Latest Religion and politics News

India's marathon national election reaches the finish line

May. 19, 2019 10:00 AM EDT

KOLKATA, India (AP) — Voting in India's mammoth national election ended Sunday with the seventh and final phase of a grueling poll that lasted more than five weeks, as exit polls predicted a victory for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Hindu nationalist party and its allies. Vote counting begins on Thursday,...

Austrian leader calls an early election amid video scandal

May. 18, 2019 4:25 PM EDT

VIENNA (AP) — Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz called Saturday for an early election after his vice chancellor resigned over a covertly shot video that showed him apparently promising government contracts to a prospective Russian investor. Kurz said he would ask President Alexander Van der Bellen to set...

Louisiana governor breaks with Democratic Party on abortion

May. 17, 2019 10:31 PM EDT

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Nearly three decades ago, when Democratic Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards' wife was 20 weeks pregnant with their first child, a doctor discovered their daughter had spina bifida and encouraged an abortion. The Edwardses refused. Now, daughter Samantha is married and working as a...

Gay couples plan mass weddings after Taiwan legalizes unions

May. 17, 2019 8:49 PM EDT

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — Gay couples in Taiwan plan a mass wedding registration after lawmakers voted to legalize same-sex marriage, a first in Asia and a boost for LGBT rights activists who had championed the cause for two decades. Legislators pressured by LGBT groups as well as by church organizations...

Poland leader slams church pathology, backs sex abuse probe

May. 17, 2019 6:28 PM EDT

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Poland's ruling conservative party leader said Friday it does not tolerate "pathology" in the Catholic church and will back a commission to investigate sex abuse of minors in church but also in other circles. It was the first reaction by Jaroslaw Kaczynski, a practicing Catholic, to a...

NOT REAL NEWS: A look at what didn't happen this week

May. 17, 2019 1:59 PM EDT

A roundup of some of the most popular but completely untrue stories and visuals of the week. None of these is legit, even though they were shared widely on social media. The Associated Press checked these out. Here are the real facts: ___ CLAIM: Health care law does not mandate that nurses give vaccines. THE...

Alabama abortion law raised hope for execution reprieve

May. 17, 2019 1:57 PM EDT

ATMORE, Ala. (AP) — A lawyer for a condemned inmate said he hoped Gov. Kay Ivey might a grant clemency request and block the execution after she talked about her belief that "life is precious" in signing a bill to virtually outlaw abortion in Alabama. It wasn't to be. Michael Brandon Samra was put to death...

Egypt's president pardons 560, including prominent columnist

May. 17, 2019 7:52 AM EDT

CAIRO (AP) — Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi pardoned 560 prisoners, including a prominent journalist and several women. The pardons, announced in the official gazette late Thursday, coincide with the Muslim holy month of Ramadan when authorities traditionally release detainees as a goodwill...

India's ruling party takes election battle to West Bengal

May. 17, 2019 7:23 AM EDT

KOLKATA, India (AP) — Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has taken his ruling party's fight to the state of West Bengal, where it hopes to retain a majority in staggered general elections concluding this week by diluting the strength of a formidable opponent, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. The battle...

Roy Moore weighs AL Senate re-run despite GOP opposition

May. 17, 2019 6:04 AM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — Conservative lightning rod Roy Moore of Alabama, narrow loser of a turbulent special election for Senate in 2017, is considering a fresh run next year. National Republican leaders are signaling they'll again try preventing their party from nominating the twice-removed state jurist whose...