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Only 1 in 7 Japanese scientists are women

Just a seventh of scientists in Japan are female, government figures show — a record high rate for the country, despite being the lowest rate of any developed nation. The figure comes amid a high-profile row in Japan that has pitted a young female researcher against the scientific establishment, and…

Second Pakistani man arrested for allegedly eating newborn baby

Pakistani police Tuesday arrested a second man suspected along with his brother of eating a newborn baby whose head was found at their home, officials said. Farman Ali was detained a day after police arrested his brother Mohammad Arif following the grisly discovery at their house in a remote district…

Palestinian woman dies after inhaling tear gas, medics say

A Palestinian woman died in hospital after inhaling tear gas used by the Israeli army to disperse protesters near the West Bank city of Bethlehem, a medical official said Tuesday. But the military denied tear gas was the cause of death. Late on Monday the army “fired tear gas near…

Owner of collapsed Bangladesh factory faces murder charges

Bangladesh police said Tuesday they will press murder charges against the owner of a nine-storey building that collapsed and killed 1,135 garment workers last April, the worst industrial disaster in the country’s history. Sohel Rana, owner of the Rana Plaza factory complex on the outskirts of the capital Dhaka, was…

French conservative leader praises European Union for providing ‘porn without borders’

Improved access to porn movies across Europe’s many borders is one of the merits of the European Union, conservative party chief Joseph Daul said Tuesday. The French member of the European Parliament has headed its biggest group since 2007, the European People’s Party (EPP). Asked by a local French newspaper…

India’s Supreme Court recognizes ‘transgender’ as a third gender in landmark ruling

India’s highest court ruled Tuesday that a person can be legally recognised as gender-neutral, a landmark judgement that raises hopes of an end to discrimination against several million transgenders and eunuchs. The Supreme Court also said transgenders should be included in government welfare schemes offered to other minority groups in…

Iraq closes down infamous Abu Ghraib prison over security fears

Iraq has closed Abu Ghraib prison, made infamous by Saddam Hussein’s regime and US forces, due to security concerns following a mass breakout last year, the justice ministry said Tuesday. The country is suffering a protracted surge in violence that has claimed more than 2,550 lives so far this year,…

Mini-sub aborts first search for MH370

A mini-sub hunting for Malaysian jet MH370 aborted its first search of the remote Indian Ocean seabed after just six hours because the water was deeper than its operating limits, officials said Tuesday. The unmanned submarine loaded with sonar to map the ocean floor deployed Monday night from the Australian…

Malta legalizes civil unions and adoption rights for gay couples

Malta’s parliament passed a law Monday legalising same-sex civil partnerships and giving gay couples the right to adopt. The Mediterranean island country’s parliament passed the bill by a vote of 37-0. The opposition abstained because it opposes gay adoption but not gay unions, said its leader Simon Busuttil. Thousands of…

U.S. hints at more sanctions against Russia after tense phone call between Obama and Putin

Presidents Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin confronted one another in telephone talks Monday as a standoff over Ukraine escalated after the CIA chief visited Kiev and a Russian war plane “buzzed” a U.S. destroyer. Washington said it was consulting European allies and hinted that more sanctions on Russia’s economy could…

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