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Last Updated: Thursday, 18 December, 2003, 20:11 GMT
Global news challenge, part 2

It's been a funny old year... Take our alternative world news quiz to see just how much you remember from our selection of weird and wonderful stories.

When you've got your result, why not e-mail the quiz to a friend to see how they measure up?

Good luck!

The banana started the year with some bad news. What was it?
A: After years of baseless rumours, the EU decided it was time to regulate the shape of the bent fruit after some clearly deformed examples hit the markets in France and Germany
B: Scientists warned that the fruit as we know it could disappear if new varieties resistant to blight were not developed
C: A major US supermarket chain decided to impose a temporary ban after exotic spiders imported with the fruit started biting customers
What was discovered in the bathroom of a family home in Bochum, Germany, during the month of February?
A: An eel called Aalfred, which had resided there for 33 years
B: A priceless notebook belonging to the 16th Century monk Martin Luther, thought to have been stolen during World War II and hidden beneath the floorboards
C: A fungal bacterium in the overflow pipe that could hold the cure for the common cold
Singing contest mania swept across the world this year. In what form did the phenomenon crop up in March?
A: "War Zone Wonders" was staged in Liberia. Anyone could take part, provided they had spent the past five years living in an area of conflict
B: Russian jails put forward contestants for "Pop Prisoner", all competing for the same prize - freedom
C: Eunuchs living in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh were invited to participate at "Eunuchs Express Themselves", a competition aimed at raising awareness of eunuchs in South Asia
In April, as US troops were fighting in Iraq, what was dropped for patriotic reasons?
A: French fries from the menu of canteens in US public schools
B: Stars and Stripes underwear from clothing outlets for fear that some purchasers may intend to burn the bras to circumvent legislation against burning the flag
C: Madonna's video to accompany her song American Life, in which a grenade was thrown at a President Bush lookalike
If you opened up your bag in May and found a baseball cap, some McDonald's vouchers, and a map of the local metro system, where would you be?
A: Madrid. You would have bought "the pilgrim's bag", a package offered by the Vatican for those arriving in the city to see the Pope
B: Washington. You were a soldier returning from Iraq who had been handed a kit by the Pentagon during a trip to meet the president
C: Beijing. You were a peasant from the Chinese provinces who had been brought to the city as part of a state programme to increase understanding between urban and rural areas
An international imposter made the headlines in June. Who was he?
A: An Ethiopian farmer who was given a hero's welcome when he arrived in Kenya posing as one of the country's long-lost freedom fighters
B: A German man who can barely boil an egg but who has secured jobs as head chef in the kitchens of an array of prominent figures, including Australian Prime Minister John Howard
C: A Dutch artist who pretended to be Van Gogh's great-great grandson to get his work displayed at three major international exhibitions
"It's not about making money." Who said this in July?
A: Dr Ricardo Pullman, the doctor who has patented a drug which allegedly melts away fat. He said he wanted to help the morbidly obese
B: Roman Abramovich, the Russian billionaire who bought Britain's Chelsea football club. He said he was seeking fun and trophies
C: Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi after releasing a CD of love songs. He said he wanted others to experience the joy and wonder he felt when hearing the music
Which tunnel made the news in August?
A: One beneath the city of Jerusalem which scientists have proved was used by the man believed to be Jesus
B: One built by a stranded scientist in the North Pole, who survived for five days underground while awaiting help
C: One which led out of Brazil's highest security jail
Haemorrhoid cream proved controversial where and why in September?
A: In China, where adverts for the cream were deemed "disgusting" and broadcasters told to censor them
B: In Germany, where a politician declared that modern comforts such as haemorrhoid cream had produced a nation unable to tolerate the slightest discomfort
C: In the US, where it was claimed manufacturers were exacerbating the condition over the long term in order to increase the need for cream
October saw riots in the usually quiet Canadian city of Montreal. Why?
A: The BBC soap opera EastEnders was axed and followers gathered to protest outside the broadcaster's local office
B: The city council had introduced a so-called "fat tax" on chocolate bars
C: Punk fans were unhappy that a gig had been cancelled at the last minute
Which country sought in November to stop the export of one of its most famous features?
A: Britain imposed a ban on the export of rain water
B: Saudi Arabia imposed a ban on the export of sand
C: New Zealand imposed a ban on the export of kiwi fruits
President Bush and Prime Minister Blair were likely to enjoy their respective festive seasons more after the news that Saddam Hussein had been found. But which film starring Patrick Swayze gave its name to the operation leading to the ex-Iraqi leader's capture?
A: Red Dawn
B: Dirty Dancing
C: Ghost

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