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NASA telescope poised to probe long-standing solar mystery

By Irene Klotz CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida (Reuters) – A small NASA telescope was poised for launch on Thursday on a mission to determine how the sun heats its atmosphere to millions of degrees, sending off rivers of particles that define the boundaries of the solar system. The study is far…

Senate expected to pass immigration bill on Thursday

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Democratic-led Senate will vote at 4 p.m. EDT on Thursday on its landmark immigration bill, Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid announced. The White House-backed measure is expected to win strong bipartisan approval, and then go to the Republican-led House, which plans to draft its own bill,…

Texas Gov. Rick Perry vows to enact 20-week abortion ban

DALLAS (Reuters) – Texas Governor Rick Perry on Thursday vowed that his state will ban abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy and said that the democratic process was hijacked in the senate this week. The Republican governor’s comments to the National Right to Life convention in Dallas came a day…

UN: Nelson Mandela helped end ‘conspiracy of silence’ on South African AIDS problem

The head of the UN’s AIDS prevention agency hailed Nelson Mandela, who on Thursday was fighting for his life in hospital, for his role in breaking the silence and shame surrounding the deadly disease. “He was the one who really helped us break the conspiracy of silence,” Michel Sidibe, the…

Obama promises he won’t ‘scramble jets’ to get Snowden

DAKAR — US President Barack Obama said Thursday he would not “scramble jets” to intercept any flights carrying fugitive leaker Edward Snowden and scoffed at spending political capital to win him back from Russia. Obama, questioned in Africa on the latest twists of the international spy drama involving Snowden and…

The Expendables: Major corporations rely on temporary workers who have little protection

By Michael Grabell, ProPublica It’s 4:18 a.m. and the strip mall is deserted. But tucked in back, next to a closed-down video store, an employment agency is already filling up. Rosa Ramirez walks in, as she has done nearly every morning for the past six months. She signs in and…

Philippine police rescue 29 mail-order brides on their way to South Korea

MANILA — Philippine police rescued 29 women and arrested five people accused of illegally supplying mail-order brides to South Korea, an official said Thursday. Police raided a house in Bacoor, near Manila, on Wednesday following a tip-off from a government agency that documented complaints by earlier victims, said Chief Superintendent…

Researchers sequence ‘world’s oldest’ genome from horse ancestor

Straight from the horse’s toe: The world’s oldest genome (via The Christian Science Monitor) Researchers have sequenced the genome of a horse that lived some 700,000 years ago – the oldest genome ever sequenced – making it possible to reconstruct an evolutionary narrative of the modern horse, whose journey through…

Defense secretary: Same sex military spouses to see benefits ‘as soon as possible’

DOMA: Military spouses to see benefits 'as soon as possible,' Hagel vows (via The Christian Science Monitor) With the Supreme Court decision striking down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the Pentagon will move “as soon as possible” to make all the same benefits available to all military spouses, regardless…

Disgruntled viewer sues Japanese public broadcaster over using English words

Elderly viewers confused by increasing trend to use anglicised terms instead of their Japanese equivalent Japan’s public broadcaster, NHK, is in a spot of toraburu with a disgruntled viewer who has filed a damages lawsuit against the company for the “mental distress” caused by its excessive use of words derived from English.…

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