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Human rights are the best weapon to combat hunger, report says

A report by civil society groups says it is impossible to tackle the causes of hunger if existing power relations remain untouched Human rights are the most powerful tool to ensure efforts against hunger and malnutrition tackle structural causes and are not reduced to short-term strategies, civil society groups said…

Jealous short man arrested for stealing women’s high-heeled shoes

A South Korean man, upset by women whose footwear made them taller than him, has been arrested for stealing high-heeled shoes and dumping them in local parks, police said Wednesday. The 24-year-old, identified only by his surname Lee, had stolen dozens of pairs of high heels from schools, restaurants and…

Trial begins for Egyptian Copt accused of blasphemy for posting clips of ‘Innocence of Muslims’ online

The trial opened on Wednesday of an Egyptian Copt accused of blasphemy after posting on the Internet an anti-Islam video that sparked violent protests worldwide, an AFP reporter said. Albert Saber, 27, was arrested at his home in Cairo on September 13 after neighbours alerted authorities that he had posted…

Anglicans to choose new Archbishop of Canterbury

A commission is meeting on Wednesday to decide on a new Archbishop of Canterbury, the spiritual leader of the world’s Anglicans, ahead of Rowan Williams’ retirement in December. The three-day meeting of the Crown Nominations Commission faces a huge task to find a new Church of England leader who can…

Iraq archives chief moves to seal controversial Saddam-era files

The terror of Saddam Hussein’s secret police has lived on long after his fall through their millions of reports, which are still dragged up by Iraqi politicians and the media, often with damaging results. But Saad Iskander, the head of Iraq’s national archives, thinks the documents have been used for…

Uruguay takes step toward legalizing abortion

Uruguay took a step toward legalizing abortion as lawmakers in the lower chamber of parliament narrowly passed a bill allowing the procedure under certain conditions. The vote was 50-49 and came as proponents and critics of the bill yelled out from the gallery in the chamber. The bill now goes…

British government pledges £1 million to stop rape in war zones

The Foreign Secretary William Hague has unveiled a £1 million pledge to help stop sexual violence against women in war zones, where thousands of women and girls are raped every day. “We are determined to raise international awareness of these issues,” Hague told journalists shortly after a meeting on the…

Strong earthquake forces more than 1,000 tourists to flee hotels in Baja, Mexico

A strong 6.2-magnitude earthquake rattled Mexico’s Baja California peninsula Tuesday, forcing more than 1,000 tourists to flee their hotels and take refuge on beaches and in gardens. No damage or victims were immediately reported after the earthquake and an aftershock struck the west coast region. The quake was centered 75…

Hong Kong tycoon offers $65 million bounty to marry off lesbian daughter

A Hong Kong tycoon has offered a $65 million “marriage bounty” to any man who can win the heart of his lesbian daughter, a report said Wednesday. Cecil Chao announced the financial reward of HK$500 million after his daughter, Gigi, married her same-sex partner of seven years in France earlier…

Global financial system as risky as before credit crunch, warns IMF

The global financial system remains as risky as it was before the credit crisis, with the necessary “reboot” of the banking sector delayed by the emergency measures taken to prop up economic growth, the International Monetary Fund has warned. In its twice-yearly Global Financial Stability Report, published on Tuesday, the…

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