Latest Religion and politics News

Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens dies at 99

Jul. 16, 2019 11:39 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — John Paul Stevens, the bow-tied, independent-thinking, Republican-nominated justice who unexpectedly emerged as the Supreme Court's leading liberal, died Tuesday in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, after suffering a stroke Monday. He was 99. During nearly 35 years on the court, Stevens stood for...

Planned Parenthood to defy Trump abortion referral rule

Jul. 16, 2019 8:26 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federally funded family planning clinics, including Planned Parenthood, are defying the Trump administration's ban on referring women for abortions, drawing a line against what they say amounts to keeping patients in the dark about legitimate health care options. "We are not going to...

Von der Leyen confirmed as new European Commission president

Jul. 16, 2019 3:07 PM EDT

BRUSSELS (AP) — Ursula von der Leyen was confirmed as the European Commission president Tuesday, becoming the first woman to hold one of the most prestigious positions in the European Union and who will be one of the most prominent faces from the bloc on the world stage. The European Parliament voted...

Government restrictions on religion increasing worldwide

Jul. 15, 2019 5:03 PM EDT

NEW YORK (AP) — Government restrictions on religion have increased markedly in many places around the world, not only in authoritarian countries, but also in many of Europe's democracies, according to a report surveying 198 countries that was released Monday. The report released by the Pew Research Center,...

Some Iranian women take off hijabs as hard-liners push back

Jul. 15, 2019 7:53 AM EDT

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — The simple act of walking has become a display of defiance for a young Iranian woman who often moves in Tehran's streets without a compulsory headscarf, or hijab. With every step, she risks harassment or even arrest by Iran's morality police whose job is to enforce the strict dress code...

Israeli minister's remarks on gays widely condemned

Jul. 14, 2019 1:44 PM EDT

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel's new education minister's remarks in favor of "conversion therapy," a controversial technique that seeks to turn gays into heterosexuals, came under widespread criticism and led hundreds to protest Sunday. Rafi Peretz, who leads a small religious nationalist party, said in a...

Court order blocking contraception exemptions upheld

Jul. 13, 2019 3:00 PM EDT

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A federal appeals court upheld a lower court order that blocked the Trump administration from enforcing rules that allow more employers to deny insurance coverage for contraceptives to women. The three-judge panel of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia said Friday that...

Indonesia leader meets defeated rival after divisive poll

Jul. 13, 2019 1:40 AM EDT

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — Indonesia's president and his defeated election rival met Saturday for the first time since the divisive April poll and rode together on a recently opened subway in the capital, signaling a calming of political tensions in the world's third-largest democracy. In a choreographed...

Kuwait arrests Muslim Brotherhood members wanted in Egypt

Jul. 12, 2019 1:10 PM EDT

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Kuwait's Interior Ministry says it has detained members of Egypt's outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group convicted of terrorism crimes. The statement published Friday on the state-run KUNA news agency did not say how many individuals were detained or if Kuwait planned on...

One boy's tale of family separation heads to court

Jul. 12, 2019 1:11 AM EDT

BUDA, Texas (AP) — There were water balloons at Byron Xol's birthday party — bunches of them, filled a dozen at a time. He squeezed them with both hands, until the water burst on his face and chest. "Super good!" the 9-year-old yelled, again and again. It's a new catchphrase — but then, Byron...