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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…

Bolivian leader’s jet held for hours amid suspicion of carrying Snowden

Bolivian President Evo Morales’s jet left Vienna on Wednesday after it was diverted overnight on suspicion of harbouring fugitive US intelligence leaker Edward Snowden. The plane took off at 11:45 am local time (0945 GMT). It was expected to stop in Las Palmas on the Spanish Canary Islands for servicing…

Texas lawmakers advance major anti-abortion bill

By Corrie MacLaggan AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) – A Texas House committee voted to move forward with a proposal to ban most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and toughen standards for clinics, after at least 2,000 people sought to testify for and against the measure at an eight-hour hearing. The…

Egypt’s army ‘ready to die’ to protect against ‘any terrorist, radical or fool’

CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt’s high command said on Wednesday the army was ready to die to defend Egypt’s people against terrorists and fools, in a response to Islamist President Mohamed Mursi that was headlined “The Final Hours”. The post on the official Facebook page of the Supreme Council of the…

Military air tankers join fight against deadly Arizona wildfire

The US military ordered four air tankers to join fire-dousing efforts in Arizona, where firefighters were battling a still out-of-control inferno which killed 19 of their comrades. The Modular Airborne Fire Fighting System (MAFFS) planes will be redeployed from other states to help tackle blazes including the Yarnell Hill fire,…

France’s Marine Le Pen expected to face charges for incitement to racial hatred

Marine Le Pen, the leader of France’s far-right Front National, is expected to face charges for incitement to racial hatred in France, after the European parliament voted to lift her parliamentary immunity. The French state prosecutor in Lyon had asked the European parliament to lift Le Pen’s protection from prosecution…

George Zimmerman’s injuries were ‘insignificant,’ medical examiner testifies

By Barbara Liston SANFORD, Florida (Reuters) – Volunteer watchman George Zimmerman suffered “insignificant” injuries in the fight in which he shot and killed unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin, a medical examiner testified on Tuesday, as prosecutors attempted to undermine Zimmerman’s claim he feared for his life. Zimmerman has pleaded not…

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