Pro-democracy protesters back in Hong Kong, no violence
By Donny Kwok and Michelle Price HONG KONG (Reuters) - Thousands of pro-democracy protesters returned to the streets of Hong Kong on Sunday in the first large-scale rally since demonstrations rocked the global financial hub late last year. Some 2,000 police flanked thousands of protesters who marched on the city's glitzy shopping and financial districts, seeking to avoid a repeat of the so-called Occupy Central campaign that saw demonstrations shut down key roads for 2-1/2 months. Last year's protests for a fully democratic vote to choose Hong Kong's next leader were the most serious challenge to China's authority since the 1989 pro-democracy demonstrations and crackdown in Beijing's Tiananmen Square. Packed streets resembled rivers of yellow as protesters carried yellow banners and umbrellas - a symbol of last year's campaign after protesters used them to fend off police pepper spray attacks.
Nigeria military repels Boko Haram assault on key city Maiduguri
Nigeria’s military on Sunday repelled a Boko Haram assault on the key northeastern city of Maiduguri, as violence raged across the region just two weeks before national elections. The hours-long attack on the strategic capital of Borno state was the Islamists’ second attempt to take Maiduguri in a week. Separately, a suicide bomber killed seven people in Potiskum, the economic capital of neighbouring Yobe state, while two blasts -- one also carried out by a suicide bomber -- killed five people in Gombe city to the south. With near-relentless violence plaguing much of the northeast, and Boko Haram still in control of large swathes of the region, fears are mounting over the prospect of organising polls on February 14.
'How to Train Your Dragon 2' tops Annie Awards
NEW YORK (AP) — The DreamWorks sequel "How to Train Your Dragon 2" topped the 42nd Annie Awards, taking best feature at the annual honors for animation.
Pregnant smokers persuaded to quit with free diapers
AKRON, Ohio (AP) — Pregnant smokers in one northeast Ohio county can get free diapers in exchange for permanently kicking the habit through a new health program.
Jailed Al Jazeera journalist Peter Greste leaves Egypt for Australia
By Michael Georgy and Shadi Bushra CAIRO (Reuters) - Al Jazeera journalist Peter Greste was released from a Cairo jail on Sunday and left Egypt for his native Australia after 400 days in prison on charges that included aiding a terrorist group, security officials said. There was no official word on the fate of his two Al Jazeera colleagues - Canadian-Egyptian Mohamed Fahmy and Egyptian national Baher Mohamed - who were also jailed in the case that provoked an international outcry. The three were sentenced to seven to 10 years on charges including spreading lies to help a terrorist organization - a reference to the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood. Many Egyptians see Qatar-based Al Jazeera as a force set on destabilizing the country, a view that has been encouraged in the local media which has labeled the journalists "The Marriott Cell", because they worked from a hotel of the U.S.-based chain.