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Sri Lankan woman loses most of her family in Easter bombings

Emily Schmall, Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 24th - 8:24am

Before the undertakers could move in, Anusha Kumari wrested herself away from her sisters and flung herself on the three coffins, wailing. In an instant on Sunday, the 43-year-old woman was left childless and a widow when suicide bombers launched a coordinated attack on churches and luxury hotels in and near Sri Lanka's capital of Colombo.

Egypt court sentences 2 monks to death for abbot's killing

The Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 24th - 7:23am

An Egyptian court has sentenced two former monks to death for killing an abbot in a desert monastery north of Cairo last year.

Sri Lanka shakes up top security posts after deadly bombings

Krishan Francis, Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 24th - 6:44am

Sri Lanka's president has asked for the resignations of the defense secretary and national police chief, a dramatic internal shake-up after security forces shrugged off intelligence reports warning of possible attacks before Easter bombings that killed over 350 people, the president's office said Wednesday.

Radicalization among Sri Lanka's Muslims was slow and steady

Aya Batrawy, Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 24th - 6:29am

A spate of attacks against mosques, shrines and followers of Sufi sheikhs in Sri Lanka more than a decade ago point to early warning signs of fundamentalism taking root among a sliver of the country's Muslims.

Washington state bill limits measles vaccine exemptions

Rachel By Corte, Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 23rd - 5:54pm

Washington state lawmakers voted Tuesday to remove parents' ability to claim a personal or philosophical exemption from vaccinating their children for measles, although medical and religious exemptions will remain.

Amal Clooney seeking Islamic State woman for Yazidi crimes

Edith M. Lederer, Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 23rd - 5:29pm

Human rights lawyer Amal Clooney said Tuesday she is requesting the transfer of a female member of the Islamic State extremist group to face justice for crimes against women from Iraq's Yazidi minority and American hostage Kayla Mueller, who was killed in 2015.

Bishop critical of Nicaragua's Ortega leaves for Vatican

Gabriela Selser, Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 23rd - 12:47pm

A Roman Catholic bishop who has been outspoken in his criticism of President Daniel Ortega over Nicaragua's political standoff left the country Tuesday after being called to the Vatican indefinitely by Pope Francis.

Czech lawmakers approve taxation of church restitution plan

The Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 23rd - 10:29am

Czech lawmakers on Tuesday approved a proposal drafted by Communist lawmakers to tax the compensation that the country's churches receive from the state for property seized by the former Communist regime.

Kushner: Middle East peace plan to be unveiled after Ramadan

The Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 23rd - 10:04am

The White House is planning to release its long-awaited Middle East peace plan in the next few months.

After IS fall, some women who joined plead to come home

Maya Alleruzzo, Philip Issa and Andrea Rosa, Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 23rd - 12:31am

They came from around the world, four women drawn to the Islamic State group's "caliphate." They said it was out of misguided religious faith or naivety or youthful rebellion, but whatever the reason, they tied their lives to a group that became notorious for its atrocities.

In camp of diehard IS supporters, some women express regrets

Maya Alleruzzo, Philip Issa and Andrea Rosa, Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 23rd - 12:14am

The women say it was misguided religious faith, naivete, a search for something to believe in or youthful rebellion. Whatever it was, it led them to travel across the world to join the Islamic State group.

Sri Lanka bombing victims were from at least 12 countries

The Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 22nd - 11:23pm

More than 300 people were killed in bombings of churches and hotels in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday. Sri Lankan authorities say at least 31 foreigners died in the attacks.

Another Pennsylvania diocese opens victim compensation fund

The Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 24th - 8:27am

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Allentown has become Pennsylvania's seventh diocese to open a victims' compensation fund since a landmark grand jury report accusing senior church officials of systematically covering up the sexual abuse of children.

Sri Lankan state minister says the Easter church bombings were retaliation for New Zealand mosque attacks

The Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 23rd - 3:02am

Sri Lankan state minister says the Easter church bombings were retaliation for New Zealand mosque attacks.

Appeals court nixes condo's coed swimming restrictions

The Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 22nd - 5:14pm

A federal appeals court has ruled that a New Jersey condominium association violated women's rights by setting separate swimming hours for male and female residents.

Sri Lanka expats wait to reconnect amid social media block

Deepti Hajela, Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 22nd - 3:23pm

Viji Devadas hasn't heard from her nephew in Sri Lanka on her family WhatsApp chat group since he reached out just after the Easter Sunday bomb blasts that tore apart churches and hotels and killed hundreds in the South Asian nation.

Judge denies lower bond for ex-priest accused of abuse

Jim Salter, Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 22nd - 2:56pm

A St. Louis County judge on Monday refused to lower bail for a former Catholic priest who was previously imprisoned and labeled sexually violent.

Survivor of Sri Lanka bombing fears returning to church

Gemunu Amarasinghe and Emily Schmall, Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 22nd - 6:15am

St. Sebastian's Church in Sri Lanka's Negombo city was packed when Nilantha Lakmal arrived with his wife and three daughters for Easter Mass.

A van parked near a Sri Lankan church that was bombed on Easter Sunday has exploded, but no injuries have been reported

The Associated Press  |  Posted Apr 22nd - 4:53am

A van parked near a Sri Lankan church that was bombed on Easter Sunday has exploded, but no injuries have been reported.