Russia proposes summit
Russia and the Arab League proposed Wednesday to broker talks between the Syrian opposition and President Bashar Assad’s regime to try to resolve the country’s civil war, while a government airstrike on a rebellious Damascus suburb killed at least 20 people. The 23-month-old conflict in Syria, which has killed more than 70,000 people and laid waste to the country’s cities, has repeatedly defied international efforts to end the bloodshed. The offer from Moscow, one of Assad’s closest allies, suggested the regime could be warming to the idea of a settlement.
Gay adoption ban upheld
Puerto Rico’s Supreme Court voted Wednesday to uphold a law banning gay couples from adopting children. The 5-4 vote came in the case of an unidentified woman who has sought for the last eight years to adopt a 12-year-old girl who her partner of more than 20 years had through in vitro fertilization. It was the first time the court heard a case on same-sex adoptions. A majority of judges upheld the constitutionality of a law that states a person cannot adopt a single-parent child if the would-be adopter is of the same sex as the child’s mother or father without that parent losing their legal rights.
Vigilantes free detainees
Officials in southern Mexico said armed vigilantes have freed the last of 42 people detained by townspeople on suspicion of crimes ranging from theft to extortion and murder, marking what authorities hope will be an end to the growth of unregulated community “self-defense” groups. Activists, however, said Wednesday that vigilante groups are likely to hang on, and perhaps grow, if authorities don’t guarantee public safety in the wave of drug cartel violence and common crime. The government of the Pacific coast state of Guerrero said the vigilantes based in the town of Ayutla turned 20 of the final detainees over to police. It said the other 22 had been suspected of lesser offenses and were released Tuesday because the vigilantes considered they had been sufficiently punished.
Compiled from wire reports.