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    Actions by Facebook and its parent Meta during last year’s Gaza war violated the rights of Palestinian users to freedom of expression, freedom of assembly, political participation and non-discrimination. That's according to a new report commissioned by the social media company. The report confirms long-standing criticisms of Meta’s policies and their uneven enforcement as it relates to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Written by the independent consulting firm Business for Social Responsibility, the report found that Meta over-enforced rules when it came to Arabic content and under-enforced content in Hebrew. But the report did not find intentional bias at Meta, either by the company as a whole or among individual employees.

      Federal regulators are ordering Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and CEO Andy Jassy to testify in the government's investigation of Amazon Prime. The regulators rejected the company’s complaint that the executives are being unfairly harassed in the probe of the popular streaming and shopping service. The Federal Trade Commission issued an order denying Amazon’s request to cancel civil subpoenas sent in June to Bezos, the Seattle-based company's former CEO, and Jassy. The order also sets a deadline of Jan. 20 for the completion of all testimony by Bezos, Jassy and 15 other senior executives, who also were subpoenaed.

        There’s a new nature documentary series that promises to show viewers incredible animal behavior in vibrant clarity. Heard that all before? Well, this one is on steroids. “Super/Natural,” a six-part series from National Geographic on Disney+, has tapped “Avatar” creator James Cameron as executive producer, and he’s added special effects on top of leading-edge filmmaking technology. The effects sometimes morph the animals into something like stars in a Marvel movie, with their bellows distorting the air, lumbering attacks that cause shock waves in sand or pheromones from an insect rendered as bursting noxious clouds. Even trees light up when sugars move through their roots.

          Saudi Arabia plans to launch a training program with the goal of sending its own astronauts, including a woman, into space next year. The kingdom is actively promoting science and technology as part of its wide-ranging Vision 2030 plan to overhaul its economy and reduce its dependency on oil. The plan, championed by Saudi Arabia’s crown prince and de facto leader, Mohammed bin Salman, also calls for greater integration of women into the workforce of the conservative Muslim country. Saudi Arabia lifted a long-standing ban on women driving in 2018. The neighboring United Arab Emirates launched a probe into Mars’ orbit in February 2021 and plans to launch a lunar rover in November.

            MyPillow chief executive Mike Lindell has sued the Department of Justice and the FBI to demand the return of a cellphone seized from him at a fast food restaurant in Minnesota last week. Agents apparently seized it as part of an investigation into an alleged scheme to breach voting system technology. Lindell alleges in the complaint, filed Tuesday in federal court in Minnesota, that the confiscation violated his constitutional rights. Lindell is a prominent promoter of false claims that voting machines were manipulated to steal the 2020 presidential election. He asked the court to order the return of his phone and to prohibit authorities from using data from it.

            Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. wants to “reintroduce the Philippines” to the world. He has ambitious plans for his nation on the international stage and at home. That is, if the twin specters of pandemic and climate change can be overcome or at least managed. And if he can get past the legacies of two people: his predecessor, and his father. He also wants to strengthen ties with both the United States and China. That's a delicate balancing act for the Southeast Asian nation. Marcos spoke in an AP interview on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly.

            The Biden administration is ramping up diplomatic efforts to press China to end provocative actions against Taiwan and keep it from active support for Russia's war against Ukraine. U.S. officials say Secretary of State Antony Blinken made both cases in a meeting with his Chinese counterpart on Friday in a meeting on the sidelines of the annual UN Assembly in New York on Friday. The officials declined to describe the Chinese response but said Foreign Minister Wang Yi was receptive to the messages and that the two men agreed on the need to keep lines of communication open. Friday's talks between Blinken and Wang came amid a period of heightened tensions on both issues and ahead of an expected meeting in November between Presidents Joe Biden and Xi Jinping.

            An Arizona judge says the state can enforce a near-total ban on abortions that has been blocked for nearly 50 years. Friday’s ruling by a judge in Tucson came after the state’s Republican attorney general sought an order lifting an injunction that was issued shortly after the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision. Roe was overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court in June. Friday's ruling means clinics across Arizona will likely stop providing abortions. The law was first enacted decades before Arizona became a state in 1912. The only exception is if the mother’s life is in danger. Another law that bans abortions after 15 weeks takes effect Saturday.

            Elton John transformed the White House South Lawn into a musical lovefest Friday night as he played a farewell gig to honor everyday “heroes” like teachers, nurses and AIDS activists. But as it turns out, the event was also to honor the 75-year-old British songwriter — President Joe Biden surprised him with the National Humanities Medal for being a “tidal wave” who helped people rise up for justice. John said he’d played some beautiful venues before, but the stage in front of the White House, beneath a massive open-air tent on a perfect autumn night, was “probably the icing on the cake.”

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