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Saudi de-fangs religious police but plans to enforce 'decency'

Apo - Saudi Arabia has rendered toothless the once-feared religious police amid a liberalisation drive, but a planned "public decency" law is stoking controversy with some fearing a revival of morality policing.

An early 'Tintin' cover sells at auction for $1.1 million

Washington - An original drawing used for the first published "Tintin" cover was sold at auction on Saturday in Dallas for $1.12 million, the Heritage Auctions house told AFP.The identities of seller and buyer have not been released.

'I worked here': home of Albanian author Kadare becomes a museum

Tirana - Ismail Kadare draws the curtain to bring a shaft of light into the Tirana apartment where he wrote furiously during the dark days of communism -- a space visitors can now explore first-hand after his former home was turned into a museum.

British visit Easter Island to discuss returning sacred monolith

Santiago - A team from the British Museum arrived Tuesday on Easter Island to meet with local Polynesian people seeking the return from London of one of the most spiritually important of the Chilean island's stone monoliths.

Malaysia fights to save centuries-old creole

Malacca - Children in colourful outfits sing in a creole of Portuguese and Malay during a class in the historic Malaysian city of Malacca, part of efforts to stem the decline of the centuries-old language.

Facelift helps Morocco's Old City of Fez lure tourists

In recent times the imperial city of Fez has been overlooked by tourists in favour of Marrakesh, but now Morocco's "spiritual" capital is bustling with visitors due to major renovations and low-cost flights.

UAE expats get taste of Ramadan traditional sweets

Dubai - Nida Mohammed drove for more than an hour from Fujairah to Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates just to buy special Iraqi sweets and juices for the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.

Moscow 8: the N. Korean filmmakers who defied Pyongyang

Seoul - As the Korean War raged eight of Pyongyang's young heroes -- all members of the North's new elite, destined for a life of privilege and power -- left for Moscow to study at a prestigious film school. They never returned.

Secret chamber uncovered 2,000 years on at Nero palace

Rome - A team of archaeologists have discovered a secret chamber decorated with detailed frescoes during restoration work at Emperor Nero's Domus Aurea or Golden Palace constructed two millennia ago.

Britain's answer to 'King Tut's tomb' found on roadside

London - Excited archeologists on Thursday hailed an ancient burial site found on the side of a road near a pub and a budget supermarket as Britain's answer to the tomb of Egypt's King Tutankhamun.

Gutted and broke: Brazil's National Museum pleads for money

Rio De Janeiro - Brazil's devastated National Museum is broke and cannot afford storage for artifacts rescued from the ashes of the gutted building, its director said Tuesday.

Tales of Leonardo, enigmatic genius

Amboise - Leonardo da Vinci, who died 500 years ago on Thursday, lives in the collective memory as an enigmatic genius who embodied the Italian Renaissance. Here are some anecdotes about his extraordinary life and work.

France, Italy mark 500th anniversary of Leonardo's death

Amboise - French President Emmanuel Macron and Italian counterpart Sergio Mattarella on Thursday kicked off commemorations to mark 500 years since Leonardo da Vinci died in France, paying their respects to the Renaissance genius in a show of unity after months o...

France, Italy mark 500th anniversary of Leonardo's death

Amboise - The Loire Valley town of Amboise will kick off festivities marking the 500th anniversary of Leonardo da Vinci's death in style on Thursday, with the French and Italian presidents topping the bill.

France, Italy mark 500th anniversary of Leonardo's death in Loire Valley

Amboise - Five hundred years after the death of Italian master painter Leonardo da Vinci, the Loire Valley town where he spent his last three years will host top-level festivities celebrating his life.

Suspected Banksy work tackles climate protests

London - A new work believed to be by British street artist Banksy appeared near London's Marble Arch on Friday, where climate change protesters have camped out for days.

Donations for gutted Brazil museum a fraction of Notre-Dame's

Rio De Janeiro - As donations for the restoration of the Notre-Dame cathedral top $900,000, the director of Brazil's devastated National Museum can only hope for such deep pockets in his own country.

'Legendary' Notre-Dame roof astounded Middle Ages: carpenter

Paris - The charred roof of the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris was once a legend that "astounded the Middle Ages" and still fascinates master carpenters, Thomas Buechi of the Charpente Concept group told AFP.What does the roof represent for master carpenters?

Egypt unveils colourful Fifth Dynasty tomb

Apo - In a major archaeological discovery, Egypt on Saturday unveiled the tomb of a Fifth Dynasty official adorned with colourful reliefs and well preserved inscriptions.

Scaffolding or modern art? Jury out on new Paris fountains

Paris - Expensive decorative scaffolding, or a welcome addition to the French capital's most famous avenue? New designer fountains on the Champs-Elysees have reopened a debate in Paris about how to add modern twists to the city's beloved classic architecture.

Slovak president vetoes foreign anthem ban

Bratislava - Slovak President Andrej Kiska has vetoed a controversial law banning foreign national anthems at public events, his office said in a statement on Thursday.

Pearls of wisdom: Japan's cultured farms still glisten

Shima - In Japan's picturesque Ago Bay, a couple sits in a little hut picking out oysters from a net, cleaning them carefully one-by-one before replacing them gently back in the water.

Ethnic Hungarian MPs upset at foreign anthems ban in Slovakia

Bratislava - Ethnic Hungarian MPs who backed a controversial law banning the singing of foreign national anthems at public events "by mistake", said on Thursday that they have asked Slovakia's president to veto it.

Polish priest 'very sorry' for Harry Potter book burning

Warsaw - A Polish priest apologised Wednesday for burning "magic" Harry Potter books, after his actions sparked a wave of protest and comparisons with totalitarian regimes and the Inquisition.

Outcry over Harry Potter book burning by priests in Poland

Warsaw - The burning of Harry Potter "magic" books by priests in Poland triggered a wave of protest in the majority Catholic country on Tuesday with critics making comparisons with totalitarian regimes and the Inquisition.

Downtown Cairo battles to keep cosmopolitan heritage alive

Apo - Cairo's downtown, with its old European-designed buildings, is wrestling to preserve its cultural heritage as Egypt readies a new capital in the desert.

Catholic priests burn Harry Potter books in Poland

Warsaw - Catholic priests in Poland burned books they say are sacrilegious this weekend, including tomes from British author J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series of fantasy novels.

Catholic priests burn Harry Potter books in Poland

Warsaw - Catholic priests in Poland burned books they say are sacrilegious this weekend, including tomes from British author J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series of fantasy novels.

Why leading the cyber battle needs better people, not technology

Cyber threats are part and parcel of everyday business life. Better technology can, to a degree, help to combat the daily hacking and phishing threats. However, the key to a joined-up strategy is people, according to a leading expert.

As conflict drags on, Ukrainians spurn Russian culture

Kiev - Five years ago Oleksandr Medvedev, like the vast majority of Ukrainians, would watch Russian movies and TV programmes and listen to Russian music.
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The six-story archive building of the City of Cologne  collapsed on 3 March 2009  comes to life agai...
The six-story archive building of the City of Cologne, collapsed on 3 March 2009, comes to life again at the Berlin's Martin-Gropius-Bau Museum.
Amazing ancient artifacts at the National Archaelogical Museum in Athens. Incredible to think these ...
Amazing ancient artifacts at the National Archaelogical Museum in Athens. Incredible to think these intricate sculptures have survived unscathed, centuries of war and sub-surface burial.
The grand Acropolis of Athens guards the city by day and night. A guardian citadel persuading any im...
The grand Acropolis of Athens guards the city by day and night. A guardian citadel persuading any imminent invaders their quest for victory is doomed and ill-fated.
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The classic and ever-popular, Russian-built Lada Niva. Used by the Russian military, these 4WD's are invincible!
German rock band Rammstein in concert in Milan on February 24  2005
German rock band Rammstein in concert in Milan on February 24, 2005
Wikimedia
Entrance to the yak Museum of Tibet
Entrance to the yak Museum of Tibet
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Toronto s cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
Toronto's cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
Aga Khan s collection for the first time in Berlin - Martin-Gropius-Bau Museum
Aga Khan's collection for the first time in Berlin - Martin-Gropius-Bau Museum
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A magnificent view of a magnificent former empire. The Byzantine empire at it's height in 555AD presided over 26,000,000 peoples; stretching from Spain, to Asia Minor and Northern Africa.
The Long Night of Opera and Theater 2010 in Berlin
The Long Night of Opera and Theater 2010 in Berlin
A quaint  Kafeneio  (Καφενειο: cafe) on the incline to the Acropolis. Just what the doctor o...
A quaint 'Kafeneio' (Καφενειο: cafe) on the incline to the Acropolis. Just what the doctor ordered!
Toronto s cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
Toronto's cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
Reddit founder Alexis Ohanian.
Reddit founder Alexis Ohanian.
Collision Conference
Vietnamese Cultural Festival 2010 in Berlin
Vietnamese Cultural Festival 2010 in Berlin
Toronto s cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
Toronto's cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
Turkish performers at the Toronto Turkish Festival.
Turkish performers at the Toronto Turkish Festival.
Aga Khan s collection for the first time in Berlin - Martin-Gropius-Bau Museum
Aga Khan's collection for the first time in Berlin - Martin-Gropius-Bau Museum
Toronto s cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.
Toronto's cultural diversity is shown in many different forms across the city.

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