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The furor over Gavriel Avital's denial of evolution and global warming continues, with a host of eminent scientists calling for his dismissal and with the minister of education reportedly describing his remarks as "unacceptable."
A recently published statement on current scientific knowledge on cosmic evolution and biological evolution from the Pontifical Academy of Sciences concludes: "The extraordinary progress in our understanding of evolution and the place of man in nature should be shared with everyone. ... Furthermore, scientists have a clear responsibility to contribute to the quality of education, especially as regards the subject of evolution."
Salman Hameed of Hampshire College addressed the challenge of Islamic creationism in the December 12, 2008, issue of Science (322 : 1637-1638), warning (subscription required) that "although the last couple of decades have seen an increasing confrontation over the teaching of evolution in the United States, the next major battle over evolution is likely to take place in the Muslim world (i.e., predominantly Islamic countries, as well as in countries where there are large Muslim populations)."
The International Planetarium Society recently issued a statement on the ancient age of the earth and universe, noting that "Many independent lines of scientific evidence show that the Earth and Universe are billions of years old.
Anticipating the bicentennial of Darwin's birth and the sesquicentennial of the publication of On the Origin of Species, the Church of England unveiled a new section of its website entitled "On the origin of Darwin," discussing Darwin's relationship to the church, the development of his own views on faith, and a brief historical sketch, bibliography, and listing of celebrations of the Darwin anniversaries.
The director of education for the Royal Society of London, Michael Reiss, resigned from his position on September 16, 2008, in the wake of a controversy occasioned by his recent remarks on creationism.