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Morning Briefing: She really does want a monkey on her back

Screengrab of Darwin the Ikea monkey from his owner's YouTube account. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1M-ItUcWvfE&feature=plcp

A summary of what you need to know today, compiled by The Globe's news desk on Dec. 11, 2012

Owner to monkey: you need me

The owner of a small monkey that caused an international sensation after it was found wandering around outside a Toronto IKEA store says the animal "can't live without me." The identity of the owner, Yasmin Nakhuda, emerged Monday as the animal settled in at a primate sanctuary. "He needs his mother like a child needs his mother," Ms. Nakhuda said in an interview with a Toronto TV station.

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Mandela being treated for lung infection

Nelson Mandela, who has been hospitalized since Saturday, is responding to treatment for a lung infection, the government says. In an interview with a South African TV channel, Mr. Mandela's wife, Graca, said the Nobel Laureate's "sparkle" was fading. The 94-year-old anti-apartheid hero hasn't appeared publicly since 2010.

Mali PM resigns after foiled bid to flee country

In an ominous sign for the strife-torn country, Mali's Prime Minister Cheick Modibo Diarra resigned Tuesday hours after being arrested by troops as he attempted to leave the country. The army – which staged a coup in March but handed power back to civilian authorities – remains a powerful force in the country, which is battling an Islamist insurgency in the north.

For background on the situation in Mali, read this story by The Globe's Geoffrey York.

Teacher job action may linger for years

Ontario students are facing the possibility of a prolonged period without extracurricular activities as teacher walkouts roll out across the province. Union and school board officials raised the possibility Monday that without a resolution to the months-long conflict, teachers may withdraw from extracurricular activities like sports and field trips until 2014 when the current contracts expire. Teachers have been protesting legislation that imposed contract terms and limited the right to strike.

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HSBC slammed with largest-ever fine

In the largest penalty ever paid by a bank, British lender HSBC Holdings Plc has agreed to pay nearly $2-billion to settle a U.S. criminal probe into money laundering. U.S. officials are expected to release details of the settlement later today.

Post-mortem examination of British nurse

An autopsy is to be conducted today on the body of Jacintha Saldanha, who was found dead on Friday days after transferring a prank call to another nurse who revealed confidential information about the Duchess of Cambridge. The parent company of the Australian radio station that broadcast the call said yesterday that it would donate all profits for the rest of the month to a fund that will benefit Ms. Saldanha's family.

Duelling rallies in Cairo

Rival mass demonstrations are expected today in Cairo by supporters and opponents of President Mohammed Morsi's draft constitution. Just hours before the rallies, masked gunmen attacked opposition protesters camped out in Tahrir Square, wounding nine people.

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Bank of Canada Governor speaks on the economy

Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney is to speak to the CFA Society Toronto, an organization for chartered financial analysts, on the economy and the stability of the global financial system.

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