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Nudists vow to defy anti-nudity law in San Francisco

Nudists vow to reject order from ‘bunch of uptight Americans’ to cover up but city officials cautiously optimistic ban will pass San Francisco nudists said on Monday they would continue to walk the streets naked regardless of a proposed law that would order them to cover up. City authorities are meeting…

Moody’s downgrades France’s credit rating

Moody’s credit rating agency has stripped France of its coveted AAA rating and declared that the country’s economic outlook remains “negative”. In what will be a severe blow to Socialist president François Hollande, the agency said it was reducing the country’s rating from AAA to AA1, claiming France’s ability for economic…

Genius or clown? Paris show weighs Dali legacy

Twirling his waxed moustache, Salvador Dali’s larger-than-life figure was beamed into millions of homes in the 1960s, his televised antics bringing huge fame, but burning his bridges with the art world. Now a major new Paris exhibit aims to reinstate that legacy, putting Dali’s media stunts — burying himself in…

DR Congo rebels seize the country’s main airport

DR Congo rebels have seized the airport in Goma, the main city in the country’s mineral-rich east after several days of fighting, a United Nations official told reporters Tuesday. “The airport is under the control of the M23,” the official said on condition of anonymity, referring to the rebel group.…

Lawyers say Pakistan quashed Christian girl ‘blasphemy’ case

A Pakistan court on Tuesday threw out all charges against a Christian girl accused of blasphemy in a case that drew international condemnation, lawyers said. Rimsha Masih spent three weeks on remand in an adult jail after she was arrested on August 16 for allegedly burning pages from the Koran.…

Israel mulls Gaza truce as death toll tops 100

Israeli leaders Tuesday discussed an Egyptian plan for a truce with Gaza’s ruling Hamas, reports said, before a mission by the UN chief to Jerusalem and as the toll from Israeli raids on Gaza rose over 100. The early morning talks came as the UN Security Council hit deadlock on…

New law to ban India’s ‘untouchable’ toilet cleaners

With both hands holding the basket of human excrement on her head, widowed grandmother Kela walks through a stream of sewage, up a mound of waste and then dumps the filth while cursing. “Nobody even pays us a decent wage!” she spits as she rakes mud and rubbish over her…

New SARS virus linked to bats

A novel strain of the deadly SARS virus that sparked a health scare this year is closely related to a virus found in Asian bats, according to a study published on Tuesday. Scientists in the Netherlands said they had sequenced the genetic code of a viral sample taken from a…

Cabbie returns $900,000 to Thai couple

A Singaporean taxi driver has been heralded as a hero after he returned Sg$1.1 million ($900,000) in cash to a vacationing Thai couple who left the money in his cab. Sia Ka Tian, 70, was shocked to find the money in a black paper bag on the back seat on…

Report: White House ‘did not alter’ Benghazi memo

A “talking points” memo distributed to government officials about the deadly attack on the US consulate in Libya was altered by the intelligence community and not the White House, CNN reported. Armed militants stormed the US mission in Benghazi on September 11 in a coordinated assault at two different locations…

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