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Vietnam to host first LGBT pride parade

Vietnam is to host its first gay pride parade this weekend, event organisers said Friday, after the communist country’s justice minister said it was time to consider legalising same-sex marriage. The parade, organised by Hanoi’s small but growing Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community, will see people cycling through the centre of the capital…

UK publisher withdraws ‘Imagine’ over Jonah Lehrer’s falsified quotes

Jonah Lehrer’s British publisher Canongate has withdrawn his book Imagine from sale, following the former New Yorker writer’s admission that he made up quotes from Bob Dylan for the bestselling title. Lehrer, a staff writer for the New Yorker, admitted at the start of this week that he had falsified quotes from the singer…

Pakistani-born British couple jailed for ‘honor killing’ of 17-year-old daughter

A Pakistani-born couple were jailed for life by a British court Friday for murdering their “westernised” teenage daughter in an apparent honour killing. Iftikhar Ahmed, 52, and his wife Farzana, 49, were told at Chester Crown Court in Cheshire, north-west England, that they would serve a minimum of 25 years…

German rower Nadja Drygalla leaves Olympics after team discovers her neo-Nazi boyfriend

German rower Nadja Drygalla (fourth from left) is to leave the Olympic village in London, the country’s Olympic committee said on Friday, after press reports that her boyfriend was a member of a far-right group. “Today the management of the German Olympic committee received information about the private associates of…

Canada policewomen file sex harassment class action

More than 200 policewomen and former cops have alleged sexual harassment on the job in a class action lawsuit against Canada’s federal police force. Hearings opened in British Columbia Supreme Court in Vancouver Thursday to certify a law suit filed in March by Janet Merlo, a 19-year veteran of the…

Iran: ‘Interfering states’ made Annan fail in Syria

Iran on Friday blamed “interfering countries” for making Kofi Annan’s mission fail in Syria, and implied it could now be among those taking “a more crucial role” in solving the conflict. “It seems that interfering countries were not satisfied with the efforts made by Annan to halt the shipment of…

Sudans are ‘inextricably linked’: Clinton

The two Sudans must strike an urgent compromise deal to end bitter disputes and resume oil production, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Friday, warning the newly separated nations they “remain inextricably linked.” Sudan and South Sudan “will need to compromise to close the remaining gaps between them,” Clinton…

Athletics center-stage as Phelps chases more gold

The first track and field medals go up for grabs at the Olympics Friday as American swimming superstar Michael Phelps chases his third gold of the Games. With swimming due to complete its programme on Saturday, the transition to athletics begins at the 80,000-capacity Olympic Stadium with the women’s 10,000m…

Saudi woman’s historic bow over in 82 seconds

Judoka Wojdan Shaherkani became the first ever female Saudi athlete to compete at the Olympic Games on Friday, but her historic debut lasted just 82 seconds. Looking nervous and wearing a swimming cap-style head covering, she was beaten by Melissa Mojica of Puerto Rico in the first round of the…

Hague pledges more ‘non-lethal’ help for Syria rebels

Foreign Secretary William Hague pledged greater support for Syria’s rebel fighters on Friday, as the battle for the country’s commercial capital Aleppo intensified. “Given the scale of death and suffering and the failure so far of the diplomatic process we will, over the coming weeks, increase our practical but non-lethal…

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