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May 24, 2015

Ireland legalises same-sex marriage

Ireland legalises same-sex marriage – Wikinews, the free news source

Ireland legalises same-sex marriage

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Sunday, May 24, 2015

LGBT
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Ireland by public vote on Friday legalised same-sex marriage. This was the first time a country legalized same-sex marriage by popular vote. The historic referendum resulted in a landslide sixty percent “yes”.

Over sixty percent of the nation’s electorate participated in the vote, with about two million counted on Saturday before the result was announced at Dublin Castle. A total of 1,201,607 — 62 percent — of people voted “yes” to gay marriage, with only 734,300 — 38 percent — voting “no”.

LGBT flag map of Ireland

Prime Minister Enda Kenny said, “we have disclosed who we are. We are a generous, compassionate, bold and joyful people who say yes to inclusion, yes to generosity, yes to love, yes to gay marriage.”

Other political leaders also took to the media to voice their support for the decision. Cabinet minister Leo Varadkar remarked, “We’re the first country in the world to enshrine marriage equality in our constitution and do so by popular mandate. That makes us a beacon, a light to the rest of the world, of liberty and equality. So it’s a very proud day to be Irish”.

Ireland is a majority Catholic country. The church opposes same-sex marriage. Dublin archbishop Diarmuid Martin said Ireland’s vote is part of a “social revolution”. “If the referendum is an affirmation of the views of young people, the church has a huge task in front of it,” he said.

About 2,000 LGBT supporters celebrated in the Dublin Castle courtyard on Saturday. Drag queen Rory O’Neill, publicly known as Panti Bliss, was among the crowd, and stated “I am drunk on Yes […] It’s not that Ireland has changed today, but that Ireland has confirmed the change that we already knew had happened.”



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May 23, 2015

Islamic State captures Syrian city of Palmyra

Filed under: Archived,Politics and conflicts,Syria — admin @ 5:00 am

Islamic State captures Syrian city of Palmyra

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Saturday, May 23, 2015

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On Thursday Islamic State reportedly completed taking the ancient city of Palmyra, Syria. The victory comes just a few days after the group seized Ramadi, Iraq last weekend.

The victory puts their forces in a position to strike westward toward a number of strategic positions, including Damascus, the capital of Syria, which is connected to Palmyra by a major highway.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which is based in Britain, estimates over half of Syria — by area — is now under Islamic State control. Holding Palmyra also provides them with access to the city’s military bases, airport, and nearby oil fields.

Palmyra is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is home to a variety of ruins, including a Roman colonnaded street. UNESCO has expressed concern for the safety of the ruins now that Islamic State controls the city. The group has previously destroyed ruins and cultural monuments during their military campaigns.

The US strategy in the region has relied on air strikes. White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest has said President Obama is not contemplating a commitment of US forces to combat Islamic State on the ground.


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May 22, 2015

Germanwings crash victims identified

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Germanwings crash victims identified

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Friday, May 22, 2015

Aviation

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Investigators looking into the Germanwings Flight 9525 crash in March announced on Wednesday that they had formally identified the 150 passengers who died on the Airbus 320 when it was flown into the French Alps. This will allow for the victims families to prepare for a proper burial ceremony in the coming weeks. It has reportedly taken more than six weeks to match the DNA found at the site of the crash in the French Alps with those of the family members of the victims involved. The city prosecutor of Marseilles, Brice Robin has now said that “The 150 death certificates can now be signed, as well as the 150 burial permits.”

This comes after extensive investigation into the life of the 27 year old co-pilot Andreas Lubitz who had reportedly suffered depression. After locking the cockpit door whilst the pilot was on a toilet break, Lubitz purposely flew the plane into the French Alps. Reports from France’s BEA civil aviation investigators revealed that Lubitz had practised altering the flight’s data settings during the outbound flight to Barcelona from an altitude of 11,600 metres to an alarmingly low 30 metres.

The incident has sparked calls for other international flights to implement the rule of always having two people in the cockpit at all times during flights to prevent any further tragedies such as this. The final report of the investigation is set to be finalised next year.



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FIFA president \’on a mission of peace\’

Filed under: Archived,Middle East,Palestine,Politics and conflicts — admin @ 5:00 am

FIFA president ‘on a mission of peace’ – Wikinews, the free news source

FIFA president ‘on a mission of peace’

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Friday, May 22, 2015

Palestine
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FIFA (International Federation of Association Football) president Sepp Blatter is touring the Middle East, making efforts to stop the Palestinian motion for the suspension of Israel from FIFA. As part of his visit, Blatter met Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday, and on Wednesday was due to meet the president of the Palestinian National Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, and the chairman of the Palestinian Football Association, Jibril Rajoub.

After his meeting with the Israeli prime minister, Mr. Blatter held a press conference, in which he said Prime Minister Netanyahu was agreeable to a “peace match”, perhaps organized by FIFA, between the Israeli and Palestinian national teams. Blatter also said he hasn’t the authority to prevent the Palestinian motion from moving forward and “it is a very unusual and very serious matter”. Blatter called his efforts “a mission of peace”.

Recently, the Palestinian Football Association proposed to suspend Israel from FIFA accusing Israel of severely restricting the importation of sports gear, the travel of players within the territories of the PNA — from Gaza to the West Bank and vice versa — as well as the visits of foreign teams in Palestine thus dealing damages to Palestinian football. The Palestinian motion reads: “Our aim is to stop the suffering of our footballers and ensure that Palestinian football is allowed to benefit from the rights and the obligations enshrined in the FIFA statutes”. In response to these claims the CEO of the Israel Footballers Association, Rotem Kemer, said the accusations aren’t about football and “we don’t have any impact […] when it comes to security issues around the borders of Israel”.

Should the motion go through, Israel would be suspended of all FIFA projects and activities, including the Champions League and the European Championship in 2016. For the motion to go through on May 29 it must win the support of 75% of the 209 voters.



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David Letterman signs off after 33 year career on the Late Show

David Letterman signs off after 33 year career on the Late Show

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Friday, May 22, 2015

Television
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David Letterman in 2011.
Image: Joint Chiefs of Staff.

American TV host David Letterman announced his retirement on Wednesday night, after a 33 year career as host of the Late Show on CBS. His farewell included an abundance of clips from his classic skits, a few restrained fillips of sincerity and humility and sarcastic, self-deprecating humor with a tinge of nostalgia.

Letterman chose as his last musical guests the Foo Fighters, as the band in the past had canceled their tour in South America to play on his first show after Letterman’s heart surgery operation.

Over the last few weeks, a parade of celebrity guests including Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts and George Clooney paid their respects to Mr. Letterman. Jason Alexander from Seinfeld tweeted: “David Letterman, thank you for the laughs, both live and on air. May your family bring you joy and inspiration and may you laugh for all your days.”

On Wednesday, he described all the encomiums as “over the top” and said he found it “flattering, embarrassing and gratifying”. After more than an hour of tributes and laughs, David Letterman signed off his last show yesterday night with the words: “That’s pretty much all I got … thank you and goodnight.”



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May 21, 2015

Yingluck Shinawatra, former Thai prime minister, begins her trial in Bangkok over corruption allegations

Yingluck Shinawatra, former Thai prime minister, begins her trial in Bangkok over corruption allegations

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Former Thai prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra.
Image: Gerd Seidel and Rob Irgendwer.

Former Thai prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra has begun her trial in Bangkok on Tuesday for alleged negligence in a rice subsidy scheme. If convicted she could face up to ten years in jail.

The subsidy scheme was designed to prop up rice prices by spending billions of dollars to acquire the crop at high rates over the market rates.

It has been alleged by her political opponents that this was a way to gain support from poor rice farmers.

“I am confident that I am innocent and I hope the court will give me justice and allow everything to proceed in accordance with the law,” Shinawatra told reporters outside the Bangkok courthouse.

12 months ago the former prime minister was removed from office by a military coup after weeks of protests in the Thai capital. The military stating that it had to restore order.

The court has forbidden Shinawatra to leave the country.



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Yingluck Shinawatra, former Thai prime minster, begins her trial in Bangkok over corruption allegations

Yingluck Shinawatra, former Thai prime minster, begins her trial in Bangkok over corruption allegations

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Former Thai prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra.
Image: Gerd Seidel and Rob Irgendwer.

Former Thai prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra has begun her trial in Bangkok on Tuesday for alleged negligence in a rice subsidy scheme. If convicted she could face up to ten years in jail.

The subsidy scheme was designed to prop up rice prices by spending billions of dollars to acquire the crop at high rates over the market rates.

It has been alleged by her political opponents that this was a way to gain support from poor rice farmers.

“I am confident that I am innocent and I hope the court will give me justice and allow everything to proceed in accordance with the law,” Shinawatra told reporters outside the Bangkok courthouse.

12 months ago the former prime minister was removed from office by a military coup after weeks of protests in the Thai capital. The military stating that it had to restore order.

The court has forbidden Shinawatra to leave the country.



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May 20, 2015

F.C. Barcelona wins La Liga 2014-2015

F.C. Barcelona wins La Liga 2014-2015 – Wikinews, the free news source

F.C. Barcelona wins La Liga 2014-2015

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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Football
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On Sunday, at Calderón Stadium in Madrid, Spain, F.C. Barcelona association football club won the Spanish La Liga title. The team defeated Atlético Madrid 1–0 to clinch the title for the 23rd time.

Lionel Andrés “Leo” Messi Cuccittini scored the only goal of the match. A victory in this match ensured the title for Barcelona.

Uruguayan striker Suárez was rested due to a hamstring injury. A goal scored by Messi secured the 1–0 win and took the title from defending champions Atlético Madrid. Meanwhile, multiple FIFA Ballon d’Or winner Ronaldo scored three goals against Barcelona based club Espanyol. But his hat-trick could not fetch his club, Real Madrid, the title, since F.C. Barcelona won against Atlético Madrid.

Luis Enrique, ex-Barcelona player and current manager of the team, wins the league for Barcelona in his first year as its manager.




May 17, 2015
Atletico Madrid 0-1 F.C. Barcelona Estadio Vicente Calderón, Madrid
Referee: Alberto Undiano Mallenco (Spain)
Messi Scored after 65 minutes 65′

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May 18, 2015

20150518

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 5:00 am

20150518 – Wikinews, the free news source

20150518

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Monday, May 18, 2015

It was 1:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (1700 UTC) and lunch period was over. The students walked back to their classrooms, and 21-year-old Jeffrey Burkland played a game of Connect Four with another student. Jeffrey won, but he was upset because the other student was not being a good sport. For the 1:00-1:30 p.m. block of the day, the students in Classroom F4 had a lesson on bullying. Teachers Daniel Feingold and Samantha Brumer stayed in the room, but the lesson was taught by Clarese Diebel and Shawna. When Clarese asked Jeffrey to do a worksheet, Jeffrey refused. 18-year-old Raymond Wang was sitting behind Jeffrey and watching nervously. Ray was thinking about how some of his League School classmates treated him. Although James Padula tends to be nice, he did not have good anger management and would often take his anger out on others, including Ray. James was usually in a bad mood on Mondays and in a good mood on Fridays. This Monday May 18, Ray spent time looking back on all the times James and several other students used to make school stressful for him. Ray feared that Jeffrey would yell at him, but at 14:20 today, Jeffrey said, “No, why, you want me to yell at you?” Ray was taken aback because he had believed that boys were irritable and girls were easy-going. He got on the afternoon bus shortly after 14:45.

At 16:30, however, Ray attended his routine dance party with his good friend Clitus Bond, and told him about the above incident, and Clitus said, “Well, I’m a boy, and I don’t have a bad temper.” At some point during their dance party, which lasted 16:30 until 17:00, they heard the song “Stay” by Rihanna, and the teen boys then sang the song together.



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Over 900 asylum seekers rescued off Indonesian coast

Filed under: Archived,Asia,Indonesia — admin @ 5:00 am

Over 900 asylum seekers rescued off Indonesian coast

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Monday, May 18, 2015

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On Friday, fishermen rescued over 700 asylum seekers whose boat sank, and the Indonesian Navy reportedly saved 200 more after they were found swimming along the coast of Aceh, Indonesia.

Major general Fuad Basya, spokesman for the Indonesian military, said fisherman first noticed the people and a warship was deployed to retrieve them. The rescued members included Bangladeshis and Rohingya, a stateless minority of Muslims from Myanmar. Myanmar is mainly Buddhist and the United Nations rates the Rohingya among the world’s most persecuted groups. According to ABC News, Basya also believes the asylum seekers found in the water may have left the boat on purpose to be rescued to avoid being sent away from Indonesia waters.

Malaysia and Indonesia have maintained a policy of turning away boats of migrants which, according to AFP, the Untied Nations and United States have both criticised.

One Rohingya, Muhammad Amin, the first boat rescued on Friday was turned around twice, toward Malaysia by Indonesian navy and then toward Indonesia by Malaysian navy.

Discussing his concern in a public statement, Malaysia’s Prime Minister, Najib Razak said, “We are in contact with all relevant parties, with whom we share the desire to find a solution to this crisis”.

Thailand has recently cracked down on human trafficking, which has affected the routes by which people-smugglers transport migrants.

The US State Department said John Kerry, the Secretary of State, contacted Thailand’s foreign minister over temporary housing for the Rohingya out at sea. Jeff Rathke, the State Department Spokesperson, said, “We urge the governments of the region to work together quickly, first and foremost, to save the lives of migrants now at sea who are in need of an immediate rescue effort”. Rathke also asked the governments of South East Asia not to turn away boats of people seeking asylum.

Estimates suggest 8000 migrants may be currently at sea in the region.



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