Austrian court rejects Iraqis’ appeal against rape sentences

Shuttertsock
Updated 04 October 2018
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Austrian court rejects Iraqis’ appeal against rape sentences

  • Rape is punishable by a maximum 15-year prison term in Austria
  • The men were convicted in March 2017 and sentenced to between nine and 13 years

BERLIN: An Austrian court has rejected appeals by eight Iraqi citizens against their prison sentences for gang-raping a German tourist on New Year’s Eve in 2015.
The men were convicted in March 2017 and sentenced to between nine and 13 years. The Austria Press Agency reported that the Vienna state court ruled Thursday there was no reason to reduce the sentences.
Rape is punishable by a maximum 15-year prison term in Austria. Presiding Judge Natalia Frohner said “such an abhorrent crime” requires sentences in the “upper regions.”
The original trial heard testimony that four men took the woman, who had been drinking heavily, to a Vienna apartment where they were joined by the others and all took turns raping her.
The men came to Austria as migrants in 2015.


Taliban close Afghan health facilities run by Swedish group

Updated 11 min 34 sec ago
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Taliban close Afghan health facilities run by Swedish group

  • Taliban raided one of the NGO’s clinics last week in which 4 people died
  • The NGO said closing the clinics will affect 6,000 patients

KABUL: A Swedish non-governmental organization in Afghanistan says the Taliban have forced the closure of 42 health facilities run by the non-profit group in eastern Maidan Wardan province.
Parwiz Ahmad Faizi, communications manager at the Swedish Committee for Afghanistan, said on Wednesday the facilities were closed after Afghan forces raided a clinic run by the NGO in Daimirdad district last week. Troops were looking for suspected Taliban fighters.
The committee says two staff members, a guard and a lab worker, and two other people were killed in the attack. A fifth person is missing.
Insurgents contacted the staff and ordered the NGO to shut down. Faizi says the closures will affect health services for around 6,000 patients, particularly women and children.
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid confirmed the closure of the facilities.