February 5th, 2013
03:27 PM ET

UK lawmakers approve same-sex marriage in first vote

[Updated at 3:27 p.m. ET] A little clarification: The bill would, as drafted, enable religious organizations in the United Kingdom to conduct same-sex marriages if they wish.

[Updated at 3:14 p.m. ET] More details on the vote on a bill that would legalize same-sex marriage in the United Kingdom: The second reading of the bill passed in a 400-175 vote Tuesday.

The bill will be up for further debate in the House of Commons, and it still would need to go though other stages, including another vote in the House of Commons and approval in the House of Lords, before it can become law.

[Updated at 2:35 p.m. ET] The UK House of Commons has passed a bill to introduce same-sex marriage in the country.

The legislation still must go through several more stages, including approval in the House of Lords, before it can become law.

[Posted at 9:23 a.m. ET] UK lawmakers are to vote on a bill to introduce same-sex marriage Tuesday, an issue that has prompted widespread rebellion within Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservative Party.

Three top party members appealed to Conservative MPs to get behind the controversial legislation in a letter published in the Telegraph newspaper Tuesday.

February 3rd, 2013
03:16 PM ET

Iran says it will consider nuclear talks with U.S.

Iran will give "positive consideration" to a renewed prospect of one-on-one talks with the United States on its nuclear program, its foreign minister said Sunday.

Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said a new round of talks between Iran and the five permanent U.N. Security Council members, plus Germany, would be held February 25 in Kazakhstan. Salehi spoke on the last day of the 49th Munich Security Conference, a day after U.S. Vice President Joe Biden said the Obama administration remains willing to hold direct talks with the Islamic Republic.

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Filed under: Iran
July 4th, 2012
04:21 AM ET

Scientists say new particle fits description of Higgs boson

Scientists said Wednesday that they had discovered a new particle whose characteristics match those of the Higgs boson, the most sought-after particle in physics, which could help unlock some of the universe's deepest secrets.

"We have reached a milestone in our understanding of nature," said Rolf Heuer, the director general of the European Organization for Nuclear Research, which has been carrying out experiments in search of the Higgs boson at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the world's largest particle accelerator.

"The discovery of a particle consistent with the Higgs boson opens the way to more detailed studies, requiring larger statistics, which will pin down the new particle's properties, and is likely to shed light on other mysteries of our universe," said Heuer.

Announcements by scientists about their analysis of data generated by trillions of particle collisions in the LHC drew avid applause at an eagerly awaited seminar in Geneva, Switzerland, on Wednesday.

The Swiss presentation comes after researchers in Illinois said earlier this week scientists that they had crept closer to proving that the particle exists but had been unable to reach a definitive conclusion.

Finding the Higgs boson would help explain the origin of mass, one of the open questions in physicists' current understanding of the way the universe works.

The particle has been so difficult to pin down that the physicist Leon Lederman reportedly wanted to call his book "The Goddamn Particle." But he truncated that epithet to "The God Particle," which may have helped elevate the particle's allure in popular culture.

Experts say finding the elusive particle would rank as one of the top scientific achievements of the past 50 years.


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Filed under: Science • Switzerland • Technology
November 2nd, 2011
08:27 AM ET

Assange loses extradition fight

WikiLeaks editor Julian Assange lost a court battle to stay in the United Kingdom Wednesday and will be extradited to Sweden to face questioning over sex charges, a court ruled.

Appeals court judges Lord Justice John Thomas and Justice Duncan Ouseley rejected all four of the arguments Assange's defense team used to fight the extradition.

They will hold another hearing later this month to determine whether he can appeal.

Assange, who has been under house arrest for nearly a year while waiting to find out the results, said Wednesday he will now consider his next steps.

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Filed under: Crime • Julian Assange • Sweden • United Kingdom • WikiLeaks • World
Atika Shubert: In London, a 9/11 event both solemn and confrontational
A member of the English Defence League shouts at Muslim extremist protesters near London's Grosvenor Square.
September 11th, 2011
04:16 PM ET

Atika Shubert: In London, a 9/11 event both solemn and confrontational

The memorial for British victims of 9/11 stands in London's Grosvenor Square at the far end of a quiet park directly across from the U.S. Embassy.

There you can find the names of the 67 British victims who lost their lives in the attacks. A set of wooden pillars stands with these words carved above them: "Grief is the price we pay for love."

On Sunday, families of those victims gathered at Grosvenor Square. Prince Charles attended with his wife, Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall. Prime Minister David Cameron also came. They laid wreaths at the memorial and later took the time to speak with the families over scones and finger sandwiches. At the memorial, a white rose was laid for each of the 67 British victims.

The ceremony was marred somewhat by two competing protests. Muslims Against Crusades, the radical Islamic group led by Anjem Choudary, arrived shortly before the ceremony full of fiery speeches. There were fewer than 100 with him but their chants of "USA you will pay!" could still be heard over the music that played as families began arriving.


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Filed under: Anti-Islam • Islam • September 11 • Terrorism • United Kingdom • World
July 25th, 2010
08:47 PM ET

WikiLeaks posts alleged Afghan war documents

A whistleblower website has published what it says are more than 90,000 United States military and diplomatic reports about Afghanistan filed between 2004 and January of this year.

The first-hand accounts are the military's own raw data on the war, including numbers killed, casualties, threat reports and the like, according to Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks.org, which published the material Sunday.

"It is the total history of the Afghan war from 2004 to 2010, with some important exceptions - U.S. Special Forces, CIA activity, and most of the activity of other non-U.S. groups," Assange said.

CNN has not independently confirmed the authenticity of the documents.

The Department of Defense will not comment on them until the Pentagon has had a chance to look at them, a Defense official told CNN.

National Security Adviser Gen. James Jones issued a statement Sunday calling the documents' release "irresponsible."

"The United States strongly condemns the disclosure of classified information by individuals and organizations which could put the lives of Americans and our partners at risk, and threaten our national security," the statement said.

Read the full story on CNN.com

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Filed under: Afghanistan • National security • Technology • WikiLeaks