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Mayor Bloomberg unveils plan to save New York from climate change

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has unveiled a $19.5 billion plan to boost the city’s defenses against climate change, seven months after superstorm Sandy devastated the US East Coast. The blueprint features structures like a series of six-meter-high (20-foot) waterfront walls and dikes to prevent flooding of the kind that…

Brazil’s indigenous activists step protests over land rights

Indigenous activists occupied the headquarters of a federal agency here Tuesday as part of mounting protests against government policies and the construction of a controversial dam in the Amazon. The natives arrived in the Brazilian capital a week ago for talks with authorities after occupying one of the Belo Monte…

Rural Chinese children ‘left behind’ as parents join mass migration to the cities

Six-year-old Keke looks silently from a bare living room at her closest companion: a grandmother who resents having to raise her. Keke is one of China’s 61 million “left-behind” children, whose parents have joined the mass migration to cities where they can earn higher wages — but cannot afford to…

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard subject of ‘grossly sexist’ menu at party fundraising dinner

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard on Wednesday accused the opposition of a pattern of misogynist behaviour, branding a menu for a party fundraiser “grossly sexist and offensive” after it featured a quail dish named after her that offered “small breasts” and “huge thighs”. The menu was used at a dinner…

Brain surgery forces halt to Mumford and Sons tour

Chart-topping English indie folk rock band Mumford and Sons postponed three sell-out shows on their US tour Tuesday while bassist Ted Dwane undergoes surgery for a blood clot. Writing on its website, the group — winners of this year’s Grammy for best album — said scans had revealed a blood…

Clown wins lawsuit over FHM magazine’s drug addict jibe

A clown won a lawsuit against the South African edition of men’s magazine FHM after the publication printed his picture with a report likening jesters to cross-dressing drug addicts. FHM used in its December 2007 issue a stock image of Puddles the Clown alongside an article branding clowns “grown men…

Senate panel approval of military sexual assault bill sets up battle over the chain of command

By David Alexander WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. Senate panel on Tuesday approved a controversial plan to improve the military’s handling of sexual assault cases, backing draft legislation that would let prosecutors, rather than a victim’s commander, decide if a sex offense should go to trial. The proposal was one…

World’s oldest ever man dies aged 116

The world’s oldest person and the oldest man ever to have lived has died of natural causes aged 116 years, media reported Wednesday. Japan’s Jiroemon Kimura, who was born in 1897, died in hospital early Wednesday morning, Kyodo News cited the local government as saying. Kimura, from Kyotango in Kyoto…

Study links genetically modified grain to stomach inflammation in pigs

By Carey Gillam (Reuters) – Pigs fed a diet of only genetically modified grain showed markedly higher stomach inflammation than pigs who dined on conventional feed, according to a new study by a team of Australian scientists and U.S. researchers. The study adds to an intensifying public debate over the…

Planned Parenthood and ACLU fight Alabama abortion restrictions

By Verna Gates BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (Reuters) – Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union filed a federal lawsuit on Tuesday challenging a new Alabama law that tightens restrictions on abortion clinics in the state. The law, signed by Gov. Robert Bentley in April and set to take effect next…

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