Twenty hurt during strike
At least 20 people have been injured in clashes between police and activists near the capital, Dhaka, on the second day of a national strike called by opposition parties. ATN Bangla TV station said clashes occurred in Narayanganj District after opposition supporters brought out a procession that was intercepted by police yesterday. Witnesses said about a dozen homemade bombs have exploded in parts of Dhaka. An alliance of 18 parties is enforcing the 36-hour strike demanding the release of more than 160 opposition politicians arrested in the past two weeks. A truck driver was killed in the strike on Tuesday.
Jordan boycotts meeting
Jordan’s ambassador said he was boycotting a controversial meeting on international criminal justice organized by the president of the General Assembly because it would not include victims of the Bosnian war and would likely attack the war crimes tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. Prince Zeid al-Hussein said that while assembly president Vuk Jeremic, a former foreign minister of Serbia, was presiding over yesterday’s assembly meeting, he and Liechtenstein’s ambassador would be hosting a press conference for two victims groups including the Mothers of Srebrenica. Among the main speakers at the high-level assembly session is Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic, an ultranationalist and disciple of Vojislav Seselj, a firebrand right-wing politician whose trial is under way at the Yugoslav tribunal in The Hague, Netherlands.
Trash import vote planned
The government pledged on Tuesday to hold a historic referendum on whether to scrap waste imports, a money-making program opposed by environmentalists who say the country is already buried under its own trash. A law passed in 2011 allows the import of non-radioactive waste for destruction or recycling in factories, but litter clogs rivers and piles up on the side of roads, and activists say the government cannot be trusted to track the imported garbage. Bowing to a petition signed by 64,000 people, the president’s office set Dec. 22 as the date for the vote.
Hollande’s camel replaced
Authorities will give French President Francois Hollande another camel after the one they gave him in thanks for helping repel Islamist rebels was killed and eaten by the family he left it with in Timbuktu, an official in Mali said. An official said on Tuesday a replacement would be sent to France. “As soon as we heard of this, we quickly replaced it with a bigger and better-looking camel,” said the official, who asked not to be named because he was not authorized to speak to the media. “The new camel will be sent to Paris. We are ashamed of what happened to the camel. It was a present that did not deserve this fate.”
Gunmen rob security van
Kalashnikov-toting gunmen robbed a security van on Monday, blocking traffic with a blazing truck, firing into the air and setting off a smoke bomb before escaping with cash and gold. The highly organized robbery happened on a busy stretch of motorway between Milan and Como, which was closed to traffic for several hours. The amount stolen, including gold ingots, was initially estimated at 10 million euros (US$13 million) by media, citing officials close to the investigation. The security firm, Battistolli, later said that amount was “absolutely exaggerated,” adding that the amount was still being calculated.