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China

*FUNCHIT!* Mystery 'Mushroom' Offers Embarrassing Surprise For TV Reporter

XI'AN UP CLOSE, 56.COM (China)

As he was drilling a new well near his home in western China, a villager found a weirdly shaped, fungus-like object. Not knowing what to make of the discovery, he called the local TV station to come and have a look.

The investigative program Xi'an Up Close quickly sent reporter Ye Yunfeng to get to the bottom of the story, thinking the object might just turn out to be a rare variety of "lingzhi mushroom," a fungus said to hold the secret to longevity.

Watch Ye Yunfeng's live report in the video below.

A few hours later, the mythical object that the naive TV reporter had been poking and prodding -- and even measuring -- and that almost everybody in the village has been touching, is soon identified… it's a sex toy!

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FOCUS: Russia-Ukraine War

How The War Is Doing Long-Term Damage To Ukraine's Fertile Soil

Ukraine's fertile soils used to feed the world. But even when the war ends, food production will take decades to recover because of damage to the land.

Photo of a missile in the dirt

A tailpart of a missile sticks out of the ground in the village of Chornobaivka, near Kherson

Oleksandr Decyk and Vitaly Alekseev

KYIV — After the start of Russia's invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, most of the world's consumers of agricultural products such as wheat, sunflower oil and corn suddenly learned that most of these products were grown in Ukraine. They also discovered that this is a country whose fertile lands feed a significant part of Africa and Europe.

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Without its wheat and sunflowers, many all over the world will starve to death. So, the war in Ukraine has become a world war. And even when the hostilities end, Ukraine will not be able to immediately resume feeding the world, as Russian troops are destroying the basis of its agriculture — chernozem soil.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, during the war in Ukraine, significantly degraded agricultural land increased by 13%. A significant percentage of the land is at risk of degradation. Scientists call it ecocide – the deliberate destruction of Ukraine's ecosystem. More than 200,000 hectares of territories in the combat zone are contaminated with mines, shells, and debris.

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