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September, 1, 2016

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Asia > Australia
Australia's prime minister on Wednesday urged his political opponents to allow Australians to endorse gay marriage through a popular vote instead of insisting that the divisive issue be put into lawmakers' hands.
 
The government's plan to hold a popular vote on whether Australia should allow same-sex marriage suffered a setback Monday when a political party announced it would not support the proposed plebiscite.
 
'Burkini' bans are good for sales: Aussie designer
Burkini bans in France have boosted sales and interest in the full-bodied Islamic swimsuit, particularly from non-Muslim women, the Australian credited with creating the design said Tuesday.
 
Almost half of the women working for Australia's national police force say they have been sexually harassed on the job, according to a report released Monday calling for urgent change.
 
Australia's treasurer on Friday formally blocked Chinese bidders from leasing a Sydney electricity grid, saying the deal would not have been in the nation's best interest.
 
Australia has agreed to close an immigration camp housing hundreds of asylum seekers on Papua New Guinea, the Pacific island nation said Wednesday, but gave no timeline.
 
Indigenous peoples look to preserve environment
Amelia Telford remembers the moment huge slabs of her country were swallowed by the sea.
 
Australia gov't halts online census after cyberattack attempt
Australia's first attempt to conduct a census online was in disarray after several cyberattacks and a hardware failure led to the website being shut down, officials said Wednesday.
 
MH370 plunged into the ocean at high speed -- up to 20,000 feet (6096 meters) per minute -- reinforcing analysis that the missing Malaysia Airlines jet crashed in the current search zone, a report said Tuesday.
 
Australia's largest banks will have to face a parliamentary committee for an annual grilling to "drive cultural change," Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said Thursday as he addressed public disquiet about their behavior.
 
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