Latest Religion and politics News

FILE- In this Oct.5, 2014 file photo, a Sri Lankan Muslim man throws a bundle of grass to a calf at a livestock market on the eve of Eid al-Adha festival in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka's government announced Tuesday that it will ban cattle slaughter, saying it would help the dairy industry and thereby save money used to purchase imported milk powder. (AP Photo/Eranga Jayawardena, File)

Sri Lanka government decides to ban cattle slaughter

Sep. 29, 2020 5:39 PM EDT

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — Sri Lanka's government announced Tuesday that it will ban cattle slaughter, saying it would help the dairy industry and thereby save money used to purchase imported milk powder. But an analyst said the decision was politically motivated to please the Buddhist majority and would...

The full moon rises behind the Byzantine-era Hagia Sophia in the historic Sultanahmet district of Istanbul, early Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2020. Worshipers held the first Muslim prayers in 86 years inside the Istanbul landmark that served as one of Christendom's most significant cathedrals, a mosque and a museum before its conversion back into a Muslim place of worship on July 24, 2020. The conversion of the edifice, has led to an international outcry. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

Orthodox church petitions UN over Istanbul's Hagia Sophia

Sep. 29, 2020 5:33 PM EDT

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — The Greek Orthodox Church of the United States said Tuesday it is petitioning United Nations experts to coerce Turkey into protecting Orthodox Christianity's cultural heritage following the Turkish government's conversion of Istanbul’s landmark Hagia Sophia from a museum into a...

Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett looks over to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., as they meet with on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, POOL)

GOP senators praise Trump pick ahead of confirmation fight

Sep. 29, 2020 5:22 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican senators praised President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee Tuesday as Judge Amy Coney Barrett held one-on-one meetings at the Capitol, but Democrats said her conservative views are out-of-step with Americans as they object to a fast-track confirmation before the Nov. 3...

FILE - In this July 31, 2017, file photo, the sun sets behind the statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee on Monument Avenue in Richmond, Va. In a state where Confederate monuments have stood for more than a century and have recently become a flashpoint in the national debate over racial injustice, Virginians remain about evenly divided on whether the statues should stay or go, according to a new poll. The poll conducted this month by Hampton University and The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found that 46% support removal of Confederate statues and 42% oppose removal. (AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)

Poll: Virginians about evenly divided on Confederate statues

Sep. 29, 2020 5:13 PM EDT

FALLS CHURCH, Va. (AP) — In a state where Confederate monuments have stood for more than a century and have recently become a flashpoint in the national debate over racial injustice, Virginians remain about evenly divided on whether the statues should stay or go, according to a new poll. The poll conducted...

FILE - In this April 18, 2018 file photo, Pope Francis meets a group of faithful from China at the end of his weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican. The Vatican on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, answered its critics and justified its decision to pursue an extension of an agreement with China over bishop nominations, acknowledging difficulties but insisting that limited, positive results had been achieved.(AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia, file)

Vatican defends China bishop negotiations on eve of US visit

Sep. 29, 2020 5:11 PM EDT

ROME (AP) — The Vatican on Tuesday answered its critics and defended its pursuit of an extended agreement with China on bishop nominations, acknowledging difficulties but insisting the effort had achieved limited, positive results. The Holy See articulated its position on the eve of a visit by U.S....

FILE - In this Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019, file photo, Amnesty International India employees work at their headquarters in Bangalore, India. The Human rights watchdog said on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, that it was halting its operation in India, citing reprisals from the government and the freezing of its bank accounts. Its announcement comes at a time amid growing concerns over the state of free speech in India where critics accuse Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Hindu nationalist government of increasingly brandishing laws to silence human rights activists, intellectuals, filmmakers, students and journalists. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi, File)

Amnesty Int'l halts India operations, citing gov't reprisals

Sep. 29, 2020 4:31 PM EDT

NEW DELHI (AP) — Human rights watchdog Amnesty International said Tuesday that it is halting its operation in India, citing reprisals by the government and the freezing of its bank accounts by Indian authorities. Amnesty International India said it has laid off its staff and paused all its ongoing campaign...

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi of Calif., and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York speak before standing at the top of the steps of the U.S. Capitol as they await the arrival of the casket of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in Washington on Friday, Sept. 25, 2020. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, Pool)

Democrats try to stick to health care in Supreme Court fight

Sep. 29, 2020 4:06 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrats are confronting the limits of their power as they fight against the Supreme Court nomination of Amy Coney Barrett with a strategy aimed at avoiding costly mistakes that could hurt the party's candidates in November. Unable to block President Donald Trump’s pick on their...

State Rep. Attica Scott speaks during a news conference, Friday, Sept. 25, 2020, in Louisville, Ky. Breonna Taylor's family attorney Ben Crump is calling for the Kentucky attorney general to release the transcripts from the grand jury that decided not to charge any of the officers involved in the Black woman's death.  (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

Officer charged in Breonna Taylor case pleads not guilty

Sep. 29, 2020 3:52 PM EDT

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — The lone Kentucky detective facing charges related to the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor pleaded not guilty Monday. Brett Hankison’s plea comes five days after a grand jury indicted him on three counts of wanton endangerment for firing into the home of Taylor’s...

Courtney Normand, director of the Planned Parenthood-affiliated political group Safe & Healthy Youth Washington that is supporting a sex education requirement for public schools, poses for a photo Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020, in Arlington, Wash. Democrats in the famously liberal state say they want to protect young people from sexual abuse, diseases and infections. But the increasingly outnumbered and aggrieved Republicans have taken issue with the content of the standards as they rally for local control. The resulting referendum on the November ballot marks the first time in the country that such a decision on sex ed will be decided by voters. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Sex ed mandate sparks bitter Washington state ballot fight

Sep. 28, 2020 4:07 PM EDT

SEATTLE (AP) — Democrats in the Washington state Legislature thought they had passed a routine sex education requirement for public schools earlier this year. But a coalition of Republicans and religious conservatives launched a swift, historic backlash that's led to a bitter partisan fight and an effort...

File - In this Saturday, Aug. 8, 2020 file photo LGBT rights supporters protest against rising homophobia in Warsaw, Poland. Ambassadors to Poland from some 50 countries and international organizations have expressed their support with an open letter published Sunday, for the LGBT community in the country. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)

Poland rejects international criticism over LGBT rights

Sep. 28, 2020 11:09 AM EDT

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Polish leaders on Monday rejected suggestions that LGBT people are deprived of any of their rights in the country, after an open letter from 50 ambassadors and international representatives cited a need to work for "non-discrimination, tolerance and mutual acceptance." The...