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By Eric Auchard FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Access to Facebook , the world's largest social network, and its Instagram photo-sharing site, were blocked around the world for up to an hour on Tuesday, which the company said later was due to an internal fault and not an outside attack. The outage at Facebook, which started around 0600 GMT, appeared to spill over and temporarily slow or block traffic to other major Internet sites, according to web and mobile user reports from around the globe. A hacker group associated with other recent high-profile attacks on other online services sought to claim responsibility for the outages, but Facebook said the fault was its own. “This was not the result of a third-party attack but instead occurred after we introduced a change that affected our configuration systems," Facebook said.
Chinese officials feasted on a critically endangered giant salamander and turned violent when journalists photographed the luxury banquet, according to media reports Tuesday on the event which appeared to flout Beijing's austerity campaign. The 28 diners included senior police officials from the southern city of Shenzhen, the Global Times said. The giant salamander is believed by some Chinese to have anti-ageing properties, but there is no orthodox evidence to back the claim. The species is classed as "critically endangered" on the International Union for Conservation of Nature's (IUCN) Red List of threatened species, which says the population has "declined catastrophically over the last 30 years".