A security officer stands guard as voters display their election identity cards as they stand in a queue to cast their votes outside a polling station at Ranti, in the Madhubani district of Bihar State, India. Polling began Thursday morning for the first phase of elections to the Bihar state Assembly amid heavy security, according to a news agency. Prashant Ravi/AP Photo
Shaolin martial arts students attend a rehearsal for the Zhengzhou International Shaolin Wushu Festival at Shaolin Temple in Dengfeng, Henan Province of China on Oct. 20. The festival kicks off on Friday. Donald Chan/Reuters
A student, whose cheek reads: 'no to the reform,' shouts slogans during a demonstration in Paris. Protesters blockaded Marseille's airport, Lady Gaga canceled concerts in Paris, and rioting youths attacked police in Lyon ahead of a tense Senate vote on raising the retirement age to 62. A quarter of the nation's gas stations were out of fuel despite President Nicolas Sarkozy's orders to force open depots barricaded by striking workers. Thibault Camus/AP Photo
A member of the Puteri wing smiles at the camera while waiting for the arrival of Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak during Malaysia's ruling party United Malays National Organization (UMNO) general assembly in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Lai Seng Sin/AP Photo
A boy walks in a city park amidst fallen leaves on a sunny autumn day in Stavropol, Russia. Eduard Korniyenko/Reuters
A member of the Guard of Honor plays as a new state flag of Burma (Myanmar) is hoisted outside the town hall in Yangon. Military-ruled Burma has unveiled the new national flag – with horizontal stripes of yellow, green, and red with a big white star in the middle. Khin Maung Win/AP Photo
Chess players wait to play against Israeli chess grandmaster Alik Gershon, not pictured, during an attempt to break the Guinness world record of simultaneous chess play in Rabin square in Tel Aviv. The Jewish Agency and the Israel Chess Federation invited hundreds of chess players, many of them new immigrants from the former Soviet Union, to break the Guinness world record for simultaneous chess play against Gershon. Ariel Schalit/AP Photo
The USS Constitution fires its guns on its 213th birthday, during its annual cruise in Boston Harbor. The ship is the world's oldest commissioned warship afloat. David L. Ryan/AP Photo
Farmers sort cabbages harvested from a field on the back of a truck near Ljubljana, Slovenia. The cabbages will be used to make sauerkraut, which serves as an important vitamin source for Slovenians during the winter season, starting December. Srdjan Zivulovic/Reuters
Pakistani Wares Imran laughs with his sister, unseen, while posing for a picture at a brick factory where his family works on the outskirts of Islamabad, Pakistan. Muhammed Muheisen/AP Photo
People from the Khayelitsha township watch as giant kites take to the skies during an event at the annual Cape Town International Kite Festival in South Africa. Mike Hutchings/Reuters
Men perform a traditional Baraa dance during a mass wedding ceremony for 3,200 brides and grooms in Sanaa, Yemen. The wedding was financed by Saudi Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul-Aziz. Khaled Abdullah/Reuters
A family looks out to the sea shortly after sunset in Kovalam, Kerala State, India. Kovalam is a popular tourist beach town on the Arabian Sea. David Azia/AP Photo
Colombia's Constitutional Court overturned a 2001 law that gave the federal government ultimate say over where mining projects took place. It's a victory for local communities, but with the government in need of billions to bank roll peace programs, can it last?
ByTaran Volckhausen, Contributor
When South African mining company AngloGold Ashanti (AGA) arrived in this central Colombian farming town ten years ago, it promised residents like Herver Oliveraula “rivers of milk and honey,” he recalls. The mining giant was set to extract an estimated 28 million ounces of gold from the La Colosa mine, buried under the northern Andes.