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A suicide bomber from the extremist Sunni IS also attacked a Shiite mosque in Saudi Arabia, raising sectarian tensions in the region. The jihadists, who now control roughly half of Syria, reinforced their self-declared transfrontier "caliphate" by seizing Syria's Al-Tanaf crossing on the Damascus-Baghdad highway late Thursday. It was the last regime-held border crossing with Iraq.
Turnout was reported to be high in Ireland's referendum Friday on whether same-sex marriage should become legal, a vote which has exposed deep divisions in the traditionally Catholic nation. "It's a very historic day, for Ireland, for gay people and for their family and for their friends, and for the future of the country," said Seamus Wright, who went to vote in central Dublin with his partner John O'Sullivan. At a polling station in the south Dublin suburb of Milltown, Rachael Stanley, 60, said she voted "No" and felt "strongly about it".
Organisers of Live Earth, a set of global concerts backed by Al Gore aimed at pushing for urgent action on climate change, announced a delay Friday, weeks before the scheduled date. Live Earth had intended shows on each inhabited continent for June 18 featuring more than 100 artists to raise pressure for a strong agreement at a UN-led climate conference in Paris at the end of the year. Representatives, however, said that no events would take place that day, and instead a free concert would be held near the Eiffel Tower in Paris sometime in the autumn.