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Pistorius ‘numb with shock’ and ‘grief’: uncle

Oscar Pistorius’s uncle on Saturday said the jailed track star was “numb with shock” and grief following the death of his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, whom the sprinter has denied murdering. Giving the strongest indication yet that the athlete plans to plead not guilty to shooting the 29-year-old blonde model,…

Vatican’s chief exorcist thanks the Pope

The Vatican’s chief exorcist has thanked Pope Benedict XVI for opening the way to exorcisms, not only for those possessed by the devil but also those tormented by him. “Benedict held an audience with exorcists from all over the world and welcomed us with words of great, great encouragement,” Gabriel…

Bisphenol A (BPA) in plastic may not be harmful, says Dept. of Energy toxicologist

A total of 150 scientific studies have shown that bisphenol A (BPA), a controversial component of plastic bottles and canned food linings, may be used in quantities too small to negatively affect human health. The analysis, presented at the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s annual meeting here by…

Divers scour lake for fragments after meteor injures 1,200 in Russia’s Urals

Divers scoured the bottom of a Russian lake on Saturday for fragments of a meteorite that plunged to Earth in a blinding fireball whose shockwaves injured 1,200 people and damaged thousands of homes. The 10-tonnes meteor streaked across the sky in the Urals region on Friday morning just as the…

Anonymous gift of $250,000 in gold arrives in wrecked Japanese seaport ahead of tsunami anniversary

A Japanese city devastated by the 2011 tsunami has received anonymous gifts of gold worth more than $250,000 in a phenomenon dubbed a “goodwill gold rush” ahead of the second anniversary of the disaster. The president of the company which operates the port in the northeastern city of Ishinomaki last…

Alleged cop killer died from single shot to head: coroner

Alleged US cop killer Christopher Dorner died from a single gunshot wound to the head that appeared to be self-inflicted, a coroner said. The doctor who examined the body concluded that “the cause of death was a single gunshot wound to the head,” said San Bernardino County coroner Kevin Lacy,…

Australia ‘deeply involved’ in Israeli ‘Prisoner X’ case: report

Australian intelligence had detailed knowledge of the case of a Melbourne man thought to have been an Israeli spy well before he died in a Tel Aviv jail in 2010, a report said on Saturday. “Every day that goes by you see how deeply involved they were,” a senior Israeli…

Maher on Hagel: Based on GOP statements ‘the Israelis are controlling our government’

On Real Time with Bill Maher on Friday, the host took issue with Senate Republican’s blocking of Chuck Hagel’s confirmation as Secretary of Defense — actions which have been called unprecedented by Democrats, although USA Today reports that leading senators claim that they will allow a vote the week of…

Carnival cruise ship passengers’ parting gift: bathrobes

The 4,000-plus exhausted passengers who lived a hellish four-day ordeal aboard the powerless and drifting Carnival Triumph cruise ship won’t be left completely empty handed. The cruise company is making a gift to the travelers of the bathrobes they were using on the ship, the company announced Friday. “Of course…

New York City marks 5 years of handing out free condoms

New York City this week marked the fifth anniversary of a groundbreaking free condom program that has distributed tens of millions free rubbers, under the racy slogan “NYC Condoms — Get Some!” NYC brand Condoms, launched on Valentine’s Day 2007 by the city’s health department, were the first to be…

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