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Tuesday, February 28, 2006

At a Glance

Mr Livingstone's ban is due to start on Wednesday London Mayor Ken Livingstone asked the High Court on Monday to hear his appeal against his four-week suspension starting March 1 by a 'flawed system' from office for comparing a Jewish reporter to a concentration camp guard.

The rumpus erupted in February last year when a reporter for the Evening Standard questioned Livingstone outside a party for a gay politician.

Livingstone compared the reporter to a concentration camp guard and German war criminal. He later refused to apologise, saying the paper's owners had supported the Nazis in the 1930s.

Meanwhile in central Europe, sentenced to three years in jail by an Austrian court, British historian David Irving has again said he does not believe Hitler presided over a systematic attempt to exterminate Jews in Europe.

He is appealing for a reduction in the three-year jail term. Prosecutors are seeking for it to be lengthened. The Austrian state prosecutor's office said it believed Irving's sentence was too lenient in light of a possible sentence of up to 10 years.

Against this backdrop, in France tens of thousands of people have marched through Paris to protest against racism and anti-Semitism after the kidnap and murder of a young Jew, while further east in Europe the massacre of Bosnian muslims is set to be heard in court in the Balkans genocide case.

Remaining in the courtroom, two historical writers accuse the author of the Da Vinci Code, which has been adapted into a £57m Hollywood movie, for 'copying their book ideas'.

Hollywood has its fair share of drama, too, as it faces a serious year for the Oscars. US actor George Clooney, who is nominated and will also present a statuette to one of the winners at Sunday's 78th Academy Awards, has hit out at being labelled a 'traitor' by the American media for his views about the war in Iraq.

The current headlines seem to paint a depressing picture about our world today, however it seems that you should have sat back and read it all with a cup of cocoa.

Scientists have produced more compelling evidence that cocoa is good for your heart, while other research shows that scientists can 'predict memories'.

Could they help us forget some of these headlines, too?

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