Our 11 year old son dissappeared without trace from the centre of Veria on 3rd February 2006 at 7.00 p.m. No one saw anything unusual that night.To say that the police have bungled this investigation would be a compliment; a more accurate characterization of the police work in this case would involve the words stupidity and corruption. And I can't even think of what kind of "justice" would let five young murderers free to taunt the mother of their victim.
Our search for him was carried out on an international scale.
On 2nd June 2006,without letting us know beforehand, the police started excavating beside the Town Hall of Veria. Frantically, we asked the police what was going on and they replied that they had been looking into the case and had discovered a gang of 5 juveniles who had confessed to killing our son and had subsequently pointed out various places where they claimed to have buried him.
Almost immediately after this, 3 of the 5 retracted their confessions, declaring that they had been playing a hoax on the police with their original statements.
Up till now, the police have still not discovered the whereabouts of our son's body. On top of this, even through there are adult relatives of the 5 juveniles implicated in the case, the police clame that they are unable to put any pressure on them, as this would be a violation of the human rights of all those involved!!
Just days after Holocaust Memorial Day, when the world commemorated the 62nd anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, it has emerged that Berlin's Holocaust Memorial has been used for a highly inappropriate purpose by members of the public. In the first few months after it opened in May 2005, the memorial in Berlin's city center was used as a public urinal.
The memorial -- officially known as the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe -- is made up of 2,711 concrete slabs, each 95 centimeters apart, and set in an area 19,000 square meters, the size of three football fields. It lies just next to the historic Brandenburg Gate and has many dark passages separating the slabs, that are barely visible from the exterior. It seems that many tourists and passers-by availed of this relative privacy to relieve themselves in a place that is intended to commemorate the fate of Europe's Jews under the Nazis. The memorial, which cost €25.3 million to build, has been seen as a major success, attracting 3.5 million visitors in its first year alone.
This ancient city, considered the birthplace of democracy, is also a hotbed of protest. On any given day, some group – doctors, students, peaceniks, garbage men, prostitutes, and even nuns – is walking off jobs or taking to the streets.
Rare, too, is the week when nothing is bombed, set alight, or otherwise destroyed. In a year here, I've accidentally wandered into more clouds of tear gas than during five years reporting on war and conflict in Africa. No wonder: Authorities report an average of two protests a day in the city – many of which turn destructive. And that's not including strikes, riots, or other forms of dissent.
The morning the cars were burned in my neighborhood, I'd made my way toward Syntagma Square – the heart of modern Athens – along normally busy streets now empty of cars. Outside the little deli where I shop nearly daily, helmeted riot police were clustered in full force, plastic shields resting at their feet, behind a blue armored car blocking the road.
Riot police are a sight I've gotten used to – and that Athenians accept with a shrug and some adjustments. They simply make shopping detours when the downtown is choked off and ship the kids off to grandmothers when schools are shuttered, as they were for months last year. I've even seen waiters scurrying along beside marchers carrying coffee on brass trays to shop owners waiting out the protestors.
French prime minister Guy Mollet suggested a Franco-Anglo union to his English counterpart Anthony Eden in 1956, reports the BBC, citing newly-released documents from the British National Archives.
The formerly secret government cabinet paper dated Sept. 10, 1956 reads: "When the French prime minister, Monsieur Mollet was recently in London he raised with the prime minister the possibility of a union between the United Kingdom and France." The extraordinary suggestion was turned down, however, meaning that the prospect of a new Anglo-French country would remain an intriguing historial hypothesis.
A week after Israel conducted the second of two series of mock air raids over French UNIFIL soldiers, France's contingent has been given permission to shoot at Israeli warplanes if the troops feel threatened, a high-ranking French military officer was reported as having said on Thursday.Because Israeli mine-clearing trainers have Jewish cooties.
A report in the Jerusalem Post said Thursday that the French contingent of UNIFIL would consider further aggressive flyovers a violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1701.
"There was a reality on the ground and it was important for us to reaffirm what we had seen and explain clearly what are the orders of the French soldiers to protect themselves," the French officer, who was not identified, was quoted as having said.
"No assurances were made to us that they [the Israeli Air Force] would stop [the flights]," the officer added. "The orders that the [French] soldiers have is that their weapons are for self-defense."
UNIFIL spokesperson Milos Strugar supported the French position, saying that according to Resolution 1701, the UN peacekeepers in Southern Lebanon had the right to use force in self-defense, even against Israeli aircraft.
Meanwhile, UN officials denied reports Thursday that Israel had trained peacekeepers to clear cluster bombs dropped across South Lebanon during the July-August war.
"Nobody from UNIFIL has been to Israel to receive de-mining training and none will ever be," said Chris Clarke, program manager for the UN's Mine Action Coordination Center in South Lebanon.
Defence barristers for the museum argue that while the anthem does have patriotic and sentimental value, it is not a national symbol.You did want a toilet thread, didn't you?
The prosecution on the other hand argue the symbolism of playing the anthem while flushing a toilet is an offence to the nation and they have put forward a robust case.
Seventy two employees of Paris's main airport have lost their security clearance after an anti-terrorism investigation that they posed a security risk.
Trade unions at Charles de Gaulle airport are threatening to go on strike over the issue, which they say amounts to religious discrimination. They claim the workers were targeted because they are Muslims.
The employees - mainly aircraft cleaners or baggage handlers - are suspected by France's anti-terrorism co-ordination unit, Uclat, of having links with radical Islam, or of attending terrorist training camps in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
According to Uclat, one was a friend of Richard Reid, the British "shoe bomber" who tried to blow up a flight from Paris to Miami in December 2001 and is serving a life sentence in the United States.
Jacques Lebrot, the deputy prefect of the Seine-Saint Denis département in which the airport is located, said all but two of the workers who lost their accreditation were Muslims. Charles de Gaulle airport draws many of its employees from the surrounding, troubled northern suburbs of Paris, where much of the population is of north African origin.
Despite the 20,000 troops deployed in southern Lebanon, the United Nations admits that weapons smuggling from Syria continues unhindered. A German report finds UNIFIL does not patrol after dark.This is a dangerous and predictable farce. The honesty of the officers who are speaking to Der Spiegel is disarming, but Hizballah is rearming and they are doing nothing except building themselves saunas.
Hizbullah terrorists are free to roam at night without fear of being identified by the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), according to a report by the German paper Der Spiegel.
The report cites a long tradition of UNIFIL inaction, which it says allowed time for a Finnish contingent to construct a giant sauna and an Indian contingent to decorate its base with tradition Indian artwork.This is the great triumph of Condi Rice's diplomacy and Olmert's (hot-)air war. Due to being led by wimps, morons, and wishful thinkers, we appear predestined to vanish off the world stage, sucked up our own fundaments by the vacuum of purpose and will inside us. I only wish the foreshadowing wasn't so obvious.
Police deployed 4,000 reinforcements as marauding youths torched at least two public buses Friday, the anniversary of the deaths of two teenagers that ignited weeks of riots in largely immigrant housing projects across France.
After the buses were burned, Paris' transport authority curtailed bus service in the Seine-Saint-Denis region north of the capital, which is home to thousands of immigrants and their French-born children.
Thierre Ange, a 19-year-old witness, said four men attacked the bus, "made everyone get off, then they hit a woman and dragged out the bus driver by his tie" and torched the bus with a gasoline bomb in a bottle. The blackened carcass of another bus that was burned earlier stood across town in Le Blanc Mesnil.
Earlier this week, newspapers quoted the American 'Defence and Foreign Affairs Strategic Policy report saying that some of the 1974 missing ended up as guinea pigs in secret Turkish biochemical experiments between 1984 and 1988. The experiments had been witnessed by Kurds who had themselves managed to escape.
Yesterday Phileleftheros, which was first to publish the contents of the article, spoke Gregory Copley, president of the Washington-based International Strategic Studies Association (ISSA), which produces the defence bulletin exclusively for governments. Copley said the association had a lot of information relating to Greek Cypriots captured in 1974 and used as guinea pigs. He said he was still gathering more information.
“It’s a very hot question for the Turkish military authorities,” he said, adding that day by day more information was emerging about Turkish biological and chemical weapons’ programmes, something they were watching closely.
Copley said he and his associates had been hearing about the programmes for a long time, but had only managed to secure concrete information over the past few months, “which we have published already”. “Now we are looking for more detailed information,” Copley said.
He said his sources were various people in Turkey, including in the intelligence services.
Michel Thooris, head of the small Action Police union, claims that the new violence is taking on an Islamic fundamentalist tinge.
"Many youths, many arsonists, many vandals behind the violence do it to cries of 'Allah Akbar' (God is Great) when our police cars are stoned," he said in an interview.
Larger, more mainstream police unions sharply disagree that the suburban unrest has any religious basis. However, they do say that some youth gangs no longer seem content to throw stones or torch cars and instead appear determined to hurt police officers — or worse.
"First, it was a rock here or there. Then it was rocks by the dozen. Now, they're leading operations of an almost military sort to trap us," said Loic Lecouplier, a police union official in the Seine-Saint-Denis region north of Paris. "These are acts of war."
National police reported 2,458 cases of violence against officers in the first six months of the year, on pace to top the 4,246 cases recorded for all of 2005 and the 3,842 in 2004. Firefighters and rescue workers have also been targeted — and some now receive police escorts in such areas.
"What bothered me, and in a certain way made me suspicious despite the relaxed atmosphere, was again and again in our discussions how much this president described himself as 'God-fearing,'" Schroeder wrote, adding he is a firm believer in the separation of church and state.Do they now...
Schroeder accused some elements in U.S. as being hypocritical when it comes to secularism in government.
"We rightly criticize that in most Islamic states, the role of religion for society and the character of the rule of law are not clearly separated," Schroeder wrote. "But we fail to recognize that in the USA, the Christian fundamentalists and their interpretation of the Bible have similar tendencies."
PARIS Airbus is unlikely to break even on the A380 superjumbo jet for at least another decade, as massive cost over-runs linked to the delay of the twin-deck plane push back the timetable for recovering development costs, company figures released Thursday indicate.
Airbus and its parent company, European Aeronautic Defense & Space, predicted Thursday that they would now need to sell 420 of the 555-seat planes in order to recoup more than $13 billion in expected expenses, up 55 percent from a forecast of 270 planes last year. The company also confirmed that it could deliver only 84 of the planes by the end of 2010, down from a forecast in June of 159 planes.
Airbus now has 159 firm orders for the A380, a number that has not changed in almost a year. With Airbus in the deepest crisis of its 36-year history, some analysts have suggested that getting many more new orders for the large plane might be a tough prospect. The company has said that it expects to sell 751 planes during the life of the program, which insiders say represents about 50 percent of the market for planes with 400 or more seats, like the Boeing 747.
Once the current A380 production bottlenecks have been cleared, Airbus should be able to produce around 45 of the jets a year beginning in 2010, executives have said. Based on that schedule, analysts said that Airbus could not expect to recover its costs until 2017.
"If the current figures are correct, then I think we are looking at another 10 years before it makes any money," said Philip Lawrence of the Aerospace Research Center at the University of the West of England in Bristol.
Muslim organisations that refuse to defend core British values and fail to take a "pro-active" role in the fight against extremism are to lose access to millions of pounds of Government funding, it was disclosed yesterday.
Ruth Kelly, the Communities Secretary, said it was time for a "fundamental rebalancing" of relations with Muslim organisations if a new generation of terrorists was not to grow up in this country.
The tough new approach would involve shifting grants towards those organisations which accepted and promoted a set of "non-negotiable values" including respect for the law and freedom of speech.
"It is only by defending our values that we will prevent extremists radicalising future generations of terrorists," Miss Kelly said in a speech to Muslim groups in London.
In an apparent threat to the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB), the umbrella group for Muslims which has received more than £200,000 from Government in the past two years, Miss Kelly highlighted its refusal to take part in Holocaust Memorial Day.
"I can't help wondering why those in leadership positions who say they want to achieve religious tolerance and a cohesive society would choose to boycott an event which marks, above all, our common humanity and respect for each other," she said.
The festivals commemorate Spain's expulsion of the Moors, which was completed in 1492 after nearly 800 years of rule in much of the country. The fiestas, which each village holds on a different date, are common in many areas of Spain, particularly around the southeastern city of Valencia. Revelers typically dress up in period costumes and sometimes stage mock battles. In the finale, Christians defeat Muslim Moors, and an image of the prophet is destroyed.
But after the worldwide Muslim anger over the Prophet Muhammad cartoons, published a year ago, some villages are toning down their festivals, the newspaper El Pais said. In the most recent case, last month the village of Beneixama near Valencia did away with the custom, the newspaper said.
"It was not an essential act, and as it could hurt some people's feelings we decided to skip it," mayor Antonio Valdes told the daily.
The paper said several other communities were also scaling back. It said that amid the cartoon uproar in February, the Valencia-area village of Bocairent abstained from its traditional practice of destroying the effigy.
SPIEGEL: You are trying to say that critics of Islam are systematically silenced in Germany?
Tibi: Yes. Even the comparatively moderate Turkish organization DITIB says there are no Islamists, only Islam and Muslims -- anything else is racism. That means that you can no longer criticize the religion. Accusing somebody of racism is a very effective weapon in Germany. Islamists know this: As soon as you accuse someone of demonizing Islam, then the European side backs down. I have also been accused of such nonsense, even though my family can trace its roots right back to Muhammad and I myself know the Koran by heart.
SPIEGEL: You have said numerous times that the conflict between the Western world Muslim groups here is an "ideological war."
Tibi: The result of a conflict between two sides is that people politicize their cultural backgrounds. In Germany representatives of the Islamic communities try to hijack children who are born here, along with the entire Islamic community, to prevent them from being influenced by the society which has taken them in. Children born here are like blank sheets on which you can write European or Islamic texts. Muslim representatives want to raise their children as if they don't even live in Europe.
Chirac's comments went farther than in the past, using the word genocide directly for the first time. In 2004, Chirac said Turkey should recognize the killings and make "an effort at memory" to join the EU, and France's parliament has officially recognized the killings as genocide.
Glen Smyth, chairman of the Metropolitan Police Federation, says policing is a dangerous business.
Police officers who launch chases over roofs, railway lines and busy roads could be sacked for putting the health and safety of criminals at risk, it has emerged. New Home Office proposals say that any officer who knowingly flouts guidelines designed to protect themselves and the public could face dismissal for "gross misconduct". The suggested new rule has infuriated rank-and-file officers who feel that it amounts to a "criminal's charter".
The fear is that police will be too scared to give chase to a suspected thief, burglar or mugger because their own job could be at risk if anyone is injured. Scenarios outlined to the Daily Mail which could be affected include any confrontations which involve running across roofs, railway lines or busy roads. The idea is contained in the Home Office's "draft police misconduct procedure" - which was circulated in July this year. Underneath the heading of "gross misconduct", it lists all the offences which could lead to officers being sacked from their force.
Mr Chirac said that he believed that there was still potential for fruitful dialogue between Iran and the six nations currently involved in the Iran nuclear issue - the US, UK, France, Germany, Russia and China.And after Iran has a nuclear bomb, then we can negotiate some more on when and where it's appropriate to use it.
"I am not pessimistic," he said. "I think that Iran is a great nation and that we can find solutions through dialogue."
Mr Chirac said he had never noticed that sanctions had been effective, although he said that he was not ruling out using them if necessary. Instead he suggested that the way forward was for negotiations to begin without any preconditions and for each side to make concessions once they are under way.
"We must, on the one hand, together, Iran and the six countries, meet and set an agenda for negotiations then start negotiations," Mr Chirac said. "Then, during these negotiations I suggest that the six renounce seizing the UN Security Council and Iran renounces uranium enrichment."
Slowly but surely, neo-Nazis have become an indispensable part of society in northeast Germany. They sponsor sports competitions and dance evenings. The baker offers loaves with smooth brown crusts called glatze, the German for skinhead. There is no niche of society here that has not been infiltrated.They can't brag about Hitler and the Nazi era since that would land them in legal trouble but that doesn't stop them from expressing their views in other ways, like wearing t-shirts with the slogan "Granddad was right". Such civilised people...
“It began with Blood & Honour rock concerts in the 1990s,” says Benedikt, a middle-aged computer specialist who did not want to be photographed, “and we thought it would go away when the teenagers grew up. But now they bring their children [to meetings] and marry each other.”
One proud neo-Nazi father gave his daughter a black doll for her third birthday — and a bat to beat it with.
Washington wants to convince Russia and China to raise the pressure on the Islamic Republic by asking the U.N. Security Council to consider sanctions, diplomats from several countries to participate in the talks told Reuters.
Some, however, expressed doubt that Washington would succeed given opposition in European capitals, Moscow and Beijing.
"There is no way the U.S. is going to walk away with an agreement to impose sanctions on Iran," said an EU diplomat from a country participating in the talks.
THE Government is discussing with airport operators plans to introduce a screening system that allows security staff to focus on those passengers who pose the greatest risk.
The passenger-profiling technique involves selecting people who are behaving suspiciously, have an unusual travel pattern or, most controversially, have a certain ethnic or religious background.
The system would be much more sophisticated than simply picking out young men of Asian appearance. But it would cause outrage in the Muslim community because its members would be far more likely to be selected for extra checks.
Officials at the Department for Transport (DfT) have discussed the practicalities of introducing such a system with airport operators, including BAA. They believe that it would be more effective at identifying potential terrorists than the existing random searches.