Egypt's top Islamic authority, the Grand Mufti Ali Gomaa, defended women's rights to wear trousers in public after a high-profile court case in neighboring Sudan where women were flogged for dressing in pants, the local press reported Wednesday. Gomaa said that trousers covering women's bodies are permitted, though they should be loose and not see through. He specified that "stretch" pants were in particular unacceptable. Sudan caused a stir when it flogged 10 women for wearing trousers. One woman, Lubna Hussein, contested the penalty and was let off with a fine for public indecency. Unlike Sudan, no moral police is entrusted with implementing the law in Egypt.
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Vandals sack catacombs of Paris, cause closing
Paris' underground bone collection, the catacombs, has been closed indefinitely after being vandalized. The collection of human remains - cleared from city cemeteries long ago - is orderly, with bones piled in stacks along underground tunnels. But a photo in Le Parisien newspaper after the weekend incident showed bones and skulls scattered along the walking paths. The catacombs are a vast underground network of tunnels holding the bones of more than 6 million Parisians. There are more than 186 miles of tunnels, but only a portion are open to the public. The catacombs are visited by 257,000 tourists each year, according to city historical officials.
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Execution set for D.C.-area sniper
A Northern Virginia judge on Wednesday set Nov. 10 as the execution date for sniper John Allen Muhammad, whose wave of random shootings terrified the Washington region in 2002.
His attorney said Muhammad plans to ask Virginia Gov. Timothy Kaine for clemency and to file an appeal with the U.S. Supreme Court, his last remaining legal options after a federal appellate court rejected his latest appeal last month.
If those efforts fail, Muhammad will be executed at the Greensville Correctional Center in Jarratt, Va.. Virginia inmates can choose lethal injection or the electric chair, but if an inmate makes no choice, lethal injection is used.
Muhammad was convicted in 2003 and sentenced to death for killing Dean Meyers near Manassas, Va., in October 2002, one of 10 sniper slayings that month. His accomplice, Lee Boyd Malvo, was sentenced to life in prison without parole in a separate trial.
The sniper slayings gripped the region, as Muhammad and Malvo prowled in an old Chevy and randomly picked out 13 people and shot them. Ten died doing the most routine of tasks - mowing lawns, unloading shopping baskets, pumping gas. After-school activities were canceled and people changed their daily routines. Washington Post
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By the numbers
The tip Sara Gaspar received for working at a catering event at the University of Notre Dame on April 17.
The tip school officials meant to give her. The incorrect amount was due to a typing error. A quick look at the numeric key pad shows that the "3" is right on top of the "." So that was probably the error. Gaspar says she called the school three times to make sure it was right and was assured it was before she cashed the check ... and paid off a bunch of bills. The school, in its lawsuit against Gaspar, says, essentially, she did not.