Country seeks Nazi war debt
Greece has set up a “working group” to scour historical archives and tally how much Germany might owe in outstanding reparations for Nazi war crimes during World War II, the finance ministry announced on Monday. Greece has said in recent years that it reserves the right to claim reparations worth an estimated US$7.5 million, saying it was forced to accept unfavorable terms during negotiations in the 1950s. “The matter remains pending,” Deputy Finance Minister Christos Staikouras said. “Greece has never resigned its rights.”
Starving rooftop tigers found
Thai police said they had discovered six underfed tigers in specially built cages on the roof of an apartment building on Monday, arresting a man who claimed he had been planning to open a zoo. Four adult cats and two cubs were found at the property on an industrial estate in Pathumthani province, north of Bangkok, in the raid by police from the Natural Resources and Environmental Crime Suppression Division. A 28-year-old man, who lives in the building, was arrested at the scene and claimed to own the animals. “The man said that he was preparing to open a zoo in the province,” said police Captain Montri Neepasee, who said the animals had not been given enough food and did not look “completely healthy.” He added he believed the tigers would have been sent to Vietnam, where there is demand for “their meat and skins.”
Casino tycoon wins case
US casino tycoon Steve Wynn won US$20 million in defamation damages on Monday after he was accused of planning to have a businessman killed and buried in the desert over a bad gambling debt. Wynn was awarded the damages after taking legal action against Joe Francis, founder of the entertainment group Girls Gone Wild. The week-long trial heard evidence from both men, as well as legendary music producer Quincy Jones. Francis first made the comments in court in April 2010 — where they were immune from legal action. That trial was about a US$2 million gambling debt, which Francis allegedly ran up at one of Wynn’s Las Vegas casinos, but he was accused of repeating them once outside court when he was overheard by an online gossip reporter and again on a recent morning TV show.
Hackers hit Web site firm
A member of a hacker collective claimed credit on Monday for downing the Web hosting firm GoDaddy, which manages millions of Web sites around the world. Credit was claimed on Twitter by AnonymousOwn3r, identified as the “security leader” of the loosely organized hacker group known as Anonymous. When some news sites blamed the attack on Anonymous, the same individual responded on Twitter by saying: “it is not Anonymous coletive it’s only me don’t use Anonymous coletive name on it, just my name.”
UK royals start Asia tour
Britain’s Prince William and his wife, Catherine, arrived in the city state on Tuesday to start a Southeast Asian and Pacific tour marking Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee. The nine-day trip through Singapore, Malaysia, the Solomon Islands and Tuvalu is to feature sentimental stops as well as the former Kate Middleton’s first overseas speech as she settles into her duties with the British monarchy. The glamorous couple’s first visit will be to Singapore’s Botanic Gardens.
EVOLVING SITUATION: Of the latest cases, 23 percent were found to be asymptomatic, but the coronavirus strain in Da Nang is more contagious, authorities said A COVID-19 outbreak that began in the Vietnamese city of Da Nang more than a week ago has spread to at least four city factories with a combined workforce of about 3,700, state media reported yesterday. Four cases were found at the plants in different industrial parks in the central city that collectively employ 77,000 people, the Lao Dong newspaper said. Vietnam, praised widely for its decisive measures to combat the novel coronavirus since it first appeared in late January, is battling new clusters of infection having gone for more than three months without detecting any domestic transmissions. Authorities yesterday reported one new
‘COVIDIOTS’: Politicians condemned the protest that came amid surging infections in the country, while a marcher said government-induced fear weakened the body Loudly chanting their opposition to masks and vaccines, thousands of people on Saturday gathered in Berlin to protest against COVID-19 restrictions before being dispersed by police. Police put turnout at about 20,000 — well below the 500,000 organizers had announced as they urged a “day of freedom” from months of virus curbs. Despite Germany’s comparatively low toll, authorities are concerned at a rise in infections over the past few weeks and politicians took to social media to criticize the rally as irresponsible. “We are the second wave,” shouted the crowd, a mixture of hard left and right and conspiracy theorists, as they converged
The Australian government yesterday said that it plans to give Google and Facebook three months to negotiate with media businesses fair pay for news content. In releasing a draft of a mandatory code of conduct, Canberra aims to succeed where other nations have failed in making tech firms pay for news siphoned from commercial media companies. Australian Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said that Google and Facebook would be the first platforms targeted by the proposed legislation, but others could follow. “It’s about a fair go for Australian news media businesses, it’s about ensuring that we have increased competition, increased consumer protection and a sustainable
SURGE CONTINUES: India recorded its steepest spike of more than 57,000 new virus cases in 24 hours, as Vietnam went from no virus deaths to reporting three South Korean prosecutors yesterday arrested the elderly leader of a secretive religious sect as part of an investigation into allegations that the church hampered the government’s COVID-19 response after thousands of worshipers were infected in February and March. Prosecutors in the central city of Suwon have been questioning 88-year-old Lee Man-hee, chairman of the Shincheonji Church of Jesus, over charges that the church hid some members and underreported gatherings to avoid broader quarantines. The Suwon District Court granted prosecutors’ request to arrest Lee over concerns that he could temper with evidence. Lee and his church have steadfastly denied the accusations, saying they are