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(MENAFN - AFP) Perched on the edge of a mine shaft, Joel Sawadogo, 13, readies the fragile plastic lamp strapped to his forehead with an elastic band as he prepares to lower himself into the darkness.

He is one of hundreds of children and young people working at the Nobsin mines, about an hour's drive from Burkina Faso's capital Ouagadougou, who every day risk their lives ...


(MENAFN - AFP) A quiet revolution is afoot in the Vatican.

With many of Pope Francis's new appointments, control over the powerful city state is slipping, slowly but surely, from the centuries-old grip of the Italian hierarchy.

Popes may come and go -- and three in a row now have been non-Italian -- but the inner workings of the opaque Vatican bureaucracy, the Curia, ...


(MENAFN - AFP) Maritime inspectors found leaky lifeboats or faulty fire doors on several cruise liners last year in the wake of several highly-publicized scandals in the booming industry.

A forum organized in Washington by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) heard about the problems on Tuesday.

Captain Eric Christensen of the US Coast Guard said 140 cruise ...


(MENAFN - AFP) South Korea's largest carmaker Hyundai Motor said Wednesday it will sign a preliminary agreement to build a fourth plant in China, as it looks to expand in the world's biggest car market.

Chairman Chung Mong-Koo will put his name to the deal on Thursday, it said in a statement.

With an annual production capacity of 300,000 cars, the plant in the southwestern ...


(MENAFN - AFP) Intel announced it has bought fitness-tracking band maker Basis Science as part of a move into the hot wearable computing market.

The California-based chip maker on Tuesday did not disclose how much it paid for Basis, which makes a strap-on wrist band that captures data such as heart rate, activity, and sleep to help people live healthier.

Information ...


(MENAFN - AFP) Heated debate on the cost of temporary World Cup stadium facilities saw lawmakers in the southern Brazilian state of Porto Alegre back a plan for tax incentives to pay for temporary stadium facilities.

Lawmakers voted late Tuesday, to pass a package offering the incentives to private firms stumping up around $11 million for facilities at the Beira Mar stadium ...


(MENAFN - AFP) King Digital Entertainment raised a sweet half-billion dollars on Wall Street, and now it is time for the market to show its taste for the makers of mobile game Candy Crush.

The British game developer priced its initial public offering at $22.50 per share on the eve of the start of public trading Wednesday on the New York Stock Exchange.

King will ...


(MENAFN - AFP) France rolls out the red carpet for China's leader Tuesday as he arrives for a nostalgia-tinged trip expected to include the signing of some blockbuster business deals.

President Xi Jinping and his glamorous wife Peng Liyuan will be given VIP treatment on their four-day visit to France with a state dinner in Paris and a concert at the Versailles palace, ...


(MENAFN - AFP) Brazil must convince markets that it can grow its economy while also slash spending and curtail inflation, analysts said after the country's credit rating sunk to near junk status.

The Central Bank said Brazil would respond "robustly" to global economic challenges after Standard & Poor's lowered its credit rating to BBB-, the lowest level for investment ...


(MENAFN - AFP) The Washington Monument will reopen to the public on May 12, nearly three years after it was shut due to damage from a rare earthquake centered near the US capital.

The 170-meter (555-foot) obelisk, a major tourist draw, was shuttered when engineers found more than 150 cracks in the structure in the wake of a 5.8-magnitude quake in Virginia in August 2011.

The ...

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