "clear that this was carried out in the name of Daesh," using an Arabic acronym for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) group, also known as ISIS. Sahin said that Abdulgadir Masharipov, who was arrested on Monday, was believed to have entered Turkey in January 2016, and that he had trained in Afghanistan. The governor said Masharipov's fingerprints matched those of the attacker. Earlier on Tuesday, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim told reporters in Ankara

    Al Jazeera q
  • From famine to feast: Street food Beijing

    Beijing, the capital of one of the fastest growing countries and economies in the world, is also home to interesting, and sometimes bizarre, street foods. From silk worm cocoons that are crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, to eating barbecued seahorse, which is believed to be good for your blood circulation, Beijing is well-known for its night and food markets that offer a variety food. The Chinese love their food, but dietary habits have changed rapidly in the past few decades. In a very short time, China has gone from "famine to feast". Today, the food in Beijing is as varied as it is plentiful: traditional or modern, Chinese or Western, China's capital caters to all tastes and needs.

    Al Jazeera q
  • Kate Moss has responded to fan mail... from 23 years ago

    Kate Moss must have got a lot of fan mail in her career and it seems that she's finally got round to opening letters from more than two decades ago. She posted a picture on Instagram of a letter from a fan called Fiona, sent in 1994. In it, Fiona asks two important questions of Kate Moss: How did she get into "modling", and was she really dating Johnny Depp? If so, she says, she would love Kate and Johnny's "altographs". Unfortunately, Moss was too busy modelling and dating Johnny Depp (it was indeed true, the pair got together that year) to reply to Fiona's note. But she's made amends now with an Instagram post showing the handwritten letter and saying that Fiona will be getting a signed Kate

    BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat q
  • Abdulkadir Masharipov: Who is Istanbul gun attack suspect?

    Abdulkadir Masharipov is suspected of killing 39 people of different nationalities only two hours into the New Year in the Reina nightclub in Istanbul. Since being detained by Turkish security forces in a raid on an apartment in Istanbul on 16 January, more information has emerged on who he is and where he came from. Officials questioning him hope to find out more about cells of so-called Islamic State (IS) in Turkey. The militant group has said it was behind the attack. Who is he? According to Istanbul Governor Vasip Sahin, Abdulkadir Masharipov is a 34-year-old Uzbek who speaks four foreign languages - Chinese, Russian, Arabic and Turkish. Mr Sahin said he had been "very well trained". Officials

    BBC News q
  • Week in pictures: 7-13 January 2017

    Our selection of some of the best news photographs taken around the world this week. All photographs are copyrighted.

    BBC News q
  • President Trump: Seven ways the world could change

    Donald Trump entering the White House could change America's relationship with the rest of the world in some important ways. Here are seven of them. Nato faces a shake-up Mr Trump has been hugely critical of Nato (the North Atlantic Treaty Organization), a cornerstone of American foreign policy for more than 60 years. He has attacked the organisation as obsolete and characterised its members as ungrateful allies who benefit from US largesse. Days before his inauguration, he reiterated that "a lot" of Nato's 28 member states were not paying their fair share, which was "very unfair" to the US. The latest rebuke came as 3,000 US troops arrived in Poland as part of Barack Obama's plans to reassure

    BBC News q
  • Who are the 8 richest people? All men, mostly Americans

    LONDON: The eight individuals who own as much as half of the rest of the planet are all men, and have largely made their fortunes in technology. Most are American, with one European and one Mexican in the mix. Several have pledged to give it all to charity. The eight tycoons’ net worth, as calculated by Forbes magazine, was cited Monday by anti-poverty activists Oxfam in a report highlighting income inequality. Although most of them will not be joining the annual gathering of business and political elites in the Swiss town of Davos this week, the extraordinary individual wealth they typify will be part of the discussions in Davos on inequality. Here’s a look at who they are. Bill Gates: $75 billion

    Kuwait Times q
  • Saudi mufti warns of ‘depravity’ of cinemas and concerts

    RIYADH // Saudi Arabia’s highest-ranking cleric has warned of the "depravity" of cinemas and music concerts, saying they would corrupt morals if allowed in the ultra-conservative kingdom. "We know that singing concerts and cinemas are a depravity," Grand Mufti Abdulaziz Al Sheikh said in a television interview cited by the Sabq news website late on Friday. The head of the Saudi supreme council of clerics was responding to a question about the plans of the kingdom’s General Authority for Entertainment to licence concerts and study opening cinemas. He warned that cinemas "might show movies that are libertine, lewd, immoral and atheist, because they rely on films imported to change our culture",

    Middle East and North Africa RSS feed - The National q
  • University of Sussex 'sorry' for domestic violence failings

    A university has apologised for the "inadequate" way it handled the case of a former student who was attacked by her lecturer partner. Allison Smith, 24, was "knocked out" by Dr Lee Salter in September 2015 but he continued teaching at the University of Sussex for another 10 months. The university commissioned a review to examine its response. Reporting on the findings, vice-chancellor Prof Adam Tickell said he was "very sorry for the failings". Salter was finally suspended by the university after a conviction in June 2016 and later lost his job. He was sentenced to 22 weeks in prison, suspended for 18 months. The independent report by professor of criminology, Nicole Westmarland of Durham University,

    BBC News q
  • The commuters who enjoy being creative with their time

    The average UK commuter spends nearly an hour a day travelling - and 3.7 million are en route for more than two hours, with the longest journey times spent on trains. Strikes and other delays aside - it is a long time to spend scrolling through social media or staring silently ahead. Some people are occupying their many captive hours with a creative pastime. Here are some of England's most productive passengers. Amy Dicketts travels for 90 minutes a day on the Tube. She photographs fellow passengers for her project Commute Blog. "I thought there must be something better I could be doing than staring into space or looking at my phone," said the 24-year-old who works in marketing. "So I began to

    BBC News q
  • Man jailed after stabbing dog for urinating on bag of marijuana

    A man who stabbed and punched his dog after the pet urinated on a bag of marijuana has been jailed for 12 weeks. Michael Anthony Bailey, 54, from Dale Terrace in Oldbury, Black Country, attacked his dog Lucky last June, magistrates in Birmingham heard. When police came to his home he said the dog had run off but she was found hidden behind the washing machine. Lucky made a full recovery but was later put down after it was found she was a banned breed. Bailey was found guilty of one count of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal, and one count of failing to take reasonable steps to ensure the needs of the dog were met. As well as his jail sentence he was also banned for life from owning animals

    BBC News q