While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Dec 16 edition

Sydney siege: Lone gunman, two hostages killed

Police stormed a cafe in central Sydney early Tuesday morning, ending the siege of a gunman who held more than a dozen hostages for more than 16 hours. They killed the gunman but two hostages also died in the carnage. 

Police fired automatic weapons and threw grenades in a dramatically loud volley of shooting, moments after remaining captives were seen fleeing.

The dramatic end stage of the siege came as the gunman holding the remaining captives was revealed as a self-proclaimed Islamic cleric Man Haron Monis.

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Polish orphan Colleen Turzynski arrives in Singapore and meets relatives in person

It was an anxious wait for Polish orphan Colleen Turzynski's relatives at Changi Airport early on Tuesday morning.

Her aunt, Madam Lee Say Moi, and uncle, Mr Lee Tak Nyen, walked from one gate to the next, eager to met her in person at long last. .

Finally, Ms Turzynski  appeared, walked quickly into the arrival hall and hugged her aunt, then her uncle, then her aunt again

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Indonesian landslide death toll rises to 56, another 52 people still missing

Indonesian rescuers dug through mud with shovels and their bare hands for a third day on Monday in the hunt for dozens of people still missing after a landslide engulfed a village, as the death toll rose to 56.

Fifty-two people are still unaccounted for after heavy rain triggered the landslide that swallowed houses in Jemblung village on Java late on Friday.

Officials say the chances of finding anyone alive are now slim.

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'Early Mona Lisa' now on show in Singapore traced to English country home

Researchers into the provenance of a painting dubbed the "Early Mona Lisa" reported on Monday they had identified an English noble who probably bought it in Italy in the late 18th century and a country house where it was found in 1911.

The revelations came as the work went on show for the first time at The Arts House in Singapore in a display about the portrait and Leonardo da Vinci, who a Swiss foundation holding it argue painted it before the version in the Paris Louvre.

"We feel these latest discoveries and new scientific analysis just carried out leave little doubt that it is Leonardo's work," said David Feldman, a Geneva-based auctioneer and vice-president of the Zurich "Mona Lisa Foundation".

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Rare white rhino dies at California zoo, leaving only five on earth

One of only six northern white rhinoceros left on earth died over the weekend at a California zoo, bringing the species closer to extinction, zoo officials said on Monday.

Angalifu, who was about 44 years old and being treated for age-related conditions, died on Sunday, according to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park.

The world's only known remaining northern white rhinos are an elderly female still at the Safari Park, one at a zoo in Europe and three in Africa, the California zoo said in a statement.

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