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World in brief: Men marred Stonehenge with hammer

Two men attacked the ancient monument of Stonehenge with a hammer and chipped off a piece of stone the size of a large coin, a conservation group said Thursday.

Two men hacked the piece from the Heel Stone, the central megalith at the ancient site, English Heritage spokeswoman Debbie Holden said. They were spotted by security guards but escaped by jumping over a fence and driving off.

Wiltshire police are investigating last week’s incident at the UNESCO World Heritage Site 90 miles west of London.

“The damage is very, very slight because security guards spotted them straight away, but the whole thing is still upsetting,” said Holden. “This kind of thing has not happened for decades.”

Stonehenge is one of Britain’s best known and least understood landmarks. It has become popular with Druids, neo-Pagans and New Agers who attach mystical significance to the stones.


U.N. supports Lebanon deal

The U.N. Security Council is giving strong backing to the deal to end Lebanon’s 18-month political crisis.

But the council dropped a specific reference to a 2004 resolution demanding the disarmament of the Hezbollah militia, which is widely seen as the victor in the agreement reached Wednesday in Qatar’s capital, Doha.

A statement approved Thursday by the 15 council members calls for full implementation of the Doha agreement, in conformity with an agreement that ended Lebanon’s 1975-90 civil war “and all relevant Security Council resolutions…”

While the U.S. insisted that the relevant measures include the 2004 resolution demanding the disarmament of all militias in Lebanon, other council members disagreed.


Sharks, ray face extinction

An international environmental group has added three sharks and a ray to a list of species threatened with extinction, saying the animals risk being wiped out.

The study released Thursday concluded that 11 species of sharks and rays that swim primarily in the world’s open oceans are under enough pressure from overfishing to make the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s “red list” of threatened species. The list is a comprehensive inventory of around 41,000 species and subspecies compiled by a network of experts around the globe.

The group said part of the threat was due to increasing demand mainly in Asia for shark fin soup.

From wire reports


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