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Rights Group Calls on Lebanon to Abolish Anti-LGBT Law

Human Rights Watch is urging Lebanon to abolish a law criminalizing homosexuality after the top military prosecutor declined to prosecute a "sodomy" case.

The rights group called the decision, which was publicized Monday, a "positive development."

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Outcry over Harry Potter Book Burning by Priests in Poland

The burning of Harry Potter "magic" books by priests in Poland triggered a wave of protest in the majority Catholic country on Tuesday with critics making comparisons with totalitarian regimes and the Inquisition.

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France Urges Brunei to Drop Stoning Law for Adultery, Gay Sex

France on Tuesday called on Brunei to scrap a law due to take effect this week that would make adultery or gay sex punishable to death by stoning, joining celebrities who have spoken out against the legislation.

The new penal code under strict Sharia law, to come into force in the tiny southeast Asian sultanate on Wednesday, has already drawn fierce criticism from rights groups and the United Nations.

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Downtown Cairo Battles to Keep Cosmopolitan Heritage Alive

Cairo's downtown, with its old European-designed buildings, is wrestling to preserve its cultural heritage as Egypt readies a new capital in the desert.

A stroll through the district takes pedestrians past buildings that meld Islamic and European motifs, neo-classical columns and ornate decorations.

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Catholic Priests Burn Harry Potter Books in Poland

Catholic priests in Poland burned books they say are sacrilegious this weekend, including tomes from British author J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series of fantasy novels.

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UN Slams 'Inhuman' Brunei Law on Stoning for Adultery

The United Nations decried Monday new "cruel and inhuman" laws set to take effect in Brunei this week imposing death by stoning for gay sex and adultery, and amputations for theft.

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Pope in Morocco Warns Catholics Off Converting Others

Pope Francis on Sunday warned Catholics in Morocco against trying to convert others to boost their small numbers, during a rare visit by a pontiff to the North African country.

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Morocco Institute Trains Imams to Counter Extremism

With its watchwords of dialogue and coexistence, the Mohammed VI Institute that trains Muslim prayer leaders to serve in Morocco and abroad was Saturday one of the first stops on Pope Francis's visit to the kingdom.

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French Artist JR Promises Latest Work Will Reveal Louvre Pyramid's 'Secret'

French artist JR on Friday put the final touches to a huge collage in the courtyard of the Louvre, his latest eye-popping-project unveiled to mark the 30th birthday of the Louvre's glass pyramid.

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Erdogan Says Time Has Come for Hagia Sophia to Be a Mosque

President Recep Taayyip Erdogan said Wednesday it was time to rename Istanbul's landmark Hagia Sophia as a mosque, saying that it had been a "very big mistake" to convert it into a museum. 

"Hagia Sophia will not be called a museum. It will be taken out of that status. We will call Hagia Sophia a mosque," Erdogan told A Haber television during an interview.

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