Saudi Arabia opens high-speed railway linking holy cities

Image copyright Reuters Image caption The trains will eventually connect five stations in Mecca, Jeddah and Medina King Salman of Saudi Arabia has inaugurated a long-awaited $6.7bn (£5.1bn) high-speed railway line connecting Islam’s two holiest cities. The 450km (280-mile) Haramain Express line linking Mecca and Medina via the Red Sea …

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How a small debt could cost a life

A year ago music student Jessica Hurst, 25, was told her father had died at the age of 56. Then came the discovery that he had killed himself after getting into debt. As she explains here, it had begun as a relatively small debt for unpaid council tax – but …

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Iraqi human rights activist shot dead in Basra

Image copyright Al-Weed Al-Alaiami For Human Rights Image caption Suad al-Ali was short outside a supermarket in Basra A female human rights activist has been shot dead in the southern Iraqi city of Basra, which has seen violent anti-government protests in recent weeks. Video posted online appears to show an …

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Ex-French PM Manuel Valls to run for Barcelona mayor

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Mr Valls has had a tumultuous relationship with French politics in recent years Former French Prime Minister Manuel Valls has announced his candidacy to be the mayor of Barcelona. It is an unprecedented bid to stand for a significant political position in a second …

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Black Cambridge alumni celebrated

Image copyright Joe Giddens/PA Image caption A portrait of actress Thandie Newton, part of the new exhibition ‘Black Cantabs: History Makers’ A new exhibition will celebrate prominent black graduates from Cambridge University. Fourteen portraits, along the library’s Royal Corridor, feature the first black students and more well-known alumni. The exhibition …

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Angola's Jose Filomeno dos Santos detained over 'fraud'

Image caption Jose Filomeno dos Santos led oil-rich Angola’s sovereign wealth fund during his father’s rule A son of Angola’s ex-President Jose Eduardo dos Santos has been arrested on suspicion of money-laundering, embezzlement of public funds and fraud. Jose Filomeno dos Santos is the most high-profile person to be targeted …

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