National briefs: 12/18/10
Share with others:
BERLIN -- German prosecutors said Friday they filed war crimes charges against two Rwandan men suspected of issuing orders to a mostly ethnic Hutu militia involved in killings of Congolese civilians.
Ignace Murwanashyaka, 47, and Straton Musoni, 49, were charged with crimes against humanity, war crimes and membership in a foreign terrorist group, federal prosecutors said in a statement.
The men allegedly served as the top military leaders of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda militia -- an extremist group made up of Hutu refugees from Rwanda who took cover across the border in Congo after the 1994 genocide.
The German prosecutors' statement said the FDLR is trying to bring down Rwanda's government.
MILAN, Italy -- The Mafia killed Sonia Alfano's father, Sicilian journalist Beppe, on Jan. 8, 1993. Now she's fighting against video games that she says trivialize violence and murder.
A member of the European Parliament, Ms. Alfano opposes games such as "Mafia II" by Take-Two Interactive Software Inc., whose investors include billionaire Carl Icahn. The game lets players take on the role of Vito Scaletta, who rises through the organization's ranks, going from petty robberies to mob hits, gunfights and combat.
She asked the European Commission last week to consider banning the games.
ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast -- Police and troops loyal to the man widely recognized as the loser of last month's presidential election filled the streets of Abidjan on Friday and prevented his rival's supporters from marching on government buildings.
The show of force by backers of President Laurent Gbagbo came a day after they clashed with supporters of opposition figure Alassane Ouattara, who is recognized by the U.S., the U.N., France and the African Union as the legitimate winner of the disputed Nov. 28 runoff balloting. Thursday's street fighting left up to 30 dead.
A 2002-03 civil war split Ivory Coast in two, and many had hoped that the election would help reunite the country.
LONDON -- No new, specific terror plots against Europe have emerged for the holiday season, British and German officials said Friday, contradicting earlier reports from U.S. security experts.
A suicide bomber blew himself up last weekend in Sweden, and Iraqi officials said that captured insurgents have claimed the Stockholm bombing was part of attacks being planned by al-Qaida against the U.S. and Europe during the Christmas season.
A writer on an al-Qaida affiliated website, however, said the bomber was targeting an unnamed Swedish newspaper that had previously published cartoons about the Prophet Muhammad.
PARIS -- Thirteen officials who served under Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet were convicted in a French court on Friday of kidnapping and torturing four French nationals. Two were sentenced to life in prison.
One suspect, 77-year-old Gen. Jose Zara Holger, was acquitted. All 14 of the defendants were tried in absentia, making the case highly symbolic. Charges against the 14 included kidnapping and torture.
The four men's bodies were never found.
-- Compiled from news services
First Published December 18, 2010 12:00 am