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Brazil lawmakers red-faced over mystery underwear

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil — Mystery underwear found during a parliamentary session earlier this month is causing a lot of red faces in the Brazilian Congress, a report said Thursday. The red and white panties, described by O Globo daily as “rather large” and “not a G-string,” were inadvertently dropped…

China detains hundreds in Tibet capital

Hundreds of people have been detained in Lhasa after two men set themselves on fire in the Tibetan regional capital, a US-based broadcaster said, as a young mother became the latest Tibetan to self-immolate. Radio Free Asia said Chinese security forces had rounded up hundreds of residents and pilgrims in…

Brazil art scene booms, reflecting strong economy

Brazil’s art scene is booming, with international aficionados snapping up the latest creations and fresh talent rising, a reflection of the South American giant’s growing economy. “We have seen an incredible increase in the number of sales, buyers and collectors,” Eliana Finkelstein, president of ABACT, the country’s contemporary art association,…

Mozambique customs arrest rhino horn smuggler

Mozambican police have arrested a Vietnamese man at the main airport in Maputo as he tried to smuggle rhino horns out of the country, a spokesman said Thursday. The man was arrested on Wednesday as he was about to board a Kenya Airways flight to Hanoi via Bangkok. “Inside the…

One baby, two moms equals controversy in Ecuador

Ecuador’s constitution extols “families of diverse types,” but this conservative, Catholic society is struggling to figure out how children raised by parents of the same sex fit that lofty ideal. A British lesbian couple have sparked controversy at a time when attitudes about same-sex couples are changing in other countries,…

Current eurozone set-up is ‘unsustainable’: Draghi

The president of the European Central Bank, Mario Draghi, called on Thursday for eurozone leaders to lay out a vision for the future of the embattled bloc, as its current set-up is “unsustainable.” “The next step … is basically for our leaders to clarify what is the vision for a…

Parents in UK court over fire deaths of six children

The parents of six children killed in a fire at their home appeared in court on Thursday charged with their murders. Mick Philpott, 55, and his wife Mairead, 31, appeared flanked by several security guards in the dock at a magistrates court in Derby a day after being charged with…

Israel to try reporter over leaked army documents

JERUSALEM — Israel’s attorney general has decided to put a journalist on trial over secret military documents he received from a former soldier who is now in prison for spying, the justice ministry said on Wednesday. “In the near future charges will be filed against (the journalist Uri) Blau for…

Enrichment ‘not a step towards a bomb’: Ahmadinejad

TEHRAN — Iran’s enrichment of uranium to 20 percent “is our right” and “is not a step towards a bomb,” President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Wednesday in an interview with the satellite television network France 24. The enrichment activity, which world powers are trying to curb in fraught talks with Iran,…

French irked by EU use of English

BRUSSELS — The Brussels-based French-language press corps reacted with fury Wednesday to the release in English of the EU’s annual report cards on the bloc’s 27 economies. In an angry open e-mail to the European Commission, the correspondent for the daily Liberation newspaper Jean Quatremer said — in French: “Once…

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