Court OKs evacuation of French migrant camp
CALAIS, France — A green light Thursday from a French court sets in motion the evacuation of a large swath of a sprawling migrant camp in Calais where thousands dream of getting to Britain, with promises of a progressive and humane process in what could be a slow death for the wind-swept outpost.
Skeptics say that many migrants will simply scatter along the northern coast.
The court in Lille ruled that the makeshift shelters where migrants sleep can be destroyed — but that common spaces such as places of worship, schools and a library that have sprung up must stand.
The camp, with an estimated 4,000 migrants, has transformed the port city of Calais into a highsecurity tension point, fueled far-right sentiment and defied efforts to make it go away.— AP
Bombs taken from Boko Haram explode accidentally
YOLA, Nigeria — Bombs retrieved from Boko Haram extremists exploded accidentally Thursday at police headquarters in Nigeria's northeastern city of Yola, killing four people and driving shattered glass into officers and schoolchildren, officials said.
The police station is in a commercial area surrounded by a market, the main prison, a post office, a TV station and two primary schools.— AP
Italy is step closer to recognizing civil unions
ROME — Italy's Senate voted Thursday to grant legal recognition to civil unions, as the last holdout in Western Europe took a compromise step to give some rights to gay couples after a bitter, years-long debate.
Premier Matteo Renzi described the passage of the bill Thursday as "historic." But gay and lesbian groups denounced the watered-down legislation as a betrayal because Renzi's party sacrificed a provision to allow gay adoption in order to ensure passage.
The legislation, which must still pass the lower Chamber of Deputies, is nevertheless significant for an overwhelmingly Roman Catholic country where the Vatican holds sway in politics and society, although Pope Francis remained conspicuously silent as debate raged in recent months.— AP
Few moderates on Iranian ballots for today's vote
Iranians vote today in national elections that once had the potential to be pivotal until almost every would-be candidate advocating reform was barred from running.
With only a limited number of moderates and reformers on the ballot, analysts say the election is unlikely to foreshadow a history-making moment of change. Most government bodies will continue to be dominated by conservatives, constraining the ability of Hassan Rouhani, Iran's pragmatist president, to push through reforms.
But the election is being closely watched nevertheless because the vote totals could open a small window onto the Iranian appetite for change and Rouhani's political future.— The Washington Post
Israel slams Iranian compensation for attackers
JERUSALEM — Israel's prime minister said Thursday that an Iranian offer to compensate the families of Palestinians killed in a wave of Israeli-Palestinian violence, among them attackers, proves that Iran continues to "aid terrorism" even after the landmark nuclear deal signed last year.
Benjamin Netanyahu's comments come a day after Iran's ambassador to Lebanon said that Iran would pay $7,000 to the families of killed Palestinians to "enable the Palestinian people to stay in their land and confront the occupier," Ambassador Mohammad Fathali was quoted as saying by the National News Agency.
Near-daily Palestinian attacks since mid-September have killed 28 Israelis. At least 166 Palestinians have been killed.— AP