Gates of Vienna News Feed 9/2/2013

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad warned that any attack on his country could spark a wider regional war, while Pope Francis cautioned that such an attack could lead to a global conflict. Meanwhile, prices of gasoline and diesel fuel rose in anticipation of a possible disruption of supplies in the event of a war in Syria.

In other news, more than a hundred illegal migrants, mostly from Egypt and Syria, were rescued off the coast of Sicily, while detained immigrants on Sardinia blocked traffic in a protest to highlight their demands for greater freedom of movement within Italy.

To see the headlines and the articles, click “Continue reading” below.

Thanks to C. Cantoni, Fjordman, Insubria, RR, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Notice to tipsters: Please don’t submit extensive excerpts from articles that have been posted behind a subscription firewall, or are otherwise under copyright protection.

Caveat: Articles in the news feed are posted “as is”. Gates of Vienna cannot vouch for the authenticity or accuracy of the contents of any individual item posted here. We check each entry to make sure it is relatively interesting, not patently offensive, and at least superficially plausible. The link to the original is included with each item’s title. Further research and verification are left to the reader.

Financial Crisis
» Greece: Athens Fears Attack on Troika Envoys
» Rome Blazes the Trail With Pioneering High-Frequency Trading Tax
» Unemployment Rates Vary Hugely Between Euro Countries
» CBS and Time Warner Cable End Contract Dispute
» Two Women Gang Raped by 10-12 Juveniles in Delaware Park: Police
» Montreal Muslim Youth Conference Cancelled After Controversy
Europe and the EU
» Bulgaria Struggles With Rush of Syrian Refugees
» Fiat Will End Italy ‘Commitment’ Without New Union Rules
» Italy: Church Ordered to Compensate Child Sex Abuse Victim
» Italy: Four Romanians Face Jail for ‘Stealing a Tonne of Copper’
» Lava Lamps: 50 Years Old and Still Groovy
» Machine as Good as Man at CPR: Swedish Study
» Move Over Arizona, Greenland Has a Grander Canyon
» Norway Cop Fired for Insulting PM Online
» Saudi Princess Dishes Out $62 M for Geneva Estate
Mediterranean Union
» Morocco: EU Executive Earmarks €110mln Aid in 2013
North Africa
» Egypt Judges Recommend Dissolving Muslim Brotherhood Group
» Mubarak’s Lawyer: ‘He Will be a Free Man’
» Space Archaeologist Unlocks Secrets of Ancient Civilizations
Israel and the Palestinians
» Israel Launches Amos-4 Civil Communications Satellite
Middle East
» Diplomacy: ‘Syria: Hollande Trapped’
» ENI Chief Meets Iraq PM on Boosting Output
» Saudi Connection to Chechen Terrorists in Syria?
» Syria: Aleppo Rebel Religious Committee Forbids ‘Colonial’ Croissants
» Syria’s Assad Warns of ‘Regional War’ If West Strikes
» Syria’s Civil War Will Continue Even After Assad’s Fall
» Syria: Intervention Could Unleash Global War, Vatican Warns
» Syria: Cyprus: GB Base to Supply Intelligence to US, Reports
» War in Syria Pushing up Energy Prices
South Asia
» India Launches First Military Satellite
Far East
» China: Woman Forced to Abort at Nine Months Because Her Husband Already Had a Child
Sub-Saharan Africa
» Beaten, Starved, Gang-Raped and ‘Forced to Give Birth to a Child in Captivity, ‘ Horrifying Story of Woman Who Was Held Hostage With Her Boyfriend in Somalia for 15 Months’
» Raped Cape Baby Discharged From Hospital
Latin America
» Diana Nyad Completes 110-Mile Swim From Cuba to Florida
» Letta Asks EU Do Its Part for Incoming Wave of Immigrants
» Sardinia: Immigrants Block Traffic to Back Demands
» Sicily: 104 People Rescued at Sea, Dead Woman on Board
Culture Wars
» Ex-Footballer Crowned Mr Gay Italia
» More Focus on LGBT in the Workplace

Greece: Athens Fears Attack on Troika Envoys

(ANSAmed) — ATHENS, SEPTEMBER 2 — Greece’s Counter-Terrorism unit is reportedly expecting that an unknown financial target is the next aim of terrorists choosing capitalist symbols to vent their anger over the coming transfer and firings of scores of thousands of public workers. The site newsit reported that the fears are that this time anarchists or terrorists will go after a person and not a building, while the newspaper Ta Nea said envoys from Greece’s international lenders of the Troika, the European Union-International Monetary Fund-European Central Bank are in the cross-hairs. They are due to return in September. Law enforcement authorities have reportedly beefed up security markedly to protect the envoys and other likely targets, although they were not disclosed. Police said there is already an announcement warning for an “upgraded” hit by the criminals.

Authorities are going after people it believes supply the terrorists with arms and weapons and are working to deter any potential hit, as GreekReporter website stressed.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Rome Blazes the Trail With Pioneering High-Frequency Trading Tax

Milan and London, 2 Sept. (AKI) — Italy was on Monday due to become the first country to introduce a levy on superfast trading and equity derivatives often used by corporations and banks to hedge against risk.

The levy, the final part of a two-stage process established this year to tax equity-related translactions, will apply regardless of where the transaction takes place or the country of residence of the counterparty, the Financial Times reported.

For high-frequency traders, order changes and cancellations will be taxed at 0.02 percent when they occur within less than half a second, once above a threshold, the paper said.

There will be a fixed charge for derivatives, depending on the type of contract. Deals done off-exchange will be subject to a higher tax band, according to the FT.

Bankers and brokers have warned that the new taxes could further damage liquidity in the Italian market, where volumes have fallen sharply since an equities tax was introduced in March, the FT said.

European policy-makers are eyeing taxes on financial transactions to stabilise markets, curb speculative and high-speed trading and cut budget deficits. A European Commission proposal has the backing of 11 eurozone countries.

Lawmakers in the United States and Australia have floated similar proposals.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Unemployment Rates Vary Hugely Between Euro Countries

Unemployment rates vary hugely in the eurozone with the worst hit countries, Greece (27.6%) and Spain (26.3%) having jobless rates over five times higher than in Austria (4.8%) and Germany (5.3%), according to Eurostat July figures. On average, the euro-area unemployment rate was 12.1%, and 11% in the EU28.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

CBS and Time Warner Cable End Contract Dispute

CBS and Time Warner Cable ended their protracted contract dispute Monday evening with the announcement of an agreement that restored CBS and its related channels, like Showtime, to millions of cable subscribers largely in three major cities, New York, Los Angeles and Dallas.

The two sides did not release any specific information on the terms. They had battled for exactly a month over an increase in fees CBS was seeking for the right to retransmit CBS stations in those cities and some other locations on Time Warner Cable systems.

[Return to headlines]

Two Women Gang Raped by 10-12 Juveniles in Delaware Park: Police

The victims, aged 24 and 32, told Wilmington police they were approached by a group of 10 to 12 black males between 12 and 17-years of age before sexually assaulted Thursday evening.

Two women were gang raped by about a dozen juveniles while sitting in a Delaware park Thursday according to police.

The victims, aged 24 and 32, recounted to Wilmington police of being approached by a group of 10 to 12 black males between 12 and 17 years of age before sun set in Kosciuszko Park at 7 p.m.

They say they were forcefully grabbed and sexually assaulted before the attackers ran from the scene.

As of Sunday no witnesses had come forward to help identify any suspects in the deplorable crime that led to the hospitalization of both women by ambulance. The condition of the two women was not released…

           — Hat tip: RR [Return to headlines]

Montreal Muslim Youth Conference Cancelled After Controversy

The organization that runs the Palais des congrès has cancelled a Muslim youth conference, scheduled for the coming weekend, based on what it described as a “security review.”

The conference, titled Entre Ciel et Terre (Between Heaven and Earth), was scheduled to be held at the popular Montreal conference centre Sept 7 and 8.

But the Société du Palais des congrès, the organization that runs the centre, issued a brief statement on Saturday stating it was cancelled “following a recent security review.” No specific security concerns were outlined.

While the release provided a media contact “for more information,” that person responded to The Gazette’s request for clarification with the following statement: “A spokesperson will be available September 3.”

The conference was organized by a Montreal group called Collectif 1ndépendance. A description on its website describes the conference as a chance for youth in the Muslim community to “exchange and share” opinions.

In a statement on its Facebook page posted on Monday, the group acknowledged it was aware of the decision and would be providing instructions for conference attendees “for refund of tickets.”

The group, which did not respond to requests for comment made throughout the weekend, made no mention of rescheduling the event elsewhere.

Le Collectif québécois contre l’islamophobie, a local non-profit organization that aims to fight Islamophobia in Quebec society, said in a release that cancelling the conference one week before it was scheduled to take place “sets a dangerous precedent for rights and freedoms in Quebec and in Canada, especially those of ethnic and religious minorities.”

The planned conference was at the centre of a controversy earlier this month when Agne’s Maltais, the provincial minister responsible for the status of women, asked the federal government to bar some of the invited speakers from entering Canada.

In a letter, Maltais asked the speakers be barred because “they transmit values that go totally against the principals of equality between men and women in Quebec.” One of the speakers, French citizen Nader Abou Anas, has made particularly strong statements in the past about women, saying they should wear a head scarf, avoid revealing clothing and refrain from wearing makeup or perfume.

The board of directors that run the Societé du Palais des congrès follow a mandate set by Quebec’s tourism minister.

At least one group recently told reporters it planned to demonstrate at the Palais des congrès if a couple of the invited speakers were allowed to present.

Last Tuesday, federal Public Security Minister Steven Blaney told reporters he would not order that the speakers, based in Europe, be prevented from entering Canada.

In its Facebook post on Monday, Collectif 1ndépendance dubbed the events of the past two weeks “a beautiful adventure.”

[Return to headlines]

Bulgaria Struggles With Rush of Syrian Refugees

Sofia must ask the EU, UN and Red Cross for help in dealing with increasing numbers of Syrian refugees coming via Turkey, Bulgarian interior minister Tsvetlin Yovchev told TV7 Sunday. “At present, some 40-50 refugees are crossing our border each day, most of them coming from Syria,” he said.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Fiat Will End Italy ‘Commitment’ Without New Union Rules

Forced by high court to talk to hard-liners

(ANSA) — Turin, September 2 — Fiat on Monday threatened to end its “commitment” to Italy unless the government draws up new rules for labour relations in Italy.

A new law on worker representation and upholding contracts “cannot be avoided,” the Turin car maker said after recent tussles with hard-line unions.

Government intervention is a “‘sine qua non’ (essential condition) for Fiat’s continued industrial commitment in Italy,” it said.

The threat was issued as Fiat said it would accept a high- court ruling to allow the hard-line metalworkers union Fiom to represent workers.

In July, the Constitutional Court ordered Fiat to revive relations with Fiom, the metalworkers’ arm of Italy’s biggest and most left-wing trade union CGIL. Fiom appealed to the supreme court after Fiat said it would no longer talk to it after it refused to sign labour agreements it said were unacceptable.

Fiom has engaged in a series of bitter fights with Fiat in recent years over the carmaker’s efforts to introduce new, more flexible working contracts and practices which the union fears will undermine workers’ rights.

Fiat chief Sergio Marchionne has long accused unions of dragging down loss-making plants in Italy which are already being subsidised by the rest of the global group.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy: Church Ordered to Compensate Child Sex Abuse Victim

Bolzano, 27 August (AKI) — A court in northern Italy has ordered the Catholic Church to pay 700,00 euros to the family of a woman who a priest was convicted and later cleared of abusing when she was a child, local media reported on Tuesday.

The court in Bolzano said the dioceses of Bolzano and Brixen and a local parish must pay 500,000 euros to the woman and 100,000 euros each to her parents.

“This sentence is probably the first of its kind in Italy, and allows for — at least in part — a form of moral compensation,” said the woman’s lawyer, Gianni Lanzinger, cited by the Alto Adige Oggi daily.

Parish priest Giorgio Carli was arrested in 2003, accused of raping the woman from when she was nine until she was 14. He was convicted of the abuse on appeal but in 2009 was acquitted by Italy’s supreme court under the statute of limitations.

Carli, 48, has always professed his innocence of the crime.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Italy: Four Romanians Face Jail for ‘Stealing a Tonne of Copper’

Rome, 30 August (AKI) — Police in the Italian capital Rome have arrested four Romanians accused of stealing a tonne of copper. They face several years in prison if convicted of the crime.

Police nabbed the suspects at Rome’s Tiburtina station as they tried to flee with the copper booty aboard two cars.

The Romanians allegedly stole the copper from a building site where work is in progress to extend the station.

Under a new law that entered into force on 17 August, anyone convictd of stealing copper and other primary metals will be jailed for at least three years.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Lava Lamps: 50 Years Old and Still Groovy

Call them relics of the 1960s or hippy home accessories, lava lamps have been casting their dim but groovy light on interiors for a half-century, having hit British shelves 50 years ago on Tuesday.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Machine as Good as Man at CPR: Swedish Study

Chest compressions performed by a machine are just as effective at helping heart attack patients as those performed by a human, a Swedish study has found.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Move Over Arizona, Greenland Has a Grander Canyon

A major geological feature of the planet discovered hidden under the ice

Scientists reported last week that they have discovered a vast canyon buried deep beneath the ice sheet that covers Greenland, the world’s largest island.

The canyon runs from the centre of Greenland to its northern coast on the Arctic Ocean, some 740 kilometres away. The gouge is about 50 percent longer than the Grand Canyon in the US and ranges from 200 to 800 metres deep. It has most likely been covered by ice for four million years.

Glaciologist Jonathan Bamber from the University of Bristol in the UK and other researchers from universities in Canada and Italy examined data compiled by NASA research planes that have flown over Greenland for the past 40 years to peek at what lies below the ice.

“We started looking at the data, and once we put it all together, we realised there was this strange feature in the middle of Greenland,” Bamber told the journal Science.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Norway Cop Fired for Insulting PM Online

A Norwegian policeman has been sacked after he called Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg “krapylet”, which roughly translates as “the creep” or “the filth”, on Facebook.

“Krapylet has ruled for eight years without achieving anything but decay,” Stein-Robin Kleven Bergh, who is also a politician for the anti-immigrant Progress Party, wrote on his page.

Tormod Bakke, the chief of police in Hedmark, confirmed that Bergh had been dismissed after an analysis of his use of Facebook, with this post and others deemed to have contravened police guidelines.

“We have rules for the use of social media, and they require that one should show respect in all exchanges. This message about “krapyl” goes way over the limit.”

He said it was irrelevant either which side of the political divide the target was on, or how senior they were.

“As a public servant, you have an obligation to show loyalty to your superiors. But one should show respect to everyone, both those you agree with and disagree with. In my opinion, this post totally lacked respect,” Bakke said.

Bergh, who has a 30-year career in the police behind him, is appealing his dismissal.

“I stand for my comments. We do not live in a totalitarian state,” he said.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Saudi Princess Dishes Out $62 M for Geneva Estate

A Saudi princess has bought a historical Geneva estate that once belonged to a former Swiss president for 57.5 million Swiss francs ($62 million, 47 million euros), media reported Monday. Princess Latifa Bin Fahd bin Abdulaziz Al Saud is 54 and a daughter of former king Fahd.

She joins a number of other Saudi royals who already live in luxurious settings in the Swiss city.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Morocco: EU Executive Earmarks €110mln Aid in 2013

Brussels, 29 August (AKI) — The European Union has allocated a total of 110 million euros this year to help Morocco’s economic and social development, the European Commission announced on Thursday.

“Our support for these two major areas of socio-economic reforms allows us to contribute to a more inclusive growth in line with the commitments made by the EU to its Moroccan partner,” said enlargement commissioner Stefan Fuele.

The aid formed part of the European Neighbourhood Policy, Fuele added.

“These actions are also designed to meet the needs of the Moroccan population regarding the redistribution of growth in Morocco” he added.

European Neighbourhood Policy aims to share the benefits of the bloc’s 2004 enlargement by strengthening ties with neighbouring countries, according to the EU.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Egypt Judges Recommend Dissolving Muslim Brotherhood Group

A panel of Egyptian judges recommended Monday the dissolution of the Muslim Brotherhood group, adding momentum to a push by authorities to ban the ousted Islamist president’s main backers.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Mubarak’s Lawyer: ‘He Will be a Free Man’

Farid al-Deeb, the lawyer of ousted Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, talks to SPIEGEL about his client’s health and ties to the current transitional government — and why he believes the ex-president will soon be acquitted.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Space Archaeologist Unlocks Secrets of Ancient Civilizations

(CNN) — In Egypt’s northern Delta, Sarah Parcak is on the hunt to unearth ancient settlements, pyramids and tombs lost in the sands of time.

“We’ve found that patterns of site looting have increased between 500 and 1000 percent since the start of the Arab Spring,” she says.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Israel Launches Amos-4 Civil Communications Satellite

(AGI) Jerusalem, 1 Sept — Israeli communications company Spacecom has launched its Amos-4 civil communications satellite .

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Diplomacy: ‘Syria: Hollande Trapped’

Le Figaro, 2 September 2013

“Having rallied to the call for immediate strikes on Bashar al-Assad, the head of state has been forced to put away his sword in the wake of Barack Obama’s decision [on August 31] to hold a vote in Congress, which is in recess until September 9,” notes Le Figaro. For the conservative daily, François Hollande is now faced with a context in which he must be feeling “very much alone.”

Following the British parliament’s refusal to endorse UK intervention in Syria, the French president had confirmed his intention to stand with the US and its plan for military action to punish the Damascus dictator.

In its editorial, Le Figaro remarks on —

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

ENI Chief Meets Iraq PM on Boosting Output

Consortium plans to reach 850,000 barrels a day in 2016

(ANSA) — Rome, September 2 — Eni CEO Paolo Scaroni met Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki Monday to discuss the Italian fuels giant’s plans to boost its international consortium’s output at the Zubair field near Bassora. Eni and its three consortium partners — Occidental Petroleum Corporation, Korea Gas Corporation and Missan Oil Company — aim to up production from 350,000 barrels a day today to 850,000 barrels in 2016.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Saudi Connection to Chechen Terrorists in Syria?

If a recent article by the Telegraph’s Ambrose Evans-Pritchard is accurate, the Saudi intelligence chief is able to turn Chechen terrorists on and off. Not only were the Boston Marathon bombers both Chechen but at least two Saudis were injured in the blast — Abdul Rahman Al-Harbi and Nura Al-Ajjaji.

By far, the most controversial of those two Saudis is Al-Harbi. In the hours after the bombing, he was reportedly a ‘suspect’ whose home was searched for hours by authorities. He then became a ‘person of interest’ and ultimately just a ‘witness’ who was in the wrong place at the wrong time, despite being on a terror watchlist.

Now, let’s get back to Evans-Pritchard’s article from this past August 27th. It has to do with the Saudis offering Russia a ‘secret oil deal’ if the latter backs off of its support for Syria. Saudi Intelligence chief, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, is reported to have met with Russian President Vladimir Putin at about the same time that Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham were in Egypt, lobbying for the release of Muslim Brotherhood leaders…

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Syria: Aleppo Rebel Religious Committee Forbids ‘Colonial’ Croissants

A sharia committee in a rebel-held area of Aleppo issued a fatwa deeming croissants ‘haram’ (forbidden in Islamic law) because of their “colonial” significance, pan-Arab daily Asharq al-Awsat reported on Tuesday. Croissants’ crescent shape celebrates European victory over Muslims, according to the fatwa (religious ruling).

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Syria’s Assad Warns of ‘Regional War’ If West Strikes

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has told a French newspaper that military intervention from France and the United States could set off a “powder keg” and “regional war”, while denying his forces had used chemical weapons.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Syria’s Civil War Will Continue Even After Assad’s Fall

Islam expert Francesco Zannini talks to AsiaNews about the consequences of the imminent US attack on Syria. Without a strategic plan, conflicts between religious and ethnic groups could explode at any time. Turkey, Jordan and Israel support Obama, but fear a war on their borders.

Rome ( AsiaNews) — “The Syrian civil war could continue even after Bashar al-Assad’s fall,” said Prof Francesco Zannini, from the Pontifical Institute for Arabic and Islamic Studies (PISAI) in Rome. Speaking to AsiaNews about the consequences of a possible US-led attack against Syria, he said that regime change in Syria or a weakening of the government of Bashar al-Assad would not stop the chaos of the past two years, which has left more 100,000 people dead and more than a million displaced. For the Islam expert, the ongoing conflict in Syria is much more than just a civil war against a dictator. “Without a commitment by all foreign parties, the country will not have a future of peace.”

“The popular uprising will continue to confront the means of repression used by the Assad regime and his Alawi military forces,” Zannini explained. “The latter are already trained to crush any internal opposition. This is preventing various ethnic and religious groups from following the same political path.”

Until now, all components of Syrian society have been held in check by an authoritarian regime. Muslims (Shias, Sunnis, and Alawis), Christians (from various groups), Kurds and other minorities have lived together in Syria for centuries. However, at present tensions between them may turn violent at any moment.

Foreign terrorists groups, such as al-Jabat Nusra Front and other armed militias, in some cases linked to al- Qaeda, are feeding the flames of the civil war.

“The danger is not only al-Qaeda, whose presence is documented but not murky,” Zannini explained. “Various Muslim extremist groups are also fighting each other in Syria. They contribute more than terrorist movements to the country’s instability because none can prevail over the other.”

Western nations are reluctant to act for fear of strengthening terrorists. “The international community is divided, but these differences also exist between many governments in the Middle East. Saudi Arabia and the Gulf nations are pushing for a new strategic dispensation for the region and support the United States. Officially, Turkey, Jordan, and Israel are also in favour of the US line but fear the consequences of a military attack that could cross their borders.”

“These factors are part of the Syrian microcosm, which must be taken into account to understand the future structure of a country dominated for decades by the Alawi regime, which kept together many religious and ethnic minorities,” Zannini said. “This is why minorities have not taken sides against a bloody dictatorship, considered by many to be the lesser evil.” (S.C.)

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Syria: Intervention Could Unleash Global War, Vatican Warns

Striking Syria would extend the violence, Monsignor Toso says

(ANSAmed) — ROME, SEPTEMBER 2 — “The way to solve Syria’s problems cannot be an armed intervention. It would not decrease the violence, but rather risks exploding it and extending it to other countries. The conflict in Syria contains all the ingredients for war on a global scale,” Monsignor Mario Toso, who is the secretary of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, warned on Monday.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Syria: Cyprus: GB Base to Supply Intelligence to US, Reports

(ANSAmed) — NICOSIA, SEPTEMBER 2 — Britain will supply intelligence to America for their planned strikes against Syria from a base in Cyprus, Cypriot media report today quoting the Sunday Times. According to the paper, the British Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) will use the listening post operated by the Army’s 9 Signal Regiment at Ayios Nikolaos. The top secret base, which includes living quarters for British servicemen and their families, is located near the Green line, two miles east of the town of Famagusta and 15 kilometres north of Ayia Napa. Land around the base, which is heavily guarded, is scattered with satellites, radar facilities and radio masts. The unit also provides UK Armed Forces and the United Nations Forces with electronic warfare support and command and control systems.

The Sunday Times reported that: “Ayios Nikolaos will help to keep the US abreast of vital signals traffic between the regime of President Assad and his military commanders.” British sources confirmed to the paper that intelligence-sharing would continue, unaffected by a Commons vote rejected action last week. In August 2012, the Times reported that British bases were providing Syrian rebels with vital intelligence information.

Last Thursday the UK sent six RAF Typhoon jets to Akrotiri to defend the strategically important bases on the island against potential retaliatory attacks from the regime of Bashar al-Assad.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

War in Syria Pushing up Energy Prices

Gas stations raising prices for diesel fuel, gasoline

(ANSA) — Rome, September 2 — The war in Syria and related concerns about stability in the region were being blamed Monday for driving up fuel prices in Italy.

Price hikes reported over the weekend saw gasoline rise to more than 1.88 euros per litre while diesel was reported above 1.77 euros per litre.

At least three previous price hikes have contributed to rising energy costs for Italian motorists and businesses that rely on trucking.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

India Launches First Military Satellite

It’s called GSAT-7 and will aid national maritime security. The launch is the result of collaboration with the French company Arianespace. The satellite cost 20.9 million euros.

Bangalore (AsiaNews / Agencies) — India successfully launched its first satellite into orbit this morning dedicated to military use only. The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has sent its GSAT-7 into orbit with the Ariane 5 rocket (by the French company Arianespace), from the spaceport of Kourou (French Guiana).

At a cost of 1.85 billion rupees (20.9 million euros), the satellite will cover the continent and the Indian Ocean, with the aim to strengthen maritime security.

By 4 September, the GSAT-7 will reach its orbital station, located about 36 thousand km above the equator.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

China: Woman Forced to Abort at Nine Months Because Her Husband Already Had a Child

Lili Zeng underwent induced labour, and a lethal injection was made on the child’s skull. In spite of all this, he was born alive, only to die in his mother’s arms. The woman’s husband forced the operation on her after he left her. He already had a son from a previous marriage. Women’s Rights Without Frontiers slams what happened.

Beijing (AsiaNews) — A Chinese woman was forced to abort in the ninth month of her pregnancy because of her former husband’s vindictiveness. In her own words, she was treated “as if I were a pig waiting to be slaughtered”. In the end, she watched her child terminated, dying in her arms after birth.

This is the horrific story of Lili Zeng, a young mother from Xinfeng County (in the rich southern province of Guangdong); just another victim of China’s one-child policy.

Her experience is told by Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, a non-governmental organisation led by Reggie Littlejohn who has been fighting to save innocent lives in China for years.

Zeng’s tragedy began in 2011. When she became pregnant, her husband left her. Having had another son from his first wife, he signed a consent form to force an abortion on his current wife.

Under Chinese law, abortion may be imposed by force if one spouse does not want to have children. What is more, already having a child is sufficient ground to stop a pregnancy.

For Chinese authorities, the husband’s desertion and Zeng’s opposition were not enough to stop them.

For the woman, her husband’s consent to the abortion was due to his first wife’s vindictiveness. In the end, red tape delayed everything until the ninth month, when Zeng was forcibly confined to a hospital for the abortion.

At such a late date, this kind of operation is a very risky, painful and completely unjustified. Zeng said she felt “as if I were a pig waiting to be slaughtered.”

Despite the lethal injection in the skull and the labour pains caused by drugs, the child was born alive but died in his mother’s arms shortly after.

Zeng said that she has attempted suicide three times after her release from hospital. Fortunately, they failed each time. Now she wants justice and is going through official channels like her local of Family Planning Office.

“If you want to blame someone, please blame the [One-Child] Policy, or your husband,” said one of the officials after being solicited extensively for an explanation.

“If he had not agreed to sign the form, no doctor would have dared to inject the induced labour needle into your body. Lili Zeng . . . if you continue to send text messages or call to berate me, I will definitely find someone to deal with you,” he told her.

For Reggie Littlejohn, “Our hearts break for Ms Zeng [. . .]. Her experience dramatically demonstrates the connection between forced abortion and China’s astronomical female suicide rate: 590 women a day end their lives in China.

Her situation “shows that-even when a woman is pregnant with her first child-if it is her husband’s second child, she can be forcibly aborted. We strongly condemn forced abortion under China’s One Child Policy and demand that the Chinese government put a stop to these atrocities immediately.”

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Beaten, Starved, Gang-Raped and ‘Forced to Give Birth to a Child in Captivity, ‘ Horrifying Story of Woman Who Was Held Hostage With Her Boyfriend in Somalia for 15 Months’

A waitress-turned-journalist has revealed her hellish tale of 15 months being held hostage by Somali terrorists where captors gang-raped her and played Russian roulette with an assault rifle.

Amanda Lindhout naively flew to the impoverished and volatile nation in 2008 at the age of 24 after convincing an ex-boyfriend to come along on the dangerous jaunt.

Miss Lindhout and Nigel Brennan, a 36-year-old Australian photographer, were kidnapped on their third day in the country.

In Mogadishu, she horrified veteran journalists with her bravado and naivety with one Robert Draper emailing his girlfriend: ‘She’s going to get herself or someone else killed.’

The conditions quickly became brutal as they were beaten and starved and Lindhout repeatedly gang-raped. Fearing that they may be killed, the pair decide that their chance of survival will improve if they convert to Islam.

There have been suggestions that Lindhout gave birth to a boy named Osama while she was in captivity but has never spoken of it — only said that she has endured ‘unspeakable atrocities’, the Post reported.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Raped Cape Baby Discharged From Hospital

Cape Town — A four-month-old baby who was raped last month has been discharged, the Red Cross Children’s Hospital said on Monday.

“She was admitted to theatre five times for wound repair and cleaning. The doctors are generally satisfied with the baby’s progress,” said hospital spokeswoman Lauren O’Connor-May.

“She will still be booked for follow-up appointments at the hospital, but the number and nature of these will depend on how the healing process goes.”

The baby was discharged on Friday. She was admitted on August 3, O’Connor-May said.

The baby was sleeping in bed with her parents when a man snatched and raped her last month, provincial police said at the time. A boy in the house was also raped.

A 25-year-old man was arrested and charged with abduction and rape.

The case was postponed to September 11 to give officials time to obtain DNA test results and gather statements from witnesses. — Sapa

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Diana Nyad Completes 110-Mile Swim From Cuba to Florida

Diana Nyad has become the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without the help of a shark cage.

The 64-year-old Nyad stepped ashore in Key West on Monday just before 2 p.m. EDT, about 53 hours after she began her swim in Havana on Saturday.

[Return to headlines]

Letta Asks EU Do Its Part for Incoming Wave of Immigrants

(AGI) Bled, Sept 2 — Italy’s Prime Minister, Enrico Letta, said he expects immigration levels to increase due to the crises in North Africa, with concerns over “Syria and Egypt in particular”. “Italy will do its part,” Letta said during a press conference in Bled, Slovenia, “but the problem is structural”. “During Italy and Greece’s semestral presidency, we will consider the pressure caused by immigration as a priority in Europe,” he added.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Sardinia: Immigrants Block Traffic to Back Demands

Pregnant women join in protests for immigrants’ rights

(ANSA) — Cagliari, September 2 — Hundreds of immigrants, including pregnant women, launched a major protest in the Sardinian city of Cagliari on Monday, blocking traffic with sit-ins to back their demands for freer movement.

Protesters were met by police officers as they called for greater freedom and travel documents to move about in Italy. The immigrants were drawn mainly from East African nations including Ethiopia, Sudan and Eritrea.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Sicily: 104 People Rescued at Sea, Dead Woman on Board

Egyptians and Syrians rescued 35 miles off Sicilian port city

(ANSAmed) — SIRACUSA, SEPTEMBER 2 — The Italian Coast Guard on Monday rescued 104 migrants 35 miles south east of the Sicilian port city of Siracusa, but arrived too late for a 52-year-old Palestinian woman, who had died on board.

The woman, a resident of Syria, had attempted the crossing in a boatload of Syrians and Egyptians along with her husband and their two children, aged 23 and 29. The woman’s family said she died two days ago, while other witnesses said she died last night, sources said.

The Coast Guard rescued the boat after one of the migrants sent an SOS call with a satellite phone.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Ex-Footballer Crowned Mr Gay Italia

Iraqi refugee gets bravery award after fleeing death penalty

(ANSA) — Torre Del Lago, September 2 — Former fourth-division goalkeeper Giovanni Licchello was crowned Mr Gay Italia Monday.

Licchello, 26, from the northern city of Ferrara, is an orthodontics salesman in the southern town of Brindisi who showed the jury a scar he got defending a friend from gay-bashers. A special Bravery Award was given to Hussiyen Adnan, an Iraqi refugee living in Turin, who fled his homeland after his family asked authorities to apply the country’s death penalty for his sexuality.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

More Focus on LGBT in the Workplace

EU report shows seven out of ten LGBTs in EU countries are hesitant about revealing their sexual identity

Last weekend’s Gay Pride activities may have been a resounding success, but judging by EU numbers there is still a long way to go, particularly in the workplace.

A new report by the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights showed that seven out of ten EU residents who consider themselves LGBT (lesbian, gay, bi-sexual or transgender) have rarely or never been open about their sexuality or sexual identity.

The same report also revealed that more than eight out of ten people under 18 have seen discrimination in their schools, something that doesn’t surprise Vivi Jelstrup, the head of LGBT union Landsforeningen for Lesbiske, Bøsser, Biseksuelle og Transpersoner.

“I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the most common swear word in Danish schools is ‘bøsserøv’ (literally, faggot a**),” Jelstrup told Information newspaper. “When a teacher in our union came out as a lesbian after living 20 years with a man, she experienced that the other teachers stopped asking what she had been up to at the weekend. It was like something mysterious had happened that they couldn’t comprehend.”

The report shows that the rights of LGBTs have a long way to go before they are accepted by society, according to the equality minister, Manu Sareen (Radikale).

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

2 thoughts on “Gates of Vienna News Feed 9/2/2013

  1. Islamophobic Honking

    “Swedish prosecutors have decided to charge a 22-year-old man for honking his horn outside the Fittja mosque in Stockholm, citing his intention to disturb the Muslim congregation.”

    People keep confusing “phobia” = fear, with disdain.

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