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Italy's Di Maio quits as 5-Star leader - party source

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Luigi Di Maio resigned as leader of Italy's co-governing 5-Star movement on Wednesday, a party source said, as it seeks to stem a wave of defections that threatens the government's parliamentary majority.

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Pandemic fears grow as China virus toll rises to nine

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Authorities in China and beyond stepped up efforts to control an outbreak of a new flu-like coronavirus on Wednesday as the death toll rose to nine with 440 confirmed cases, while suspicion grew that the virus crossed to humans from animals.

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Russia strengthens sanitary controls at borders over virus fears - Ifax cites watchdog

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Russia's consumer safety watchdog said it has strengthened its sanitary and quarantine control at all entry points into the country, due to concerns over coronavirus from China, the Interfax news agency said on Wednesday.

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Duchess Kate embarks on UK tour for childhood survey

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Britain's duchess Kate, the wife of Prince William, embarked on a short tour of the country to launch a survey on people's views on bringing up children, as the royals carry on with official duties in the wake of the rift over Prince Harry.

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Biggest swimming pool in Russia's Muslim south bans women, causing outcry

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The biggest swimming pool in Russia's Muslim-majority North Caucasus region has banned women, prompting anger from rights activists and others who have accused the sports complex of discrimination.

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U.S. environmental reporter arrested in Indonesia for visa violation

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An American journalist who has covered stories exposing environmental destruction in Indonesia has been arrested on Borneo island for alleged visa violations, his lawyer and the environmental news outlet he works for said on Wednesday.

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China confirms 473 cases of new coronavirus - state media

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China has confirmed 473 cases of a new coronavirus, the People Daily newspaper said on Wednesday.

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Russia gets new government in what Putin calls 'major renewal'

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Russian President Vladimir Putin approved a new government on Tuesday which he described as a break with the past, bringing in some fresh faces but retaining many senior ministers.

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Saudi foreign minister calls claim that Crown Prince hacked Bezos phone 'absurd'

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Saudi Arabia's Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud said on Wednesday that an allegation the kingdom’s crown prince had been involved in a plot to hack the phone of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos was "absurd".

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Iran will never seek nuclear arms, with or without nuclear deal - Rouhani

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Iran will never seek nuclear weapons, with or without nuclear deal, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday, calling on the European powers to avoid Washington's mistake of violating Tehran's 2015 nuclear deal with major powers.

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Factbox: What we know about the new coronavirus spreading in China and beyond

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At least nine people have died from a new coronavirus in China following an outbreak in the central city of Wuhan, and more than 470 cases have been reported globally, most of them in China where the infection has spread faster in recent days.

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Democrats to make opening arguments in Trump impeachment trial

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The Republican-controlled U.S. Senate will hear opening arguments in President Donald Trump's impeachment trial on Wednesday, beginning up to six days of presentations on the question of whether Trump should be removed from office.

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Canadian prosecutor set to defend U.S. request to extradite Huawei CFO Meng

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Canadian prosecutors are expected to defend on Wednesday their case to extradite Huawei Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou to the United States saying Meng was arrested on charges of bank fraud, which is a crime in both countries, and not because of U.S. sanctions against Iran as argued by the defense.

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Factbox - Trump impeachment: What happens next?

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The Republican-controlled U.S. Senate will hear opening arguments in President Donald Trump's impeachment trial on Wednesday, beginning up to six days of presentations on the question of whether Trump should be removed from office.

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U.S. Supreme Court examines religious school funding in major rights case

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U.S. Supreme Court justices are poised to tackle a major religious rights case on Wednesday over whether states can bar public funding of religious institutions in a dispute over a Montana tax credit program that could benefit private religious schools.

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Thailand finds fourth coronavirus ahead of Lunar New Year

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Thailand has quarantined a fourth patient with the new coronavirus, including one Thai national, authorities said on Wednesday, days before Saturday's start of the Lunar New Year holiday is expected to bring an influx of Chinese tourists.

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Exclusive: Giuliani told U.S. his client deserves leniency for financing Venezuela's opposition - Parnas

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At a lavish August gathering at a private estate in Spain, a wealthy Venezuelan businessman under criminal investigation in the United States introduced Rudy Giuliani, President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, to the father of Venezuela’s opposition leader, Juan Guaido.

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What to expect at Harvey Weinstein's rape trial

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Opening statements begin on Wednesday in the rape trial in New York of Harvey Weinstein, once one of Hollywood's most powerful producers. He has pleaded not guilty to charges of rape and criminal sexual assault.

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Lengthy pizza delivers funds for embattled Australian firefighters

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An Italian restaurant in Australia has made a 103 metre (338 foot) Margherita pizza to raise funds for firefighters battling bushfires.

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Macron says France 'inflexible' over Iran's nuclear ambitions

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French President Emmanuel Macron said on Wednesday that France will be inflexible about Iran's nuclear ambitions and that his country is determined Tehran will never acquire nuclear weapons.

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