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Moroccan navy blocks Dutch ‘abortion boat’

The Moroccan navy on Thursday blocked the Mediterranean harbour in which a controversial Dutch “abortion ship” was due to dock in the first such trip to a Muslim country, one of the organisers said. “They have blocked the harbour. We can see a big warship in front of the harbour,”…

German cabinet considers law to legalize circumcision in some circumstances

A draft law aimed at resolving a controversy in Germany over the circumcision of boys is due to be considered by the cabinet next week, a source close to the government said Thursday. The new legislation would permit circumcision under certain conditions and remove the legal uncertainty created when a…

Researchers find tiny dinosaur that had quills, a beak and fangs

Researchers have identified a species of puny dinosaur so odd looking — quills like a porcupine, a parrot-like beak and fangs like a vampire — it probably deserved a small part in “Jurassic Park.” The finding was reported Wednesday in the online journal ZooKeys by Paul Sereno, a paleontologist and…

Swedish royals condemn swastika-laden art that depicts king eating pizza off naked woman

Sweden’s royal court has criticised the publication of an artwork showing the Swedish king eating pizza off a naked woman’s body, while the queen tries to scrub a swastika off the floor. “There is a limit to how much anyone should have to endure. The picture is offensive, hurtful and…

Dubai to build giant replica of Taj Mahal to be ‘world’s greatest wedding venue’

A replica of India’s world-famous Taj Mahal, four times the size of the original, is to be built in Dubai as what is to be billed as the world’s grandest wedding venue, one of its developers said. It took the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan 22 years to build the marble…

Bosnia national museum closes due to lack of funding after staying open through civil war

Bosnia’s National Museum, founded in the 19th century and home to a famed 600-year old Jewish manuscript known as the Sarajevo Haggadah, closed its doors indefinitely Thursday due to political disputes and a lack of funding. “Such a complex institution cannot function by improvisations. The authorities must provide the funds…

Astronomers find racing star that could prove Einstein was right

US astronomers have found evidence of a star racing tightly around the monstrous black hole at the heart of our galaxy — the closest ever found near the matter-sucking body. The scientists from the University of California, Los Angeles, said the discovery will help them test Albert Einstein’s theory of…

NSA director: U.S. needs offensive weapons in cyberwar

The United States needs to develop offensive weapons in cyberspace as part of its effort to protect the nation from cyber attacks, a senior military official said Thursday. “If your defense is only to try to block attacks you can never be successful,” General Keith Alexander, director of the National…

Google announces settlement in long-running book copyright lawsuit

Google and the Association of American Publishers announced Thursday they reached a settlement in a long-running copyright case over books and journals digitized by the Internet giant. The settlement “will provide access to publishers’ in-copyright books and journals digitized by Google for its Google Library Project” and “will end seven…

Facebook reaches 1 billion monthly users

The milestone means Zuckerberg has achieved his stated ambition of reaching 1 billion active monthly users just two years and three months after the social network reached the half billion mark. Facebook reached 900 million active monthly users in April. Facebook has recorded 1.13 trillion Likes, 140.3 billion friend connections…

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