NEWS ABOUT: Australia

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Australia Foils Gruesome ISIS Beheading Plot

In largest raids in country's history, 15 are detained

(Newser) - Fifteen people have been detained in Australia, and police there say that in so doing, they have thwarted a plot to carry out a random beheading in Sydney. More than a dozen properties across Sydney were raided today by a force of 800 federal and state police officers, making it... More »

10-Year-Old Goldfish Undergoes Brain Surgery

'Fiddly' procedure gives fish new lease on life

(Newser) - In the hands of a less skilled surgeon, the patient could have ended up being flushed: After a 45-minute operation that a veterinarian in Melbourne, Australia, describes as "fiddly," a life-threatening brain tumor was removed from a goldfish named George last week, the BBC reports. On its Facebook... More »

Ironman Competitor Dies During Race

Heart attack suspected in 39-year-old's death

(Newser) - Officials said a 39-year-old male competitor died today after being pulled unconscious from the swim portion of an Ironman event on Queensland's Sunshine Coast north of Brisbane. Ironman Asia Pacific chief executive Geoff Meyer confirmed the man from Victoria state suffered a suspected heart attack during the 1.2-mile... More »

Australia to End Shark Cull Program

No more baited hooks, but government will still go after 'rogue' sharks

(Newser) - Authorities in Western Australia are scrapping their controversial shark-cull program, reports the BBC . The idea was to catch sharks using baited hooks on drum lines in order to keep beaches safe, but a review by the government's Environmental Protection Authority found little evidence that it worked. In a test... More »

In a First, 2 Americans Make Booker Shortlist

We are all completely beside ourselves for Karen Joy Fowler, Joshua Ferris

(Newser) - Three British writers, two Americans, and an Australian are the finalists announced today for the prestigious Booker Prize for fiction . The British nominees are Ali Smith's How to Be Both, Howard Jacobson's J, and Neel Mukherjee's The Lives of Others. The US is represented by Joshua Ferris'... More »

Man Wakes From Coma Speaking Fluent Mandarin

He lost his English-speaking skills but remembered Chinese from high school

(Newser) - When Ben McMahon went into a coma after a car crash, he spoke English; when he woke up, he spoke only fluent Mandarin. Although the Australian man had taken Mandarin in high school, he was never fluent, and doctors are still trying to figure out exactly why he completely lost... More »

Shark Kills Aussie Swimmer

Study finds attack victims almost always male

(Newser) - Despite what police say was the "extraordinary bravery" of a beachgoer, a 50-year-old man was killed in a shark attack in Byron Bay in eastern Australia today. The man's wife was watching from the shore as he was attacked and received severe leg injuries, reports the BBC . "... More »

Amid Uproar, Aussies Tweak Barrier Reef Dumping Plan

Sediment could now be placed on land

(Newser) - Environmental advocates were deeply concerned when officials at Australia's Great Barrier Reef approved the dumping of a vast quantity of sediment in the area. Now, a new plan aims to satisfy both those concerned about environmental impact and companies seeking to enlarge a coal terminal in the area, the... More »

Aussie MP to China: Sorry I Called You Guys Mongrels

Chinese embassy accepts apology

(Newser) - Australian billionaire and alleged politician Clive Palmer has done some serious open-minded thinking and now realizes, a week later, that calling the Chinese "mongrels" was perhaps "an insult to Chinese people everywhere," he writes in a letter to ambassador Ma Zhaoxu, the Australian reports. "I wish... More »

Gonorrhea 'Superbug' Hits Australia

Expert warns of 'major public health concern'

(Newser) - Australia has encountered the most drug-resistant strain of gonorrhea the country has ever seen. The disease, detected in a central European tourist who reportedly contracted it in Sydney, is being called a "sex superbug" by the UK's Independent . While clinics in Australia and New Zealand are boosting their... More »

Mr. Diplomacy: Chinese Are 'Mongrels' Who 'Shoot Own People'

Australian lawmaker Clive Palmer creates a ruckus

(Newser) - An Australian billionaire-turned-lawmaker went on live TV yesterday and demonstrated that while he's great at making money, he's not so good with diplomacy. Mining magnate Clive Palmer, whose business is in a nasty legal battle with its state-owned partner in China, got a little heated when asked about... More »

'Michael Jackson' Croc Kills Fisherman

Albino-headed animal shot, killed after attack

(Newser) - Australia's Adelaide River is known for its enormous crocodiles, which tourists often watch jumping to snatch chicken meat hung from poles. One such croc, who's 15 feet long, had been somewhat dubiously named Michael Jackson for his albino head. During a fishing session on the dangerous river, a... More »

Gammy's Parents: Surrogate Wouldn't Let Us Take Him

Dad says he's changed after pedophilia convictions

(Newser) - With their case making international headlines, the Australian parents of baby Gammy are telling their story. Speaking to Australia's 9News , David Farnell said he and his wife, Wendy, "wanted" to take Gammy home with them, Reuters reports—but his surrogate mother wouldn't let them. Surrogate Pattaramon Chanbua... More »

Giant New Jellyfish Has No Tentacles

Keesingia gigas has potentially deadly sting

(Newser) - A huge new species of jellyfish discovered off western Australia looks a bit like a plastic bag—but one that can deliver a potentially lethal sting. Keesingia gigas is as long as a human arm, though bizarrely, none of the specimens caught or photographed appear to have any tentacles, the... More »

Crowd Shoves Train Off Trapped Man

A little teamwork saves the day at Australian train station

(Newser) - A guy who fell into the gap between a train and the platform during this morning's rush hour in Perth, Australia, was rescued by none other than his fellow commuters, reports ABC News Australia . Video footage shows the passengers working in tandem to shove the train off him, then... More »

Dad Who Left Down's Baby Is a Pedophile: Sources

Meanwhile, Australia may intervene in the case

(Newser) - Since the story of baby Gammy went viral several days ago, the Australian government has announced that it is looking into whether it can intervene in a case described by the Australian immigration minister as "very, very murky," particularly because it took place in another country, reports the... More »

Aussie Parents: No One Told Us of Down Syndrome Baby

But surrogate mom in Thailand says that's not true

(Newser) - More details are filling in the story of an Australian couple accused of leaving behind a surrogate baby in Thailand who has Down Syndrome, though the additional details seem to be confusing the account instead of clarifying. The Aussie couple is denying the allegations, but the surrogate mom in Thailand... More »

Parents Leave Behind Surrogate Baby With Down's

Australian couple took his healthy twin in Thailand, says birth mother

(Newser) - An Australian couple who paid an impoverished woman in Thailand to be a surrogate mother left behind a baby boy with Down Syndrome but took his healthy twin sister, reports ABC News of Australia . The boy, named Gammy, is now about 7 months old, and mom Pattaramon Chanbua says he... More »

Oops: Ninja Turtles Make 9/11 Gaffe on Movie Poster

Paramount Australia tweets poster, promptly deletes it

(Newser) - Raphael, Donatello, Michelangelo, and Leonardo have a bit of explaining to do. That’s because the Australian film poster for the release of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles features the famous turtles falling from a burning building that has apparently just been rocked by an explosion ... and the opening date, prominently... More »

Power Company Pays $470M Over Fire That Killed 119

Black Saturday payout is biggest in Aussie history

(Newser) - Australian power company SP AusNet hasn't officially accepted responsibility for a wildfire that killed 119 people near Melbourne in early 2009—but it has agreed to pay $470 million to survivors in the biggest class-action settlement in the country's history. Some 10,000 plaintiffs accused the firm of... More »

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