The eerie wail of air raid sirens has brought the ordinarily bustling nation to a halt, marking two minutes of silence in memory of the 6 million Jews who perished during the Nazi Holocaust. Cars stopped in their tracks and millions of people stood in an annual tribute to the dead. Sounding a common theme in recent years, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has drawn a parallel between the Nazis who sought to exterminate the Jewish people and Iran’s talk of the nation’s destruction. Restaurants and places of entertainment were closed. About 200,000 aged survivors of the Nazi genocide live in the country.
Sea surveillance to increase
Beijing is stepping up its maritime surveillance by hiring more staff and increasing the number of inspection ships, state media said yesterday, amid deep-sea territorial disputes with neighboring nations. China Marine Surveillance, the nation’s ocean monitoring agency, will hire more than 1,000 people this year, raising staff numbers to “at least 10,000,” the official China Daily reported. It will also buy 36 inspection ships over the next five years, the newspaper said.
Senior fights off muggers
An 81-year-old man single-handedly fought off a gang of teenage muggers, police said yesterday, with eight youths arrested and some requiring hospital treatment. The elderly man, only identified as Mak, was assaulted by the gang aged between 15 and 19 in a pedestrian tunnel during the 4am incident when he was on his way to do morning exercises. He was attacked from behind. “They pushed him to the ground and tried to rob him. The man fought back and the gang ran away empty-handed,” a police spokeswoman said. Some of the teenage suspects, five boys and three girls, sustained cuts and minor injuries after the man put up a fierce fight. Police later traced a trail of blood to a nearby apartment and detained the teenagers. The injured were taken to hospital for treatment. “They are still being detained and under investigation for assault with intent to rob,” the spokeswoman said.
An underground publisher has been arrested after receiving an overseas award honoring his courage and contribution to freedom of expression, an industry federation said. Bui Chat, who received the International Publishers Association (IPA) Freedom to Publish Prize in Buenos Aires last week, was arrested on Saturday when he returned to the country, according to the Geneva-based IPA. “The award and prize certificate were confiscated,” the group said in a statement dated Sunday. “IPA condemns the arrest and calls for his immediate release.” The association said Chat was being held for investigation, but it did not say what specific allegations he faced.
Nationalists protest Caucasus
About 500 nationalists rallied in central Moscow on Sunday to protest against their government’s financial support of the mainly Muslim, impoverished regions that make up the North Caucasus. Donning surgical face masks, bands of young people marched peacefully down Moscow’s mutli-laned streets with large red and black banners reading “Russia for Russians!” and “Migrant workers get out!” “We are united against the lawlessness committed by members of the ethnic diasporas,” said Alla Gorbunova, the spokeswoman of the Russian Social Movement, a nationalist group.