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Belarus expels Swedish ambassador over ‘Teddy Bear Incident’

MINSK — Belarus expelled Sweden’s ambassador Friday saying he tried to “destroy” ties with the ex-Soviet state run by authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko, after a pro-democracy stunt by a Swedish firm. The move came after Swedish activists illegally flew a plane into Belarus early last month and dropped hundreds of…

Vietnam to host first LGBT pride parade

Vietnam is to host its first gay pride parade this weekend, event organisers said Friday, after the communist country’s justice minister said it was time to consider legalising same-sex marriage. The parade, organised by Hanoi’s small but growing Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community, will see people cycling through the centre of the capital…

Pakistani-born British couple jailed for ‘honor killing’ of 17-year-old daughter

A Pakistani-born couple were jailed for life by a British court Friday for murdering their “westernised” teenage daughter in an apparent honour killing. Iftikhar Ahmed, 52, and his wife Farzana, 49, were told at Chester Crown Court in Cheshire, north-west England, that they would serve a minimum of 25 years…

German rower Nadja Drygalla leaves Olympics after team discovers her neo-Nazi boyfriend

German rower Nadja Drygalla (fourth from left) is to leave the Olympic village in London, the country’s Olympic committee said on Friday, after press reports that her boyfriend was a member of a far-right group. “Today the management of the German Olympic committee received information about the private associates of…

Unemployment up to 8.3 percent in July despite some job creation

The US economy created a solid 163,000 jobs in July, the Labor Department said Friday, unveiling data that will help President Barack Obama dull attacks from his Republican rival. The economy created many more jobs than the 100,000 expected from economists, although the unemployment rate ticked up to 8.3 percent.…

Canada policewomen file sex harassment class action

More than 200 policewomen and former cops have alleged sexual harassment on the job in a class action lawsuit against Canada’s federal police force. Hearings opened in British Columbia Supreme Court in Vancouver Thursday to certify a law suit filed in March by Janet Merlo, a 19-year veteran of the…

Iran: ‘Interfering states’ made Annan fail in Syria

Iran on Friday blamed “interfering countries” for making Kofi Annan’s mission fail in Syria, and implied it could now be among those taking “a more crucial role” in solving the conflict. “It seems that interfering countries were not satisfied with the efforts made by Annan to halt the shipment of…

Sudans are ‘inextricably linked’: Clinton

The two Sudans must strike an urgent compromise deal to end bitter disputes and resume oil production, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Friday, warning the newly separated nations they “remain inextricably linked.” Sudan and South Sudan “will need to compromise to close the remaining gaps between them,” Clinton…

Toll in Uganda’s Ebola outbreak rises to 16: WHO

The latest outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus has killed 16 people in Uganda, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday, increasing the previous toll by one. “Today we have 50 suspected cases and 16 dead,” WHO spokesman Tarek Jasarevic told reporters in Geneva. For the time being the…

Truman’s grandson meets Japan atomic bomb survivors

A grandson of former US president Harry Truman, who authorised the atomic bombing of Japan during World War II, met survivors in Tokyo Friday, calling it “a good first step towards healing old wounds”. Clifton Truman Daniel, 55, was in Japan to attend 67th anniversary ceremonies of the bombs falling…

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