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Billboard chart won't count Jay Z sales from Samsung album deal LOS ANGELES: Billboard's weekly music chart will not include the 1 million copies of rapper Jay Z's upcoming album that were sold to electronics maker Samsung as part of a promotion, the US trade magazine said on Friday. Jay Z, 43, announced last weekend that his album "Magna Carta Holy Grail" could be downloaded for free on July 4 - three days before its public release - to the first 1 million users of Samsung smartphones who had downloaded a special app.Copyright Reuters, 2013

Andrew W.K. sets drumming record at MTV O Music Awards LOS ANGELES: Musician Andrew W.K., the self-described "party king," set a new world record after playing drums nonstop for 24 hours during MTV's O Music Awards this week. The O Music Awards, which give out accolades in a variety of fan-voted categories to musicians who make a significant impact online through social media, was streamed solely online as a 24-hour virtual concert.Copyright Reuters, 2013

Sopranos star had 'wonderful' last day with son: friend ROME: James Gandolfini, star of the US Emmy-winning series The Sopranos, had a "wonderful" last day on holiday with his son before dying of a heart attack in Italy, a family friend said on Friday. Michael Kobold told journalists an autopsy on Friday morning showed Gandolfini had died of natural causes, confirming an earlier report from medical officials.Copyright Reuters, 2013

Food Network to drop Paula Deen amid racial slur controversy LOS ANGELES: The Food Network said on Friday it would drop celebrity chef Paula Deen after the Southern food doyenne was sued for racial discrimination and admitted in a legal deposition to using a racial slur in the past. The impending loss of Deen's broadcast deal represents a potentially huge setback for a television personality who has built an empire on high calorie food, with cookbooks and restaurants in her native Georgia and other states.Copyright ...

Palestinian singer from Gaza wins Arab Idol contest BEIRUT: Palestinian singer Mohammed Assaf on Saturday won a pan-Arab singing contest that has had millions of viewers fixed to their TV screens since March.Powerfully voiced Syrian singer Farah Yousef came second, and Egyptian Ahmed Jamal third in the Arab Idol competition, modelled on the Western Pop Idol."Mohammed Assaf is the Arab Idol!" called out the presenter as coloured confetti rained down on the cheering audience.Immediately after his win, Assaf was named Youth Ambassador for ...

Local residents celebrate Mount Fuji's World Heritage status TOKYO: Residents in towns around Mount Fuji erupted with joy on Saturday after UNESCO granted World Heritage status to Japan's highest and most celebrated moutain.Known for its perfectly cone-shaped volcano, UNESCO classified the mountain as a "cultural" heritage site saying it has "has inspired artists and poets and been the object of pilgrimage for centuries"."Oh, I feel relieved. I am thankful," Shigeru Horiuchi, the mayor of Fuji Yoshida told reporters at his office after receiving ...

Miss Algeria crowned for first time in 10 years ORAN: After an absence of 10 years, the Miss Algeria beauty contest was held on Friday in the western city of Oran, with 19-year-old science student Rym Amari taking the pageant honours.The competition was suspended in 2003 after the death of Cheradi Hamdad, who launched the beauty contest in 1996 during Algeria's devastating civil war and whose son Faycal Hamdad has now taken up the mantle."I have picked up the torch for this year only, ...


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Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
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WeeklyOctober 27, 2014
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