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In Los Angeles, Muslim women find empowerment in female-only Friday prayers

Feb 01, 2015

In Los Angeles, Muslim women find empowerment in female-only Friday prayers

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - After the traditional call to prayer, Edina Lekovic stood in front of some 150 women seated on the floor at an interfaith center in Los Angeles, and delivered a sermon, a role traditionally reserved for Muslim men. "We have the right and responsibility to our faith," Lekovic told the women as she stood in front of banners emblazoned in gold with verses from the Koran, Islam's holy book. #Business #India #Japan #France #Arabic #Middle East #markets #Italy #Argentina #Latin America #Mexico
Bangladesh opposition says leader's Internet, electricity cut amid protests

Feb 01, 2015

Bangladesh opposition says leader's Internet, electricity cut amid protests

DHAKA (Reuters) - Opposition activists accused Bangladesh's government of cutting their leader's electricity, Internet and cable connections on Saturday after days of violent anti-government protests. The disconnections were reported soon after the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), led by Begum Khaleda Zia, called another 72-hour strike from Sunday morning along with its ongoing blockades of roads, railways and water routes. At least 40 people have died and hundreds been wounded in protests that surged on Jan #Economy #facebook #United States #India #Internet #France #Russia #Government #Argentina #United Kingdom #author
Pivotal time for trans people as rigid notion of gender challenged

Feb 01, 2015

Pivotal time for trans people as rigid notion of gender challenged

NEW YORK (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - For Kate Bornstein, the American author and pioneer gender activist, this is a pivotal time in history for transgender people as the rigid concept of two sexes is challenged by a growing number of individuals who don't conform to either. Some even suggest the notion of gender as we know it, the categorisation of individuals as either male or female, might become obsolete altogether. "Most college students are okay with the idea of someone who defines themselves as not a man or a woman," said Bornstein, 66, who was born a man but had a sex change operation in the 1980s. #Business #facebook #United States #India #Japan #France #Arabic #markets #Argentina #United Kingdom #Latin America #author
Ukraine's envoy accuses separatists of undermining Minsk peace talks

Feb 01, 2015

Ukraine's envoy accuses separatists of undermining Minsk peace talks

MINSK (Reuters) - Peace talks on Ukraine broke up on Saturday after more than four hours and Ukraine's envoy accused separatist envoys of undermining the meeting by making ultimatums and refusing to discuss plans for a ceasefire, Interfax news agency said. Ukraine's representative, former president Leonid Kuchma, was quoted by Interfax as saying that the two separatist officials present had delivered ultimatums and refused "to discuss a plan of measures for a quick ceasefire and a pull-back of heavy weapons". He also reproached the two main separatist leaders in eastern Ukraine, who signed key agreements in Minsk last September, for failing to attend Saturday's follow-up meeting of the "contact group", which also involved a Russian envoy and an official from the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe #India #Japan #Brazil #Technology #France #Arabic #Italy #Latin America #author
Iraqi leaders, U.N. call for probe of alleged massacre

Feb 01, 2015

Iraqi leaders, U.N. call for probe of alleged massacre

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraq's prime minister blamed "outlaw criminals" on Saturday for alleged mass executions, following reports that dozens of civilians were killed by Shi'ite militias in Diyala province. "It's not permitted for people to take the law into their own hands and punish others whenever they want to settle scores", Haider al-Abadi told a gathering of Sunni and Shi'ite religious and political leaders in Baghdad. Abadi, a moderate Shi'ite Islamist who has sought reconciliation between Sunnis and Shi'ites, had called on Wednesday for an investigation into accusations that Shi'ite militias systematically executed at least 72 people in the village of Barwanah #United States #India #China #Japan #Brazil #France #Middle East #Russia #markets #Mexico #author #opinion
Iraqi leaders, U.N. call for probe of alleged massacre

Feb 01, 2015

Iraqi leaders, U.N. call for probe of alleged massacre

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraq's prime minister blamed "outlaw criminals" on Saturday for alleged mass executions, following reports that dozens of civilians were killed by Shi'ite militias in Diyala province. #Business #facebook #United States #India #France #Arabic #Middle East #markets #Argentina #Latin America
Germany's von Weizsaecker, president at unification, dies at 94

Feb 01, 2015

Germany's von Weizsaecker, president at unification, dies at 94

BERLIN (Reuters) - Former president Richard von Weizsaecker, who challenged German attitudes about the Holocaust by arguing that the country had been liberated by the Nazi defeat in 1945, died on Saturday at the age of 94, the current president's office said. A member of one of Germany's most distinguished aristocratic families, von Weizsaecker also presided over the reunification of East and West Germany in 1990, 11 months after the fall of the Berlin Wall. He was most remembered for a speech in May 1985 marking the 40th anniversary of the end of World War Two in which he urged Germans to come to terms with responsibility for the Holocaust. #Business #Technology #France #Arabic #markets #Argentina #Latin America #author #Holocaust
Kurds retake oil facility in north Iraq, 15 workers still missing

Jan 31, 2015

Kurds retake oil facility in north Iraq, 15 workers still missing

KIRKUK, Iraq (Reuters) - Kurdish peshmerga forces retook a small crude oil station near the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk which Islamic State insurgents seized earlier on Saturday, but the fate of 15 employees remained unclear. Two officials from the state-run North Oil Co told Reuters the militants had seized a crude oil separation unit in Khabbaz on Saturday morning and said 15 oil workers were missing after the company lost contact with them #China #Brazil #Technology #France #Middle East #Russia #markets #Italy #Argentina #United Kingdom #author
Plastics factory fire kills 13 people in Bangladesh capital

Jan 31, 2015

Plastics factory fire kills 13 people in Bangladesh capital

DHAKA (Reuters) - At least 13 people including two women were killed when a fire swept through a plastics factory in Bangladesh's capital Dhaka on Saturday, police said. Scores were injured and more people may have died at Nasim Plastic House in a crowded market in the suburb of Mirpur, a police official said. "We are searching under a collapsed wall ... #Economy #United States #India #China #Brazil #Technology #France #Arabic #markets #Italy #Argentina
Rouhani accuses Iranian hardliners of "cheering on" other side in atom talks

Jan 31, 2015

Rouhani accuses Iranian hardliners of "cheering on" other side in atom talks

DUBAI (Reuters) - Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, growing frustrated with hardline resistance to a nuclear deal with the West, accused opponents on Saturday of effectively "cheering on" the other side in Tehran's gruelling negotiations with world powers. Soon after his 2013 election victory over conservative hardliners, the pragmatist Rouhani set out to end a 12-year nuclear stand-off with the West and thereby secure the lifting of tough sanctions that have crippled Iran's oil-based economy. Iran's ongoing talks with the United States, China, Russia, France, Germany and Britain have gone on for about 14 months and missed a self-imposed November 2014 deadline for a final comprehensive agreement that would limit Iran's nuclear energy capacity in exchange for a phased lifting of sanctions #Business #facebook #China #Japan #France #Middle East #Russia #Argentina #United Kingdom #Mexico #author #opinion