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French rail staff stage ‘Black Tuesday’ protests against overhaul

National and international services hit on first day of rolling walkouts over Macron proposals French rail workers have launched three months of rolling train strikes in what threatens to become the largest and most chaotic industrial action against Emmanuel Macrons drive to overhaul state transport and liberalise the economy. Called Black Tuesday in the media, the opening day of train strikes was expected to cause disruption for Frances 4.5 million rail passengers around 33% of all train staff and more than 75% of drivers walked out. Only one regional train…

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Atheists who bring logic to the Easter story are missing the point | Julian Baggini

Having faith is a complex business. To assume that religious people are either crazy or stupid is lazy, says philosopher Julian Baggini Many years ago, I had to recount the life of Jesus to a young Taiwanese student who knew nothing about Christianity. As I told him about the virgin birth, the miracles, crucifixion and resurrection, he responded with incredulous laughter. Most nonbelievers in traditionally Christian cultures would show a bit more respect. But inside, our reaction is often pretty much the same: how can people really believe this stuff?…

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Stormy Daniels: I was told to ‘leave Trump alone’ in parking lot threat

Adult film actor says man told her in 2011: Thats a beautiful little girl. Itd be a shame if something happened to her mom Stormy Daniels, the adult film star who alleges she had sex with Donald Trump in 2006, claimed on Sunday night that she was threatened with physical violence after she first attempted to go public with the story by a man who told her: Leave Trump alone. Speaking to Anderson Cooper in a highly-anticipated broadcast on CBSs news magazine, 60 Minutes, Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie…

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Vladimir Putin wins Russian election with 74% of vote

Result expected to be declared legitimate despite some irregularities extending Putins time in office to nearly a quarter of a century Vladimir Putin cruised to victory in Sundays presidential elections in a result that was never in question. His fourth term as president will extend until 2024, making him the first Kremlin leader to serve two decades in power since Josef Stalin. With results still coming in, Putin looked set to exceed expectations by clinching more than 73% of the vote. Turnout, which was seen as a measure of the…

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British woman killed fighting Turkish forces in Afrin

Anna Campbell believed to be the first British woman to die alongside Kurdish forces in Syria A British woman fighting alongside Kurdish forces in Afrin, northern Syria, has been killed, her Kurdish commanders have said. Anna Campbell, from Lewes, East Sussex, was volunteering with the US-backed Kurdish Womens Protection Units (YPJ) the all-female affiliate army of the Peoples Protection Units (YPG) in the besieged city of Afrin when the convoy she was travelling in was struck by a Turkish missile on 16 March. Sources say the 26-year-old initially travelled to…

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Revealed: 50 million Facebook profiles harvested for Cambridge Analytica in major data breach

Whistleblower describes how firm linked to former Trump adviser Steve Bannon compiled user data to target American voters How Cambridge Analyticas algorithms turned likes into a political tool The data analytics firm that worked with Donald Trumps election team and the winning Brexit campaign harvested millions of Facebook profiles of US voters, in one of the tech giants biggest ever data breaches, and used them to build a powerful software program to predict and influence choices at the ballot box. A whistleblower has revealed to the Observer how Cambridge Analytica…

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Steve Bannon tells French far-right ‘history is on our side’

Former Trump adviser addresses Front National as Marine Le Pen attempts to relaunch her party Donald Trumps former adviser Steve Bannon has told Frances far-right Front National that, history is on our side and will bring us victory in an address to the partys conference. Announced as a surprise speaker at the event, Bannon said: You are part of a movement that is bigger than that in Italy, bigger than in Poland, bigger than in Hungary. As Bannon entered the hall to cheers and applause, the US flag was unfurled…

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Artist Nan Goldin stages opioids protest in Metropolitan Museum Sackler Wing

New York Big Pharma demonstration sees activists dump specially made bottles in moat around Egyptian Temple of Dendur The artist Nan Goldin and around 100 fellow demonstrators threw pill bottles into the moat surrounding an ancient Egyptian temple at the Metropolitan Museum in New York on Saturday, to protest sponsorship by the family that owns one of the largest makers of opioids. The pill bottles had been labeled by the protesters to say prescribed to you by the Sackler Family. The Sackler family Temple of Dendur stands. Goldin, who recently…

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Canadian doctors: cancel our pay rise and spend money elsewhere

Doctors in Quebec say negotiated pay rises are shocking given draconian cuts to other parts of provinces healthcare system Nearly 800 doctors and medical residents in the Canadian province of Quebec have signed a letter protesting against plans to raise their pay, arguing that the funds would be better spent on other areas of the provinces beleaguered healthcare system. We, Quebec doctors, are asking that the salary increases granted to physicians be cancelled and that the resources of the system be better distributed for the good of healthcare workers, Mdecins…

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Death of investigative journalist sparks mass protests in Slovakia

Jn Kuciak and his fiancee were killed after he wrote an article linking politicians to the mafia Tens of thousands of Slovaks have rallied to demand the resignation of prime minister Robert Ficos government following the murder of a journalist that has shocked the central European nation and stoked anger over sleaze in public life. Jn Kuciak and his fiancee, Martina Kunrov, both 27, were found shot dead at their home near Bratislava on 25 February. Police have said Kuciaks death was most likely related to an investigation of his…

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Mueller charges 13 Russians with interfering in US election to help Trump

DoJ indictment alleges Russian operatives communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump campaign Mueller charges 13 Russians with interfering in US election to help Trump DoJ indictment alleges Russian operatives communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump campaign Marc Bennetts in Moscow First published on Fri 16 Feb 2018 13.08EST Share via Email Share on LinkedIn Share on WhatsApp Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election. Photograph: Andrew Harnik/AP Thirteen Russians have been criminally charged for interfering in the 2016 US election to…

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Offended by Koreans eating dog? I trust youve never had a bacon butty | Chas Newkey-Burden

Frightened animals being caged, killed and turned into food wed never dream of such evils in the western world, writes journalist and author Chas Newkey-Burden The meat industry Offended by Koreans eating dog? I trust youve never had a bacon butty Chas Newkey-Burden Frightened animals being caged, killed and turned into food wed never dream of such evils in the west would we? @AllThatChas Last modified on Thu 15 Feb 2018 09.20EST Share via Email Share on LinkedIn Share on WhatsApp Labradors, beagles and chihuahuas are eaten in South Korea.…

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Safe, happy and free: does Finland have all the answers?

In the first of our new series, The Upside, we look at how the country went from famine to topping nearly every global social ranking The Upside Finlands 10 great innovations Supported by About this content @jonhenley Last modified on Mon 12 Feb 2018 09.28EST Share via Email Share on LinkedIn Share on WhatsApp the most stable, the safest and the best-governed country in the world. It was also the third wealthiest, the third least corrupt, the second most socially progressive and the third most socially just. Finlands judicial system…

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Martin Scorsese teams up with British writer for epic take on the Romans

British writer Michael Hirst joins forces with the mega-filmmaker to tell story of the Caesars Martin Scorsese teams up with British writer for epic take on the Romans US director Martin Scorsese and British writer Michael Hirst will focus on youth and vitality of ancient Romes rulers Dalya Alberge Last modified on Sun 11 Feb 2018 12.24EST Share via Email Share on LinkedIn Share on WhatsApp Katheryn Winnick in Vikings. The series writer, Michael Hirst, will join forces with Martin Scorsese for a TV drama about the Caesars. Photograph: MGM/Allstar…

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Malaysian newspaper publishes ‘how to spot a gay’ checklist

Sinar Harian says LGBT people identifiable by beards, branded clothes and going to gym Malaysian newspaper publishes ‘how to spot a gay’ checklist Sinar Harian says LGBT people identifiable by beards, branded clothes and going to gym Hannah Ellis-Petersen South-east Asia correspondent Last modified on Mon 12 Feb 2018 09.14EST Share via Email Share on LinkedIn Share on WhatsApp LGBT rights activists have ridiculed the Sinar Harian article. Photograph: Manan Vatsyayana/AFP/Getty Images A leading Malaysian newspaper has published a list of pointers for identifying potential gay and lesbian people, drawing…

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