A controversial plan to make women wearing the burqa or niqab sit in separate glassed public enclosures at Australia's Parliament House due to security concerns was abandoned Monday after an outcry.
The backdown followed a decision on October 2 by Speaker Bronwyn Bishop and Senate President Stephen Parry to seat people wearing face coverings in areas normally reserved for noisy school children while visiting parliament.Full Story
A series of acid attacks on women in the historic Iranian city of Isfahan has raised fears and prompted rumors that the victims were targeted for not being properly veiled.
Police have declined to comment on a motive but suspects have been arrested and an investigation is ongoing, General Hossein Ashtari was quoted as saying by the official IRNA news agency.Full Story
Pope Paul VI, who banned contraception but presided over Vatican reforms in the 1960s, moved one step away from sainthood on Sunday as Pope Francis beatified him.
The beatification mass took place in a sun-drenched St Peter's Square, with a red tapestry bearing an image of Paul VI smiling with open arms unfurled from the basilica.Full Story
An oil painting attributed to 17th-century Spanish master Diego Velazquez, found languishing in a back room of Yale University, has been returned to Spain for an exhibition in Valazquez's hometown Seville.
The large painting, "The Education of the Virgin Mary", has been on show since Wednesday at the Santa Clara arts centre as part of a show of the painter's early works made when he still lived in the southern Spanish city.Full Story
The US government announced Friday it would recognize same-sex marriages in seven additional states, after the Supreme Court declined to take up the debate.
A total of 26 of the 50 US states, and the capital Washington, now legally recognize gay and lesbian marriages, giving them the same legal rights and federal benefits as married heterosexual couples.Full Story
Warsaw's National Museum has added state-of-the art multimedia and installed new settings to enhance Europe's only exhibition of Christian-era wall paintings saved by the Poles from flooding in Sudan in the 1960s.
Thanks to a donation by philanthropist Wojciech Pawlowski, the museum was able to arrange the fragile, damaged wall paintings in settings reminiscent of the 8th-century cathedral that they had adorned.Full Story
One of the finest cubist collections in the world, painstakingly pieced together by a U.S. billionaire and pledged to the Metropolitan Museum in New York opens to the public on October 20.
Featuring 81 works of art by four artists, the museum says it will be the most important exhibition dedicated to the pioneers of the early 20th century avant-garde art movement in more than 30 years.Full Story
An imposing mosaic uncovered in the largest antique tomb ever discovered in Greece depicts the myth of the abduction of Persephone, Zeus's daughter who became goddess of the underworld, the Greek culture ministry said Thursday.
The 4.5 meter by three meter (15 foot by 10 foot) floor mosaic was discovered in a huge tomb that was discovered in August in Amphipolis, a northern Greek town. It dates back to the fourth century BC.Full Story
Sherlock Holmes never existed but his fictional address of 221B Baker Street still receives a steady flow of letters addressed to the famously intuitive detective.
The latest tribute comes in the form of a Museum of London exhibition opening Thursday entitled "The Man Who Never Lives and Will Never Die" and billed as the biggest in 60 years.Full Story
Despite sparse resources and limited institutional support, the world will soon wake up to Africa's ingenious new artists, according to some of the continent's leading exponents taking part in London's Contemporary African Art Fair.
The four-day event -- the largest such fair outside Africa -- opens on Thursday and showcases the work of over 120 artists in the grand setting of Somerset House in the heart of the British capital in a bid to reach a global market.Full Story