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Dr. Lilian Nabulime explains on  June 18, 2009 that her installation "Shattered Lives" illustrates the various ways that HIV/AIDS affects people's lives in Uganda.

Living positively through art

In the midst of a deadly virus that is often discussed in hushed, concerned tones, musicians, actors and artists are shouting and singing about living positively with HIV/AIDS. They are using the creative arts to educate, comfort and declare their status.


French officials arrest widow of ex-Rwandan leader

French authorities arrested the widow of the former Rwandan president killed in a plane attack widely considered the event that sparked the east African country’s 1994 genocide, a judicial official said Tuesday.

Agathe Habyarimana was taken into custody on a Rwandan warrant issued on genocide-related charges, the official said.


History finds new life in U.K.

An old Victorian tea set. A jade axe. The Rosetta Stone. These seemingly unrelated objects have one distinct commonality — they are all a part of the History of the World project’s 100 items chosen to represent world history through a partnership involving the British Museum, the BBC and hundreds of local museums throughout Britain.

As an outreach to communities, the project has also selected 10 items from each region of Britain to represent history. In Kent, these objects range from a Bronze Age boat to a World War II football, viewable at local museums throughout Kent.


Colleges enlist parents to curb drinking

At Virginia Tech, where tailgating and raucous apartment complex parties are time-honored rituals, university officials are turning to Mom and Dad to curb underage drinking.

This semester, the school began notifying parents when their under-21 students are found guilty of even minor alcohol violations, such as getting caught with a beer in a dorm room.


Chile quake death toll hits 708

Heroism and banditry mingled on Chile’s shattered streets Sunday as rescuers braved aftershocks digging for survivors and the government sent soldiers and ordered a nighttime curfew to quell looting. The death toll climbed to 708 in one of the biggest earthquakes in centuries.

In the hard-hit city of Concepción firefighters pulling survivors from a toppled apartment block were forced to pause because of tear gas fired to stop looters, who were taking from microwave ovens to canned milk at a damaged supermarket across the street.


Special Olympics offer alternative for hundreds of athletes

With so much attention on Vancouver and the medal count, it can be easy to forget another group of hard-working athletes.

Since 1968, the Special Olympics has provided an opportunity for children and adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities to compete on an international level in many sports.



Scientists defend tsunami warnings after nonevents

Oceanographers issued a bulletin telling Hawaii and other Pacific islands a killer wave was coming with terrifying force and that “urgent action should be taken to protect lives and property.”

But the tidal surge predicted after Chile’s earthquake for areas far from the epicenter never materialized.


Olympics mascots stir debate

Quatchi, Sumi and Miga: not anime characters, but Olympic mascots.

The trio was designed by Vicki Wong and Michael Murphy of Meomi Design, a Vancouver-based business described as “a little design studio dedicated to play, delight and goodness” on its Web site.


Obama tries to maintain middle-class connection

President Barack Obama grew up experiencing the hardships of poverty and divorced parents. He is no stranger to the struggles of a middle-class family, whether during economic downturn or emotional turmoil.

In 1988, he entered Harvard Law School and became a Harvard Law Review editor. He served as a professor at the University of Chicago Law School for 12 years, becoming engaged in community service and civil rights law. 

His background is rooted in middle-class America. So why do “everyday Americans” claim to see him as detached from their concerns, as an elitist?


Ex-officer pleads guilty in Katrina killing probe

In Hurricane Katrina’s chaotic aftermath, police shot six people — killing two — as they crossed a bridge. For years the case was a shocking symbol of the confusion and violence that swept through the flooded city. On Wednesday, it became a mark of shame for the police department.

Michael Lohman, a retired lieutenant who supervised the department’s probe of the shootings, pled guilty to organizing a cover-up to conceal that police gunned down unarmed civilians.


Separate spheres operate between men and women in Ghana

Living as a female in the United States, I often take for granted how equally I am treated. Sure, there is the occasional sexist remark or rude gesture, but in general men treat me like an equal.

However, at the University of Ghana in Legon, men feel it’s their duty to hoot and holler at women merely for walking around campus.


Court convicts Google execs

An Italian court convicted three Google executives of privacy violations Wednesday for not acting quickly enough to remove an online video showing bullies abusing an autistic boy.

In the first criminal trial of its kind, Judge Oscar Magi sentenced the men to six-month suspended sentences and absolved them of defamation charges. A fourth defendant, charged only with defamation, was acquitted.



Woman sentenced to prison for lying about gang rape

A woman who fabricated a gang rape accusation was sentenced Tuesday to up to three years behind bars.

Biurny Peguero, 27, pled guilty in December to perjury, admitting she made up the September 2005 incident that imprisoned William McCaffrey for nearly four years.
A judge overturned his conviction, with new DNA evidence.


Pancake Day: the British Mardi Gras

In New Orleans, Mardi Gras festivities mark the last day before the official start of Lent. In Spain, the week-long Carnival festival ushers in the season. It’s all about Fat Tuesday — the day where it’s OK to indulge in your favorite things, as you’re about to give up excesses for the next 40 days.

In the United Kingdom, “Shrove Tuesday”  is more affectionately known as Pancake Day, following a longstanding Catholic tradition of using up indulgent ingredients in the kitchen, such as fat, butter and eggs, by cooking a food that contains all three — pancakes.


Confirmation process drags on for many

The stage was a confirmation hearing by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
The reminder of Bernanke’s experience was a sobering one for the four witnesses, and their families behind them, who came to testify before Congress.


Ole Miss to vote on new mascot

The University of Mississippi dumped the mascot Colonel Reb — a caricature of a white plantation owner — in a 2003 effort to distance the school from Old South stereotypes. It’s been without a mascot ever since, but a vote Tuesday could change that.


Refugee orphans find peace in US foster homes

Hiding from merciless militiamen and trekking through unforgiving mountainous terrain, Madhel Majok escaped the genocide of the Sudan that killed his parents.

The 9-year-old fled to neighboring Kenya, where he survived vigilante shellings on his crowded refugee camp.

Majok remained in limbo for eight years, waiting for any country to grant him refuge.
Now 17, Majok has found safety in the home of Paul Boulanger, a 68-year-old single father who has fostered three dozen refugee children in 30 years.



Vangelis Keramitzis, an Athenian jewelry maker, faces the current debt crisis in Greece as both a citizen and a small business owner. Keramitzis, however, doesn’t let the situation get him down, choosing instead to face the day with a smile for his customers and hope for tomorrow.

Daily life amid national debt

Amid the bustling side streets of ancient Athens, tucked among the ubiquitous storefronts hawking everything from gilded icons to phallic bottle openers, is a quaint shop called Agora Ethnic Jewelry. Having made a purchase the day prior, I approach a kind salesman with a few questions on conducting business in a nation whose debt has reached Olympian proportions.


Pa. school defends spy charges

A school district accused of secretly switching on laptop webcams inside students’ homes said it never used webcam images to monitor or discipline students.

The Lower Merion School District acknowledged webcams were activated 42 times in the past 14 months but only to find missing, lost or stolen laptops.

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