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Sunday, Apr 20th

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Guantánamo Bay detainees' release upon end of Afghanistan war 'unlikely'

Gitmo detaineesTypically, when a war ends, so does the combatants’ authority to detain the other side’s fighters. But as the conclusion of the US war in Afghanistan approaches, the inmate population of Guantánamo Bay is likely to be an exception – and, for the Obama administration, the latest complication to its attempt to close the infamous wartime detention complex.

In December, when President Barack Obama and his Nato allies formally end their combat role in Afghanistan, US officials indicate there is unlikely to be a corresponding release of detainees at Guantánamo who were captured during the country's longest conflict.

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Share this page Print Share Facebook Twitter Iran condemns US seizure of Alavi Foundation building

Alavi foundation building seizedIran has condemned a US decision to seize a Manhattan skyscraper belonging to a non-profit organisation with alleged links to the Tehran government.

The 36-storey building is owned chiefly by the Alavi Foundation, a Persian and Islamic cultural centre. Iran said its seizure was illegal and violated religious freedom.

On Thursday the US justice department agreed to distribute proceeds from the sale of the building to victims of attacks by Iran-backed militants.

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Kansas speech by Michelle Obama draws complaints

Michelle ObamaIf expanding the guest list to include Michelle Obama at graduation for high school students in the Kansas capital city means fewer seats for friends and family, some students and their parents would prefer the first lady not attend.

A furor over what the Topeka school district considers an honor has erupted after plans were announced for Obama to address a combined graduation ceremony for five area high schools next month an 8,000-seat arena. For some, it was the prospect of a tight limit on the number of seats allotted to each graduate. For others, it was the notion that Obama's speech, tied to the 60th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Brown v. Board of Education outlawing segregation in schools, would overshadow the student's big day.

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Telltale Rainbow Sheens Show Thousands Of Spills Across The Gulf

gulf spills revealedJonathan Henderson of New Orleans-based Gulf Restoration Network is flying Louisian

"I just noticed something out of the corner of my eye that looks like a sheen that had some form to it," he says. "We're going to go take a closer look and see if there's a rainbow sheen."

It's a target-rich environment for Henderson, because more than 54,000 wells were planted in and off this coast — part of the 300,000 wells in the state. They're connected by thousands of miles of pipelines, all vulnerable to leaks.

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Atheist Sues After NJ Rejects Her License Plate

Atheist license plate deniedNew Jersey has a free-speech lawsuit on its hands after a woman's attempt to score an atheist license plate got rejected, reports NJ.com. Shannon Morgan says it was bad enough when she typed in 8THEIST on the state website and learned that it was deemed objectionable.

But when she typed in BAPTIST and was allowed to proceed, she decided to lawyer up. The state is showing a clear preference for "theistic beliefs over non-theistic ones," says her lawsuit.

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Iran says it watered down, converted over 200 kg of enriched uranium

Iranian foreign ministerIran said on Saturday it had completed watering down and converting more than 200 kilograms (440 lb) of enriched uranium under a deal reached in Geneva last November with world powers over its disputed nuclear program.

"Based on the agreement with the West, we were supposed to have half of our 200 kilogram stock of uranium diluted and the other half converted to uranium oxide," Iran's atomic chief, Ali Akbar Salehi, told the Arabic-language Al Alam television channel.

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Israeli vandals damage mosque in northern Israel

Vandals damage mosquePolice say vandals have damaged a mosque in northern Israel in an attack blamed on a fringe group of Jewish extremists.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld says the door of a mosque in the Arab town of Umm al-Fahm was damaged overnight and the house of worship was sprayed with anti-Arab graffiti.

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4 French journalists abducted in Syria freed, safe

French journalists freedTen months after their capture in Syria, four French journalists crossed the border into neighboring Turkey and reached freedom Saturday, though dozens more remain held in the country's chaotic civil war.

Edouard Elias, Didier Francois, Nicolas Henin and Pierre Torres - all said to be in good health - were freed over the weekend in unclear circumstances in what has become the world's most dangerous, and deadliest, conflict for journalists.

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Yemen drone strike kills at least 12

drone strikeAn air strike has killed at least nine alleged Al-Qaeda fighters in the central Yemeni province of al-Bayda, security officials said.

Tribal sources in the area said a drone had been circling the region for days before the early Saturday strike hit two cars that contained suspected fighters, and added that at least three civilians in a nearby car were also killed, Reuters reported.

Yemen's Defense Ministry website quoted a security source as saying more than nine suspected Al-Qaeda members were killed.

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