While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Jan 2 edition

AirAsia Flight QZ8501: French investigators to arrive Friday at crash scene

France's crash investigation agency said its specialist black box search team and equipment would arrive early Friday at the search area for the AirAsia flight which crashed on Sunday en route from Indonesia to Singapore.

France's BEA crash investigation agency assists in the investigation of any air crash involving an Airbus aircraft because the company is France-based.

Heavy seas stopped divers reaching the possible wreck of the AirAsia Indonesia jet off Borneo on Thursday and an aviation official said it could be a week before the black box flight recorders were found.

Read more here

76,000 killed in Syria war in 2014, deadliest year yet: Monitor

More than 76,000 people were killed in Syria’s brutal conflict in 2014, making it the bloodiest year yet in the country’s nearly four-year war, a monitor said on Thursday.

The conflict that began in March 2011 shows no sign of abating, with President Bashar al-Assad making a rare public appearance on a front line over the New Year to bolster soldiers and pro-government fighters.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a monitoring group based in Britain, recorded 76,021 deaths in Syria last year, with 3,501 children among them.

Read more here

Biological bad luck to blame in two-thirds of cancer cases, researchers find

Cancer is often caused by the "bad luck" of random mutations that arise when cells divide, not family history or environmental causes, US researchers said Thursday.

The study in the Jan 2 edition of the journal Science was led by researchers at Johns Hopkins University and based on a statistical model that includes many types of cancer in a range of human tissues, but which excluded breast and prostate cancer.

In the adult cancers they did measure, about two-thirds could be explained by random mutation in genes that encourage tumours to grow, while the remaining one third was due to environmental factors and inherited genes.

Read more here

Sweden hit by third mosque arson attack in a week

Swedish police launched a manhunt Thursday after the third arson attack against a mosque in a week, amid growing tensions over the rise of an anti-immigration far right movement.

"Someone threw a firebomb, a Molotov cocktail at the building," Torsten Hemlin a spokesman for Uppsala police told Swedish news agency TT, adding that the mosque in eastern Sweden did not catch fire.

Thursday's attack came just three days after a late night blaze at a mosque in Esloev in southern Sweden which police suspect was also arson. On Christmas Day, a week ago, five people were injured when a petrol bomb was thrown through the window of a mosque in Eskilstuna, east of the capital Stockholm.

Read more here

Football: Spurs' Kane runs Chelsea's title bid off the road in eight-goal thriller

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho suffered a chastening defeat as Tottenham Hotspur stunned his side 5-3 on Thursday to leave them joint-top with Manchester City in the Premier League.

Mourinho's side began 2015 in nightmare fashion as Tottenham ran riot in an absorbing eight-goal London derby thriller.

Chelsea began the day as clear leaders, but ended it level pegging with defending champions City, who have an identical record.

Read more here