Man dies after Melbourne car attack

Above, a videograb from the Australian Broadcasting Corp. shows emergency medical workers aiding victims struck by a vehicle in Melbourne. One of the victims, 83-year-old Antonios Crocaris, an Australian national, died from his injuries late Friday. (Australian Broadcast Corp. via AP)
Updated 30 December 2017
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Man dies after Melbourne car attack

MELBOURNE: An elderly man has died after being mowed down during a car rampage in Melbourne last week, police said Saturday, with one of 18 attempted murder charges expected to be upgraded to murder.
Afghan-Australian Saeed Noori, who has a history of drug abuse and mental problems, is accused of plowing his car through a busy intersection earlier this month, careering into tourists and shoppers.
He has been charged with 18 counts of attempted murder, but now faces at least one murder charge after 83-year-old Antonios Crocaris, an Australian national, died from his injuries late Friday.
Six others remain in hospital.
“A man has died following an incident on Flinders Street on December 21 where a number of pedestrians were struck by a vehicle,” Victoria state police said.
“Homicide squad detectives are expected to upgrade one of those charges to murder.”
Nine foreigners were among those hurt, including from South Korea, China, Italy, India, Venezuela, Ireland, and New Zealand.
Police have alleged Noori made “utterances” to them about voices, dreams and the “poor treatment of Muslims” after his arrest, but no link to any terrorist group has been found.
The Melbourne Magistrates’ Court heard on Wednesday that he may be suffering psychiatric issues or have an undiagnosed illness. He is due back in court on May 30.
The incident came less than a year after a car rammed into pedestrians in Melbourne’s busiest mall, killing six people. That driver, whose case is still before the courts, also had a history of drug issues.
Like other countries, Australia has been taking steps to prevent vehicle attacks in crowded public places since the Nice truck incident in southern France last year that killed 86 people.
They include deterrent options like fencing and closed circuit cameras, and using delaying tactics such as trees and bollards to slow down vehicles.


Germany considers expelling convicted Syrians

Updated 58 min 41 sec ago
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Germany considers expelling convicted Syrians

BERLIN: Germany is examining if Syrians convicted of crimes in Europe's biggest economy or who are deemed dangerous can be sent back to their conflict-torn country, Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said Friday.
"That is being looked at closely in our ministry," Seehofer told newspaper group RedaktionsNetzwerk Deutschland (RND).
Tens of thousands of Syrians have sought asylum in Germany, with the biggest influx taking place in 2015.
A ban on expulsions to Syria has been in place as war rages there, but the restriction runs out at the end of the year.
Germany would then need to consider whether to extend the ban, and the foreign ministry's assessment of the situation in Syria would be crucial in the decision.
But several high-profile crimes involving migrants have soured the public mood in Germany, prompting interior ministers of several states to push for the expulsion of asylum seekers who have been convicted.
"Once the security situation allows, dangerous individuals and criminals can be sent back to Syria," Saxony state's interior minister Roland Woeller told RND.
Idlib and some surrounding areas are the last major rebel bastions in Syria, where the Russian-backed government has in recent months retaken much of the territory it had lost since the civil war erupted in 2011.
Berlin in 2016 signed a controversial deal with Kabul to repatriate Afghans who had failed to obtain asylum, even though Afghanistan remains strangled by violence.