Marcos Rodrigues

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How I ended up in the jungle with deadly hornets in my hair

When a swarm of giant hornets descended upon me in West Papua I feared I was going to die. Fortunately, a local was at hand with an antidote. Or so I thought<p>This story has no message or purpose. It is one of the winter’s tales – accounts of the many bizarre incidents that have marked my life – that …

Melanesia

The most exciting thrillers and horror movies of 2017

In the latest in our 10-part series, we run through the films we are most looking forward to next year (in alphabetical order). Today: thrillers and horror films<p>• Read more of our most anticipated films of 2017<p>Baby Driver<p>Edgar Wright’s latest is a departure in many ways: his first film to shoot in …

Most Australian funds transferred to China – but Estonia gets an odd spike

Unexplained increase in transfers to Estonia not necessarily suspicious, experts say<p>China remained by far the biggest destination for Australian cash this year, while the amount of funds transferred to Estonia experienced a huge, unexplained spike.<p>New data published on Austrac’s freedom of …

Two arrested after man is shot dead in car in West Bromwich

Police say two men have been detained on suspicion of murder, and appeal for witnesses to come forward<p>Two suspects have been arrested in connection with the death of a 33-year-old man who was shot in the head while sitting in a stationary car.<p>West Midlands police said two men, aged 19 and 24, were …

Mexico: six severed heads found on Christmas Day

Drug war claims another 13 lives in western region riven by murders and violence<p>Western Mexico’s plague of violence has continued with the discovery of six decapitated heads in one state and the killing of seven people in another.<p>The Michoacan state prosecutor’s office said the six heads were found …

Mexico

Fake news story prompts Pakistan to issue nuclear warning to Israel

Defence minister reminds Israel on Twitter that ‘Pakistan is a nuclear state too’ after fake story says Israel had threatened to destroy Pakistan<p>A fake news story has touched off a Twitter confrontation between nuclear powers Pakistan and Israel, the latest disturbing incident of fabricated stories …

Sailor Thomas Coville sets new solo round the world record

Tears and champagne flow as French skipper completes voyage in just 49 days and three hours<p>Thomas Coville has smashed the record for sailing around the world solo, finishing his journey in just 49 days and three hours, more than a week faster than the previous titleholder.<p>The French sailor …

Sailing

Christianity is for life, not just for Christmas

I was delighted to read Prebendary Neil Richardson’s letter (24 December) about the exclusion of programmes that were genuinely about Christmas from your “festive 40” listing. I had been thinking along very similar lines myself. Perhaps I could go a little further. Here at All Saints church in …

US government collecting social media information from foreign travelers

Visitors filing visa waiver application are prompted to enter account names for social platforms, but activists say there are few guidelines for use of information<p>The US government has begun asking select foreign travelers to disclose their social media activities as part of an expanded effort to …

Israel threatens to give Trump 'evidence' that Obama orchestrated UN resolution

Netanyahu allies claim ‘iron-clad information’ from Arab sources reveals Obama administration drafted document to end settlements, which US abstained from<p>Israel has escalated its already furious war with the outgoing US administration, claiming that it has “rather hard” evidence that Barack Obama …

US increased weapons sales in 2015 despite slight drop in global arms trade

Developing nations were once again the largest buyers of weapons as total sales dropped to $80bn from $89bn in 2014<p>The sale of global arms dropped slightly last year to $80bn from 2014’s $89bn, according to a new congressional study, with the US maintaining its position as the world’s dominant …

Korean Air crew to 'readily' use stun guns on passengers after Richard Marx criticism

Korean Air to take tougher stance on in-flight disturbances after US singer said staff were ill-trained in incident last week<p>Korean Air Lines has said it will allow crew members to “readily use stun guns” to manage in-flight disturbances, after being criticised by US singer Richard Marx for its …

Horse, possum and donkey meat on menu under South Australian food safety changes

Proposal, which has been opposed by the Animal Justice party, would be implemented by September if adopted<p>Horse, possum, camel and donkey will be available for sale from South Australian butchers from September next year if recommended changes to food safety regulations are adopted.<p>The SA …

Russian plane crash investigators recover first black box

Discovery of flight recorder may offer clues to crash in which 92 people died, amid reports all TU-154 planes grounded<p>Russia has found the first flight recorder from a military plane that crashed into the Black Sea killing all 92 on board, the defence ministry said, amid unconfirmed reports that …

What's in store for Europe in 2017? A look at possible scenarios

2016 showed anything can happen and as a wind of anti politics-as-usual sentiment blows across the continent more changes could be on the horizon<p>Europe will look back on 2016 as a dreadful year – the horror of attacks in Brussels, Nice and Berlin, the shame of Calais and the earthquake of …

Hard for Dilma Rousseff to clean up Brazil’s dirty politics

The challenges that confronted Dilma Rousseff in cleaning up Brazilian political life cannot be underestimated (From presidential palace to her mother’s flat, 24 December). In 2012, I was contracted by Unesco to advise the government on implementing the access to information decree the president …

Cristina Fernández de Kirchner indicted in Argentina corruption case

The former Argentinian president and former aides face charges of illicit association and fraudulent administration in connection to public works funds<p>The former Argentinian president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner was indicted on Tuesday in a corruption case involving public works.<p>Federal judge …

Shinzo Abe visits Pearl Harbor in what Barack Obama calls 'historic gesture'

During the first joint visit by US and Japanese leaders, Obama says Abe’s presence is a reminder that wars can end and enemies can become allies<p>Barack Obama said Shinzo Abe’s visit to Pearl Harbor was a “historic gesture” that showed the power of reconciliation.<p>Speaking at Pearl Harbor alongside …

On the hunt for illegal miners as a new gold rush hits New Zealand

Prospecting for gold is growing in popularity by the year, but amateurs looking for a quick fortune can damage the environment<p>When travelling up the glacial rivers that thread through parts of New Zealand’s rugged South Island Jackie Adams often uses his 1,500CC motorbike to move quickly over the …

Netanyahu 'told New Zealand backing UN vote would be declaration of war'

Israeli PM reportedly warned that support for motion on settlements would ‘rupture relations’ between two countries<p>Benjamin Netanyahu reportedly told New Zealand’s foreign minister that support for a UN resolution condemning Israeli settlement-building in the occupied territories would be viewed as …

Bike-sharing revolution aims to put China back on two wheels

From Shanghai to Sichuan, schemes are being rolled out to slash congestion, cut air pollution – and spin a profit<p>Even through Beijing’s nicotine-tinged smog you can make out the multi-coloured frames, gliding through the pea soup towards a greener future.<p>In recent months an unmissable fleet of …