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Gender-bending fashion on Tokyo runway bang on trend

Toukyo - If gender bending fashion is suddenly all the rage in the West, think Pharrell Williams promoting Chanel's new unisex handbag, then nowhere has the look excelled more than in Tokyo.

New U.S. ambassador to Israel is pro-settler

Washington - The US Senate approved the appointment of David Friedman, president Donald Trump's former bankruptcy lawyer to be the United States' ambassador to Israel.

Pope heads to Milan hinterland to rally poor

Vatican City - Pope Francis visits Milan Saturday where he will meet families on a housing estate, nap in a prison and hold a mass for hundreds of thousands of believers in nearby Monza.

Stephen Hawking appears as hologram in Hong Kong

Hong Kong - Renowned physicist Stephen Hawking has spoken to a Hong Kong audience by hologram, showcasing the growing reach of a technology which is making inroads into politics, entertainment and business.

Climate disaster mitigation takes center-stage in Canada budget

On Wednesday Canada's Liberal government tabled the 2017 federal budget, earmarking $2.0 billion in spending to create a Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund.

Shiite Lebanese women wage painful custody battles

Birut - Every week, young divorcee Rita Choukeir looks forward to the three precious hours she gets with her young son in Lebanon, where child custody is awarded according to religious rulings.

Turkey vote a 'test' for Kurds says veteran Kurdish politician

Mardin - Jailed by the junta after Turkey's 1980 military coup and again after last year's failed putsch, veteran Kurdish politician Ahmet Turk still hopes for peace but fears the consequences of next month's referendum.

South Korea's sunken Sewol a step closer to reaching port

Susong - South Korea's sunken Sewol ferry has been successfully hauled onto a giant heavy lifting ship, officials said Saturday, a step towards returning the vessel to port.

Two months in, Trump suffers string of defeats

Washington - President Donald Trump suffered a bitter defeat in his first major legislative challenge as Republican lawmakers shot down his effort to repeal Obamacare. It was the latest in a string of major setbacks to have hit his two-month-old presidency.

Singaporean teen dissident granted US asylum

Singapore - A Singaporean teenager who was jailed twice after insulting the island's late leader Lee Kuan Yew and religious groups has been granted political asylum in the United States, his US lawyer said Saturday.

New York launches immigrant defense initiative

New York - New York state launched an immigrant legal defense initiative with more than $1 million in public and private funding in response to "overwhelming" demand for help from non-profit organizations.

Stem cell therapy helps some men with erectile dysfunction

Paris - Men unable to have an erection after prostate surgery enjoyed normal intercourse thanks to stem cell therapy, scientists are to report Saturday at a medical conference in London.

US to keep some special forces troops in Libya

US Marine General Thomas Waldhauser, head of the US Africa Command, told reporters that the US needs to retain a small special operations force in Libya indefinitely.

Israel ignores UN demand against settlements: diplomat

New York - Israel has ignored a United Nations resolution demanding it halt settlement building in the occupied Palestinian territory that was criticized by the Trump administration, the world body's Middle East envoy said Friday.

Gunmen kill Hamas official in Gaza

Gaza - Gunmen in the Gaza Strip on Friday shot dead a Hamas official who was freed by Israel in a 2011 prisoner swap, the interior ministry in the Palestinian enclave said.

Shia LaBeouf anti-Trump art project shut down after threats

New York - An anti-Trump art project by actor Shia LaBeouf was shut down for a fourth time on Friday a day after it opened in its latest location, the British city of Liverpool.

Maduro asks for UN help on Venezuela medicine shortage

Caracas - President Nicolas Maduro said Friday he had asked the United Nations to help address severe shortages of medicine in Venezuela, a rare acknowledgement of the crisis-hit country's desperate situation.

Panama creates anti-narco force as drug seizures rise

Panama - Panama's president on Friday presented a new elite counternarcotics police unit to combat smuggling of increased cocaine production in neighboring Colombia.The Eagle force, as it is called, consists of 300 officers with access to intelligence.

UN peacekeeping chief defends cost of missions

New York - United Nations peacekeeping missions, under threat from budget cuts if Washington's promise to slash its UN spending goes ahead, are already costing as little as possible, a UN official said Friday.

US Physicians — Health problems rising due to climate change

A group of physicians in medical societies representing over half of the nation’s doctors released a report this month warning that climate change is already having a negative impact on people's health.
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