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  • Photo by Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images(MOSCOW) -- A spokesman for Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday said the leader is healthy, just days after U.S. President Donald Trump released information from his annual physical.Kremlin spokesman Dimitry Peskov was asked Wednesday if detailed information on Putin's health would be released. Russian news agency Interfax says Peskov replied that he was unaware of such a report begin planned. "Our legislation does not envisage any mandatory publication on the state of the President's health."Still, Peskov said, "I can assure you that the president is absolutely health and is in far better condition than many people."Putin has held the position of President since 2000. Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
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  • dk_photos/iStock/Thinkstock(TEMUCO, Chile) -- Pope Francis stepped into another thorny issue in Chile Wednesday: the plight of the country’s indigenous people.Francis flew some 400 miles from the capital of Santiago to the city of Temuco, located deep in the country’s poorest region of Araucania, the land of the Mapuche, the largest ethnic group in Chile.In a nod to the centuries-long struggle indigenous people in the region have waged, Francis greeted the different indigenous people of the region: the Mapuche, the Rapanui (from Easter Island), the Aymara, the Quechua and the Atacamenos.He spoke of the beauty and richness of their lands, saying in their local language, "Mari, Mari," or "Good morning," and "Küme tünngün ta niemün," or “Peace be with you.”The pontiff said the land "has a sorrow that cannot be silenced, the injustices of centuries that everyone sees taking place" and focused on the meaning of unity. He stressed the need for all to listen and respect one another and about the art of "weaving" that unity to build history."We need the riches that each people has to offer, and we must abandon the notion that there are higher or lower cultures," Francis said.He urged attendees to not resort to "destructive violence.""We have to insist that a culture of mutual esteem may not be based on acts of violence and destruction that end up taking human lives," Francis said. "You cannot assert yourself by destroying others, because this only leads to more violence and division. Violence begets violence, destruction increases fragmentation and separation. Violence eventually makes a most just cause into a lie."The pope arrived there earlier in the day from Santiago. Looking relaxed, he was driven in his motorcade straight to an open area at a now-unused airport area where about 150,000 people had gathered for Mass. The site is also known as a former detention center used during Chile’s violent dictatorship under Augusto Pinochet. Crowds chanted loudly to the welcome song, "Francisco amigo!"A group of indigenous people dressed in colorful, traditional costumes knelt before the altar while some played traditional horn and drum instruments and waved leafy branches.Some improvements have been made to the indigenous people's situation, but the Mapuche people feel still feel targeted and discriminated against for defending their rights.Protests against the repeated attempts to take their land from them and the continued destruction of their natural environment have continued. Some of these protests have turned violent: evangelical and Catholic churches have been burned in protest, and at least 11 firebombs have damaged or razed churches to the ground in recent days.Speaking from the Vatican before his trip, the pope said he wanted to bring Chile a message "of hope, that hearts may be opened to peace, justice and dialogue."He has made a point on his trips to visit the countries’ disadvantaged regions to speak of indigenous rights and environmental issues. The pope is expected to address similar concerns when he travels to Puerto Maldonado, in the Peruvian Amazon, on Friday.After Mass Wednesday, the pope had a private lunch with the Bishop Hector Eduardo Vargas Bastidas, eight Mapuche people from various communities, a victim of rural violence, a local of Swiss-German heritage and a recent immigrant from Haiti. He was expected to return to Santiago Wednesday afternoon for a meeting with young people.
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  • Avosb/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Randall Hansen, the director of the Munk School at the University of Toronto, was in Washington, D.C. last Friday when something from his past kept appearing in the news: the title phrase Fire and Fury.That same day, Michael Wolff released his political exposé, Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House, which illustrates President Trump’s campaign and first year in office.For Randall, however, his first thought was about his own book, released almost 10 years ago, called Fire and Fury: the Allied Bombing of Germany, 1942-1945."I was hearing Fire and Fury all day and perked up in the morning and realized no one was talking about me," Hansen told ABC News. "After dinner I logged onto Amazon and saw it shot up on three best-sellers lists."People looking to purchase Wolff’s book instead found Hansen’s work about the American and British bombings on Germany during World War II.Hansen said he felt "completely shocked" when he saw his book's sudden resurgence and he "didn’t see this coming at all."Some of those who purchased Hansen’s book seemed surprised, as well. One reviewer wrote, "Don't see anything about President Trump! I don't know why the democrats are so happy with this book and makeing a big deal of this!"While the book has jumped up on of some of Amazon’s best-sellers lists, Hansen said he won’t know how many have sold until he gets a royalty check next month."[My publisher] is delighted," Hansen said. "Any publisher appreciates publicity."As for the book names, Wolff’s refers to comments made by President Trump to North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un. Hansen’s title, however, refers to bombings during the second world war."I wanted to capture two ideas: Fire in the literal sense because in Germany, and later in Japan, it was actually fire rather than bombs as such that destroyed German cities, and later, Japanese cities,” Hansen said. "The fury referred to what I wanted to capture ... the demonic commitment of the head of the British bombing war, Arthur Harris ... he was the fury. And I like alliteration."Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
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  • Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images(LONDON) -- The coming marriage of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle is shaping up to be the wedding of the decade, and everyone from designers to caterers to photographers is hustling to get involved.But one plucky DJ from South London directly asked the man himself.Jevanni Letford, a Brixton-based DJ for Reprezent Radio, handed Prince Harry his business card during the royal couple's visit to the station Tuesday. "I’ll DJ at your wedding," he called out to the prince, who initially seemed confused by the small glittery card before grinning and – to Letford's delight – quickly pocketing it.The video tweeted by the artist has been circulated thousands of times.“I’d love to have a chat with the bride and groom and see, firstly, what they wanted," Letford, 28, told ABC News Thursday. "Take all the publicity aside and at the end of the day, it’s two people getting married. So the first thing I’d do is chat with them and see what they’re comfortable with, and I’ll put some ideas to them.”Letford has wasted no time in researching and preparing his pitch. Speaking to Good Morning Britain Thursday, he said he has already thought through the song lineup, even suggesting a remix of the national anthem to play for Queen Elizabeth."I'd definitely play some Ed Sheeran,” Letford told Good Morning Britain of the English singer.“I'd get a bit of Stormzy because Prince Harry loves his grime, and maybe Wiley because he got an MBE [a prestigious British award]," he said of two other English performers.Grime music is an underground hip-hop themed genre that has exploded in popularity in recent years with the rise of South London artists like Stormzy. Wiley, known as the “Godfather of Grime,” is being honored for his services to music and in recognition of his pioneering the genre.Letford, the DJ, already has a mix in mind that would combine Harry and Markle’s uniqueness and modernity with hallmarks of royalty and some appropriate tunes."With this wedding, it's quite unique so there'd have to be an element of tradition,” Letford told Good Morning Britain. “But I’d throw in a few surprises as well … there’d be some cheese, too.”Whatever the playlist, he told ABC News Thursday, it's not about fame and fortune. “For me, this opportunity, if it happens, isn’t about the money," Letford said."It’s about the experience and how I could use it to benefit the community in some way. If they offered it to me, I’d forgo any sort of payment in order to help the community.”Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
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  • Ingram Publishing/Thinkstock(MUROL, France) -- It wasn't an armed robbery at the Ritz, but you could put it on a Ritz – and it stinks a lot more.Local police from central France’s Auvergne region told ABC News today that around 700 blocks of Saint-Nectaire cheese were stolen Monday night in the city of Murol.Thieves broke the door of a cellar where the cheese was located, according to police.The owner and producer of the cheese, Caroline Borrel, told the France Bleu radio network that the losses totaled an estimated €10,000 ($12,000). Borrel said she wanted to install CCTV cameras and alarms in her cellar.Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
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