A teenager from Somalia became the first person to face piracy charges in the United States for more than a century. Abde Wale Abdul Kadhir Muse, 16, was the only survivor of a gang of four who were holding an American captain hostage aboard a lifeboat. He was on board a US warship negotiating a ransom when snipers shot dead three others guarding Captain Richard Phillips. His mother appealed for her son's release, telling the BBC: "I am requesting the American government, I am requesting President Obama to release my child. He has got nothing to do with the pirates' crime. "He is a minor. He is under age and he has been used for this crime."
The father of one of the child stars of the international hit film Slumdog Millionaire has denied a newspaper report that he was willing to sell her for £200,000 (Dh1 million). The News of The World, a British tabloid newspaper, claimed that Rafiq Qureshi had offered to sell nine-year-old Rubina Ali to a reporter posing as an Arab sheikh who wanted to adopt her and bring her to Dubai. Mr Qureshi, a carpenter in Mumbai, said the newspaper had "made fun of our poverty". "They tricked us into this fakery but we came out unscathed."
Pets are to be banned from public parks and beaches in Abu Dhabi. A draft law published by the municipality will also require owners to keep their dogs on a leash at all times. Officials say the legislation is in response to complaints from members of the public about unruly animals and could be introduced within two months. Dog owners say the rules will make it hard to exercise their pets and are a response to antisocial behaviour by a tiny minority of owners.
A speech by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at a United Nations anti-racism conference prompted a walk out by dozens of delegates. The Iranian president described Israel as a " most cruel and totally racist government" and said it was working with the US and Europe to destabilise the world. France called his remarks a "hate speech" with America describing it as "vile". Officials from Britain and other European countries walked out of the conference in Geneva which had already been boycotted by the USA, Netherlands, Poland, Italy, Germany, New Zealand, Australia and Israel. They claimed the conference, designed to combat racism, was instead promoting it. The remaining delegates applauded the Iranian president at the end of his remarks Mr Ahmadinejad said later that countries boycotting had showed "arrogance and selfishness".
An obscure book given to President Barack Obama by the left-wing president of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, has become an international best-seller. Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent, by Eduardo Galeano, a Uruguayan journalist, was first published in 1971 and is out of print in hardcover. The paperback edition jumped to No 2 in sales on Amazon.com after President Chavez handed a copy to President Obama at the Summit of the Americas. The book claims foreign interests have dictated life in Latin America since the arrival of the Spanish in the 15th century. A taste of space
Astrobiologists searching for the building blocks of the cosmos in Sagittarius B2, a giant dust cloud at the centre of the Milky Way say they have detected ethyl formate, a chemical that gives the fruit its taste. The chemical was discovered in a search for molecules that could explain how life emerged.
Shoppers at Masdar City, the experimental ecological community being built on the outskirts of Abu Dhabi, may be told the environmental costs of their purchases along with the receipt. Retailers will list the carbon footprint of every product on their shelves when the Dh14 billion (US$3.8bn) development opens in 2011. Speaking at Cityscape Abu Dhabi, Khaled Awad, the director of Masdar's property development unit, said: "The key is to get this information and pass it to the consumer so the consumer has a choice."
Hitler's master-race of cattle were discovered to be living in a field in rural England. Nazi scientists bred the Heck cows in an attempt to recreate the auroch, an extinct wild ox whose power and strength resonates in German mythology. Only a few animals survived the Second World War, and a herd of 13 has now been created by the farmer and conservationist Derek Gow on his land in Devon. Swat deal criticised Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, accused the government of Pakistan of abdicating power to the Taliban in parts of the country. Speaking to the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Mrs Clinton warned allowing extremists to control areas like the Swat Valley threatened world peace. She called the situation "a mortal threat to the security and safety of our country and the world". "I think the Pakistani government is basically abdicating to the Taliban and the extremists," she added.
The founder of the micro-blogging service Twitter visited Baghdad to see if Iraqis could be persuaded to start "tweeting". Jack Dorsey met with representatives of Iraqi mobile phone services to discuss adding Twitter to local handsets. He was joined by senior executives from Google and YouTube in a visit sponsored by the US government. More than 80 per cent of Iraqis have mobile phones, but only five per cent have home broadband. Mr Dorsey, who invented the service in 2006, used Twitter to tell friends and colleagues that he had talked to Jalal Talabani, the president of Iraq. "Met the President of Iraq at his house this morn. Amazing palace and an enlightening conversation," his entry read.
Pakistan played Australia in Dubai in a match that signalled the emergence of the UAE as a venue for world-class cricket. Fears of terrorism, following the attack on the Sri Lanka team in Lahore last month, led to the game being switched to the Dubai Sports City stadium. Thousands of Pakistani fans saw their team defeat the current world champions in the first of five one-day internationals. email@example.com