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Urban Purveyor Group to create ‘entertainment hub’ in Melbourne

Urban Purveyor Group will create an ‘entertainment precinct’ at The Alfred in Melbourne, with a variety of hospitality venues on site. This weekend, Urban Purveyor Group will take over the site of 7 Alfred Place, in Melbourne’s CBD, currently home to Stokehouse restaurant. The site was purchased from Stokehouse Restaurants for an undisclosed amount, and will be renamed The Alfred. ...

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People too scared to speak about issues: John Howard

John Howard has sounded an alarm about the culture war in Australia — warning that people are being “cowed” against stating their views on issues and that a dangerous anti-religious push has emerged — and branded as “pernicious­” the Victorian government’s hostility to religious connections in schools. Mr Howard said there was a “get Pell” mentality in “some sections of ...

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Defence white paper shows Australia’s ‘Cold War mentality’, says China

China has accused Australia of maintaining a “Cold War mentality” with its alliance with the United States, following the release of the Turnbull government’s defence white paper which criticised China’s role in rising tensions in the South China Sea. At a regular press briefing in Beijing, Defence Ministry spokesman Colonel Wu Qian said China was “seriously concerned” about the contents in the white paper, and ...

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Pope urges unity against militants

Pope Francis has urged the world in his Christmas message to unite to end atrocities by Islamist militants that he said were causing immense suffering in many countries. Security was tight at the Vatican on Friday as Francis, marking the third Christmas since his election in 2013, read his traditional Christmas Day “Urbi et Orbi” (to the city and the ...

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Holiday season road death toll hits 15

Australia’s holiday road toll has climbed to 15 after six people were killed on the country’s roads on Boxing Day. In Queensland a 26-year-old man died in a two-car crash on the Burnett Highway at Gayndah and a motorcyclist aged in his 30s died after losing control and being thrown from his bike at Mount Nebo. In Richmond, western Sydney, ...

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Pharmacists warn against cheaper meds

The powerful pharmacists lobby warns pensioners they won’t see any benefit if they buy discounted medicines. The Pharmacy Guild fired the warning shot on Monday, after Chemist Warehouse announced it would discount prescription medicines by $1 from January 1. Pharmacists have been required to charge set fees for prescription drugs – $6.10 for concession patients and $37.70 for general patients, ...

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Lindt Cafe donates money to charity

Every dollar spent in the Lindt Cafe on the first anniversary of the Sydney siege will be donated to charity. It’s been a year since the dramatic siege which claimed the lives of cafe manager Tori Johnson and barrister Katrina Dawson. Funds raised at the Martin Place cafe on Tuesday will be donated to the Katrina Dawson Foundation and Beyond ...

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Police target Melbourne Stereosonic

A week after a woman died from a drug she took at a music festival in Sydney, police in Victoria are urging people not to gamble with their lives at Melbourne’s Stereosonic this weekend. Sniffer dogs and police will be outside and inside the Melbourne Showgrounds to crack down on illicit drugs among the 25,000 people expected to attend the ...

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Qld man fighting IS to be deported to Aust

A Queensland man who’s been fighting alongside Kurdish forces battling Islamic State in Syria is set to be deported back to Australia after being detained in Germany. Ashley Dyball, 23, was detained after entering Germany while on a break from the conflict zone in northern Syria, where he had been fighting with the YPG, also known as the People’s Protection ...

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Lebanon PM holds emergency meeting

Lebanese Prime Minister Tammam Salam has held an emergency meeting with his security cabinet and military chiefs as the nation mourns 44 people killed in a double suicide bombing claimed by Islamic State. The blasts late on Thursday hit a residential and commercial area in a southern suburb of Beirut, a stronghold of Shi’ite Muslim group Hezbollah, in the latest ...

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