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The United States government is tracking as many as 300 Americans supposedly fighting with Islamic State, the jihadist group with a heavy presence in parts of Syria and Iraq, according to senior US officials. Washington is worried that radicalized foreign fighters could become a risk to the US if they return to employ skills learned overseas to carry out attacks,...
The anti-corruption stance of Pope Francis has riled Italy’s powerful mafia groups, according to a prosecutor who specializes in mob cases. State prosecutor Nicola Gratteri – who works in the southern Italian region of Calabria, where the ‘Ndrangheta mafia is active – told the Italian daily Fatto Quotidiano that Francis’ statements on transparency and dismantling economic power in the Vatican...
Pope Benedict XVI is to resign for reasons relating to his health, according to a Vatican spokesperson. He's the first head of the Catholic Church to quit the highest post since the Middle Ages. The 85-year-old is due to step down on February 28. The Pope said he is “fully aware of the gravity of this gesture” but that he lacks the...
Los Angeles Archbishop Jose Gomez has relieved his predecessor, Cardinal Roger M. Mahony, from any and all public duties as a result of his mishandling of the decades-long clergy sex abuse that victimized 10,000 children since the early 1950s. Mahony served as the LA Archbishop from 1985-2011, after which he reached the mandatory retirement age of 75. In response to...
A documentary about jailed punk band Pussy Riot, who became a household name after their controversial act at Russia’s main cathedral, ‘Pussy Riot—A Punk Prayer’ has won the World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award in America. The Russian and British co-production, directed by Mike Lerner and Maxim Pozdorovkin, was screened at the Sundance Film Festival, competing against 11 other titles. The...
Pressured by rights activists and foreign Jewish diaspora, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu has asked for a review of an Orthodox-backed law which restricts the ways how women can pray at the holy site of the Western Wall. The decision comes amid outrage from women rights activists in Israel and across the Jewish Diaspora in other countries over a flurry of...