While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Nov 30 edition

Sarkozy wins party leadership, moves a step closer to French presidency

Nicolas Sarkozy was elected leader of the French conservative UMP party on Saturday with 64.5 per cent of votes cast, official results showed, a step towards becoming a presidential candidate in 2017 but a less convincing endorsement than some had hoped.

The last time the former president secured the UMP chairmanship, in 2004, he won 85 per cent of the vote and went on to become the country's head of state from 2007 until 2012.

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Book-buying Obama shows support for local business

Barack Obama showed some presidential support for small businesses on Saturday, when he stopped at a local Washington bookstore for a spot of holiday shopping.

His visit to the Politics and Prose independent bookstore came on "Small Business Saturday" - a growing movement that encourages shoppers to support local merchants.

Accompanied by his teenaged daughters Sasha and Malia, Obama bought 17 books for readers of varying ages and even received a "neighbour's discount".

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Sony looks for possible North Korea link in hacking incident ahead of movie release: Report

Sony Pictures Entertainment is investigating to determine if hackers working on behalf of North Korea might be responsible for a cyber attack that knocked out the studio's computer network earlier this week, the technology news site Re/code reported.

The attack occurred a month before Sony Pictures, a unit of Sony Corp, is to release The Interview.

The movie is a comedy about two journalists who are recruited by the CIA to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

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Formula One: Hamilton, Rosberg are friends reunited after title battle

Lewis Hamilton said Saturday the tension with his Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg has disappeared, a week after the Briton won the world drivers' championship ahead of his German rival.

The pair appeared at Mercedes' end of season party in Stuttgart in front of 50,000 fans with Hamilton saying all the friction between the pair during the season is now long gone.

"All the tension disappears and we have gone back to being two normal individuals, talking about the normal things guys talk about," said Hamilton when asked about relations with his team-mate.

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Football: Van Persie ends barren run as Manchester United breeze past Hull 3-0

Robin van Persie got back on the scoresheet after a disappointing run as Manchester United strolled to a 3-0 victory over Hull at Old Trafford on Saturday.

Louis van Gaal's side retained their place in the Premier League's top four thanks to a third successive win secured by Chris Smalling's opener, a Wayne Rooney strike and Dutch forward van Persie's first goal in his last four club matches.

And with one defeat in eight games, plus upcoming fixtures against Stoke and Southampton in the next nine days, there is a growing belief at Old Trafford that United can secure a place in next season's Champions League.

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