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Friday, Feb 27th

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'Jihadi John' from Islamic State beheading videos unmasked as Londoner

Jihad JohnInvestigators believe that the "Jihadi John" masked fighter who fronted Islamic State beheading videos is a British man named Mohammed Emwazi, two U.S. government sources said on Thursday.

He was born in Kuwait and comes from a prosperous family in London, where he grew up and graduated with a computer programming degree, according to the Washington Post.

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Lawmaker asks if swallowed camera be used for female exam

Vito BarbiereAn Idaho lawmaker received a brief lesson on female anatomy after asking if a woman can swallow a small camera for doctors to conduct a remote gynecological exam.

The question Monday from Republican state Rep. Vito Barbieri came as the House State Affairs Committee heard nearly three hours of testimony on a bill that would ban doctors from prescribing abortion-inducing medication through telemedicine.

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Washington DC legalizes recreational marijuana

Wasington DC legalizes potRecreational marijuana use is legal in the nation’s capital as of Thursday, the result of a measure, approved by voters in November, that permits the possession of a small amount of pot for home use by adults over 21 in Washington, D.C.

Mayor Muriel Bowser this week announced the city's plans to move forward with the initiative, despite an attempt by Congress in December to block it.

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Wisconsin Senate passes anti-union legislation amid mass protests

Wisconsin passes anti union billThe Wisconsin state Senate on Wednesday night narrowly approved a proposal to make Wisconsin the 25th right-to-work state in the nation, as thousands of demonstrators protested the measure at the state capitol.

The Republican-led state Senate was expected to approve the bill, which would prohibit requiring private sector workers to join or financially support unions, and move it to the state Assembly, where Republicans also hold a majority.

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UN: Third of Afghan Detainees Report Torture, Ill Treatment

Afghan detainees claim tortureMore than one in three Afghans detained on conflict-related allegations say they were tortured or mistreated, according to a U.N. report released Wednesday based on interviews with nearly 800 detainees.

The detainees reported 16 torture methods, including beatings, suspension from walls or ceilings, electric shocks and near-asphyxiation. Some detainees said their genitals were twisted with a wrench-like device while others reported being kept in extremely hot or cold conditions and being denied food and water.

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Jamaica Decriminalizes Small Amounts of Pot

Jamaica decriminalizes potMarijuana has been pervasive but illegal in Jamaica for decades, consumed as a medicinal herb, puffed as a sacrament by Rastafarians and sung about in the island's famed reggae music.

After many years of dialogue about the culturally entrenched drug, and emboldened by changes to drug laws in U.S. states, Jamaica's Parliament on Tuesday night gave final legislative approval to an act decriminalizing small amounts of pot and establishing a licensing agency to regulate a lawful medical marijuana industry.

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'2014 Was A Catastrophic Year,' Amnesty International Says

Human RightsGovernments "must stop pretending the protection of civilians is beyond their power," Amnesty International says in its human rights report for 2014. The group faults the U.S. on a range of issues, from the use of excessive force by police to rights abuses in the name of fighting terrorism.

"Governments pay lip service to the importance of protecting civilians," Amnesty says. "And yet the world's politicians have miserably failed to protect those in greatest need."

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Media Matters: O'Reilly lied about Florida suicide

Bill O'ReillyBill O'Reilly has repeatedly claimed he personally "heard" a shotgun blast that killed a figure in the investigation into President John F. Kennedy's assassination while reporting for a Dallas television station in 1977. O'Reilly's claim is implausible and contradicted by his former newsroom colleagues who denied the tale in interviews with Media Matters. A police report, contemporaneous reporting, and a congressional investigator who was probing Kennedy's death further undermine O'Reilly's story.

George de Mohrenschildt was a Russian emigre who befriended Kennedy assassin Lee Harvey Oswald and testified before the Warren Commission investigating the Kennedy assassination. On March 29, 1977, the same day he was contacted by the House Select Committee on Assassinations, he committed suicide at his daughter's home in Florida. At the time, O'Reilly was a reporter for Dallas' WFAA-TV who regularly reported on stories related to the Kennedy assassination.

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Abercrombie & Fitch case: justices set to side with Muslim woman over headscarf

head scarf case at SCAbercrombie & Fitch’s rejection of a Muslim job applicant for wearing a headscarf was sharply criticised in the US supreme court on Wednesday, as even conservative justices ridiculed the fashion chain’s “mythical preppy” rules on how employees can dress.

In a landmark religious discrimination case, brought by Oklahoma shop worker Samantha Elauf, lawyers for the store argued it need not have taken her religion into account when applying a rule against headwear because managers only guessed she was Muslim.

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