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88-year-old peaceful activist wins surveillance database fight

John Catt, who has no criminal record, wins legal action to have records deleted from police database of suspected extremists Three appeal court judges have ruled that police violated the human rights of an 88-year-old peaceful campaigner when they secretly labelled him a “domestic extremist” and recorded his political activities.…

Israel poised to unveil new government ahead of Obama visit

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is to formally unveil the shape of his long-awaited coalition government on Thursday which will be sworn in just days before a visit by US President Barack Obama. After nearly 40 days of intensive negotiations with potential partners, Netanyahu was expected to announce a deal between…

Venezuela’s acting president admits it may be too late to embalm Chavez for eternal viewing

Venezuela’s acting president Nicolas Maduro acknowledged Wednesday that it could be too late to have president Hugo Chavez embalmed “like Lenin” so that his body could be on view permanently. “We have welcomed top-level scientists, the best in the world, from Russia and Germany… The scientific reports and opinions we…

India to give small plots of land to homeless rural poor

India’s government is drawing up a major new welfare reform which would hand small plots of land to millions of homeless poor in the countryside, reports said on Thursday. The proposed entitlement programme, which comes as Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s administration is struggling to rein in the public spending deficit,…

Japan fails to overturn shark-protection deal

Japan and other pro-shark fishing nations lost a bid to overturn a landmark deal to offer international trade protection for several species of the ocean’s oldest predator. The decision to restrict exports in the oceanic whitetip shark, the porbeagle, three types of hammerheads and the manta ray won final approval…

British food banks brace for new influx of poor

As the first visitors arrive at St. Luke’s church in south London, pushing empty shopping trolleys and carrying plastic bags, it is clear they haven’t come to worship. Twice a week, this place functions as a food bank serving up physical rather than spiritual sustenance to the increasing numbers of…

Over quarter of South African schoolgirls HIV positive: minister

As many as 28 percent of South African schoolgirls are HIV positive, according to figures from the country’s health minister reported by local media on Thursday. Unveiling statistics that minister Aaron Motsoaledi admitted “destroyed my soul,” he added that four percent of schoolboys have the virus. “It is clear that…

Hamas promises amnesty to Palestinian collaborators spying for Israel

Islamist group says any informers who hand themselves in to authorities by 11 April will not be interrogated or imprisoned Hamas has launched a campaign to convince Palestinians who collaborate with Israel to turn themselves in, offering promises of impunity and financial rewards. The Islamist group claims to have obtained…

Private surveillance companies flock to Arizona’s annual Border Security Expo for their slice of multi-billion dollar industry

From a distance, it looked like Wyatt Nease was using a handset to operate a remote control car. However, the small wheeled vehicle zipping across the carpet was not a child’s toy but the very adult Pointman Tactical Robot. “Swat teams absolutely love it,” said Nease, an unmanned systems specialist…

Court hears account of alleged attack at Steubenville rape trial

Two high school football players accused of repeatedly sexually assaulting 16-year-old while she was intoxicated Two high school football players subjected a 16-year-old girl to a rape attack that amounted to “degradation and humiliation” while she was too drunk to repel them, a court heard on Wednesday. In a case…

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