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White House releases Benghazi emails

The White House on Wednesday released 100 pages of emails designed to quell a furor about disputed talking points framed for top officials following the attack on the US mission in Benghazi. The release of the documents was an apparent attempt to defuse Republican complaints that the White House initially…

Swedish advertising watchdog mulling citizen complaints over sexist American Apparel ads

Swedish consumers have accused the US clothing chain American Apparel of sexism for its advertisements depicting half-naked women, Sweden’s advertising watchdog said on Wednesday. “We have received five or six complaints,” said advertising ombudswoman Elizabeth Trotzig, who has the power to order the withdrawal of an advert. Trotzig said consumers…

New Yorker unveils open source whistleblower system designed by activist Aaron Schwartz

The New Yorker magazine on Wednesday unveiled a new online system for anonymous whistleblower tips, based on technology developed by the late Internet activist Aaron Swartz and a former hacker. The system called Strongbox was unveiled amid an uproar in the news media over the US government seizure of phone…

Construction company that razed Mayan pyramid for gravel is owned by prominent local politician

A construction company owned by a local politician demolished a 2,300-year-old Mayan temple in northern Belize to use the rubble as gravel for road repair work, authorities charged. The ancient 30-meter (yard) high pyramid, which was reduced to a small mound of debris, was part of the Noh Mul ceremonial…

New evidence proves monkeys, apes shared the earth millions of years earlier than scientists thought

Newly unearthed ape and monkey fossils prove that the cousin species lived side-by-side in Africa as long as 25 million years ago, a study said Wednesday. This is at least five million years earlier than fossil evidence has so far been able to show, according to a team of scientists…

Moscow bans another gay pride parade, vows clamp-down if organizers march anyway

Moscow city authorities on Wednesday again turned down demands for a gay rights rally in the Russian capital later this month, warning organisers that police would clamp down on any unauthorised demonstration. One of the organisers, Nikolai Alexeyev, said early Wednesday that he would fight a ban in court. “We…

Google stock hits record high after unveiling new apps, subscription services

Google shares leapt to a new all-time high Wednesday, topping $900 for the first time, as the Internet giant opened its developers’ conference and reports said new services were planned. At 1510 GMT, Google was up 2.5 percent at $909.43, bringing its gains for the year to nearly 30 percent.…

Nigerian police liberate second ‘baby factory’ in a week

Nigerian police on Wednesday said they had found six pregnant teenage girls in a raid on a house and arrested three people suspected of planning to sell their babies. It was the second so-called baby-factory uncovered in a week in the west African nation. “We acted on intelligence information and…

Ariel Castro to plead not guilty of kidnapping and rape in Cleveland case

The man accused of holding three young US women captive for around a decade in a house in Cleveland will plead innocent to charges of rape and kidnapping, one of his lawyers said Wednesday. “There will be a plea of not guilty,” attorney Jaye Schlachet told AFP. He would not…

UN, Slow Food movement sign agreement to promote ‘gastronomy of liberation’ in developing world

The UN food agency and the gastronomic and ecological movement Slow Food signed an agreement on Wednesday for joint work on promoting small farmers and local recipes around the world that they hope will put Africa on the gourmet map. “I call it the gastronomy of liberation,” said Carlo Petrini,…

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