The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Cannon horror

Belgrade, Nov. 25 (Reuters): A Montenegrin family thought a World War II artillery shell was the ideal replacement for a broken table leg — until it exploded, injuring eight people as they were about to eat a meal.

The Miskovic family in the town of Danilovgrad was preparing the local speciality of grilled pork fat on the table when the old shell went off at the weekend, the Yugoslav daily Vecernje Novosti reported today.

“It was our own idea to replace the missing leg with this cannon grenade,” house owner Milovan Miskovic said. “We thought it was was here in our courtyard for some 50 years.”

But “all of a sudden, we heard a loud bang and then everything went black”.

The newspaper reported the victims suffered only light injuries.

Lazy killer

Kuala Lumpur (Reuters): A Malaysian snake charmer who apparently lost patience with his lazy cobra was killed after he pulled the snake out of its box and was bitten, a newspaper reported on Sunday. The 23-year-old victim died on the Indonesian island of Batam, where he was performing at a fair, the New Sunday Times reported. A fellow performer said the victim was having difficulty geting his snake to come out of its box. “When the snake refused, Anbarasan pulled its tail and placed the cobra on the floor,” he said. “However, without warning, the snake bit his left hand.” The victim, a four-year veteran of snake shows, was taken to a hospital but died three hours later.

Panda ware

Beijing (Reuters): International panda experts have designed computer software to help the charismatic and endangered bears find their ideal mates, a newspaper reported on Monday. The software, developed by experts at a meeting in China, would analyse the health and bloodlines of each panda in captivity to find the best match while avoiding close relatives, the Star Daily said. Plagued by habitat loss, only about 1,000 giant pandas live in the wild atop foggy, bamboo-filled mountains in western China. The country protects hundreds more of the adored black-and-white bears in zoos, but it has proven difficult to tempt them to mate. In the wild, female pandas usually give birth to a single cub only once every two to three years, the World Wildlife Fund said on its website ( In April, middle-aged panda Ling Ling was sent home to Japan from a Mexico City zoo where he failed to romance three female pandas.

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