World and Nation

Shorts (left)

In Iraq, killings strike fear in gay and emo youth

BAGHDAD — A recent spate of killings and intimidation aimed at gay Iraqis and teenagers who dress in brash Western fashions is sending waves of fear through Iraq’s secular circles while casting doubt on the government’s will to protect some of its most vulnerable citizens.

Many details of what Iraqi newspapers have called the “emo killings” are murky, but the uproar comes at an awkward moment for Iraq. The country has been preparing to showcase itself to the world as host of a high-profile meeting of Arab leaders in late March, the first major diplomatic event here since U.S. forces withdrew in December.

But the news that young men in tight T-shirts and skinny jeans are being beaten to death with cement blocks and dumped in the streets has threatened to overshadow the new palm trees and fresh paint. The violence offers a reminder that the government has been unable to stop threats and attacks against small religious sects, ethnic groups and social pariahs like gay men.

—Jack Healy, The New York Times

Britain to join Obama in discouraging a strike on Iran

WASHINGTON — Britain will add its voice to President Barack Obama’s in discouraging an Israeli military strike on Iran when Prime Minister David Cameron begins a three-day visit here this week, a senior British diplomat said Monday.

“The prime minister is pretty clear that he does not think military action against Iran would be helpful,” the diplomat, Peter Westmacott, Britain’s recently appointed ambassador to the United States, told reporters. “We do not regard that as the right way forward in the months to come.”

Cameron, he said, supports Obama’s vow that Iran will not be allowed to acquire nuclear weapons. And, like the president, the prime minister believes military force must be preserved as an option.

—Mark Landler and John F. Burns, The New York Times

Google to collaborate with Belgian museum

PARIS — Google, which organizes the world’s information digitally, is linking up with a precursor that aimed to do something similar, on paper.

It plans to announce Tuesday that it is forming a partnership with a museum in Mons, Belgium, dedicated to a long-ago venture to compile and index knowledge in a giant, library-style card catalog with millions of entries — an analog-era equivalent of a search engine or Wikipedia.

“The partnership with Google gives us a great opportunity to spread knowledge of this remarkable Belgian project throughout the world,” Jean-Paul Deplus, director of the museum, the Mundaneum, said in remarks prepared for a news conference Tuesday.

—Eric Pfanner, The New York Times

Yahoo sues Facebook over patents on web technologies

Yahoo stepped up its feud with Facebook on Monday, suing the social-networking giant on accusations it infringed on 10 patents tied to an array of web technologies.

According to the lawsuit, which was filed in U.S. District Court in San Jose, Calif., Yahoo contended that Facebook had knowingly and improperly violated some of the company’s core intellectual properties.

The patents, which were issued from 1999 to 2010, cover advertising, privacy, customization, social networking and messaging. Last month, Yahoo warned Facebook that it may file suit over the patents.

—Michael J. De La Merced, The New York Times