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Supreme Court to hear Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) case on Wednesday

The rights of married same-sex couples will come under scrutiny at the US Supreme Court on Wednesday in the second of two landmark cases being considered by the top judicial panel. After the nine justices mulled arguments on a California law that outlawed gay marriage on Tuesday, they will take…

Saudi Arabia beheads and crucifies convicted Yemeni murderer

Saudi authorities on Wednesday beheaded a Yemeni man and then crucified his body after he was convicted of murdering a Pakistani national, the kingdom’s interior ministry announced. “The Yemeni citizen Mohammed Rashad Khairi Hussein killed a Pakistani, Pashteh Sayed Khan, after he committed sodomy with him,” said a statement carried…

Singer Dionne Warwick declares bankruptcy citing $10M in back taxes

Dionne Warwick, the singer and actress who was a regular at the top of the Billboard chart for four decades, owes more than $10 million in back taxes and has only $10 left at the end of each month after paying expenses, according to a petition filed in U.S. Bankruptcy…

Chameleons migrated from Africa to Madagascar by sea 65 million years ago: new study

Chameleons took to the waves to migrate from Africa to Madagascar about 65 million years ago, said a study published on Wednesday that seeks to resolve a roiling biological debate. Chameleons are famous for the extraordinary ability of some species to change colour, and for a lightning-fast talent to catch…

Cyprus scrambles to stop run when banks reopen on Thursday

“Superhuman” efforts are being made to reopen banks in Cyprus on Thursday, the central bank governor said, as protests and uncertainty over the island’s top lender showed a huge bailout has not ended its troubles. The comment, made by central bank governor Panicos Demetriades on Tuesday, came as hundreds of…

Philippines turns trash into ‘clean energy’ windfall

Teresita Mabignay does her ironing using free of electricity on the slope of a garbage dump, an unlikely beneficiary of efforts to turn the Philippines’ growing rubbish problems into a clean-energy windfall. Mabignay lives at the base of one of Manila’s largest landfills, which was the first in the country…

Property developer tears down additional stretch of Berlin Wall in surprise pre-dawn move

A property developer removed more of the Berlin Wall Wednesday, police said, in a surprise dawn move amid a bitter running protest over the dismantling of the once-detested Cold War division. Four segments were removed from around 5:00 am local time (0400 GMT) from the Wall’s longest surviving stretch, creating…

Peru’s engineers ‘make’ their own drinkable water in response to shortages outside of Lima

The message emblazoned on a billboard outside the Peruvian capital sounds almost too good to be true: drinkable water for anyone who wants some in this arid village. Even more intriguingly, the fresh, pure water on offer along a busy road in this dusty town some 90 kilometers (55 miles)…

Former CIA chief General David Petraeus says he’s sorry about affair, in first speech since quitting

Former CIA chief General David Petraeus said sorry Tuesday for the “mistake” which triggered his resignation last year, in his first public speech since quitting due to an extra-marital affair. Addressing a military audience in Los Angeles, Petraeus voiced regret for the “pain” caused by his relationship with his biographer…

Love of art is blind for sightless MoMA visitors

Her eyes see nothing, but when Barbara Appel runs her fingers over the face of a Picasso sculpture in New York’s Museum of Modern Art, she sighs with pleasure. Most people go to museums to look at exhibits, but for some at MoMA, love of art is literally blind. Each…

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