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Europe has been battling a deep freeze that started in late January and has killed hundreds, snow that has trapped thousands in Balkan mountain villages and prompted worries of flooding as heavy snow melts. In Greece and Bulgaria, flooding on Monday and Tuesday left dozens of homes under water and at least eight dead. Serbian [...]

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A man walks as snow and frozen wind billows cross the region, in Roncesvalles, northern Spain, Thursday Feb. 2, 2012. A cold spell has reached Europe with temperatures plummeting far below zero. Protesters demonstrate inside of a tent created by draping a tarp over a statue of Union General James McPherson at the Occupy DC [...]

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The Hajj pilgrimage draws millions of Muslims from around the world every year to Mecca, the birthplace of the Prophet Muhammad, Islam's holiest place. Saudi Arabia expects to host perhaps three million people in a ritual journey that every able-bodied Muslim who can afford it must make at least once in their lifetime. It is the largest annual gathering of humanity anywhere. Timed to the Muslim lunar calendar, the Hajj is followed by the celebrations of the three-day festival of Eid al-Adha, or the Feast of Sacrifice, which symbolizes Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his son. Collected here are photographs of the Hajj in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, as well as images of preparations for the Hajj and Eid al-Adha in many other parts of the Muslim world. -- Lane Turner (42 photos total)
A Muslim pilgrim prays as visits the Hiraa cave at the top of Noor Mountain on the outskirts of Mecca, Saudi Arabia on November 2, 2011. According to tradition, Islam's Prophet Mohammed received his first message to preach Islam while he was praying in the cave. (Hassan Ammar/AP)

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Kayaker Alan Brady is surprised by two breaching humpback whales while kayaking off the coast of Seabright State Beach in Santa Cruz, Calif. Photographer Paul Schraub was shooting pictures from a boat while on assignment for the Santa Cruz Conference and Visitors Council when he captured the moment. Newborn Pakistani babies, receive phototherapy treatment against [...]

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It's time for another look into the animal kingdom and our interactions with the countless other species that share our planet. Today we have scenes of an elephant rescue in India, a loyal dog bidding a final farewell, a competitor in the Open Rabbit Sport Tournament, and a rather unfortunate moose discovered intoxicated and tangled in a tree. These images and many others are part of this roundup of animals in the news from the past several weeks, seen from the perspectives of their human observers, companions, captors, and caretakers. [44 photos]

A dog casts a long shadow in the morning in St. Petersburg, Russia, on September 28, 2011. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky)

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Most of us don't get enough sleep. "As the world is getting faster and crazier, I've noticed sleepers around the streets, just everywhere," writes photographer Romain Philippon. "Of course, I also see some poetry and dreamings in all of that, but the contrast is so interesting to me, people trying to escape to their condition…" Philippon is self-publishing a book on the topic called "Inconscience". The first eight photographs in this entry are from that book. Collected here as well are more photographs of people everywhere lucky enough to find a few winks. -- Lane Turner (32 photos total)
Delivery man, in front of a shop, Kolkata, India © Romain Philippon

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Kufow Ali Abdi, 51, holds the body of his three-year-old daughter, Kadija, in a hospital in Mogadishu, Somalia, July 28, 2011. Kadija had died of starvation. The al-Shabab Islamist insurgent group, which controls much of southern Somalia, is blocking starving people from fleeing the country and setting up a cantonment camp where it is imprisoning displaced people who were trying to escape al-Shabab territory.

South Korean army soldiers remove muddy water after a landslide, caused by heavy rains, hit the area around an apartment complex in Seoul, South Korea, Friday, July 29, 2011. Tens of thousands of South Korean firefighters, soldiers, police officers and other workers Friday continued to clean up walls of mud and search for possible survivors in hard-hit areas, according to the National Emergency Management Agency.

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., appeared on the floor of the House of Representatives Monday, Aug. 1, 2011, in Washington. Giffords was on the floor for the first time since her shooting earlier this year, attending a vote on the debt standoff compromise.

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Kufow Ali Abdi, 51, holds the body of his three-year-old daughter, Kadija, in a hospital in Mogadishu, Somalia, July 28, 2011. Kadija had died of starvation. The al-Shabab Islamist insurgent group, which controls much of southern Somalia, is blocking starving people from fleeing the country and setting up a cantonment camp where it is imprisoning displaced people who were trying to escape al-Shabab territory. (Tyler Hicks/The New York Times) #

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A man gets a haircut in Central Havana, July 26, 2011. The area is one of the most heavily populated of the Cuban capital since many of these old buildings have been subdivided to house multiple families. Experts say that even with some state controls, property sales, announced recently by the government that some would be permitted, could transform Cuba more than any other economic reform announced by President Raul Castro's government. (The New York Times) #

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South Korean army soldiers remove muddy water after a landslide, caused by heavy rains, hit the area around an apartment complex in Seoul, South Korea, Friday, July 29, 2011. Tens of thousands of South Korean firefighters, soldiers, police officers and other workers Friday continued to clean up walls of mud and search for possible survivors in hard-hit areas, according to the National Emergency Management Agency. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon) #

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Women prepare a meal on the site of their home, destroyed by last year's floods, next to their temporary accomodation one year on, on July 29, 2011 in the village of Basti Jagwala Shoki, near Muzaffargarh, Pakistan. A year ago, monsoon rains caused flooding which ravaged Pakistan causing the worst natural disaster since its inception in 1947. Flood waters submerged a fifth of the countryside, equivalent to the size of England, affecting over 20 million people, displacing over 4 million and killing 2000. Millions lost their homes, farms and livelihoods. But the crisis still continues, as hundreds of thousands of people still remain homeless. (Photo by Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images) #

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A malnourished child in a hospital in Mogadishu, Somalia, July 27, 2011. The al-Qaida-linked militant group al-Shabab, which controls much of southern Somalia, is blocking starving people from fleeing the country and setting up a cantonment camp where it is imprisoning displaced people who were trying to escape Shabab territory. (Tyler Hicks/The New York Times) #

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Kieren Fallon riding Hoof It win the Blue Square Stewards' Cup at Goodwood racecourse on July 30, 2011 in Chichester, England. (Photo by Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images) #

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A stunt rider of Red Bull X-Fighters performs during a show in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Saturday, July 30, 2011. The Red Bull X-Fighters is one of the biggest Freestyle Motocross Championship riders in the world. (AP Photo/ Eranga Jayawardena) #

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A Filipino Muslim woman enters a mosque to pray during the first day of the holy fasting month of Ramadan in suburban Paranaque, south of Manila, Philippines on Monday, Aug. 1, 2011. During Ramadan, the holiest month in Islamic calendar, Muslims refrain from eating, drinking, smoking and sex from dawn to dusk. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila) #

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In this picture taken Thursday, July 28, 2011, Hindu pilgrims are carried on palanquins by Muslim bearers over a glacier near Amarnath Cave,150 kilometers (93 miles) from Srinagar, India. At least half a million devotees make the pilgrimage to the icy cave which lies 13,500 feet (4,115 meters) above sea level in Indian-controlled Kashmir amid tight security. Hindus worship a stalagmite inside the cave as an incarnation of the Lord Shiva, the Hindu god of destruction and regeneration. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri) #

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Gwynne Chapin, foreground right, hands an ice cream cone to Baltimore Ravens defensive tackle Bryan Hall (68) from her truck as his teammates wait in line for their orders following NFL football training camp Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2011, in Owings Mills, Md. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) #

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A Nepalese Muslim prays on the second day of the holy fasting month Ramadan at a mosque in Katmandu, Nepal, Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2011. Muslims are a minority in this predominantly Hindu nation. Official data indicates only 4.3 percent of the country's 27 million people are Muslim. (AP Photo/ Niranjan Shrestha) #

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The Malecon, Havana's seaside bouleveard, July 28, 2011. Cuba as a country has been seemingly locked in time since its revolution. But through a labyrinth of rations, regulations, two currencies and four markets (peso, hard currency, agro and black), people make their way, though the going is hard. The world economic crisis plunged Cuba into an abyss not seen since the years after the Soviet Union collapsed. Before that, the island of 11 million people suffered decades of economic deterioration.(The New York Times) #

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Peninah Pechenik (C), from Buffalo, New York, leans around to take a closer look of wax figures of (L-R) U.S. first lady Michelle Obama, President Barack Obama and Oprah Winfrey while visiting Madame Tussauds Wax Museum on Obama's 50th birthday August 4, 2011 in Washington, DC. On Obama's 50th birthday, the replica Oval Office at Madame Tussauds was decorated with party balloons, streamers and presents, while the figures the Obamas, Bill and Hillary Clinton and Oprah Winfrey were outfitted with party hats and noisemakers. . (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images) #

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An electronic board displays trading activity on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday, Aug. 4, 2011 in New York. The Dow plunged nearly 513 points Thursday, its biggest point decline since Oct. 22, 2008. (AP Photo/Jin Lee) #

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An old house that has been subdivided and is in use by several families, known as a "solar," in central Havana, July 29, 2011. Experts say that even with some state controls, property sales, announced recently by the government that some would be permitted, could transform Cuba more than any other economic reform announced by President Raul Castro's government. (The New York Times) #

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An Afghan carries his belongings as he passes burning fuel tankers in the outskirts of Kabul, Afghanistan, Thursday, Aug. 4, 2011. Police said around five fuel tankers carrying fuel for NATO and U.S. forces in Afghanistan caught fire inside a depot in Kabul. No casualties were reported, and it was not immediately clear what caused the fire.( AP Photo/Dar Yasin) #

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An Indonesian woman reads a copy of the Koran on the fourth day of Ramadan at the Istiqlal mosque in Jakarta on August 4, 2011. Like millions of Muslim around the world, Indonesians celebrated the month of Ramadan by abstaining from eating, drinking, and smoking as well as sexual activities from dawn to dusk. AFP PHOTO / ADEK BERRY #

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This video image taken from Egyptian State Television shows 83-year-old Hosni Mubarak laying on a hospital bed inside a cage of mesh and iron bars in a Cairo courtroom Wednesday Aug. 3, 2011 as his historic trial began on charges of corruption and ordering the killing of protesters during the uprising that ousted him. The scene, shown live on Egypt's state TV, was Egyptians' first look at their former president since Feb. 10, the day before his fall when he gave a defiant speech refusing to resign. (AP Photo/Egyptian State TV) #

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Cristina Alfaro Mejia, whose husband and daughter were killed by soldiers during a massacre in the community of Dos Erres in 1982, holds a rose while waiting to the sentence in Guatemala City, Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2011. The court sentenced three former special forces soldiers to 6,060 years in prison each for the massacre of more than 200 men, women and children, one of hundreds that occurred during Guatemala's 36-year civil war, which ended in 1996. Some 240,000 people, mostly Mayan Indians, vanished or died.(AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd) #

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In this image from House Television, Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., appears on the floor of the House of Representatives Monday, Aug. 1, 2011, in Washington. Giffords was on the floor for the first time since her shooting earlier this year, attending a vote on the debt standoff compromise. (AP Photo/House Television) #

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Malaysian jellyfish swim in a tank at the Sunshine Aquarium in Tokyo on August 1, 2011. The aquarium loacted on the top of a building, will be reopened on August 4 following a one year renovation. AFP PHOTO / Yoshikazu TSUNO #

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A man performs the traditional "El Torito" dance at the Rabin Ajau National Folkloric Festival and Indian beauty contest in Coban, Guatemala, Saturday July 30, 2011. Unlike traditional beauty contests, the panel of judges not only value the participants' leadership skills, but their commitment to the rescue and maintenance of Mayan values. The Rabin Ajau, or Queen Daughter, contestants, whose ages range from 14-26 years, go through numerous rounds of competition, including a speech that must be given in their native dialect and Spanish. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd) #

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U.S. Marine Sgt. Myron Ellis, 26, of Sacramento, Calif., with the 2nd Battalion 12th Marines based in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii, looks out from under a tent at a mountain top outpost called The Shrine Saturday, July 30, 2011 in Kajaki, Helmand province, Afghanistan. (AP Photo/David Goldman) #

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An Indian bicycle rickshaw puller sleeps after stopping in a water-logged underpass during monsoon rain in New Delhi, India, Thursday, Aug. 4, 2011. India receives the annual monsoon rains from June to September. (AP Photo/Kevin Frayer) #

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U.S. Marine Cpl. Abraham Willis, 22, of Beech Bottom, W. Va., with the 2nd Battalion 12th Marines based in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii, and his IED detection dog Preacher ride in the back of a wagon as they are shuttled over a bridge for a foot patrol at sunrise in Kajaki, Helmand province, Afghanistan, Friday, July 29, 2011. (AP Photo/David Goldman) #

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Romanian brides pose for pictures at the Triumph Arch in Bucharest, Romania, early Sunday, July 31, 2011. The arch, a replica of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, the French capital, is a rendezvous place for brides after midnight on the wedding night during the stealing of the bride ritual. The ritual, of ancient origin, is performed by wedding guests who take the bride away from the party and then demand a ransom from the groom, usually money or alcoholic drinks, to return her.(AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda) #

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An Indian farmer works in a rice paddy field near Saputara Hill Station some 400 kms from Ahmedabad on July 30, 2011. The strength of the annual June-September downpour is vital to hundreds of millions of farmers and to economic growth in Asia's third-largest economy which gets 80 percent of its annual rainfall during the monsoon season. TOPSHOTS / AFP PHOTO / Sam PANTHAKY #

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A boy sleeps on a wall at a bus station during 'Iftar', when Muslims break their fast, on the third day of the holy month of Ramadan on August 4, 2011 in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. Ramadan, the month in which the holy Quran was revealed to the prophet Mohammad, is observed by devout Muslims who abstain from food, drink and sex from dawn until sunset, when they break the fast with the meal known as Iftar. (Photo by Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images) #

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Their homelands are torn by war, economic distress, political strife, or environmental collapse. They choose to leave, or have no choice. They're called migrants, refugees, or internally displaced people. The labels are inadequate as often circumstances could allow all three descriptions, or some combination of them. Once in their new countries, they face difficult transitions, discrimination, or outright hostility. Host countries are burdened with the economic and political repercussions of the arrivals, while home nations are sometimes saddled with a "brain drain" of their most important human resources. Immigration is a hot-button issue in the American presidential race, and a wave of new arrivals from Libya to Italy has left the European Union struggling with decisions over the Schengen policy of borderless travel between member nations. Gathered here are images of some of the estimated 214 million people worldwide in the process of redefining what "home" means to them. -- Lane Turner (47 photos total)
Rescuers help people in the sea after a boat carrying some 250 migrants crashed into rocks as they tried to enter the port of Pantelleria, an island off the southern coast of Italy, on April 13. Italy is struggling to cope with a mass influx of immigrants from north Africa, many of whom risk their lives by sailing across the often stormy Meditteranean in makeshift vessels. (Francesco Malavolta/AFP/Getty Images)

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Reports that a dog accompanied the Navy Seals' raid on Osama bin Laden's Pakistan compound created a wave of interest in the animals and their training. Almost 3000 dogs are in use by the American military. Other dogs have been in the news lately as well, with sniffer dogs searching for bombs in sensitive areas in the wake of the raid. Sniffer dogs were also deployed to search for victims of the tornados in the American South. Dogs were in headlines for other reasons recently too, as several hundred were rescued in China, street dogs were being killed in Kosovo and Romania, and luxury dog hotels opened in Europe and North America. A luxury hotel would be a welcome change for those dogs abandoned in Japan in the wake of the earthquake and tsunami and nuclear disaster. And in the middle of all of this, the International Dog Show in Szivasvarad, Hungary showed off pampered purebreds. Collected here are pictures of working dogs, rescued dogs, those suffering the effects of natural disasters, and several others. -- Lane Turner (34 photos total)
A military working dog outfitted with its own equipment and light heads up the steps of a building in this undated handout image from a company which manufactures a range of specialized gear that includes high-tech canine flak jackets and tactical body armor. The equipment provides real time video feedback and night vision capabilities. (K9 Storm Inc./Handout/Reuters)

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