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Syria walks out of UN Human Rights Council debate

Syria on Wednesday stormed out of a UN debate on a freshly critical report on the rights abuses in the conflict-torn country. “We will not participate in this flagrantly political meeting,” said Syrian ambassador Faisal Khabbaz Hamoui, before leaving the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. The diplomat denounced a…

Google teaching computers to mimic human brain

Google said it was dabbling with getting computers to simulate the learning process of the human brain as one of the unusual projects for researchers in its X Lab. Computers programmed with algorithms intended to mimic neural connections “learned” to recognize cats after being shown a sampling of YouTube videos,…

UN asked to probe Guantanamo torture of 9/11 chief

Lawyers for self-confessed September 11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed revealed they have asked the UN to investigate their client’s alleged torture at Guantanamo Bay military jail. On the UN’s International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, Mohammed’s defense team revealed they had sent a “Letter of Allegation” to Juan…

Japan probes website attacks amid Anonymous claims

Japan probed attacks on government websites Wednesday after hacker collective Anonymous lashed out at beefed-up laws against downloading copyrighted works, and warned of more to come. A site purporting to speak for the group said newly enacted laws that could mean jail for anyone downloading copyrighted music and movies “will…

Federal court bars Samsung tablet after Apple complaint

A US federal court has barred the sale of Samsung’s new Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet computer, siding with Apple in a bitter dispute between the two tech giants over alleged patent infringement. The US district court in northern California Tuesday ruled that there was “evidence that Samsung altered its design…

Monet’s garden replanted in the Bronx

Past a walkway cutting through roses and delphiniums, visitors see a small bridge arching over some water lilies. Not in France, but in the Bronx, at an extraordinary five-month exhibit recreating Monet’s gardens at Giverny in this down-at-heel New York borough. The American take on Claude Monet’s garden has already…

Deadly raid on Syria TV after Assad speaks of ‘war’

An attack on a pro-government television channel’s offices near Damascus killed three staff on Wednesday after President Bashar al-Assad said Syria was in a “state of war.” As the UN Human Rights Council prepared to hear a new report by a panel it set up to probe the conflict, human…

EU court upholds billion-dollar Microsoft fine

A European court upheld a billion-dollar EU fine against Microsoft on Wednesday but reduced the penalty by tens of millions of euros. The General Court, the European Union’s second highest, dismissed Microsoft’s bid to annul the penalty but cut the US software giant’s fine by 39 million euros to 860…

Post-Nazi art therapy comes to Kabul

An art exhibition that began as an attempt to heal Germany after the horrors of Nazi rule and World War II is now being replicated in Afghanistan. “Documenta” arose from the ruins of the bombed-out German city of Kassel as artists sought to reconnect West Germany, as it then was,…

Bangladesh’s Hindu women fight for divorce rights

Unlike her Muslim compatriots, Tarulata Rani is unable to inherit anything from her family, cannot divorce and cannot claim maintenance from her absent husband — all because she is a Bangladeshi Hindu. Unlike Bangladeshi Muslims or Hindus in neighbouring India and Nepal, Bangladeshi Hindu women can’t divorce as the legal…

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