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Putin critics just keep dying

Written By surya kencana on Senin, 02 Maret 2015 | 23.45

Russian opposition leader Sergei Mitrokhin says the killing of Boris Nemtsov is a blow to Russia's future, as the national flag is draped over a makeshift memorial. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

People react as they gather in memory of Boris Nemtsov just a day before a planned protest against the government. Picture: AP Source: AP

MAYBE it was Islamic extremists who killed Boris Nemtsov. Or someone offended by his love life. Or agents of a Western power who will stop at nothing to disfigure President Vladimir Putin's image and drive him from power.

Russian investigators, politicians and political commentators on state television on Saturday covered much ground in looking for the reason Nemtsov was gunned down in the heart of Moscow, but they sidestepped one possibility — that he was murdered for his relentless opposition to Putin.

A group of ambassadors to Russia lay flowers at the place where Boris Nemtsov was gunned down. Picture: AP Source: AP

Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov shot dead in Moscow

Nemtsov, a 55-year-old former deputy prime minister and leading Russian liberal political figure for the past two decades, was gunned down shortly before midnight Friday as he walked across a bridge near the Kremlin with a female companion.

Although there is no certainty about who is responsible it is certain that he is not the first critic of the Kremline policies to lose his life.

These are some of the others.

ANNA POLITKOVSKAYA

Renowned journalist Anna Politkovskaya, 48, was fatally shot in the elevator of her Moscow apartment building in October 2006. Her work in the Novaya Gazeta newspaper was sharply critical of Kremlin policies in Chechnya and of human rights violations there.

Last year, a court convicted five men, most of them Chechens, of involvement in the murder. However, Russia's Investigative Committee has said it is still trying to determine who ordered the killing.

Reporter Anna Politkovskaya. Picture: AP Source: AP

Alexander Litvinenko, former KGB spy. Picture: AP Source: AP

ALEXANDER LITVINENKO

Former Russian intelligence officer Alexander Litvinenko, 44, became sick after drinking tea laced with radioactive polonium-210 at a London hotel in November 2006 and died three weeks later. Litvinenko had fallen out with the Russian government and became a strong critic of the Kremlin, obtaining political asylum after coming to Britain in 2000.

Two weeks before he was poisoned, Litvinenko blamed Putin for the murder of Politkovskaya. Before he died, he signed a statement blaming Putin for his poisoning.

British police have named two Russian men, former KGB agent Andrei Lugovoi and Dmitry Kovtun, as prime suspects. They deny involvement, and Russia refused to extradite them. An inquiry in Britain is now examining the circumstances of Litvinenko's death.

STANISLAV MARKELOV

Stanislav Markelov, a human rights lawyer, was shot after leaving a news conference less than a kilometre from the Kremlin in January 2009. Markelov, 34, was appealing the early release of Yuri Budanov, a Russian military officer convicted of killing a young Chechen woman. A journalist walking with Markelov, Anastasia Baburova, also died in the attack. A Russian nationalist extremist was sentenced to life in prison for the killings.

People light candles in memory of Boris Nemtsov, seen behind, in central St. Petersburg, Russia. Picture: AP Source: AP

NATALYA ESTEMIROVA

Human rights activist Natalya Estemirova, 50, was abducted in Chechnya in July 2009 and found shot dead the same day. One of Chechnya's best known rights activists, Estemirova headed the Memorial group's Chechen branch and exposed alleged abuses by the forces of Kremlin-backed Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov.

Russian investigators said in 2010 that two brothers who were members of an Islamic militant group killed Estemirova, who had implicated them in kidnappings of Chechen civilians. Memorial said DNA evidence showed that the two men — one of whom was killed in 2009 and the other granted asylum in France — didn't commit the crime.

BORIS NEMTSOV

Boris Nemtsov, 55, who served as a deputy prime minister in the 1990s and became a prominent opposition figure under Putin, was gunned down in Moscow on Friday night. The killing came a few hours after he denounced Putin's "mad, aggressive" policies and the day before he was to help lead a rally protesting Russia's actions in the Ukraine crisis and the economic crisis at home.

Originally published as Putin critics just keep dying
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Man gets gold and white dress tattoo

White and gold? ... Daniel Howland has had the infamous blue and black dress tattooed on his calf. Picture: Instagram Source: Supplied

IT WAS the dress that divided the internet this week. Everyone from Julianne Moore to Taylor Swift had a say about whether the dress was black and blue or white and gold.

Now one man from Texas will have the memory forever with a new tattoo of the infamous dress on his leg.

THE DRESS THAT BAFFLED THE WORLD

Daniel Howland told Buzzfeed he had some extra space on his leg and thought why not. "I didn't see a reason not to," he said

"I pretty much got it because, I mean, I keep up with all the social memes and hysteria and whatever, and this is the only one that I really couldn't wrap my brain around. So I just decided to do it."

The 24-year-old, who is a body piercer, sees the dress as blue and black but briefly saw gold and white after a couple of drinks.

The man responsible for the artwork, Nick York, 19, says he was only able to see white and gold but etched the blue and black dress with the words "white and gold?" for his mate in ....

blue and black ink.

Both men agree the tattoo is stupid. "It's a joke", Mr York explains.

Mr Howland admits it is a dumb tattoo, "that's why it's funny".

In our opinion, a cute tattoo of a runaway llama would have been a better option if you were going to pick anything from this week's top stories.

Llama ... Way easier to explain as a tattoo. Picture: AP Photo/abc15.com Source: AP

Originally published as Man gets gold and white dress tattoo

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‘There may be life on Jupiter’s moon’

Written By surya kencana on Senin, 23 Februari 2015 | 23.45

NASA is asking for $30 million in its fiscal year 2016 budget request to plan a mission to Jupiter's moon Europa which it calls one of the most likely places to find current life beyond Earth. WSJ's Monika Auger reports.

Life on Europa? ... this NASA image shows a body of water under the icy surface of the distant moon. Picture: NASA Source: Supplied

NASA thinks there may be life on Jupiter's moon, Europa.

Officials at NASA have asked scientists to consider how a potential mission to Jupiter's small icy moon could search for signs of alien life, reports Space.com.

"This is our chance" NASA science chief John Grunsfeld said at a workshop at the Ames Research Centre in California on Wednesday. "I just hope we don't miss this opportunity for lack of ideas."

The Europa mission has been in the works for years, but received a boost earlier this month when the White House allocated $US30 million in funding for the project.

Under the $2.1 billion plan, NASA would search plumes of water vapour that are believed to blast from the moon's south polar region, possibly allowing scientists to sample the liquid beneath Europa's frozen surface.

Mr Grunsfeld urged workshop attendees to "think outside the box" and come up with feasible ways to study the vapour, which could contain signs of life.

However, it will be some time before any results are known. The earliest any spacecraft could blast off for Europa is 2022, and it wouldn't arrive for another eight years, Mr Grunsfeld said.

Killed ... Jade Louise Bayliss was murdered at age 13. Her mother says she was "an angel in disguise". Source: Supplied Source: Supplied

IN NATIONAL NEWS

— WHEN a child killer came into Tina's life, she had no idea about his dark past. A few months later, he gagged Tina's daughter, strangled her with a cord and set the house on fire.

— READ the fine print, read the fine print, read the fine print. This simple mistake could see a group of young families slugged for up to $1 million.

— ARMY troops are on their way to Queensland to help with clean-up in the wake of Cyclone Marcia, amid reports three men have been arrested for looting.

— TONY Abbott has slammed reports that he suggested a go-it-alone invasion of Iraq to fight Islamic State as "absolutely fanciful".

— TEN elite sports stars across three codes have been linked to a major drug ring that threatens to rock Queensland sports to its core.

No fan of Trans ... Pope Francis believes transgender people are playing with creation. Picture: AP Source: AP

IN WORLD NEWS
— POPE Francis has said he isn't in a position to judge gay people. However he is less than gracious in his views on the transgender community.

— THE United States is seriously considering slowing the pace of its troop withdrawal from Afghanistan amid a bloody Taliban insurgency.

— UKRAINE'S former pro-Kremlin president, whose toppling sparked the bloody war raging in the country's east, has declared: "I'll be back".

— THREE teens have been charged after a former friend was bashed with a crowbar and left fighting for his life after he allegedly stole their pot.

Poster girl ... Kanye West says Beyonce has pictures of Kim Kardashian up on her wall to inspire her. Picture: Getty Source: Getty Images

IN SHOWBIZ NEWS

— KANYE West has said a lot of wild things but his claim that Beyonce has photos of Kim Kardashian on her wall for inspiration may be the most outlandish.

— SCARLETT Johansson has revived her music career by assembling an all-girl "super-pop" band. Hear the first single.

— BOBBI Kristina Brown was abusing cocaine, heroin and other drugs before she was found unconscious in her bathtub, according to a report.

— ONE of the original stars of Orange is the New Black has been dropped from season three. Find out who — and why.

Originally published as 'There may be life on Jupiter's moon'
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‘You white girls are good at it’

Written By surya kencana on Senin, 22 Desember 2014 | 23.45

Raped in bushes ... Abdul Ghafoor subjected his victim to a terrifying three-hour ordeal. Source: Supplied

A MARRIED father-of-four who raped a young pub worker in a three-hour ordeal — saying "you white girls are good at it" — has been jailed for life.

Abdul Ghafoor, 33, grabbed the woman while she walked home from work around 11pm in the English town of Bedford, dragging her into undergrowth and bushes, The Mirror reports.

The drunken rapist sexually assaulted his victim in a terrifying three-hour attack on May 30 that lasted from 11.25pm to 2.45am, during which he forced her to perform a sex act on him.

At one point the victim, in her 20s, sent her sister a message on WhatsApp begging for help, but Ghafoor smashed her mobile phone, The Mirror reports.

The woman then attempted to escape when Ghafoor vomited from the drinks he had downed, but he chased her and dragged her back into the bushes.

Worst nightmare ... Ghafoor grabbed his victim from behind while she was walking along Cardington Road in Bedford. Source: Supplied

Luton Crown Court heard the victim's sister raised the alarm and police helicopter began searching for her.

Ghafoor eventually allowed the victim to get dressed and walk out on to the road — even suggesting she should accompany him into town, The Mirror reports.

But they were spotted by a police inspector who managed to detain the rapist.

Prosecutor Sally Hobson said Ghafoor's behaviour had a racial aspect as he had "made racially aggravated comments to the effect that this is the sort of behaviour that white women would engage in".

"She was a white woman and he believed it was OK to behave in this way," the prosecutor told the court.

"It was a stranger rape of a young woman going about her business in her home town she ought to feel safe.

Judge Richard Foster said the victim had been subjected to a "nightmare of unimaginable proportions", the Mail Online reports.

He passed a life sentence on Ghafoor, saying he was a dangerous offender.

Ghafoor cannot be considered for parole until he has served nine years.

Originally published as 'You white girls are good at it'
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Millionaire murdered after kidnap

Written By surya kencana on Senin, 25 Agustus 2014 | 23.45

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Run-over boy’s miracle escape

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Teen party mum’s ‘condoms, booze’

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Porn stars: squeeze our boobs for charity

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Doctor dies despite Ebola serum

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ISIS claims Sony cyber attacks

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