Anti-austerity Syriza party sweeps to Greek victory

Greece's leftwing Syriza looked set for a comfortable victory over the ruling conservatives in Sunday's national polls. The question now is whether the radical party leader Alexis Tsipras can form a coalition.

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US curtails counter-terrorism efforts in Yemen

An armed member of the Shi'ite Houthi movement shouts during a demonstration to support the movement's uprising in the Yemeni capital of Sanaa.

The United States has halted some counter-terrorism operations against al-Qaeda militants in Yemen following a takeover of the country by Iran-backed Houthi rebels, US officials said on Friday.

Killer algae making Hong Kong's water glow

Glow-in-the-dark blue waves caused by the phenomenon known as harmful algal bloom or 'red tide', are seen at night near Sam Mun Tsai beach in Hong Kong.

Along a seashore in Hong Kong yesterday, a vibrant blue glow was seen emanating from the water. 

Could this man tackle Boko Haram?

A poster of leading opposition All Progressive Congress presidential candidate Mohammadu Buhari in Lagos.

A former Nigerian military ruler has strong support in the Muslin north, where supporters say he is the man to tackle Boko Haram.

Latest world news

Oxford don John Bayley lived in meteor's orbit

Writers John Bayley and Iris Murdoch.

Elaine Woo 1:02 PM   John Bayley has died. Long married to Iris Murdoch, he wrote a brutally frank depiction of her decline with Alzheimer's and a lyric paean on his remarkable marriage to one of the most esteemed authors of our time.

Dozens of police killed in shootout with fugitive terrorist

Massive security in Manila during the papal visit to the Philippines on January 17. The crowds are reported to have prevented an assassination attempt by an Islamist sleeper cell.

Lindsay Murdoch 12:36 PM   More than 30 Philippines police commandos have been killed trying to capture South-east Asia’s top Islamist terrorist, who was involved in planning the 2002 Bali bombings.

Obama wants ban on oil exploration in Alaska's Arctic refuge

A polar bear cub in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, an area also believed to hold significant oil and gas reserves.

Coral Davenport 12:19 PM   Environmentalists welcome Barack Obama's request to Congress to protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge's 7.7 million hectares as wilderness, but Republican opponents want to negotiate over whether oil and gas could be developed in the area.

Japanese rice: the new, safe luxury food in China

The Chinese eat about 120 million tonnes of rice a year but there are concerns locally grown rice is contaminated by cadmium and  heavy metals.

Alexandra Harney 11:54 AM   Pollution from industrialisation has exacted a heavy toll on China's soil and water. Agricultural produce has been affected by metals such as cadmium. So consumers are looking elsewhere.

Prince Philip awarded Knight of the Order of Australia

Prince Philip's long life of service should be honoured by Australia, Tony Abbott has said.

Megan Levy and Lisa Cox 10:34 AM   Prime Minister Tony Abbott has awarded Australia's highest honour to the Queen's husband, Prince Philip.

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Arise Prince Philip: a look at the British consort's notorious gaffes

Prince Philip in 2012.

10:26 AM   Many consider Prince Philip's gaffes as the innocent comments of a nice, old duffer. Others say it reveals a deep-seated racial and chauvinist prejudice.

Google handed over WikiLeaks journalists' emails

Julian Assange.

Philip Dorling 9:42 AM   Sarah Harrison, Joseph Farrell and Kristinn Hrafnsson have been informed by Google that all their Gmail account content and metadata were provided to US federal law enforcement officers.

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Hoax caller put through to British PM David Cameron

Hoax call: David Cameron.

8:58 AM   A hoax caller has been put through to British Prime Minister David Cameron's phone after claiming to be the director of eavesdropping agency GCHQ.

Climate, nuclear issues atop Obama's agenda in India

Obama and Modi hold talks in India.

Peter Baker and Ellen Barry 8:13 AM   US President Barack Obama swept aside past friction with India on Sunday to report progress on climate change and civilian nuclear power cooperation as he sought to transform a fraught relationship marked by suspicion into an enduring partnership linking the world's oldest and largest democracies.

Energy-hungry India doubles down on coal

India's coal demand shows no sign of retreating.

Annie Gowen 8:12 AM   In the hilly Singrauli region of northern India, animals feed on ash-covered grass, smoke stings the eyes and burns the throat, and the reservoir is foul with toxins such as mercury and arsenic. Even the breakfast eggs are grey.

Ukraine offensive continues as Barack Obama promises tougher action

A woman holds a placard during a rally on Independence Square in Kiev on Sunday.

Douglas Busvine and Alessandra Prentice 5:14 AM   Pro-Moscow rebels pressed on with their offensive on Sunday after restarting the war in eastern Ukraine with the first all-out assault since a truce five months ago.

Anti-austerity Syriza party sweeps to election victory in Greece

Alexis Tsipras, the leader of the leftist Syriza party, greets supporters in Athens.

Renee Maltezou and Deepa Babington 4:54 AM   Greece's leftwing Syriza looked set for a comfortable victory over the ruling conservatives in Sunday's national polls.

Charlie Hebdo's Muslim cartoons 'childish' compared to Christian mockery, says church head

Anti-Charlie Hebdo protests continued around the world on the weekend, including this one in Karachi, Pakistan, on Saturday.

Gabriela Baczynska 4:26 AM   The head of Russia's influential Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill, said on Sunday cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad in the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo were "childish" compared to offences it had dished out to Christians.

Violence erupts as Egypt marks anniversary of Mubarak uprising

A lone woman crosses the entrance to Cairo's Tahrir Square, which was blocked by military vehicles and barbed wire on Sunday during the fourth anniversary of the 2011 Egyptian uprising.

Maggie Fick and Shadi Bushra 3:35 AM   At least 10 protesters and a policeman have been killed in unrest in Egypt as the country marks the fourth anniversary of its 2011 uprising, officials say.

Boko Haram on the rampage as US backs Nigerian elections

Soldiers and security guards patrol a venue during a rally of the ruling People's Democratic Party in Maiduguri on January 24. Barely 48 hours later, the city was under siege from Boko Haram.

Bukar Hussain and Aminu Abubakar 3:12 AM   Panic erupted in north-eastern Nigeria on Sunday as Boko Haram fighters poured into two strategic towns in pre-dawn strikes that escalated into battles with Nigerian army troops.

Alleged adulterer 'beheaded and cooked' in Tanzania

2:41 AM   A local leader in Tanzania who had been accused of adultery has been attacked and beheaded by a gang of men, who then cooked some of his body parts, police say.

Hunt for terror suspect leaves 27 Filipino police dead after rebel clash

Manuel Mogato 2:05 AM   A Philippine town mayor says more than 30 police commandos have been killed in a clash with Muslim rebels while hunting a top terror suspect in the south.

US-India relations renewed as Obama and Modi break nuclear deadlock

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi, US President Barack Obama and Indian President Pranab Mukherjee at the Presidential Palace in New Delhi.

Jerome Cartillier 1:52 AM   US President Barack Obama and India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi hailed a new era of friendship as they broke the deadlock on a long-stalled nuclear pact.

Mother tries to sell baby in China

Baby

12:08 AM   A Chinese mother has been charged with human trafficking for allegedly conspiring with a doctor to sell her baby boy for more than $A8000, media have reported, the latest case highlighting the country's lucrative child market.

Australia accused of 'surreal hypocrisy' over Bali Nine executions

Facing execution: Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran.

Jewel Topsfield 11:16 PM   Australia has been accused of a "surreal form of hypocrisy" in criticising the execution of the Bali Nine while "slowly disposing" of asylum seekers through "inhumane detention centres".

Search for Earhart plane on remote island

Amelia Earhart disappeared over the Pacific Ocean in 1937.

9:26 PM   A search is underway on a remote atoll in the Marshall Islands aimed at solving the mysterious disappearance of aviation pioneer Amelia Earhart.

Obama gets down to business with Modi in India

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi greets President Barack Obama.

Roberta Rampton and Douglas Busvine 9:08 PM   US President Barack Obama and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi worked on a series of bilateral agreements at a summit on Sunday that both sides hope will establish an enduring strategic partnership.

Australian stars and public figures plead for mercy for Bali nine

Asher Keddie

Rania Spooner 7:28 PM   Asher Keddie, Germaine Greer and Alan Jones are among those who have thrown their support behind two Australians facing the death penalty in Indonesia, in a powerful star-filled video calling for mercy.

Senior Labor figure leaves Australia to fight against Islamic State: report

Matthew Gardiner, a senior figure in the Northern Territory branch of the Labor party, has reportedly gone to fight in Syria.

Georgina Mitchell 6:11 PM   The head of the Northern Territory branch of the Labor party has reportedly flown overseas to fight in Syria against terror group Islamic State.

The late Saudi King's 'jailed' princesses

Sahar and Jawaher: They claim they are being held captive.

Ishaan Tharoor 4:15 PM   The late Saudi King Abdullah has been lionised by politicians around the world. Four of his daughters might see things differently.