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seattlepi.com: Europe News from the Associated Press





 



Alitalia workers wrap up voting on deal to save airline

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 15:05:44 UT

ROME (AP) — Alitalia employees have wrapped up voting on a government-brokered deal to save Italy's flagship airline from bankruptcy. Parent company Etihad Airways wants the cost-cutting in hopes of securing 2 billion euros ($2.1 billion) in investment to keep the airline afloat.



Thousands at Auschwitz for yearly Holocaust memorial event

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 15:04:11 UT

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Thousands of people from around the world, many of them young Israelis, paid homage Monday to the millions who perished in the Holocaust at the former Nazi German death camp of Auschwitz. The event, the March of the Living, is a somber memorial march of about three kilometers (two miles) from the original Auschwitz camp to Birkenau, a much larger death camp where Jews and Roma were murdered in gas chambers in German-occupied Poland. The blowing of a shofar, a ram's horn used for religious purposes, was the signal for the large group to begin marching in silence down the main street of Oswiecim, past fields and along the historic train tracks that once brought people to their deaths at Birkenau.



The Latest: Macron marks slaying of Armenians anniversary

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 14:32:06 UT

Macron, a centrist with pro-business, pro-European views, will face far-right leader Marine Le Pen in the May 7 runoff of the presidential election. French president Francois Hollande has urged voters to choose centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron in the May 7 presidential runoff to keep out far-right leader Marine Le Pen. In April 2016, he launched his own political movement, En Marche! (In Motion!) to prepare his presidential bid as an independent centrist candidate. Manlio Di Stefano, foreign policy point person for the opposition 5-Star Movement, said in a Facebook post Monday that neither Emmanuel Macron, a pro-EU centrist, nor Marine Le Pen from the far-right has proposed cutting presidential salaries or enforcing two-term limits in power like his movement advocates. The European Union's head office has thrown its weight behind Emmanuel Macron in the French presidential runoff against Marine Le Pen, arguing it is a choice between the defense of the EU or those seeking its destruction. The president of the European Jewish Congress has lamented the success of far-right candidate Marine Le Pen in the first round of the French presidential elections. Kantor highlighted that the 48-year-old National Front leader recently "made comments against the historic record of the Holocaust which makes her no less dangerous than her Holocaust-denying father who she has tried to hide." Earlier this month, Le Pen denied that France was responsible for rounding up more than 13,000 Jews at a Paris cycle track to be sent to Nazi death camps during the Holocaust. Spanish Foreign Minister Alfonso Dastis says he hopes a victory in the French presidential election for Emmanuel Macron would mark a break in the rise of extremist populist parties in Europe. Speaking to Spain's Cadena Ser radio, Dastis stressed the need for caution but added that a win for Macron in the second round against Marine Le Pen would be "good news because



UKIP seeks ban on face-covering veils, new Muslim schools

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 14:20:51 UT

LONDON (AP) — Britain's anti-EU U.K. Independence Party says it will promote social unity by banning face-covering veils and barring the opening of new Islamic schools. Polls give Prime Minister Theresa May's Conservatives a big lead on the main Labour opposition and other parties in an election likely to be dominated by Britain's decision to leave the EU.



Putin criticizes opponents' corruption fight in Russia

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 14:09:38 UT

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin has tacitly criticized a popular opposition leader whose efforts to expose official corruption fueled nationwide protests last month. The president said Monday that it was important to differentiate between those who truly want to fight corruption and "strengthen the state" and those "who try to use it as a tool in their own political fight."



French president: Marine Le Pen's platform would devastate economy, threaten French liberty

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 14:06:59 UT

PARIS (AP) — French president: Marine Le Pen's platform would devastate economy, threaten French liberty.



French president urges voters to choose centrist Macron in presidential runoff to keep out nationalist Le Pen

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 14:05:56 UT

PARIS (AP) — French president urges voters to choose centrist Macron in presidential runoff to keep out nationalist Le Pen.



Italian journalist home after 2 weeks detention in Turkey

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 13:57:25 UT

ROME (AP) — An Italian journalist returned home on Monday after being detained for two weeks in Turkey, apparently because he entered an area near the Syrian border without the necessary permission. In Turkey, a government official said that the journalist was detained on April 9 for illegally entering a military zone bordering Syria and near the town of Reyhanli in Hatay province, and because he was working without the permit journalists are required to obtain. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity in line with government regulations that bar civil servants from speaking to journalists without prior authorization, said that at some point Del Grande was transferred to a center for the expatriation of foreigners in the province of Mugla, in southwest Turkey.



Serbia customs officers among 17 arrested in corruption case

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 13:55:14 UT

Police say the accused customs officers accepted fraudulent documentation and cleared the goods of taxes as if they had been intended for embassies and foreign organizations in the Balkan country.



1 killed, many hurt in grenade explosion at school in Russia

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 13:38:25 UT

Following two separatist wars in neighboring Chechnya, an Islamic insurgency spread to Dagestan where shootouts between the militants and police are almost routine occurrences and the illegal ownership of weapons is high.



Russian foreign minister: No proof of persecution of gay men

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 13:20:19 UT

Lavrov told reporters Monday that Russian officials haven't seen any information confirming the reports but added that Moscow is concerned about "any human rights violations." Lavrov was speaking at a joint news conference with EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, who said she raised human rights at talks with Lavrov earlier in the day and met rights activists in the morning to discuss the reports of persecution.



French analyst probed over Erdogan "assassination" comments

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 13:04:48 UT

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkey's state-run news agency says prosecutors have launched an investigation into a French former diplomat and analyst over accusations that he allegedly called for the assassination of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.



EU Commission throws weight behind Macron in French election

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 12:53:40 UT

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union's head office has thrown its weight behind Emmanuel Macron in the French presidential runoff against Marine Le Pen, arguing it is a choice between the defense of the EU or those seeking its destruction. [...] even beyond the exceptional show of voting advice when it usually is scrupulously neutral, the European Commission also said it would vet campaign arguments and counter them if they told lies about the EU. Independent candidate Macron led the first round of the presidential elections on Sunday and will face Le Pen of the extreme-right National Front in the May 7 runoff. Macron also received the backing of another French neighbor, Spain, with Foreign Minister Alfonso Dastis saying Macron would mark a break in the rise of extremist populist parties in Europe.



Death toll from migrant boat sinking in Aegean rises to 16

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 12:48:23 UT

Death toll from migrant boat sinking in Aegean rises to 16 [...] a European Union-Turkey deal reached last year — in which those arriving on Greek islands face deportation back to Turkey — has significantly reduced the number of people attempting to cross the Aegean.



Germany sees new rise in far-right offenses, hate crimes

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 12:42:23 UT

BERLIN (AP) — Violent crimes in Germany with far-right motives rose 14.3 percent last year after a bigger increase in 2015, and the country also saw another increase in hate crimes, authorities said Monday. There was a 3.6 percent increase last year in the broader category of "hate crimes" — offenses of a racist or anti-Semitic nature or targeting people because of their religion, often in online posts.



Swedish police arrest 2nd suspect in Stockholm truck attack

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 12:36:53 UT

HELSINKI (AP) — Swedish police have arrested a second person in the April 7 truck attack that killed four people and injured 15 others in Stockholm. Police spokesman Simon Bynert said Monday the male suspect was arrested Sunday, but he did not elaborate.



Romanian political leader loses bid to get sentence quashed

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 12:35:52 UT

BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — A Romanian court has rejected an appeal by the ruling party's leader to quash his sentence for vote rigging during a 2012 referendum, striking a blow to his ambition to become prime minister. The High Court for Cassation and Justice on Monday rejected an appeal by Liviu Dragnea, who heads the Social Democratic Party, to overturn a two-year suspended prison sentence he received in April 2016 for inflating voter numbers in a referendum to impeach ex-President Traian Basescu.



The Latest: Migrant boat sinks in Aegean Sea, 16 dead

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 12:26:58 UT

Greek authorities say a migrant boat sinking has left 16 people dead, with nine bodies recovered from Greek waters off the Aegean Sea island of Lesbos, and another seven bodies recovered from Turkish waters. The coast guard said the pregnant woman told authorities she had been among about 25 people who had set sail late Sunday night from the Turkish coast heading for Lesbos on a smuggling boat. Greece's coast guard says rescue crews have recovered eight bodies believed to be migrants from the sea off the eastern Aegean island of Lesbos and rescued two people, including a pregnant woman.



Greece: Death toll from migrant boat sinking reaches 16, with 9 bodies recovered in Greece, 7 in Turkey

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 12:17:13 UT

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greece: Death toll from migrant boat sinking reaches 16, with 9 bodies recovered in Greece, 7 in Turkey .



Bavarian leader Seehofer reverses course, seeks new term

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 12:15:47 UT

BERLIN (AP) — Horst Seehofer, the leader of one of Germany's governing parties and Chancellor Angela Merkel's most prominent domestic critic during the migrant crisis, says he plans to stay on beyond 2018 — reversing previous statements that he would step down. Seehofer once threatened Merkel's federal government with a lawsuit over the migrant influx and has pushed for a cap on the number of asylum-seekers that Germany accepts.