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Vatican denies video shows exorcism by Pope Francis

The Vatican on Tuesday denied that Pope Francis had performed an exorcism after an Italian religious television channel said footage of the pontiff blessing a boy in a wheelchair showed he had. “The Holy Father did not intend to perform any exorcism,” Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi said in a statement,…

Guatemala strikes down ex-dictator’s genocide conviction

Guatemala’s Constitutional Court has struck down the 80-year sentence given to former dictator Efrain Rios Montt as well as his conviction for genocide and war crimes. The 3-2 ruling annulled all proceedings that took place after the trial was temporarily halted on April 19 due to a technicality, overturning the…

7 children among 24 dead in Moore, Oklahoma tornado

UPDATE: The state medical examiner’s office revealed that some of the victims may have been counted twice and the most recent death toll is at 24 people, 7 of whom are children, according to the Associated Press. Twenty children were among at least 91 people killed when a powerful tornado…

North Korea releases Chinese fishermen after briefly holding them hostage

North Korea has released 16 Chinese fishermen and their boat, Chinese state-run media said Tuesday, after reports that armed assailants had taken the sailors hostage and demanded a ransom. “All the fishermen with the boat are safe on their way back,” China’s Xinhua news agency said, citing a Chinese embassy…

Google faces new pressure in UK over tax claims

HM Revenue and Customs is investigating fresh lines of inquiry into Google’s tax affairs after interviewing a former executive at the company who gave anonymous evidence to parliament, the Guardian can disclose. Barney Jones, 34, who worked for the internet company between 2002 and 2006, met officials in Whitehall on…

Sudden infant death risk greater when parents share bed with babies

The controversy over whether parents should share a bed with newborns has been reignited by research showing that babies who do are five times more likely to die suddenly than those who sleep in a cot. Ministers have asked health advisers to urgently reappraise official guidance on co-sleeping and cot…

Secret Service probes right-wing radio host for threatening Hillary Clinton

The U.S. Secret Service is eying fringe right-wing radio host Pete Santilli, who recently said he wanted to shoot former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the vagina. Secret Service spokesperson told Talking Points Memo on Monday that the agency was “aware of Mr. Santilli’s comments and will take the…

Apple allegedly uses havens to avoid paying billions in U.S. taxes

Apple uses a “highly questionable” web of offshore entities to avoid paying billions in US income taxes, a Senate committee alleged on Monday. The complex arrangement includes three subsidiaries, based ostensibly in Ireland, which appear not to be designated as tax resident anywhere, the committee said. A source on the…

Church of Scotland votes to allow gay ministers

The Church of Scotland on Monday voted to allow gay ministers following years of debate between the liberal and traditionalist sides of the church. Scottish gay rights campaigners praised the move but the Free Church of Scotland called it a fudge. The General Assembly pledged commitment to its “current doctrine…

Ray Manzarek of The Doors dies at 74 after battle with cancer

Ray Manzarek, keyboardist and founding member of The Doors, died Monday in Germany after a long battle with cancer, according to a statement on the iconic band’s Facebook page. He was 74. Manzarek formed the group — whose worldwide hits included “Light My Fire” and “L.A. Woman” — with Jim…

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