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Montreal police make pre-emptive arrests of protesters before Grand Prix

Police in Montreal arrested dozens of protesters ahead of Sunday’s Grand Prix, as Canadian students rallying for months over tuition hikes used the Formula One event to highlight their cause. Police spokeswoman Annie Lemieux said about 30 arrests made on Sunday were pre-emptive in nature, but six people were charged…

Spread of ‘baby boxes’ in Europe alarms United Nations

The United Nations is increasingly concerned at the spread in Europe of “baby boxes” where infants can be secretly abandoned by parents, warning that the practice “contravenes the right of the child to be known and cared for by his or her parents”, the Guardian has learned. The UN Committee…

Sri Lanka holds mass baby elephant christening

COLOMBO — Sri Lanka’s main elephant orphanage staged its biggest mass christening Sunday by naming 15 baby elephants born in captivity, an official said. Thirteen babies born last year and two in 2010 were given names chosen from among thousands suggested by visitors to the Pinnawala orphanage, director Nihal Senaratne…

Greek leaders trade blows over Spain bank bailout

ATHENS — Greek party leaders Sunday traded blows over the rights and wrongs of a Spanish bank bailout, with the right insisting it showed the importance of talking with Europe on the country’s own problems. New Democracy leader Antonis Samaras, campaigning ahead of key June 17 elections, said Greece must…

Human Rights Watch slams Israel migrant law

JERUSALEM — Human Rights Watch on Sunday urged Israel to repeal or amend a law that allows migrants to be detained without charge for up to three years, calling it a violation of “basic rights.” The New York-based group said the new law “punishes asylum seekers for irregularly crossing into…

Iran to crack down on web censor-beating software

TEHRAN — Iran’s cyber police force is poised to launch a new crackdown on software that lets many Iranians circumvent the regime’s Internet censorship, media reported on Sunday. The operation will target VPNs, or Virtual Private Networks, which use a secure protocol to encrypt users’ data, foiling online blocks put…

Second deadly Nigeria church attack as gunmen open fire

LAGOS, Nigeria — Gunman opened fire on a church in the northeastern Nigerian town of Biu, killing at least one person and wounding several others, a Christian official said, in the second such attack Sunday. “One female worshipper was killed while several others were wounded, two of them critically,” Christian…

Hollande tipped to cement Socialist power in France vote

France was voting on Sunday in round one of a parliamentary election tipped to give Socialist President Francois Hollande the majority needed to implement his tax-and-spend programme. Hollande defeated right-winger Nicolas Sarkozy in last month’s presidential election and has called for voters to turn out en masse to give him…

Nepal ‘Himalayan Viagra’ harvest droops to record low

Every summer, Himalayan villages empty as locals rush to the mountains of northern Nepal to harvest yarchagumba, a high-altitude wild fungus that is prized for its aphrodisiac qualities. In recent years, however, the yield has been severely depleted by over-picking and the probable effects of climate change, experts have warned,…

Galapágos menaced by tourist invasion

Tourism will wreck the wonders of the Galápagos – where animal and plant life is being wiped out by the arrival of aggressive new species – unless action is taken soon, writes Carole Cadwalladr Opening what looks like the drawer of an office filing cabinet, Gustavo Jimenez, a scientist at…

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