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Inside Christchurch’s damaged Catholic cathedral

Incredible footage shows earthquake damage

Christchurch's Catholic Diocese will to spend up to $45 million partially rebuilding its earthquake-damaged cathedral.

  • Frenchwoman jailed for 18 months for 'torturing' boyfriend

    A Frenchwoman who kept her boyfriend as a "domestic slave", forcing him to ingest sponges and window cleaner, was Thursday sentenced to three years in prison, half of which was suspended. Zakia Medkour, 43, was also ordered to pay 200,000 euros ($217,000) in damages to her ex-boyfriend Maxime Gaget, 37, for crimes which the prosecution said went "beyond violence" with a "female torturer and a male victim". The pair met in 2007 on the Internet and seven months later moved into a Parisian studio where Medkour lived with her two children.

    AFP
  • Natalie Imbruglia: I did crazy things after my divorce

    Natalie Imbruglia did a lot of "crazy stuff" following the breakdown of her marriage. The 'Torn' hitmaker split from her husband, Silverchair frontman Daniel Johns, in 2008 after five years of marriage and has admitted she felt a sense of freedom following the break up which led to rumours of flings with a host of fellow A-listers including Robbie Williams, David Schwimmer and Chris Martin. In an interview with Red magazine, she said: "After my divorce I was doing lots of crazy stuff.

    Bang Showbiz
  • Rebels storm last regime-held city in Syria's Idlib: monitor

    A rebel coalition led by Al-Qaeda's Syrian affiliate edged into the last remaining government-held city in the northwest province of Idlib on Thursday, a monitoring group said. The lightning offensive saw the Army of Conquest, or Jaish al-Fatah in Arabic, enter outer districts of Ariha within a matter of hours, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights told AFP. "There was heavy shelling and rocket fire, then they stormed the city," said Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman.

    AFP
  • Djokovic, Nadal canter while Kokkinakis breaks through

    World number one Novak Djokovic and defending champion Rafael Nadal stayed on course for a French Open quarter-final Thursday as teenager Thanasi Kokkinakis provided a glimpse into the sport's future. Top seed Djokovic survived a worrying injury scare to reach the third round with a 6-1, 6-4, 6-4 win over Gilles Muller of Luxemburg. Nadal, chasing a 10th Paris title, enjoyed a 6-4, 6-3, 6-1 breeze past Spanish compatriot Nicolas Almagro.

    AFP
  • UPDATE: Bob Jones ejected from Air NZ flight as fellow passengers applaud

    Property magnate Bob Jones was ejected from an Air New Zealand flight after refusing to take instructions from cabin crew. Jones kept reading when the staff member sought to deliver him and other passengers a routine safety briefing and became argumentative when asked to stop reading, again refusing to be instructed on emergency procedures. Told he could be moved to another seat if he was unable or unwilling to assist in an emergency, he refused to be moved and asked to be left alone, according to passengers in the same row, who witnessed the incident.

    BusinessDesk
  • Nicole Riche and Joel Madden Sell Their Home Amidst Split Rumours

    Joel Madden and Nicole Richie have sparked more rumours of a divorce as they list their home for sale. Nicole Richie and Joel Madden have fuelled speculation that they're headed for a split after listing their four-bedroom, five-bathroom estate in Laurel Canyon for $US3.49 million ($4.5 million). The listing comes weeks after rumours began floating around about the couple's marital troubles, stemming from arguments about everything including work schedules and personal differences.

    FAMOUS
  • Racist trolling casts pall over US spelling bee

    Racist trolling on social media is casting an ugly pall over, of all things, the world's foremost spelling bee. For seven years in a row, and for 11 of the past 15 years, the $30,000 Scripps National Spelling Bee championship has been won by American youngsters of Indian heritage. One of them, Vanya Shivashankar, 13, who lives in Kansas, is back for a fifth time -- inspired no doubt by her sister Kavya, the 2009 champion.

    AFP
  • Australia's richest person Gina Rinehart loses control of family trust

    Australia's richest person Gina Rinehart was Thursday ordered by a court to relinquish control of a multi-billion dollar family trust to her eldest daughter, culminating a long and bitter feud. The New South Wales Supreme Court appointed Bianca Rinehart as head of the trust, reportedly worth Aus$4.0-5.0 billion (US$3.1-3.8 billion), which was established by her grandfather, the late mining magnate Lang Hancock. It ordered Gina Rinehart to deliver the trust documents and accounts to her daughter.

    AFP
  • NZ man acquitted of Perth man's death

    New Zealander Patrick Sunill Lilii was chatting with friends outside a Perth nightclub when he felt a man jump on him and wrap arms around his neck. It was Zak Harvey giving him a hug. The 32-year-old was taken to Royal Perth Hospital, but his head injuries were too severe for him to survive and eventually his life support was switched off.

    NZ Newswire
  • Putin condemns US over FIFA probe

    Russia switched the focus of its tensions with America from Ukraine to the football pitch Thursday with President Vladimir Putin lashing out over the US probe into FIFA. The Kremlin strongman condemned the arrest of seven top FIFA officials, accusing Washington of trying to oust football boss Sepp Blatter after he resisted pressure to stop Russia hosting the 2018 World Cup. "We know about the pressure that has been put on (Blatter) with the aim of banning the holding of the 2018 World Cup in Russia," Putin said in comments released Thursday.

    AFP
  • Mystery of holes in Swiss cheese cracked after a century

    Eureka! After about a century of research, Swiss scientists have finally cracked the mystery of the holes in Swiss cheese. Experts from Agroscope, a state centre for agricultural research, said the phenomenon -- which marks famous Swiss cheeses such as Emmental and Appenzell -- was caused by tiny bits of hay present in the milk and not bacteria as previously thought. "It's the disappearance of the traditional bucket" used during milking that caused the difference, said Agroscope spokesman Regis Nyffeler, adding that bits of hay fell into it and then eventually caused the holes.

    AFP 54 mins ago
  • New species of human ancestor found in Ethiopia

    In 1974, anthropologists in Ethiopia found the astonishing fossilised remains of a human-like creature who last walked the planet some 3.2 million years ago. Was "Lucy," as the hominid was called, the direct ancestor of Homo sapiens?

    AFP
  • Lena Dunham Strips Down to Her Lingerie

    Lena Dunham's latest Instagram photo aims to empower women. Photo: InstagramLena Dunham's latest saucy Instagram post is a celebration of freedom, according to the Girls star.The 29-year-old star shared a photo of herself wearing a lacy lingerie set,

    FAMOUS
  • Kurds oust IS from Christian villages in Syria: monitor

    Kurdish forces have driven the Islamic State group from more than a dozen Assyrian Christian villages that the jihadists had captured in northeastern Syria, a monitor said Wednesday. "Following a 10-day offensive, Kurdish fighters took control early this week of 14 Assyrian villages that IS had controlled since February," said Rami Abdel Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Assyrian Christians, who are from one of the world's oldest Christian communities, have been under increasing threat since IS seized control of large parts of Syria.

    AFP
  • Depp finds Australia 'war on terrier' 'quite humorous'

    Johnny Depp found the "war on terrier" storm over his pet dogs Pistol and Boo being turfed out of Australia "quite humorous", his friend Mick Doohan said Wednesday. Doohan also commented on recent reports that the actor had fled Australia to "save his marriage" to wife Amber Heard, when he in fact went to celebrate his daughter Lily-Rose's 16th birthday back in the United States.

    AFP
  • The Russian billionaires hit hard by oil's plunge

    The sharp fall in global oil prices has had a deep impact not only on the global economy but on the fortunes of Russian billionaires, many of whom got rich on the back of the commodity. According to the 2014 Wealth-X and UBS Billionaire Census, the net worth of many of the 114 Russian billionaires in the index has been sorely affected by lower oil revenues and the value of their holdings in petroleum-related businesses. International sanctions imposed on Russia for its annexation of Crimea and role in the conflict in east Ukraine, the drop in the Russian ruble (Exchange:RUB=) and the ensuing rampant inflation have not helped matters either, and have all contributed to Russia's economy sliding towards recession this year.

    CNBC
  • Lewis Hamilton smitten with Kendall Jenner

    The 30-year-old Formula One racing driver, who split from Nicole Scherzinger in February after seven years of dating, is reportedly smitten with the 19-year-old model. The brunette beauty is equally attracted to Lewis and enjoyed spending the day with him on his boat. Another source said: "Kendall definitely has a major flirtation going on with Lewis and seems into him.

    Bang Showbiz
  • 65-year-old mum's quadruplets face big health risks

    Doctors at a Berlin clinic say quadruplets, whose very premature births to a 65-year-old German mother have captured headlines and stirred debate, face big health risks. Eight days after their delivery about 15 weeks early, two of the newborns are receiving help breathing and one has undergone surgery for an intestinal problem, said the medical experts at the prestigious Charite hospital. Teacher Annegret Raunigk, who has already had 13 children, gave birth to the quadruplets by caesarian section in the 26th week of pregnancy, after travelling to Ukraine for fertility treatment with two anonymous donors.

    AFP
  • Jack Nicklaus looks to expand his empire

    Legendary golfer Jack Nicklaus has long has his hand in business, leading The Nicklaus Cos. for decades. "The golf course design business ... it's been pretty dead in the United States," he noted. In February, Jack Nicklaus premium ice cream was launched in partnership with The Schwan Food Co. There are also Nicklaus golf balls, lemonade and apparel, among other things.

    CNBC
  • Relationship with Saudi Arabia `poisoned'

    New Zealand's relationship with Saudi Arabia was poisoned by a dispute with a businessman who lost millions when the export of live sheep for slaughter was banned, parliament has been told. Foreign Minister Murray McCully said on Wednesday the poisoned relationship spilled over into the wider Gulf Co-operation Council. Mr McCully confirmed on Tuesday the government had spent $11.5 million equipping Al Ali Al Khalaf's Saudi Arabian farm as settlement.

    NZ Newswire