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Friday, Dec 19th

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Italian man seriously wounded at West Bank protest

Italian man shot on west bankAn Italian man marching in support of Palestinians in the northern West Bank on Friday was shot and seriously wounded by Israeli forces, a Palestinian hospital official said.

Ramallah Hospital director Ahmad Bitawi says 30-year-old Patrick Corsi was shot during a peaceful protest Friday in the village of Kufr Qadom, near Nablus. He described Corsi's condition as stable.

Village resident Khaldon Ishtawi said Israeli soldiers opened fire without provocation on about 400 protesters from a distance of about 40 meters (130 feet) and shot Corsi in the chest.

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Suicide bomber kills five in attack on British embassy car in Kabul

Suicide bomber attacks British Embassy vehicleA suicide bomber attacked a British embassy vehicle in the Afghan capital on Thursday, killing five people including one Briton, officials said.

The blast in the east of Kabul wounded 33 people, including many bystanders, the latest in a wave of bombings to hit the city as the majority of foreign combat troops prepare to withdraw from the country by the end of the year.

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European Parliament votes to break up Google

GoogleThe European Parliament, in a symbolic and non-binding vote Thursday, approved a resolution calling for the breakup of Google Inc. into separate companies.

The vote, 384-174 with 56 abstentions, part of a larger resolution and carrying no legal power, represents resentment over Google's power in Europe. The California-based Internet search company has about a 90 percent market share in Europe, a higher percentage than in the United States, and is suspected of favoring its own advertisers and services when presenting search results.

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Ship with 700 migrants safely towed to Greek coast

700 migrants towed to greeceA smuggling ship carrying more than 700 men, women and children that broke down in gale-force winds while trying to reach Europe was towed Thursday to the Greek island of Crete.

The 77-meter (250-foot) cargo ship appeared off the coastal town of Ierapetra around sunrise Thursday, still tethered to the Greek navy frigate that has been towing it for a day and a half.

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China Drafts First National Law Against Domestic Violence

China domestic anti domestic violence lawChina has drafted its first national law against domestic violence, a move hailed by campaigners as a major step forward.

The new bill defines domestic violence for the first time and offers clear guidance on restraining orders. Activists have welcomed the move but say the law does not go far enough.

Nearly 40% of Chinese women who are married or in a relationship have suffered abuse, according to state media.

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Israeli president opposes proposed law to give ‘national rights’ to Jews only

RivlinIsrael’s president, Reuven Rivlin, has voiced his strong opposition to a controversial proposed new law that would define “national rights” in Israel as reserved for Jews only.

The “Jewish nation-state” bill would recognise Israel’s Jewish character, institutionalise Jewish law as an inspiration for legislation and possibly de-list Arabic as a second official language. It is being promoted vigorously by the prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, and was approved by the Israeli cabinet on Sunday, but has attracted fierce criticism from opponents inside Israel as well as from the US and the EU.

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Four polio vaccinators shot dead in SW Pakistan

POlio workers killedGunmen opened fire on a team of polio vaccinators in Pakistan's restive southwest on Wednesday, killing four of them and forcing authorities to halt an immunisation drive, officials said.

The incident happened on the eastern outskirts of Quetta, the capital of oil and gas rich Baluchistan province.

"A team of seven polio workers was getting ready to launch the fourth and final day of the campaign when two men riding a motorbike opened fire on their vehicle," provincial home secretary Akbar Durrani told AFP.

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