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Brutal Death of Bull in Festival Angers Colombians

The brutal killing of a bull in a popular festival in a town in northern Colombia has sparked indignation and calls for a public debate on traditions involving animal cruelty.

Animal rights activists and even some government officials are demanding legal action after a video appeared in Colombia showing dozens of people in Turbaco chasing the bull and killing it with machetes, rocks, knives and kicks. The killing took place during a "corraleja," or amateur bullfighting event held in some towns in the South American country.

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French Court Blocks Renovation of Iconic Paris Building

A French appeals court on Monday blocked the renovation of the iconic former Parisian department store La Samaritaine, saying its modern makeover would clash with its historic surroundings.

Perched on the right bank of the Seine, the hulking store occupies some of the choicest Parisian real estate but was shut down in 2005 when it ran afoul of health and safety regulations.

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U.S. Museum Puts Asian Art Treasures Online

Artistic treasures from Asia's past have found a place online after the Freer and Sackler galleries in Washington released its entire 40,000-piece collection on the Internet.

The museum is the first in the Smithsonian network to digitize and release its entire collection, which also includes a large number of works by the American painter James Whistler.

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India Elects First Transgender Mayor

A low-caste transgender in central India has become the country's first to win civic polls and be declared mayor.

Madhu Bai Kinnar won the municipal election in Raigarh in the central state of Chhattisgarh Sunday, beating her rival from Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) by more than 4,500 votes, according to the state election commission. 

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Tomb of Previously Unknown Pharaonic Queen Found in Egypt

Czech archaeologists have unearthed the tomb of a previously unknown queen believed to have been the wife of Pharaoh Neferefre who ruled 4,500 years ago, officials in Egypt said Sunday.

The tomb was discovered in Abu Sir, an Old Kingdom necropolis southwest of Cairo where there are several pyramids dedicated to pharaohs of the Fifth Dynasty, including Neferefre.

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Egypt Defense Lawyers Challenge Police in Hammam Case

Defense lawyers for 26 Egyptians accused of "debauchery" at a Cairo bathhouse challenged police procedures in the case on Sunday.

The men were arrested on December 7 in a night raid on a hammam in the Azbakeya district of the capital.

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Sartre's 'Non to Nobel Prize Came Too Late'

A letter sent by French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre in 1964 declining the Nobel Prize for Literature came too late to avert one of the biggest debacles in its history, Swedish media reported Saturday.

Sartre's letter arrived nearly a month after he had been picked as the top choice by the Nobel Committee, the daily Svenska Dagbladet reported, based on archival material made available at the end of a customary 50-year period of secrecy.

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Turkey Gives Go-ahead for First New Church in 90 Years

Turkey's Islamic-rooted government has authorized the building of the first church in the country in nearly a century, officials said Saturday.

The church is for the tiny Syriac community in Turkey and will be built in the Istanbul suburb of Yesilkoy on the shores of the Sea of Marmara, which already has Greek Orthodox, Armenian and Catholic churches.

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California Issues Driver Licenses for Illegal Immigrants

California began issuing driver's licenses Friday to people who are in the country illegally, becoming the 10th state in the nation to do so.

Thanks to a 2013 law approved by Governor Jerry Brown, anyone who can show they are California residents -- such as through bills or rental agreements -- can now apply for a license, regardless of immigration status.

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Turkish Minister Slammed over 'Career of Motherhood' Comment

Turkey's Health Minister Mehmet Muezzinoglu on Friday faced a barrage of criticism on social media after suggesting that women should prioritize the "career" of motherhood before anything else. 

"Women of the world have the career of motherhood that no one else can experience," Turkish media quoted Muezzinoglu as saying on Thursday at a hospital where he welcomed the first baby born in Istanbul on New Year's Day.

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