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Accused Cleveland kidnapper Ariel Castro found competent to stand trial

By Kim Palmer CLEVELAND (Reuters) – Accused Cleveland kidnapper Ariel Castro has been found competent to stand trial on rape and murder charges, a judge said at a hearing Wednesday. Castro has been accused of kidnapping three women and holding them prisoner for about a decade in his Cleveland home.…

Credit card donations to WikiLeaks once again flowing through Iceland

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) – International credit card donations to WikiLeaks are flowing again after an Icelandic court ruling forced MasterCard’s and Visa’s local agent to process payments, the companies involved in processing the funds said. One of WikiLeaks’ most important sources of funding – donations made from Visa and MasterCard users…

Putin signs law banning foreign LGBT adoptions

President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday signed a law banning gay and lesbian couples in foreign countries from adopting Russian children. The measure was one of a series adopted by Russian authorities in recent weeks that have been slammed by civil rights leaders as discriminatory. The Kremlin said in a statement…

Scientists say HIV banished from bone marrow transplant patients

Two men who had longstanding HIV infections have been off Aids drugs for several months and have no detectable HIV Two men who became free of HIV infection after bone marrow transplants have been off Aids drugs for several months without any sign of the virus returning, according to scientists.…

Ecuador finds microphone hidden in London embassy where Assange is living

By Estelle Shirbon LONDON (Reuters) – Ecuador has found a hidden microphone inside its London embassy, where WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is living, and will disclose on Wednesday who controls the device, its foreign minister said. Ricardo Patino said the microphone was found inside the office of the Ecuadorean ambassador…

Brazilian leader asks for referendum after worst unrest in 20 years

Brazil’s Congress has received a request from President Dilma Rousseff to hold a referendum on political reform in response to the worst social unrest in 20 years. The move, widely supported by the public, came after three weeks of protests over corruption and public spending which marred the Confederations Cup,…

Chinese court hears claim Apple’s ‘Siri’ is a copycat

A case against US technology giant Apple brought by a Chinese firm for alleged patent infringement in its digital personal assistant “Siri” has begun in a Shanghai court, state media said Wednesday. Lawyers representing Apple and Zhizhen Network Technology Co. on Tuesday argued over the technical specifications of Siri and…

U.N. report confirms: World gripped by climate extremes over past decade

By Environment Correspondent Alister Doyle (Reuters) – The world suffered unprecedented climate extremes in the decade to 2010, from heatwaves in Europe and droughts in Australia to floods in Pakistan, against a backdrop of global warming, a United Nations report said on Wednesday. Every year of the decade except 2008…

Almost 100 women sexually assaulted during anti-Morsi protests

Close to 100 women have fallen victim to “rampant” sexual attacks in Cairo’s Tahrir Square during four days of protests against Egypt’s Islamist President Mohamed Morsi, Human Rights Watch said on Wednesday. “Mobs sexually assaulted and in some cases raped at least 91 women in Tahrir Square… amid a climate…

Italian police probe more suspicious Vatican bank transfers

Italian police have found 13 suspicious money transfers through the Vatican bank, a newspaper said Tuesday, reporting that a senior cleric arrested last week allegedly offered his own accounts to transfer money for his friends. The Corriere della Sera daily said that the suspect operations which have triggered money laundering…

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