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Chatter: Dozens killed in stampede during New Year's festivities in Ivory Coast

At least 60 people crushed to death in the Ivory Coast city of Abidjan, the US Senate reaches a "fiscal cliff" deal two hours after the deadline, and what to do if you are dumped just before your New Year's Eve wedding.
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Need to know:

At least 60 people have been crushed to death, and some 250 injured, in a stampede after New Year's Eve festivities in Ivory Coast.

Rescue officials said the incident happened near a stadium in the commercial capital of Abidjan, while people were returning home from a fireworks display in the early hours of the morning. 

It is not yet clear what caused the stampede, which happened outside Abidjan's Felix Houphouet Boigny Stadium. The victims included many children, and the death toll is expected to rise.

Want to know:

The US Senate has approved a deal to allow taxes to rise only for wealthy Americans while temporarily suspending spending cuts in order to avoid the "fiscal cliff."

After tense negotiations, Democrats and Republicans agreed to raise taxes on families with incomes over $450,000 a year.

Congress had scrambled to hammer out a deal before the January 1 deadline that would automatically lead to tax hikes and spending cuts that could damage America's gradual economic recovery.

In the end, they passed the deal two hours after midnight.

Dull but important:

Kim Jong Un, in his first New Year's address, has told North Koreans they must embark on "an all-out struggle" to overhaul the country's destitute economy.

In the nationally televised speech, Kim also called for an end to confrontation between the two Koreas, which are technically still at war.

However, at the same time Kim — who came to office just over a year ago, following the death of his father Kim Jong Il — celebrated last month's controversial launch of a long-range rocket.

He called it "a great event which inspired all the service personnel and people with confidence in sure victory and courage and clearly showed that Korea does what it is determined to do."

Just because:

Doctors taking care of Hillary Clinton say the US Secretary of State is making "excellent progress" after a blood clot was found in a vein between her brain and skull, behind her right ear.

Clinton's spokespeople say the clot stemmed from a concussion she received after fainting earlier this month. 

Doctors at the New York hospital where she is being treated said it did not result in a stroke or neurological damage, and added they were confident that she would make a full recovery.

Clinton also suffered a clot in 1998, and later described it as "the most significant health scare I've ever had," according to the New York Daily News.

Strange but true:

Angela Burrow, a former British army major, was dumped by text message two weeks before her New Year's Eve wedding.

But instead of canceling the elaborate reception, which included a seven-course wedding breakfast and Scottish pipers at midnight, she decided to turn it into a very different kind of celebration.

The 52-year-old told the BBC that after "three days of crying," she managed to get her "fighting spirit" back — and hosted a "new beginnings" party.

"Life is too short and you have to live each day as if it's going to be your last," she told her guests.

"I'm meant to be getting married today, but I want it to be a celebration of New Year and new beginnings."

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/chatter/chatter-dozens-killed-stampede-new-year-festivities-ivory-coast