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Blunt Revels in Upbeat Optimism of New Album

James Blunt prefers to think of his enduring first hit, "You're Beautiful," as a blessing, not a curse.

True, none of his songs have attained the massive success that "You're Beautiful" did when it hit the No. 1 spot five years ago in the U.S. and beyond. But Blunt, 33, is happy to have that song on his musical resume, so long as people understand there's a lot more to his achievements.

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Bill Gates, Abu Dhabi Prince Pledge Vaccine Funds

Bill Gates' foundation and Abu Dhabi's crown prince are donating $50 million each to vaccinate children in Afghanistan and Pakistan against polio and other diseases.

Sheik Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation say two-thirds of the funds will go toward a pair of vaccines against pneumonia, diphtheria, whooping cough and other ailments afflicting young children in Afghanistan. The rest will be given to the World Health Organization and UNICEF to provide polio vaccines in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

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New York Times to Publish E-Book on WikiLeaks

The New York Times is experimenting with another source of revenue: digital books.

The newspaper said Wednesday it will publish its first e-book on Monday.

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Federer, Nadal Out of Australian Open

First Rafael Nadal, now Roger Federer.

Federer, the 16-time Grand Slam winner, was knocked out of the Australian Open 7-6 (3), 7-5, 6-4 on Thursday by 2008 champion Novak Djokovic.

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Explosion at Davos Hotel during World Economic Forum

A small blast shattered two windows but caused no injuries at a hotel near where top business and political leaders are attending the World Economic Forum, Swiss police said Thursday.

The explosion happened in a storage room of the Posthotel Morosani shortly after 9 a.m. local time (0800 GMT) Thursday, regional police spokesman Thomas Hobi told the Associated Press.

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Muallem Meets Hague: We Hope Miqati Would Form a Unity Cabinet

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem on Thursday urged all political parties in Lebanon to join a new government headed by Najib Miqati and opposed by outgoing Premier Saad Hariri.

"We call on all parties to join the Miqati cabinet, and Syria is ready to cooperate with this government," Muallem told a joint news conference with his British counterpart William Hague.

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Sony to Release New PlayStation Portable this Year

Sony said Thursday the successor to its PlayStation Portable machine will go on sale late this year, offering the quality of a home console in an on-the-go machine boasting a screen double the size of smart phones.

The NGP, short for "next generation portable," has a touch panel in the front and touch pads in the back to allow players to tap on the machine to move images, in addition to the usual buttons and switches.

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FDA Sees Possible Cancer Risk with Breast Implants

Federal health officials said Wednesday they are investigating a possible link between breast implants and a very rare form of cancer, raising new questions about the safety of devices which have been scrutinized for decades.

The cancer, known as anaplastic large cell lymphoma, attacks lymph nodes and the skin and has been reported in the scar tissue which grows around an implant. The Food and Drug Administration is asking doctors to report all cases of the cancer so the agency can better understand the association.

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Arab World Experts at Economy Forum Call for Reform

The head of the Arab League said Wednesday that Arabs were angry and frustrated and "the name of the game is reform" — a call lent urgency by turmoil of recent days, when a corrupt regime was overthrown in Tunisia and several people died in anti-government riots in Egypt.

Arab League's Secretary-General Amr Moussa, who is Egyptian, spoke to reporters at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, where a panel of Mideast economic experts convened separately to tackle the same question — and generally agreed the region needs better education, more transparent regimes, and cleverer business strategies.

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At Least 1,000 Arrested in Egypt Protests as ElBaradei Plans to Return

At least 1,000 people have been detained in Egypt since Tuesday, in the most serious protests against President Hosni Mubarak's 30-year-rule, a security official said on Thursday, as activists vowed to continue rallying.

"At least 1,000 people have been detained around the country since the demonstrations started," on Tuesday, the official told Agence France Presse.

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