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First lady Michelle Obama praises civil rights movement – and tai chi – during China tour

<!– google_ad_section_start –> US first lady Michelle Obama promoted ethnic equality, the civil rights movement and religious freedom on the mainland yesterday, raising the sensitive issues on a tour meant to avoid politics. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Justice for Abused Afghan Women Still Elusive, U.N. Report Says

The report, released by the United Nations, said years of intensive efforts by Afghan and international rights advocates have done little to increase prosecutions.

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China provokes anger as it ‘restores’ Dalai Lama’s ancestral home

<!– google_ad_section_start –> The Chinese town where the Dalai Lama was born is undergoing huge redevelopment, and behind a mountain the exiled spiritual leader’s family home has received a makeover of its own, with a three-metre wall and security cameras installed. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

Continue reading China provokes anger as it ‘restores’ Dalai Lama’s ancestral home

China news round-up: China finances Kenya-Uganda railroad, memos target political dissent

<!– google_ad_section_start –> Tuesday’s summary of top stories in Chinese and foreign news on Chinese politics, society, the economy and foreign affairs. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

Continue reading China news round-up: China finances Kenya-Uganda railroad, memos target political dissent

Tibet win in Britain stiffens Beijing’s resolve with EU over Dalai Lama

<!– google_ad_section_start –> Emboldened by its successful efforts to get Britain to toe the line on Tibet, China is expected to increasingly use its economic heft to pressure European countries on its core national interests, analysts say. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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China vows to step up fight against Dalai Lama as shootings reported

<!– google_ad_section_start –> China’s top official in charge of religious groups and ethnic minorities vowed on Tuesday to step up the fight against exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, as a rights group reported police shootings of monks marking his birthday. The comments by Yu Zhengsheng, number four in the ruling Communist Party’s hierarchy, appear aimed at thwarting speculation that China’s new leadership could take a softer line on the Dalai Lama. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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The Man for the Job

Ignore the tabloid jokes about Spitzer’s self-immolation in a prostitution scandal. He’s a guy who can actually see through Wall Street’s bullsh–t, writes Dan Gross.

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Tibetans quietly mark Dalai Lama’s birthday in China

<!– google_ad_section_start –> The streets of Chabcha county in western Qinghai province were quiet on Saturday as Tibetan monks marked the Dalai Lama’s birthday in their homes, wary that any public celebration could endanger a tentative softening by Chinese authorities. Tibetans in China have always had to steer clear of public ceremonies revering their 78-year-old exiled spiritual leader who Beijing has denounced as a “wolf in monk’s robes”. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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US releases photos of ambassador Gary Locke’s Tibet visit

<!– google_ad_section_start –> US ambassador to China Gary Locke chatted with Buddhist monks, visited famous sites and mixed with locals on a rare trip to Tibet, photos released on Tuesday showed. The State Department announced that Locke was travelling in the Himalayan region from Tuesday to Friday last week. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Watching cautiously amid signs of shift towards Tibet

<!– google_ad_section_start –> After 120 self-immolations over the past four years, a series of events in Tibetan regions has sparked speculation that Beijing is rethinking its hard-line stance towards the ethnic minority. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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China denies changing policy on displaying images of Dalai Lama

<!– google_ad_section_start –> China denied changing its stance on exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama on Saturday, after reports said Beijing had relaxed its policies of publicly denouncing him and banning worship of his image. “Our policy towards the Dalai Lama is clear and consistent, and has not changed,” China’s state bureau of religious affairs said. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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‘Standing man’ inspires silent opposition in Turkey

<!– google_ad_section_start –> By lunchtime in the waterfront district of Besiktas in Istanbul, Ismail Orhan had been standing silently under a yellow parasol in the blistering heat for more than four hours. “We’ll be here for weeks, for months,” said the 25-year-old, as office workers used their lunch break to join him in a new wave of passive resistance to the authorities. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Sri Lanka monk attempts to self-immolate

<!– google_ad_section_start –> A Sri Lankan monk set himself on fire on Friday to protest the slaughter of cattle, in the country’s first attempt at self-immolation by a monk, police said. The monk doused himself with a flammable liquid and set himself ablaze near a temple in the central town of Kandy during an important Buddhist festival, police said. “Policemen near the temple doused the flames and rushed the monk to hospital,” police spokesman Buddhika Siriwardena said. “Just before setting himself alight, he shouted that his action was to protest the slaughter of cattle.” <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Far-right activist Dominique Venner, commits suicide in Notre Dame

<!– google_ad_section_start –> Police evacuated Paris’ Notre Dame cathedral yesterday after a well-known far-right former activist committed suicide by shooting himself through his mouth in front of its main altar, a police source said. Dominique Venner, 78, a historian known in France for his political essays, was carrying a letter but did not say anything before he shot himself dead in the mid-afternoon, the source said. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Self-Immolation in Nablus

Orly Halpern rounds up the news from Israel.

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Litvinenko inquest future in doubt

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The inquest into the death of ex-KGB spy Alexander Litvinenko could be replaced by a form of public inquiry to allow evidence about Russia’s alleged role in the killing to be heard in secret.

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‘More than 1.5m’ Syrian refugees

The UN’s refugee agency says that more than 1.5m people have fled the conflict in Syria, and warns the total is likely to be far higher.

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Police launch murder investigation after torso found on Beijing street

<!– google_ad_section_start –> A brutal murder case is gripping Beijing. On Thursday, a man’s headless, limbless body has been found in the Chinese capital, just one block south of the Tiananmen Square. The torso was found in the early morning hours of Thursday on the sidewalk at the intersection between Zhushi West Street and Meishi Street. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Shavuot and Self-Immolation

Shaul Magid reflects on how hatred of the ‘other’ is inseparable from hatred of self.

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Exiled Tibet PM Lobsang Sangay ‘not challenging’ China Communists

<!– google_ad_section_start –> The leader of Tibet’s exiled government said on Wednesday he would accept the Chinese Communist Party’s rule in the territory, assuring Beijing it faced no threat to its sovereignty if it eases its grip. Lobsang Sangay, who was elected in 2011 to a new position of prime minister in exile after the Dalai Lama gave up political duties, appealed to China for new talks on the grievances that have triggered a wave of self-immolations. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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America, Inc. at it’s Finest

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US iTunes, App Store, iBookstore, and Mac App Store
J&R Computer/Music World
Burberry
New July 2013