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Friday, May 22nd

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It’s Time for America to Pardon Martha Stewart

Martha StewartOn Wednesday, five of the largest banks in the world agreed to pay a combined $5.6 billion to the U.S. Treasury and then pleaded guilty to a series of criminal charges that they had operated for years as a secret cabal to manipulate currency exchange rates, in many cases directly ripping off clients in the process.

The new felons are J.P. Morgan Chase (the largest bank in the U.S. by assets), Citigroup (the third largest by assets), Barclays (the largest U.K. bank), UBS (the largest bank in Switzerland) and the Royal Bank of Scotland (a bank in Scotland).

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Israel court orders Palestinian woman lawmaker freed on bail

Khalida JarrarAn Israeli military court has ruled that Palestinian legislator Khalida Jarrar should be released on bail, but has ordered her held for at least three more days while the prosecutor decides whether to appeal.

Jarrar, 52, was seized from her West Bank home in pre-dawn army raid on April 2. She has been charged with membership in a small leftist PLO faction banned by Israel and with inciting violence.

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Amnesty International warns over torture practice in Morocco

Amnesty InternationalMoroccan authorities still use torture widely despite a ban on the practice, the Amnesty International rights group said in a report Tuesday documenting the abuse.

Despite the ban and statements against torture by King Mohammed VI, law enforcement authorities still abuse protesters, rape detainees with objects and beat confessions out of suspects, it said, detailing 173 cases of abuse and torture since 2010.

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Asia selected China India SE Asia migrants 'killed in fight for food' on boat

Migrants die over food Migrants rescued from a sinking boat off Indonesia have told the BBC that about 100 people died after a fight broke out over the last remaining food.

Survivors told of horrific conditions. Three men separately said people were stabbed, hanged or thrown overboard.

The 700 rescued migrants from Myanmar and Bangladesh are being processed by the Indonesian authorities.

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Israel continues to criminalize marking Nakba Day

Nakba Day illegal in IsraelEach year on May 15, Palestinians across the world commemorate the Nakba (catastrophe), or the 1948 establishment of Israel that led to hundreds of thousands of Palestinians being displaced from their homeland.

The estimated 1.7 million Palestinians who carry Israeli citizenship and live in villages, towns and cities across the country are no exception. Each year, protests, marches, lectures and other events to mourn their ancestors' dispossession are held in Palestinian communities across Israel.

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Poland makes payout to alleged victims of CIA renditions

rendition site, PolandPoland is paying a quarter of a million dollars to two terror suspects allegedly tortured by the CIA in a secret facility in this country — prompting outrage among many here who feel they are being punished for American wrongdoing.

Europe's top human rights court imposed the penalty against Poland, setting a Saturday deadline.

It irks many in Poland that their country is facing legal repercussions for the secret rendition and detention program which the CIA operated under then-President George W. Bush in several countries across the world after the 9/11 attacks.

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Israeli demolition plan for Bedouin village sparks outcry

Israeli demolition of Bedouin villagesIsraelis are once again locked in a bitter settlement dispute with their Arab neighbors, but this time the conflict is not unfolding in the West Bank, but in Israel's southern desert.

After years of legal battles, Israel's Supreme Court last week cleared the way for the government to uproot the nearly 60-year-old Bedouin Arab village of Umm al-Hiran, a dusty hill of ramshackle dwellings without proper electricity or water hookups, and in its place build "Hiran," a new community seemingly catering to Jews that is expected to feature a hotel and country club.

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