25 Macedonians held after clashes in name protest

A demonstrator holds a banner reading 'Macedonia' in front of the parliament building in Skopje on June 13, 2018 during a protest against the new name of the country. (AFP)
Updated 18 June 2018
0

25 Macedonians held after clashes in name protest

SKOPJE: Macedonian authorities say seven policemen have been injured and 25 protesters detained during overnight clashes in the capital of Skopje, as demonstrators opposed to the name deal with Greece tried to push their way into Parliament.
The Interior Ministry said police used tear gas to stop the demonstrators, who were throwing stones and firecrackers.  A few thousand people took part in the demonstration.
The clashes came after the foreign ministers of Greece and Macedonia signed a preliminary deal that would see Macedonia being renamed “North Macedonia,” during a meeting Sunday on the two countries’ border.


Italian hostage freed after 3 years in Syria returns home

Updated 23 May 2019
0

Italian hostage freed after 3 years in Syria returns home

  • The man who disappeared traveled to Turkey in October 2016
  • An official said the man was kidnapped by a criminal gang

MILAN: Italy’s defense minister says an Italian who had been held hostage in Syria for three years has been released and returned to Italy.

Defense Minister Elisabetta Trenta late Wednesday confirmed Alessandro Sandrini’s arrival at Rome’s Ciampino airport and thanked Italian intelligence services for their role in his liberation. Details were not disclosed.

Sandrini, who is in his early 30s, disappeared after traveling to Turkey in October 2016, and wasn’t heard from for over a year. In July 2018, a dramatic video showed Sandrini wearing an orange jumpsuit flanked by masked men brandishing automatic weapons, appealing to Italy to help free him as quickly as possible.

A local government in Syria affiliated with the Al-Qaeda-linked militant group Hayat Tahir-al Sham said he had been kidnapped by a criminal gang.