Nude gunman kills 3 at Tennessee restaurant

A nude gunman shot dead three people and injured at least four more in the early hours of Sunday at a restaurant on the outskirts of Nashville, Tennessee, police said. The Metropolitan Nashville Police Department said in a statement that the shooting occurred at a Waffle House restaurant in Antioch, a suburb southeast of Nashville, […]

At least 20 people were killed during an attempted mass breakout at a prison in Brazil

Fighting began inside the Santa Izabel Prison Complex in the northern Brazilian city of Belem when an armed group outside the jail used explosives to try to break the prisoners free.

Brazil’s state security service said that prison guards were battling with people inside and outside the jail and authorities are trying to establish whether any prisoners escaped.

In a statement it confirmed the use of explosives against one of the prison walls and said early investigations found that prisoners also had weapons inside the prison.

A guard was killed in the attack along with 19 prisoners and their accomplices helping from the outside. Four other guards were injured in the figthing.

Photo  AFP/Andressa Anholete

Chemical weapons agency to meet to discuss alleged Syria attack

An emergency session of the global chemical weapons watchdog will be convened on Monday to discuss the attack in Syria’s Douma in which dozens of people are believed to have been killed with poison gas.

Members of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons will gather at 10 a.m. (0800 GMT) on April 16 to discuss “alleged use of chemical weapons” in Syria, a statement said.

Italy arrests 13 in high-speed migrant trafficking ring

Customs Police in Sicily said Tuesday that a wiretapped conversation between two traffickers revealed one saying he intended to travel to France and carry out a suicide attack and asking for prayers.

The trafficking group allegedly organized transport from the Tunisian port of Nabeul to Trapani in Sicily aboard rubber dinghies equipped with high-speed outboard motors and trained navigators for 3,000 euros ($3,690) to 5,000 euros per person.

The traffickers also carried contraband cigarettes for a total value per trip of up to 70,000 euros, with the capacity to run two trips a week. Police said the suspects were Italian, Tunisian and Moroccan.

Four Iranian fighters killed in air strike on Syrian air base

Four Iranian military personnel were killed in an air strike on a Syrian air base on Sunday, Iran’s Fars news agency said, as Syria and its main allies Iran and Russia blamed Israel for carrying out the attack.

Israel has not confirmed or denied mounting the raid, but Israeli officials said the Tiyas, or T-4, air base near Homs was being used by troops from Iran, and that Israel would not accept such a presence in Syria by its arch foe.

The Revolutionary Guards, Iran’s most powerful military force have been fighting in support of Syrian president Bashar al-Assad for several years. More than 1,000 Iranians have been killed in Syria, including senior members of the Guards.

German police foil Berlin half-marathon attacks

German police said they detained several people in Berlin who they suspected of planning a crime linked to Sunday’s half-marathon, and newspaper Die Welt said one was suspected of planning a knife attack at the popular event.

Berlin police said in a statement they had detained suspects aged between 18 and 21 after searches in the districts of Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf and Neukoelln in the capital.

They did not say how many people they detained. “Because of the ongoing investigation, no further information can be given at the present time,” the police added in their statement.

Terrorist killed himself after knocking Several pedestrians in Münster, Germany

Several people were killed and many others injured in Münster, in western Germany, after a van crashed into a group of people in the heart of the old city, according to the police and news media reports.

A spokeswoman for the Münster police told Die Welt newspaper, that the driver of the van killed himself after the crash.

The police said that they had closed the area and had urged people to leave in order to allow access for emergency services.

The crash occurred outside the Kiepenkerl, a restaurant on a cobble-stoned street in the center of the city that is popular with locals and tourists. It is not in a pedestrian zone, but has wide sidewalks where people had been sitting outside on a sunny, spring afternoon.

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Former president Lula defies judge’s order to turn himself in.

Brazil’s former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva defied a judge’s order to turn himself in to police on Friday and start serving a 12-year prison sentence for bribery that would likely end his hopes of regaining the presidency.

Lula remained holed up inside the headquarters of a steelworkers union in metropolitan Sao Paulo, surrounded by hundreds of fervent supporters, creating a standoff expected to stretch into the weekend.

Talks between Lula’s aides and federal police to arrange his surrender were ongoing on Friday evening, according to two people familiar with the matter. One of the sources, who requested anonymity, said he would not be taken into custody before Saturday.

Photo: Victor Moriyama/Getty Images

 

European tourists were kidnapped in Cameroon.

A group of European tourists travelling in southwest Cameroon were kidnapped Monday. Speaking on state television late on Tuesday, government spokesman Issa Tchiroma Bakary said 18

Hostages had been taken on Monday and were freed hours later by the army’s elite Rapid Intervention Battalion.

He said the group included seven Swiss and five Italian tourists as well as six Cameroonian municipal officials, who were taken by English-speaking separatists in the restive southwest region.

However tour group African Adventures said its clients had simply been stopped on Monday by a group of armed individuals who carried out a check of their documents and vehicles, contradicting the government spokesman.

 

Thailand-bound flight escorted safely back to Singapore after bomb threat

Two Singapore fighter jets escorted a civilian plane bound for Thailand safely back to the city-state on Thursday after a bomb threat was made by a passenger, the airline and authorities said.

The passenger suspected of making the threat and two travel companions were assisting police investigations, police said. All passengers and crew on Scoot Flight TR632 disembarked safely.

Scoot is the budget carrier of Singapore Airlines. Two F-15SG fighter jets responded to the pilot’s alert and escorted the plane from the South China Sea back to Changi airport. 

No further details were immediately available.