While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Sept 13

Rafael Grossi said the agreement on servicing the agency's equipment would be put into practice "within a few days, very soon".
Rafael Grossi said the agreement on servicing the agency's equipment would be put into practice "within a few days, very soon".PHOTO: EPA-EFE

Agreement with Iran 'gives time to diplomacy': IAEA

The head of the UN's nuclear watchdog hailed the agreement struck with Iran on Sunday (Sept 12) over access to surveillance equipment at Iranian nuclear facilities, saying it allowed space for diplomatic talks.

"This has always been seen, for me at least, as a stopgap, as a measure to allow time for diplomacy," International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Rafael Grossi told reporters at Vienna airport after returning from talks in Iran.

Iran and the IAEA had earlier announced that they had agreed to allow inspectors to service the agency's surveillance equipment as Teheran has restricted access since earlier this year.

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As West ponders aid for Afghanistan, China and Pakistan quick to provide relief

As international donors gather in Geneva on Monday (Sept 13) to discuss humanitarian relief for Afghanistan under Taliban rule, neighbours China and Pakistan have already reached out with aid and discussions of future assistance.

The economy in the war-torn country is in crisis and a humanitarian crisis is looming, experts say.

Yet the United States and other Western nations are reluctant to provide the Taliban with funds until the Islamist militant movement provides assurances that it will uphold human rights, and in particular the rights of women.

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Formula One: Verstappen gets 3-place grid penalty for Hamilton crash at Monza, say stewards

Red Bull's championship leader Max Verstappen was handed a three-place grid penalty for his role in the frightening crash with Lewis Hamilton in Sunday's (Sept 12) Italian Grand Prix, the stewards at Monza announced.

The Dutch driver was "predominantly to blame" for the incident that wiped him and his Mercedes rival out of the race won by McLaren's Daniel Ricciardo, a statement read.

The penalty will be applied at the Russian Grand Prix in a fortnight's time.

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Athletics: Vienna marathon winner disqualified after shoes' soles violate rules

Ethiopia's Derara Hurisa won the Vienna City marathon on Sunday (Sept 12) but was disqualified soon after when the soles of his shoes were found to be one centimetre too thick and in violation of the rules.

Hurisa crossed the line with a time of 2:09:22 but less than 45 minutes later, he was left distraught when his time was struck off as his shoes' soles were five centimetres thick.

The soles of road running shoes cannot be thicker than four centimetres and Hurisa had worn a different set of shoes to the ones he had mentioned on his form.

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Wrapping of Arc de Triomphe begins in Paris art installation

Visitors to Paris were surprised on Sunday (Sept 12) when strolling up the Champs-Elysees as dozens of workers began enveloping in a shimmering wrapper a posthumous installation by artist Christo at Arc de Triomphe monument.

Workers were shuffling around the 50-metre high, 19th century arch setting up 25,000 square metres of silvery blue, recyclable plastic wrapping, which will be on view between Sept 18 and Oct 3.

Imagined decades ago in 1961 by the late Bulgarian-born artist Christo and his wife and fellow artist Jeanne-Claude, who died in 2009, L'Arc de Triomphe, Wrapped was finally brought to life by Christo's nephew, Vladimir Yavatchev at a cost of about 14 million euros (S$22.19 million).

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