Prince Harry wins approval
More than two-thirds of adults thought Prince Harry cavorting naked with women at a Las Vegas party was acceptable behavior, according to a poll out yesterday. The YouGov survey in the Sunday Times newspaper found that 68 percent thought the third-in-line to the throne’s antics were acceptable for a young, single man having fun on a private holiday, with 22 percent saying it was not. About 75 percent still had a positive view of the 27-year-old army helicopter pilot. While the two images of Harry are widely available on the Internet and abroad, only The Sun newspaper has published them in Britain, saying it was striking a blow for press freedom. Some 61 percent thought media baron Rupert Murdoch’s tabloid was wrong to do so, with 25 percent saying the country’s biggest-selling newspaper had been right to print them.
London parliament to shut
The country’s iconic Houses of Parliament in London could close for up to five years while essential repairs are carried out, the Sunday Times said. The broadsheet said several options were on the table while the plumbing and electrics are refurbished and the building is purged of asbestos, including leaving the Palace of Westminster for good. “Officials are undertaking an initial study into options for the long-term upkeep of the palace,” a spokesman for parliament’s lower House of Commons told the weekly. “It is anticipated that the results of the initial study will be considered by the House of Commons commission and the House of Lords committee by the end of the year.” The Sunday Times said the Commons and the upper House of Lords could be evacuated for the first time since World War II, when the palace was repeatedly hit in Nazi air raids. Options include leaving the palace, selling it and building a new parliament; a temporary replica chamber in the palace grounds, or, spreading the repair work out across decades of parliamentary breaks. The interiors of the riverside Perpendicular Gothic palace, completed in 1870, have not been refurbished since the 1940s.
Gaza rockets hit factories
Three rockets fired by Gaza militants hit the south yesterday, damaging two factories in the border town of Sderot, but without causing any casualties, the army said. “Two rockets hit two factories in the industrial zone in Sderot, while a third exploded in a nearby field,” a spokeswoman said, referring to a town of 24,000 people which lies less than a kilometer from the border with the Gaza Strip.
Crowds view ‘Monkey’ Christ
It has been dubbed the “world’s worst restoration,” but a 102-year-old church painting of Christ that now resembles a pale monkey is drawing visitors by the hundreds to the sleepy Spanish town of Borja. The town garnered global press attention after residents decried the well-meaning restoration efforts of Cecilia Gimenez, described as being in her 80s, who made a horribly botched attempt to restore a flaking oil painting of Christ wearing the crown of thorns. The “restored” painting looks like a pale monkey’s face surrounded by fur, with misshapen eyes and nose and a crooked smudge for a mouth. Some media have called it the worst restoration in history. On Saturday, hundreds of curious visitors lined up outside the Iglesia del Santuario de Misericordia church, where the image is painted on a column.