Thursday 22 February 2018

In brief: Two Polish men charged in connection with IKEA bomb attacks across EU

Polish police say they have arrested and charged two suspects in relation to a series of bomb attacks at IKEA stores in several European countries this year. The attacks, made with homemade bombs, occurred from May to September in France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany and the Czech Republic. Two people were injured in the German attack but there were no fatalities. Some of the bombs were potentially lethal, though not all detonated.

Two Polish men, both aged 39, were arrested. They were only identified as Mikolaj G and Adam K.

A police spokesman said that both men were charged with endangering the lives of many people, extortion and racketeering and could face up to 10 years in prison.

Dalai Lama hits out over 'travel ban'

The Dalai Lama yesterday sharply criticised China, which is accused of blocking him from travelling to South Africa to celebrate Archbishop Desmond Tutu's 80th birthday.

The Tibetan spiritual leader spoke with Archbishop Tutu and answered questions via a video link, instead of attending an event honouring the anti-apartheid hero a day after his birthday. He said communist propaganda portrayed him as a demon and that he made Chinese officials "uncomfortable" because he told the truth.

Hundreds evacuated in warehouse fire

Danish police say they have evacuated several hundred people as firefighters tackle a warehouse fire that followed a series of violent explosions. The cause of the explosions was not immediately known, but police spokesman Klaus Arboe said the building hit by the fire appeared to contain powerful fireworks. Mr Arboe could not confirm media reports that at least one person was found dead yesterday.

A 370-metre security perimeter was created around the warehouse in Store Andst, a village near Kolding, 200km west of Copenhagen. Danish media said the area around the warehouse was littered with pieces of fireworks.

Yemen leader says he is ready to quit

YEMEN'S president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, has said he is willing to leave power in his first major speech since returning to the country. It was not the first time Mr Saleh has expressed a willingness to step down amid eight months of mass protests demanding his removal.

Still, he has repeatedly refused to resign immediately and rejected a US-backed deal for him to hand over his authority. Mr Saleh was gravely wounded in an explosion at his presidential palace in June, after which he left to Saudi Arabia for treatment. A violent crackdown against his opponents followed. He returned abruptly to Yemen late last month.

Zsa Zsa Gabor is rushed into hospital

ZSA Zsa Gabor was rushed to hospital yesterday after losing consciousness at her Los Angeles area home. Her husband, Frederic Prinz von Anhalt, said the actress had a high fever and was bleeding from a tube in her stomach.

Paramedics took Gabor from her Bel Air mansion to UCLA Ronald Reagan Medical Centre. The 94-year-old Gabor has been treated in hospital repeatedly since July 2010, when she broke her hip falling from bed. Most of her right leg was amputated in January because of gangrene.

Gored bullfighter risks facial paralysis

A Spanish bullfighter is likely to suffer facial paralysis and lose the sight in one eye after a terrifying goring, the hospital treating him said yesterday.

Television images showed the moment when the bull's left horn ripped into Juan Jose Padilla's lower jaw to emerge beside his protruding eyeball as spectators in the north-eastern city of Zaragoza screamed in horror.

Mr Padilla, 39, was in a stable condition and recovering from a five-hour operation, Miguel Servet Hospital said. Surgeons were not able to repair a severed facial nerve.

Sunday Independent

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