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Fri Oct 24 11:33:24 SAST 2014

10 in TEN

Times LIVE | 06 February, 2013 00:19

MEXICO

Six tourists raped at Acapulco resort

SIX Spanish tourists were raped early on Monday by hooded gunmen at a resort in Acapulco, Mexico.

Acapulco mayor Luis Walton Aburto said that the attack was outside a house in Barra Vieja.

The tourists were with another seven Spaniards and a Mexican woman.

"We are now working on (victims' and witnesses') statements and looking for suspects," said Guerrero state prosecutor Martha Elva Garzon.

She said witnesses could not give descriptions of the suspects because they were wearing masks. - Sapa-AFP

US

Obama calls for Congress vote on weapons ban

PRESIDENT Barack Obama pressed Congress on Monday to at least vote on banning assault weapons, the most contentious part of his plan to curb gun violence.

Obama's comments suggested a realisation in the White House that just getting as far as a vote - let alone having an assault weapons ban approved - will be a struggle.

"Weapons of war have no place on our streets," Obama said.

Among the safety measures Obama wants are background checks on anyone who wants to buy a gun and a 10-round limit on magazines . - Reuters

Bulgaria

Hezbollah link to Burgas bombing could sway EU

TWO individuals with links to Lebanon's Islamic militant group Hezbollah were involved in a bomb attack on a bus in the Bulgarian resort of Burgas that killed five Israeli tourists in July, Bulgaria's interior minister, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, said yesterday.

The conclusions of the Bulgarian investigation may open the way for the EU to join the US in branding the Iranian-backed Hezbollah a terrorist organisation since there is now a clear connection to an attack on EU territory.

Teheran has denied responsibility and accused Israel of plotting and carrying out the bombing. - Reuters

SAUDI ARABIA

Cleric's call to veil baby girls prompts outrage

A SAUDI cleric has said baby girls should be veiled to avoid sexual harassment in remarks broadcast on television that have sparked outrage in the conservative kingdom.

"Girls should wear the veil from the age of two," said Abdullah Daoud on Islamic television.

"If a girl is sexually desired, her parents should cover her face and force her to wear the veil" to protect her against perverts, he said.

Prominent cleric Salman al-Audah was among the many appalled by the comments, yesterday stating: "We hope that these aberrant statements will not be exaggerated and taken as fatwa (religious edict)." - Sapa-AFP

NIGERIA

Gunmen attack oil shipment, three killed

GUNMEN ambushed an Indian-owned oil barge yesterday as it was being escorted by the military through the Niger Delta region, killing two soldiers and a member of the barge's crew, a security forces spokesman said.

Onyema Nwachukwu, spokesman for mixed military and police brigades in the Niger Delta region, said: "The gunmen were repelled by return fire. Troops have been deployed to the area because some of the gunmen fled wounded." - Reuters

ITALY

Police make arrest in Pompeii investigation

ITALIAN police arrested a former restorer of the ancient city of Pompeii on corruption charges yesterday and are investigating five other conservationists.

Italy declared a state of emergency in 2008 at Pompeii after archaeologists and art historians complained about the poor upkeep of the crumbling site.

But investigators say irregular contracts were awarded to the restoration services company Caccavo, which was paid inflated prices for its work. The collapse of walls and columns since 2008 has renewed concerns about the site. - Reuters

FRANCE

Suspected Islamist recruiters arrested

POLICE arrested four suspected Islamist militants near Paris yesterday as part of an investigation into the recruitment of volunteers by al-Qaeda insurgents in Mali, Interior Minister Manuel Valls said.

France's intervention in Mali to rid its former colony of Islamists has prompted the authorities to increase security against the possibility of reprisal attacks in France and abroad.

Anti-terrorism judge Marc Trevidicsaid more and more French Muslims of African origin were finding a cause in the conflict. - Reuters

ZAMBIA

Ex-president Banda summoned over graft

ZAMBIAN investigators yesterday summoned former president Rupiah Banda for questioning in a corruption investigation. Banda is immune from prosecution and faces no penalty if he does not appear because of indemnities afforded former presidents.

His Movement for Multiparty Democracy party, which ruled Zambia for two decades, said the summons was an attempt to destabilise the group.

Since defeating Banda in 2011, President Michael Sata's government has launched several investigations into deals struck by the former administration of Africa's biggest copper producer. - Reuters

UK

Troggs singer Presley dies of cancer at 71

ROCK star Reg Presley, lead singer of the Troggs on hit songs such as Wild Thing, has died. He was 71.

Presley's death after a year-long struggle with lung cancer was announced on Monday by friend and publicist Keith Altham on his Facebook page.

Altham said his "old pal" died at his home, with his family and friends at his side.

Presley had recently retired because of his health problems.

He is remembered for the band's breakthrough garage band hits, including Love is All Around and With a Girl Like You. Presley founded the Troggs in the 1960s. - Sapa-AP

GERMANY

'Cookie monster' returns golden biscuit

A SELF-STYLED "Cookie Monster" thief who took a large golden biscuit from outside the premises of a renowned German baker to demand goodies for sick children appeared to have returned the emblem yesterday.

A large golden biscuit wrapped in a red ribbon mysteriously appeared on a monument in front of Hanover University in Germany. Police said they were checking to see if it was indeed the missing company symbol. - Sapa-AFP

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