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A newly identified coronavirus variant has spread in South Africa.

The variant – originally called B.1.1.529 – has a spike protein that is different from the one our vaccines are based on. The new variant has been called Omicron by the World Health Organisation.

Lab studies are still needed to assess how contagious this new variant of Covid is.

So far South Africa has confirmed around 100 specimens of B.1.1.529h. However, the variant has also been found in Botswana, Hong Kong, and throughout Europe.

The variant has more than 30 mutations on its spike protein. This is more than double the number carried by the Delta strand.  

So far a number of countries have closed all their borders to South Africa in an attempt to stop the spread.

One of the world’s most famous streets – Sesame Street – has a new character named Ji-Young.

Ji-Young is the first Asian American character to move onto the famous puppet street.

The Korean American puppet is seven years old and loves rocking out on her electric guitar and skateboarding.

Sesame Street’s producers hope she helps young Asian and Pacific Island children to feel at home in America as much as anyone else.

Kathleen Kim is the puppeteer behind Ji-Young. She said that she hopes her character can help teach children how to be a good “upstander”. An ‘upstander’ is a person who stands up against things like bullying, racism, and hateful messages.

Crazy Frog, the viral animated creature that topped the charts ten years ago is back.

It has been announced that the irritating frog will make a comeback on YouTube on December 10. It comes after the frog recently teased “something’s cooking” on its Instagram page.

Crazy Frog’s new track will be inspired by TikTok trends while incorporating classic hits in a mash-up style.

The frog was developed by the ringtone company Jamba! back in 2005. It famously beat Coldplay to Number One in that year.

Crazy Frog’s song was called ‘Axel F’ Beverly Hills Cop theme. The official video was uploaded to YouTube in June 2009. It has since registered 3.1billion views and is the 19th most popular clip in YouTube’s history.

Tens of millions of red crabs have begun their annual migration on Christmas Island, near Australia.

This yearly event sees around 50 million red crabs travel from their homes in the island forests to the ocean.

The red crab’s migration starts with the first rainfall of the wet season. On Christmas Island, this is usually between October and November, but can sometimes be as late as December.

The crabs are travelling to the ocean to mate and lay their eggs.

Once they’ve mated, the female crabs stay in little burrows on the beach for a few weeks whilst their eggs grow. Then, with that done, the crabs will head back home into the forests.

Local people have built crab bridges to help the crabs get around tricky obstacles like roads, and the local radio stations provide people with updates on their movements.

Kamala Harris has become the first woman to wield presidential power in the US.

Harris was given the President’s power’s temporarily when Joe Biden went into the hospital.

Joe Biden, the president travelled to Walter Reed Medical Center for a routine physical at 9am last Thursday to undergo a routine colonoscopy.

The operation was short and at 11:35 he rang the white house and resumed his position as US President.

President Biden will remain in the hospital for a few days to recover.

Short transfers of power have been made before. In 2002 and 2007, Vice-President Dick Cheney assumed the role of temporary president when George Bush was in the hospital.

An estimated 18,000 people are stranded due to severe flooding in western Canada.

Emergency crews are still trying to reach people stranded by landslides and cut off from some of the worst floods in living memory.

British Columbia Premier John Horgan has announced a state of emergency due to the flooding that has displaced people from their homes and disrupted transportation routes.

Thousands of farm animals have died as a result of the floods, and thousands more are in need of food.

Many experts believe that the flood was due to an extensive wildfire last summer. These fires wiped out vegetation that could have slowed the flooding.

Apple has announced that it will start selling spare parts and tools to the general public.

This will enable them to perform their own repairs on some iPhones and Mac computers.

Consumers will also be able to buy replacement parts for their Apple devices direct from the company. 

In 2019, Apple started a programme where independent repair shops could buy its parts, tools and manuals. However, this is the first time they have sold to the general public.

Apple said they would start with about 200 parts and tools aimed at fixing the most common issues with displays, batteries and cameras on iPhone 12 and 13 models.

The programme would begin early next year in the United States and expand to more countries later in the year.

The original cast of the Harry Potter series will be reunited for the 20th anniversary.

To celebrate a special titled Return to Hogwarts will be released on 1 January 2022. This will be available on the HBO network.

In the documentary Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson will discuss the films and explore their creation in depth.

The first film, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, on 16 November 2001.

The trio will be joined by other actors who took part in the films.

The three colours of the French flag have been changed in a move that went unnoticed.

The blue segment of the flag was made darker in July last year.

President Emmanuel Macron darkened the blue in the French flags to bring the tricolore in line with how it looked after the French revolution.

The Presidents office said the change happened in July last year, but nobody appears to have noticed until now.

France’s flag was navy blue since the 18th century, when the flag became a symbol of the country.

However, a lighter shade of blue was introduced in the 1970s. This was to stop it clashing with the blue in the European Union Flag.