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Afghan schoolgirl scarred in acid attack now a teacher

When attackers threw acid in Shamsia Husseini’s face outside her school in Afghanistan, she defied them by returning to class — and now she has struck another blow for female education by becoming a teacher herself. Shamsia suffered severe burns on her eyelids and cheeks in the November 2008 assault,…

Pentagon chief reprimands Texas National Guard and other states over LGBT rights

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel rebuked several US states for failing to grant full spousal benefits to the partners of gay and lesbian members of the armed forces. Hagel said nine states had failed to recognize the rights of same-sex partners of military personnel based at National Guard installations. The…

‘Ender’s Game’ author Orson Scott Card welcomes attacks on his homophobic beliefs because ‘my sales go up’

Ender’s Game author Orson Scott Card responded to threats of a boycott in an interview with the Deseret News in which he says that while his views on same-sex marriage are unchanged, his words have been taken out of context. He claimed that he’s had “no criticism. I’ve had savage,…

John Kerry: ‘In some cases,’ spying ‘has reached too far inappropriately’

The United States has said in some cases its surveillance program has gone too far, an unprecedented admission in its tense row with Europe over US spying against allies. After 10 days of scandal with key European allies, a statement Thursday by Secretary of State John Kerry was the first…

Girl dubbed ‘The Next Steve Jobs’ captivates Mexico

Mexico has found a new heroine: A 12-year-old math whiz from a state plagued by drug violence who was dubbed “The Next Steve Jobs” by a US magazine. The youngest of eight children from a modest family, Paloma Noyola was thrown under the media spotlight since Wired magazine featured the…

Edward Snowden’s lawyer says he is ready to turn over U.S. spying info to Germany

US intelligence leaker Edward Snowden is ready to talk with German prosecutors in Russia, his lawyer said on Friday, after the fugitive met a German lawmaker over his evidence that Washington spied on Chancellor Angela Merkel. The former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor, who was also due Friday to begin…

‘Anonymous’ hacks pro-government Singapore newspaper to protest Internet censorship

Activist group Anonymous hacked a Singapore newspaper website Friday over Internet freedom in the city-state, where government agencies are now reportedly on alert for wider cyber attacks. The website of the pro-government Straits Times was hacked early in the day by apparent members of the group, which is opposing recently…

China demands ‘clarification’ over spying reports

China has demanded the United States provide an explanation over its spying programme amid reports that Washington’s missions in the country were involved, with state media on Friday urging the withdrawal of American agents. The Sydney Morning Herald newspaper, amplifying an earlier report by the German magazine Der Spiegel, said…

Senate bill ‘entrenches and codifies’ NSA mass surveillance, privacy advocates warn

Legislation in the Senate to reform the government’s sweeping surveillance powers would do little more than codify current practices, critics say. In a 11-4 vote, the Senate’s intelligence committee on Thursday approved legislation that would increase transparency of the National Security Agency but also would enshrine the bulk collection of…

Beating of straight Marine who defended gay friends to be investigated as a hate crime

Omaha police are investigating the Saturday beating of a straight Marine as a hate crime. Ryan Langenegger, the man in question, was beaten defending his friends, Joshua Foo and Jacob Gellinger, at a late night eatery. The three had attended a popular drag show earlier, and Gellinger was wearing a…

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