Outside the Outbreak: Elder Uchtdorf clarifies political donation, Sri Lanka proposes ban on burqas

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Church leader says family donation to Biden was ‘oversight’

FILE – Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, a top leader with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaks during a news conference on Feb. 7, 2017, in Salt Lake City. Elder Uchtdorf said Friday, March 12, 2021, political donations made in his name to several Democratic candidates last year including President Joe Biden that violate the faith’s political neutrality rules were done by his family. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)

A top leader with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints said Friday political donations made in his name to several Democratic candidates, including President Joe Biden, that violate the faith’s political neutrality rules were done by his family.

Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf said in a statement provided by Church officials that the contributions came from an online family account associated with his name.

“I regret such an oversight on my part,” Elder Uchtdorf said. “I fully support the Church’s policy related to political donations from Church leaders.”

Security camera hack exposes hospitals, workplaces, schools

FILE – In this March 4, 2020 file photo, a security camera is shown on the second floor of a row of rooms at a motel in Kent, Wash. Hackers aiming to call attention to the dangers of mass surveillance said they were able to peer into hospitals, schools, factories, jails and corporate offices after they broke into the systems of a security-camera startup. That California startup, Verkada, said Wednesday, March 10, 2021, it is investigating the scope of the breach, first reported by Bloomberg, and has notified law enforcement and its customers. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Hackers aiming to call attention to the dangers of mass surveillance say they were able to peer into hospitals, schools, factories, jails and corporate offices after they broke into the systems of a security-camera startup.

That California startup, Verkada, said Wednesday it is investigating the scope of the breach, first reported by Bloomberg News, and has notified law enforcement and its customers.

Swiss hacker Tillie Kottmann, a member of the group that calls itself APT-69420 Arson Cats, described it in an online chat with The Associated Press as a small collective of “primarily queer hackers, not backed by any nations or capital but instead backed by the desire for fun, being gay and a better world.”

Concerns rise over Sri Lanka’s move to ban burqas

A burqa-clad Sri Lankan Muslim woman walks on a street of Colombo, Sri Lanka, Saturday, March 13, 2021. Sri Lanka on Saturday announced plans to ban the wearing of burqas and said it would close more than 1,000 Islamic schools known as madrassas, citing national security. (AP Photo/Eranga Jayawardena)

A Pakistani diplomat and a U.N. expert have expressed concerns over Sri Lanka’s proposed move to ban the wearing of burqas.

Sri Lanka announced plans over the weekend to ban the wearing of burqas — garments worn by some Muslim women that cover the body and face — and also said it would close more than 1,000 Islamic schools known as madrassas, citing national security.

Pakistan’s ambassador to Sri Lanka, Saad Khattak, tweeted on Monday that the ban would “only serve as injury to the feelings of ordinary Sri Lankan Muslims and Muslims across the globe.”

South African official pledges to fund university students

Protesting students from the University of the Witwatersrand, form a guard of honor around a forensic pathology vehicle which carries the body of a man shot dead in clashes between students and police in Johannesburg, Wednesday, March 10, 2021. At least one person has died and two students have been injured in clashes between South African university students and police over tuition fees at the University. Protests erupted this week after thousands of students were denied registration for the 2021 academic year because they owed tuition fees from last year. (AP Photo)

In an effort to quell violent protests at universities, South Africa’s education minister has vowed to make more money available to enable thousands of students to register for the 2021 academic year.

One man, a bystander, was killed in the protests Wednesday at Johannesburg’s University of the Witwatersrand, adding pressure on the government to resolve the problem.

Throughout the week students have been protesting because thousands of poor students have been prevented from registering due to outstanding fees.

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