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Cuba's Small Muslim Community to Mark End of Ramadan

They speak little Arabic and don't have a real mosque, but Cuba's small Muslim community practices the faith and will quietly mark the end of Ramadan as best they can.

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Saudi-Funded Mosque Opens in Nice after Long Struggle

A Saudi-funded mosque in Nice opened its doors for the first time Saturday, after a 15-year tussle with the local town hall.

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Benedict to Tell All about Troubled Time as Pope

Retired pope Benedict XVI is to lift the lid in a new book on his troubled time at the head of the Catholic Church, publishers announced Friday.

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Rights Group Hails 'Historic' UN Gay, Gender Rights Post

Human Rights Watch on Friday hailed the UN's "historic" decision to create a new post tasked with fighting discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

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Hajj Pilgrims to Get e-Bracelets for Safety

Muslim pilgrims joining this year's hajj in Saudi Arabia will have to wear an electronic safety bracelet, newspapers reported Friday, after more than 2,000 died in a stampede last year.

The high-tech safety measure will help authorities provide care "and identify people", the Arab News and Saudi Gazette reported.

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Lagos Shuts Churches, Mosques over Noise

Authorities in Nigeria's commercial hub of Lagos have shut down dozens of churches, mosques and hotels in a bid cut noise pollution, officials said Thursday.

The sprawling city of some 20 million people is notorious for heavy traffic jams and the deafening noise of churches and mosques that use horns and loudspeakers to spread their message.

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US Military Lifts Ban on Transgender Personnel

Transgender personnel will no longer be barred from serving openly in the US military, the Pentagon announced Thursday -- a major milestone that immediately attracted criticism.

Lifting the ban on transgender service members is "the right thing to do, and it's another step in ensuring that we continue to recruit and retain the most qualified people," Defense Secretary Ashton Carter told reporters.

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France's Lyon Diocese Sacks Four Priests for Sex Abuse

Four priests of the Catholic diocese of Lyon in eastern France have been relieved of their duties for sexual abuse, a diocesan source said Thursday.

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Spain's Animal Rights Party Wins Record Votes in election

An animal rights party in Spain won a record number of votes in weekend elections in a country where opposition to bullfighting is more and more vocal.

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U.S. Supreme Court Hands Major Victory to Abortion Rights Movement

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday struck down a Texas law placing a raft of restrictions on abortion clinics, handing a major victory to the "pro-choice" camp in the country's most important abortion case in a generation.

In a case with far-reaching implications for millions of women across the United States, the court ruled 5-3 to strike down measures which activists say have forced more than half of Texas's abortion clinics to close.

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