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Ancient Irish coronation stone Lia Fail vandalized by hammer

One of Ireland’s ancient monuments, the Lia Fail standing stone which according to legend served as the coronation stone for the high kings, has been vandalised, the government said Wednesday. Heritage Minister Jimmy Deenihan said the granite Lia Fail, which is Gaelic for Stone of Destiny, appeared to have been…

Palestinian man attempts self-immolation after denied money to visit sick daughter

A man upset over not being given money to visit his sick daughter in Jordan tried to immolate himself on Wednesday during one of several demonstrations against rising prices in the West Bank, Palestinian sources said. Gaza Strip resident Hussein Qahwaji, aged 37, was stopped from setting himself on fire…

South Korean lawmakers seek castration for repeat sex offenders

A group of 20 South Korean lawmakers introduced a bill Wednesday that would allow for the physical castration of repeat sex offenders, amid public outrage at a spate of brutal sex crimes. If the bill is adopted, courts could order the testicular castration of recidivist sex offenders who fail to…

Australian doctor reprimanded for ‘homosexuality cure’

An Australian doctor has been severely reprimanded and banned from working as a general practitioner after prescribing a drug to a boy who came to him for help to “cure” his homosexuality. A Health Care Complaints Commission committee found Mark Craddock guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct over his treatment of…

World’s richest woman suggests $2 a day wages for Australian miners

The world’s most wealthy woman is warning that firms are in danger of having to abandon iron-ore mining in Australia if wages are not cut, pointing out that African miners are “willing to work for less than $2 per day.” In a video recently posted on the Sydney Mining Club…

Oxfam: Climate change’s impact on future food prices is underestimated

Climate change’s impact on future food prices is being underestimated, Oxfam warned in a report on Wednesday. The development charity predicts that massive price spikes will be a devastating blow to the world’s poorest people who today spend up to 75% of their income on food, and will also adversely…

One dead after shooting at Quebec premier’s victory speech

MONTREAL — A gunman was arrested after shooting two people, one of them fatally, at the victory speech of Quebec’s Pauline Marois, whose separatist party is projected to win polls in the Canadian province. Another person was seriously wounded in the incident late Tuesday, as Marois was hustled offstage by…

Report: Liberian forests sold off in secret logging contracts

Forty percent of Liberia’s forests have been sold off in secretive and often illegal contracts, Global Witness said Tuesday, just days after the country’s president announced a probe into the issuing of logging permits. An investigation by the London-based natural resource watchdog has shown how, despite efforts to reform the…

Magnificent mosaic floor unmasked in Siena Cathedral

Magnificent Renaissance mosaics covering the sweeping marble floor in Siena cathedral have been unveiled to give visitors a rare glimpse of scenes it took local artists 500 years to create. The inlaid panels, usually covered to protect them from the thousands of visitors who flock to the Tuscan city each…

Algeria’s new PM takes office after 4 month delay

Algeria’s new Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal took office on Tuesday promising to push ahead with reforms four months after parliamentary elections, as key ministers kept their posts in his new cabinet. Foreign Minister Mourad Medelci, Interior Minister Daho Ould Kablia and Energy Minister Youcef Yousfi all kept their jobs in…

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