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Phoenix Gov Enacts Toughest Bill on Illegal Immigration

Phoenix Gov. Jan Brewer signed a bill on illegal immigration that is set out to identify, prosecute and deport illegal immigrants, according to the NY Times.
Brewer signed what the Times have called the "toughest" bill on illegal immigration on Friday, a move that provoked protests and a divisive battle over national immigration reform.
Before Brewer signed the bill, President Obama called the bill "misguided," according to the BBC, and he said the bill threatened "to undermine basic notions of fairness that we cherish as Americans, as well as the trust between police and our communities that is so crucial to keeping us safe."
The law, which critics have argued is too broad and too strict, would make the failure to show proper immigration documents a crime, the Times reported, and it gives police expanded power to hold anyone who they suspect of being in the country illegally.
One group that opposes the bill said it will turn Hispanics into terrorists no matter what their legal status while supporters say the bill will help get illegal immigration in control, the BBC reported.
Arizona is a main entry point for undocumented immigrants.

Travelers in Europe still Stranded at Airports

Hundreds of thousands of passengers in Europe have been affected by volcanic ash spewing from Iceland, which is causing flights across most of Europe to be cancelled. Officials said some 17,000 flights will be cancelled on Friday, the BBC reported.
"I've never seen such chaos," Erich Klug, 35, said, a buyer for an auto parts company who has been stranded at the Frankfurt airport after it closed last Friday, the NY Times reported.
Aviation authorities said they do not know when flights will be back to normal, the earliest date being Saturday.
The question has been raised if President Obama will make it to Poland for the Polish president and his wife's funeral after an unrelated plane crash.
Scientists say the volcano is producing less ash, but it is still erupting, according to the BBC.
More countries closed their airspace Friday morning: the UK, Denmark, Norway, Irish Republic, Finland, Sweden, Belgium and the Netherlands closed their airspace on Thursday, while France shut down 24 airports in its northern country, according to the BBC.
Airports have begun laying out beds for tired travelers still waiting for flights to resume.
The volcano causing the problems has erupted for the second time in one month.
The World Health Organization in Geneva cautioned people with respiratory problems to stay inside until the ash has settled, according to the Times.

Flags Flown Half-Staffed for CPL Swenson

Gov. Pawlenty ordered all U.S. flags and Minnesota flags to be flown at half-staff at state and federal buildings on Saturday, in loving memory of Lance Corporal Curtis M. Swenson, according to Hometown Source.
U.S. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Curtis M. Swenson, 20, of Rochester, died Friday in Afghanistan, according to the Post Bulletin.
http://www.postbulletin.com/newsmanager/templates/localnews_story.asp?z=2&a=446160
Swenson was killed after the vehicle he was riding in his an IED, improvised explosive device. Cpl Swenson is survived by his wife, parents, sister and other family and friends.
Cpl Swenson's sister, Emiliy Swenson, created a Facebook page in his memory. By Monday 900 people had joined the group. Emily Swenson titled the Facebook page "RIP LCPL Curtis Michael Swenson."

The Prime Minister of Thailand and protestors met to defuse protests on Sunday; however, the only agreement reached was to meet again on Monday, according to the NY Times.

Protesters known as the red-shirts want parliament dissolved and have staged large rallies near Bangkok, the capital, according to the BBC.

The Prime Minister, Abhisit Vejjajiva, said he would dissolve parliament in approximately nine months; however, the red-shirts want Vejjajiva to increase the time frame to dissolve parliament in 15 days.

Vejjajiva said he would make a decision based on what is wanted by the whole country.

Red-shirt protestors believe the prime minister came to power illegally after the former Prime Minister,Thaksin Shinawatra was ousted in a 2006 military coup.

The battle is between Thailand's lower income class who benefitted from Thaksin's policies, and the elite class who benefit more from Vejjajiva, according to Miamiherald.


New Move Makes Discharging Gays from Military More Difficult

The Pentagon announced new criteria to make discharging gays in the U.S. military harder on Thursday saying the move was an issue of common sense and decency, the Inquirer reported.
Robert Gates, Defense Secretary, said the changes allow a "fairer" approach to the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" law that requires gays to quiet their sexual orientation or endure expulsion from the military.
New measures only allow for high-ranking officers to initiate and oversee discharge cases, according to the BBC.
The new measures also discourage hearsay, and it eliminates third party gossip by requiring third party's information be given under oath.
"I believe these changes represent an important improvement, in the way the current law is put into practice, above all by providing a greater measure of common sense and common decency, to a process for handling what are difficult and complex issues for all involved," Mr Gates said, a quote pulled from the BBC.
The changes are set to take effect immediately, Gates added.

Man accused of Inticing the Theft of Nazi Death Camp Sign

Investigators accused a former neo-Nazi man in Sweden for instigating the theft of an infamous Auschwitz death camp sign last December.
Anders Hogstrom, 34, was arrested in February after the "Arbeit Macht Frei" sign was stolen. He will be expedited to Poland for trial with one condition, that he serve his prison sentence in Sweden if convicted.
Hogstrom said he was acting as a middle man between the five Polish men who were arrested for the theft of the sign and an English-speaking buyer, according to CBC.
Hogstrom told BBC reporters that as soon as he knew the sign was stolen, he contacted the police.
"I have [in] no way committed a crime. On the contrary, I have made sure this sign could be returned," Hogstrom told the Associated Press.
The sign was recovered shortly after it was stolen, cut into three pieces. A replica replaced the actual sign and may stay in its place because the original may be too fragile to endure weather conditions, officials said.
Outrage erupted in Israel, Poland and around the world after the sign's theft. The sign, which in German means "Work sets you free," symbolizes the atrocities of Nazi Germany, according to the BBC.
Millions of people, 90 percent Jews, were murdered in Auschwitz after the Nazis occupied Poland during WWII.

Mass Protest over Abortion Rights in Madrid

Tens of Thousands of protesters went out in Madrid's streets Sunday to protest a bill that will make it easier for women to receive an abortion, according to the BBC.
"Get out of here and let the children live," demonstrators chanted as they called on the socialist government's equality minister Bibiana Aido to resign, reported France 24.
The bill passed through parliament and allows women to get an abortion up to 14 weeks into her pregnancy.
As it is, a woman can only terminate her pregnancy under specific circumstances, including rape, fetal abnormalities or physical danger to the mother's health and life, according to the BBC.
The new bill is expected to come into existence in July.
A series of ethical issues have the Catholic right pitted against the government, which legalized gay marriage and made divorce easier, according to the BBC.
Socialst Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said the only difference with this bill is that women will not be sent to jail or threatened with jail time for terminating her pregnancy.
Children should not be responsible if their parents do not want them. Parents should have thought about that aspect before, Marta Puig told AP news reporters.

Refused: Gay Rights Activists Rally at Chruch

Hundreds of Dutch activists in 's-Hertogenbosch left church Sunday after the priest refused to distribute communion to a practicing homosexual.

Protestors in pink wigs and shirts left church after discovering the church was not serving communion to anyone that Sunday.

The dispute came when the carnival 'prince' was told he would not be served communion at a Roman Catholic church.

The Netherlands was the first country to initiate gay marriages, and many Dutch support gay rights, according to the BBC.

One man said he just wants equal rights. If he is a sinner who cannot receive communion, the priest should refuse communion to all sinners.

The church diocese issued a statement saying church is not an appropriate place for a protest and will maintain its stance on refusing open homosexuals communion, according to Lifesite. .


Death Toll Rises after Floods Ravish Madeira

At least 40 people have died, hundreds more were injured and many more are missing after a flood ravished through Madeira, CNN reported Sunday.
Water, mud, stone and trees are just some of the debris that is charging off Madeira's mountains, and British Holiday Maker Kathy Sayers told the BBC that Funchal's infrastructure is destroyed and the city's drains cannot cope with the sludge pouring off the mountains.
The floods destroyed houses, buildings, bridges and lives. At least 250 have been evacuated, and search and rescue teams are still trying to locate missing people, according to the BBC.
Portuguese Prime Minister Jose Socrates said "the situation is under control," a quote pulled from CNN, and the government is offering its support.
The BBC Weather Centre reported the floods were due to a low pressure system and Madeira could expect more rain, but more rain will not result in another flood, BBC said.

Grandma Fights off Shark Attack After it Bit her Butt

A 60-year-old grandma fought off a shark after it tore into her buttocks and legs in the tug of war match, according to SMH.
Patty Trumbull was snorkeling with her husband and friends near Whitsunday Islands, Queensland when she felt a huge tug at her, the BBC reported.
"I turned around and saw this huge shark," Trumbull said, as she told herself the shark was not going to get the better of her.
Trumbull began repeatedly punching the shark in its nose, and when it pulled her under, she kicked it in the neck until it released her.
Doctors said Trumbull is lucky to be alive.

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