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Saturday, July 26, 2014

Latest News Headlines

Synthetic drug use rises as governments try bans, regulation

An emergency room doctor and researcher says prohibition is driving the rate that new synthetic drugs are evolving in Australia.

Synthetic drugs or 'legal highs' can be packaged as party pills, herbal highs, bath salts or even plant food, but often contain new and untested chemicals that mimic the effects of drugs like cannabis, LSD and amphetamines.

To help stop people using synthetic drugs, the Queensland, New South Wales, and South Australian governments have put a 'blanket ban' on possessing or selling substances other than alcohol, tobacco and food, that have a psychoactive effect.

But some say banning synthetic drugs will not help.

Pork industry calls for Australian-made bacon labelling overhaul

Australian pork producers say their industry is being undermined by weak labelling laws that make it easy for foreign pig meat to be portrayed as home-grown.

Lawyer questions legality of returning asylum seekers to India

Lawyers representing a group of 157 Tamil asylum seekers held on board an Australian customs boat say there are doubts about whether the Government can legally send them back to India.

Moylan sorry for 'unintended consequences' of ANZ hoax

An environmental activist who received a suspended sentence for sending out a fake press release that prompted Whitehaven Coal's share price to crash has said he is sorry and accepts the court's decision.

In January last year, Jonathan Moylan, 26, of Newcastle sent out the release, announcing that the ANZ Bank was withdrawing $1.2 billion from the Maules Creek mine project in north-west NSW.

A total of $314 million was wiped from Whitehaven Coal's share price in response.

Australia pressing Ukraine for deal to get police to MH17 site

Australia is still working for an agreement with Ukraine to allow an international police force into the country to help secure the crash site of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17.

Islamic State claims killing of 50 Syrian soldiers

Fighters from the extremist Islamic State group, formerly known as ISIS, say they have killed at least 50 soldiers and in north-eastern Syria.

Pair found dead with their dog inside car near Ballarat

Two people have been found dead in a car on the outskirts of Ballarat in central Victoria.

Police found the bodies of the 27-year-old man and 24-year-old woman inside the car, which was parked on Smarts Hill Road in Cardigan.

It is believed the pair had been living in the car and were using a butane heater to keep warm.

Their dog was also found dead in the vehicle.

'Disruptive' edits bring Wikipedia ban for US Capitol

Wikipedia has imposed a ban on page edits from computers at the US House of Representatives after anonymous changes were made to entries about politicians, businesses and historical events.

Nigeria confirms Ebola case in megacity of Lagos

Nigeria's health minister claims a Liberian man who died in the commercial capital of Lagos has tested positive for the deadly Ebola virus.

Israel, Hamas to pause hostilities in Gaza but ceasefire remains elusive

Israel and Hamas have agreed to a 12-hour pause in hostilities in Gaza as diplomatic efforts continue to reach a broader ceasefire to the deadly conflict.

An American official says Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu has told US secretary of state John Kerry that a halt to fighting would begin later Saturday, which Hamas later agreed to.

But mediators are still working to resolve seemingly irreconcilable demands from Israel and Hamas-led fighters, locked in conflict since July 8.

Mr Kerry said there were still disagreements on the terminology for a formal truce and called for a seven-day humanitarian ceasefire for the Muslim holiday of Eid next week.