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Highlights from the world's press

Compiled by Ravi Agrawal
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(CNN) -- In an editorial, The New York Times calls on U.S. President George W. Bush to "devote [his] speech to the horrors of Darfur" when he addresses the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday.

"The tally of human suffering should make even the most jaded listener take notice: At least 200,000 dead and two million more driven from their homes by three years of rape and mutilation led by Sudanese troops and their proxy Arab militias.

"Mr. Bush must leave no doubt who is most responsible. Sudan's president, Omar Hassan al-Bashir, is blocking the Security Council from sending some 20,000 peacekeepers to Darfur, saying that would insult Sudan's sovereignty.

"Mr. Bush should call on all countries -- including those like China that have been shielding Mr. Bashir -- to demand that Sudan drop its opposition. He should also say that he will press for broad international sanctions if Mr. Bashir does not quickly reverse his position."

London Fashion Week

An editorial in The Times questions why there are no moves in London to follow Madrid's lead and bar sickly-thin models from parading the catwalk this week.

"No law can prevent the use of desperately thin models. But designers love publicity. They enjoy challenging conventional wisdom. Why doesn't one of them break out from the stifling embrace of the size zero?

"If they were to start using real-shaped women on the catwalk, they would display their individuality, challenge conformity and encourage real women to buy their goods. It worked for Dove. Why not for Dior?"

Spinach scare

Back in America, reports of the bacteria E.Coli in the country's bagged spinach have meant that the leafy green vegetable has all but disappeared from supermarket shelves.

The Boston Globe says "the Food and Drug Administration is right to be ultra careful in issuing its warnings even if it prevents only a single death in the process ... it is too easy for the public to assume that the problem is reaching monstrous proportions. It is not. We must keep in mind that there has been only one death, 14 cases of kidney failure, and just over 100 people have become ill from ingesting the tainted spinach. Our infectious fears spread faster than any bacteria and ignite a sense of imminence that far eclipses the reality."

Honor killings

In an editorial, Pakistan's Dawn reports that "honor killings" continue to rise in Sindh and Punjab -- the paper cites police records suggesting that honor killings claim over a thousand victims annually, most of them women.

"The police, for their part, are often hesitant to pursue cases of honor killing -- and if they do become involved, they tend to view the perpetrators with sympathy, even respect."

"The country's intelligentsia as well as religious scholars must take the lead in delivering the message that this reprehensible crime has no place in civilized society."

Civil unions in South Africa

An editorial in South Africa's Mail & Guardian compares an AMC Cabinet approval for civil unions between same-sex couples to apartheid.

"One of the most popular, and ridiculous, arguments put forward to justify apartheid, was that it provided 'for separate but equal' opportunities and was therefore fair and just.

"It is sad and surprising that an ANC Cabinet has approved legislative proposals providing for civil unions between same-sex partners that replicate this bankrupt logic.

"The Civil Unions Bill purports to give effect to a decision by the Constitutional Court ordering an extension of marriage to same-sex couples; in effect it denies them that right."


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