From today's UK papers

February 27, 2002

Muslim world strongly opposed to US foreign policy
Muslims feel sympathy for the US after the terrorist attacks of September 11, but they feel even more strongly that the West's military action in Afghanistan was wrong, according to a Gallup poll across the Islamic world published yesterday. In the first study of its kind, Gallup surveyed 10,000 people in nine countries - Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Indonesia, Jordon, Morocco, Iran, Kuwait, Turkey and Lebanon - during December and January. (Financial Times)

Police raid on Iran's student reform lobby
Leaders of Iran's main pro-reform student organisation said yesterday that police had closed their Tehran headquarters late on Monday, detained more than 40 students overnight and severely beaten several activists. The raid was aimed at halting the political activities of reformist students belonging to the nationwide Office to Foster Unity and follows the recent interrogations of dozens of intellectuals by a shadowy group acting on the orders of the conservative-controlled judiciary. (Financial Times)

Academic in twins paternity battle
An academic in his mid-60s who wants to be declared the father of four-year-old twins took his legal battle to the Court of Appeal yesterday. The man is seeking an order that the two girls should be taken for DNA tests despite the refusal of their mother, who has been married since 1975 to another man. Judge Elystan Morgan refused the request at Caernarfon county court, ruling that if the academic proved to be the true father it would break up a "happy marriage". (Guardian, Times)

Britain plans world's first stem-cell bank
The world's first bank of cells from human embryos is expected to be established in Britain next year, according to the Medical Research Council. Doctors hope to use them to create tissue to repair the ravages of old age, damage and disease, in research that will put Britain at the forefront of a field that has been hailed as the next medical revolution. (Daily Telegraph)

Embryo screened for Alzheimer's
Doctors from the Reproductive Genetics Institute of Chicago have genetically screened an embryo to prevent a child from developing early onset Alzheimer's for the first time, according to a report in a scientific journal. The procedure was used to allow a woman who is destined to develop Alzheimer's disease before she turns 40 to give birth to a child that will not have the same genetic defect. (Guardian, Daily Telegraph)

Primates don't just monkey around
Monkeys may have more to say for themselves than has been thought. Scientists have found that the primates have developed a language with similar speech patterns to humans. A study in the Ivory Coast by a team from the University of St Andrews found that monkeys have developed a much larger vocabulary than has been realised and that they use the same kind of vocal inflection as humans to distinguish between words. (Independent)

Sex diseases soar among young Britons
Sexually transmitted diseases are rampaging through the UK unchecked as a new generation of young people, who missed the Aids scare of the 1980s, fail to protect themselves by practising safe sex. According to a report published yesterday by the British Medical Association, sexually transmitted infections, which include HIV/Aids, gonorrhea, and syphilis, have soared by almost 300,000 cases between 1995 and 2000. (Guardian)

Work until 72 for a decent pension
People in their 20s and 30s might have to keep working until they are 72 to avoid poverty in old age, says a study on pensions. A fall in the value of pensions meant workers making typical contributions to a group scheme would have to work for seven years beyond the age of 65, or face a big fall in retirement income, said the study published yesterday by the Pensions Policy Institute. (Daily Telegraph)

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