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A Bahraini appeals court on Monday more than doubled a jail sentence against opposition leader Sheikh Ali Salman in a move his bloc warned would stoke unrest among the kingdom's Shiite majority. Salman's Al-Wefaq bloc condemned the verdict as "unacceptable and provocative", warning it "entrenches the exacerbating political crisis" in Bahrain. Al-Wefaq was Bahrain’s largest parliamentary bloc until its 18 MPs walked out in February 2011 to protest violence used against demonstrators.
Mexican security forces have rescued football star Alan Pulido, who was found "safe and sound" hours after he was kidnapped in his crime-plagued home state of Tamaulipas, authorities said early Monday. Pulido, a former national team forward who plays for Greek club Olympiakos, declared he was "very well, very well, thank God" as he appeared alongside Governor Egidio Torre Cantu at a brief news conference. Pulido was rescued "safe and sound ... shortly before midnight" on Sunday by state and federal forces, the Tamaulipas government said in a statement, without providing details about the operation.
Nisha Ayub has endured virtually everything thrown at Muslim-majority Malaysia's repressed transgender community: contempt, violence, arrest and sexual assault in a prison where she was sent to become a "real man". "The way they treat you is like you don't have any rights, you don't have any dignity," said Nisha, 37, dressed in the flowing skirt and long-sleeve shirt favoured by Malaysian Muslim women. A Muslim, Nisha's first overt gender-identity expression came at age nine in a costume contest at her straight-laced boy's school -- she dressed as a ballerina.