Political News from Yahoo

Iran executes man despite international pressure

Iran on Sunday hanged a man said to be affiliated to an exiled opposition group, state media reported, despite international pressure on the Islamic republic to halt the execution. According to the official IRNA news agency, Gholamreza Khosravi Savadjani was convicted of "waging war against God" (moharebeh) by helping the People's Mujahedeen Organisation of Iran (PMOI). The announcement of the hanging came just hours after Amnesty International said Khosravi Savadjani's trial in 2010 had been unfair. Khosravi Savadjani was until then being held in solitary confinement at Evin Prison in the capital.


US-Taliban prisoner exchange will help peace: Afghan official

The release of five senior Taliban detainees from Guantanamo Bay in exchange for American soldier Bowe Bergdahl bodes well for the resumption of peace talks, a senior member of Afghanistan's High Peace Council said Sunday. But despite the Taliban's "great happiness" over the prisoners' release, a spokesman for the militant group cautioned the exchange was "not political". The five prisoners were named as Mohammad Fazl, Norullah Noori, Mohammed Nabi, Khairullah Khairkhwa and Abdul Haq Wasiq, all influential former officials of the Taliban regime driven out of power in the US-led invasion of Afghanistan after the 9/11 attacks.


Israel denies future Palestinian ministers West Bank entry

Israel has denied three future Palestinian ministers from the Gaza Strip entry to the West Bank ahead of the unveiling of a new unity government, public radio said on Sunday. The head of Israel's military administration in the Palestinian territories, Major General Yoav Mordechai, had informed the Palestinians that the three would not be permitted to cross from Gaza to the West Bank, the radio said. Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas said on Saturday that the line-up of a unity government would be announced Monday, following a delay over who would head the foreign ministry. He also said Israel had informed the Palestinians that it would "boycott the government".


In Europe, Obama gets second chance to explain his Russia policy

By Roberta Rampton WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama heads to Warsaw, Brussels, Paris and Normandy this week where he is expected to elaborate on the U.S. commitment to counter Russian moves against Ukraine and reassure nervous allies the United States has their backs. In Poland, Ukraine's western neighbor, Obama meets with Eastern European leaders - including Ukraine's president-elect, Petro Poroshenko, on Wednesday - and is expected to address criticism he has not done enough to push back against Moscow after it annexed Crimea in March.


White House turns blind eye on Democrats who oppose climate rules

By Jeff Mason WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Democrats in Republican-leaning states have a simple strategy for dealing with President Barack Obama's upcoming power plant restrictions before the mid-term elections: Fight them, with the White House's blessing. The new rules, popular with the Democratic Party's base, are one of Obama's highest domestic priorities for his second term. But they are complicating the lives of Democrats in coal and oil-rich states such as West Virginia, Louisiana and Alaska, where candidates are piling on the president and the Environmental Protection Agency for proposing restrictions that could cost jobs locally. So, the White House is turning a blind eye to attacks from within the party, despite the importance of the regulations to Obama's agenda and post-presidential legacy.


Hands Off Those Gun Laws, Judges

The NRA isn’t just blocking new gun laws—it’s going after that elected representatives have already passed. Judges are being tempted to intervene, but they should stay as far away as possible.


Bibi and the Pope’s Awkward Jesus Moment

A tense exchange between the Israeli prime minister and the pope over Jesus’ language points to the complexity of the Middle East’s history—and suggests a way toward understanding.


Newport’s Secret Norman Rockwells

Behind the hedges in Newport, a treasure trove from America’s golden age of illustrators, from N.C. Wyeth to the creator of Santa Claus as we know him.


The Week in Viral Videos

From a goat riding a guy riding a bike to a chubby Korean baby dance, watch our countdown of this week’s buzziest videos.


The Gamma-Ray Burst That Wasn’t

The combination of a software glitch and bad luck convinced astronomers that a one-in-a-million burst of light occurred in our closest galaxy this week. What the slip-up teaches us about the science of rare events.


The Realistic Life of Toni Collette

Somewhere between her debut and making faces on stage in her Broadway return ‘The Realistic Joneses,’ Toni Collette learned to stop worrying and love acting.


Men Must Fight Domestic Violence

Guys, face it: We are the problem here. And of all us should be doing something to stop violence against women.


Mecca For Artichoke Lovers

The farm-to-table trend may be new, but Duarte’s has been serving local produce for over 120 years. The James Beard award-winning tavern is all about the area's star crop: artichokes.


Keep Harvey Milk Off Our Mail!

From rejecting mail with a Harvey Milk stamp to arguing that Maya Angelou was only famous because she was black, the best moments in crazy from the past week.


Creationist Tall Tales on Human Tails

Human tails are a genetic accident—and a big problem for the faux-scientific creationism known as ‘intelligent design.’ But that won’t stop their wild tales.


From Hakuna Matata to Maleficent

It’s been over 20 years since Linda Woolverton wrote 'Beauty and the Beast.' With ‘Maleficent,’ she’s ditching the Disney princess for something a bit more complicated: the villain.


Despite dustup, NY Gov Cuomo gets liberal backing

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo beat back a challenge from the left Saturday, narrowly winning the nomination of the Working Families Party with a promise to support liberal priorities while taking on state senators who have blocked them.


Tanzania's poor suffer from trade tax theft

Tanzania's mining revenues are touted as a key way to reduce reliance on foreign aid and pull people out of poverty, but experts argue companies are swindling the government out of at least $248 million a year. The East African nation topped the worst of a list of nations across the continent examined by the watchdog group Global Financial Integrity (GFI), with nearly $19 billion (14 billion euros) in illicit flows over the past decade, the equivalent to over seven percent of the country's total government revenue. There are a lot of illegal reasons to do this, including tax evasion and money laundering.


Ethnic minorities in focus in election race

GRAYS (United Kingdom) (AFP) - Feeling "surrounded" by ethnic minorities, retired factory worker Peter Harvey voted for anti-immigration UK Independence Party (UKIP) in last month's European and local polls and plans to do so again in next year's national election. "I'm the only white British person in my area," the 66-year-old said, explaining his voting preference in Grays, a town in southeast England, where UKIP did particularly well amid spectacular gains across the country. Ostensibly fuelled by antipathy to immigration and Europe, UKIP's rise has nonetheless helped bring the issue of race to the fore ahead of the May 2015 general election. At the same time, there is a growing realisation of the importance of the ethnic minority vote, as studies show the numbers of black and Asian Britons growing at a faster rate than whites.


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