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Friday Digest: Liu Xiaobo, Danube, Haiti, EA…


This is our new Friday Digest! Every Friday, this weekly news round-up gives us the occasion to share with you news from various topics: politics to arts, entertainment, media, science, sports, fun and less fun news… This digest is a list of news published this week on the Internet (Friday to Friday), selected by the Sama Team, and it is by no means exhaustive.

If you want to suggest a news to be added in the next Friday Digest, contact us.

The list goes from oldest to newest news.  See you on Sunday, for our weekly Twitter Sunday!

US medical tests in Guatemala ‘crime against humanity’
US testing that infected hundreds of Guatemalans with gonorrhoea and syphilis more than 60 years ago was a “crime against humanity”, Guatemalan President Alvaro Colom has said. President Barack Obama has apologised for the medical tests, in which mentally ill patients and prisoners were infected without their consent. Mr Obama told Mr Colom the 1940s-era…
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11457552

California Reduces Its Penalty for Marijuana
A month before California voters decide the fate of a ballot initiative that would legalize marijuana, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has signed a bill that essentially puts those caught possessing small amounts of the drug on the same level as those caught speeding on the freeway. The governor — who has come out against the ballot measure, Proposition 19…
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/02/us/politics/02pot.html

US will issue travel warning for Americans in Europe
The US government is to issue a travel alert, warning its citizens to be vigilant while travelling in Europe because of the threat of an al-Qaeda commando-style attack. US and UK officials have confirmed that updated guidance will be issued because of the current terror threat. A UK official said the travel advisory would not be country-specific…
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11460335

Runoff Will Decide the Presidency of Brazil
Dilma Rousseff was leading late Sunday in her bid to be Brazil’s first female president, but election officials said she had failed to come up with enough votes to avoid a second round. With about 99.6 percent of the votes counted, Ms. Rousseff, the former chief of staff of President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, had 46.8 percent of the votes to 32.6 percent for…
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/04/world/americas/04brazil.html

Hamburg cell at heart of terrorist plot against Europe
A group of jihadists from the German city of Hamburg are alleged to be at the heart of the recent al Qaeda plot to launch co-ordinated terrorist attacks against European cities, according to European intelligence officials. The plan prompted the U.S. State Department to issue a Europe-wide security advisory for Americans traveling in Europe…
http://edition.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/europe/10/04/europe.terror.plot/index.html

Frenzy of Rape in Congo Reveals U.N. Weakness
Four armed men barged into Anna Mburano’s hut, slapped the children and threw them down. They flipped Mrs. Mburano on her back, she said, and raped her, repeatedly. It did not matter that dozens of United Nations peacekeepers were based just up the road. Or that Mrs. Mburano is around 80 years old. “Grandsons!” she yelled. “Get off me!” As soon as they finished…
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/04/world/africa/04congo.html

EA sort of removes ‘Taliban’ from game, after complaints
At Gamasutra, Ian Bogost takes us through a recent flap over Electronic Arts’ forthcoming Medal of Honor game, set in modern Afghanistan. Though similar titles tend to avoid geopolitical specifics, here gamers were promised the option of siding with Taliban militants against U.S. soldiers. Critics said this was offensive and EA ultimately announced it would “remove”…
http://www.boingboing.net/2010/10/04/ea-sort-of-removes-t.html

In Haiti, Rising Call for Displaced to Go Away
As tent camps go, the one on the 28-acre Church of God property overlooking the Valley of Bourdon is almost bucolic, with hundreds of canvas-draped shelters under leafy shade trees and a cohesiveness among residents. But panic is building there. The Church of God is planning to evict the encampment in the near future. While the church relented on a Sept. 30 deadline…
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/05/world/americas/05haiti.html

Fast-food freebie ban gets OK in San Francisco
San Francisco lawmakers have given preliminary approval to a law that would prohibit fast-food restaurants from putting toys in children’s meals unless they include fruits and vegetables and don’t have too many unhealthy calories. A committee of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted 3-0 Monday to pass the proposed ordinance on to the full board…
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2010/10/04/state/n161625D55.DTL

Father fights bullying to honor son
Kirk Smalley’s 11-year-old son Ty committed suicide after being bullied. Smalley now works to try to protect other kids from bullies. He spoke to CNN’s “American Morning’s” Carol Costello about his efforts…
http://edition.cnn.com/2010/LIVING/10/04/bullying.causes.suicide/index.html

Hungary chemical sludge ‘threatens Danube’
Hungary is racing to prevent red chemical sludge from a huge spill reaching the Danube river, officials have said. The alkalinity has risen in the Raba river, which flows into the Danube – Central Europe’s major waterway. If the sludge enters the Danube the pollution could reach six countries down river, including Croatia, Serbia and Romania. Pollution has been…
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-11491412

9 years in Afghanistan: Experts see worldwide war with no end in sight
Watching the worst terrorist attack in the nation’s history on a TV at CIA headquarters was like a punch in the stomach for Gary Schroen. The 35-year veteran of the CIA had just entered the agency’s retirement program when planes struck the Twin Towers in New York and the Pentagon on September 11, 2001. Schroen’s career had been spent mostly overseas as a covert officer…
http://edition.cnn.com/2010/POLITICS/10/07/afghanistan.nine.years/index.html

Nobel Peace Prize awarded to China dissident Liu Xiaobo
Jailed Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo has been named the winner of the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize. The award, announced in Norway’s capital Oslo, is certain to anger Beijing, which had earlier warned against the move. Norwegian Nobel Committee president Thorbjoern Jagland said Mr Liu was “the foremost symbol of the wide-ranging struggle for human rights in China”…
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-11499098




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