In celebration of libertyTHAT long-awaited “we told you so” moment arrived on June 18th for Dani Rodrik, an economist at Princeton University, and his wife Pinar Dogan. An Istanbul court ordered the release of 230 people, mostly army officers convicted of trying to overthrow the prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and his Justice and Development (AK) government. Among them was Cetin Dogan, a retired general and Mr Rodrik’s father-in-law, sentenced in the “Sledgehammer” case.Mr Rodrik and his wife have campaigned hard to prove that much of the case, in which the generals supposedly planned to bomb mosques during Friday prayers and shoot down Greek fighters to justify a coup, rested on bogus digital evidence. Forensic experts concurred, in 25 separate reports. The constitutional court duly called for a retrial because the prosecution’s case was flawed and key defence witnesses were not allowed to testify, and the Istanbul court released the suspects.In this sectionCoincidentally on the same day, an Ankara court sentenced Kenan Evren, a 96-year-old general and former president who led a violent coup in 1980, to life imprisonment. The same verdict was handed down to Tahsin Sahinkaya, the other surviving coup plotter. Thus a gross injustice was righted and a long-overdue punishment meted out. General Dogan celebrated. But, as Mr Rodrik tweeted, Mr Erdogan seems in effect to be saying “I can put you in jail and I can let you out. This is democracy.” Many believe that, just as the Sledgehammer convictions were political, so was the constitutional court’s call for a retrial.The first was about settling scores with the generals; the second, as an AK official says, was “about poking Fethullah Gulen in the eye.” He is referring to the Pennsylvania-based Sunni cleric, an ally in the battle against the army who has since fallen out with the prime minister. Mr Erdogan now calls Mr Gulen and his flock “terrorists”. Judges and prosecutors involved in the Sledgehammer case, and the similar Ergenekon trials, have been purged or demoted, along with thousands of bureaucrats and security officials seen as Gulenists. Mr Erdogan has gone global, getting Azerbaijan to shut Gulenist schools and even asking America to extradite Mr Gulen.Mr Erdogan’s courtship of the army (and of the Kurds) also furthers his hopes of becoming Turkey’s first popularly elected president in August. The army was plotting coups as recently as 2007 when, in a statement on its website, it threatened to intervene over the presidency. If Mr Erdogan really wanted to bolster civilian control of the army, he would get the chief of the general staff to report to the defence minister, have the army’s books audited and change the constitution the army wrote in 1982.Rumblings of discontent are growing within Islamic intellectual circles. Corruption allegations against Mr Erdogan’s relatives, business cronies and fellow AK members suggest they are no different from their secular rivals, some say. Many are horrified by a claim by Hayrettin Karaman, an Islamic academic, in the daily Yeni Safak, an AK party mouthpiece, that it is admissible for businessmen to be “asked” to donate a portion of their profit from government contracts to charitable foundations. Mr Erdogan’s younger son Bilal runs a charitable foundation referred to in the scandal, though he denies wrongdoing.Liberals who were among Mr Erdogan’s staunchest supporters are also disillusioned. Anti-government journalists continue to be sacked at his behest. Prosecutors want a long jail sentence for a 13-year-old boy accused of taking part in a protest against the deaths of 300 people in the Soma mine explosion in May. This week Turkey’s central bank unexpectedly cut interest rates by 0.75 percentage points, seemingly to please Mr Erdogan and despite its supposedly independent status.General Evren’s conviction is a milestone. Yet a huge majority of Turks welcomed his 1980 coup, because it ended street battles between left-wing and right-wing activists that were claiming thousands of lives. Today’s Turkey is richer and a lot calmer. But as Mr Erdogan looks ahead to the presidential race, he might do well to remember that the greatest leaders have worked with critics and opponents as well as their natural base of support.From the print edition: Europe

Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko (C) poses with European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso (L) and European Council President Herman Van Rompuy at the EU Council in Brussels June 27, 2014. STRINGER/AFP/Getty Images BRUSSELS — Ukraine’s new president signed a trade and economic pact with the European Union on Friday, pushing his troubled country closer into a European orbit and angering Russia, which warned of unspecified consequences.A beaming President Petro Poroshenko called it „maybe the most important day for my country” since its independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.European Union leaders, meanwhile, decided not to immediately impose new sanctions on Russia for destabilizing eastern Ukraine. In a statement, however, the leaders said new sanctions have been prepared so they could be imposed „without delay” and listed several demands for Vladimir Putin’s government and the pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine.Play Video Pro-Russian militants shoot down Ukraine transport plane Poroshenko’s pro-Moscow predecessor, Viktor Yanukovych, backed out of signing the agreement in November and the bloody protests that followed toppled his government, sparking an insurgency in the east and Russia’s annexation of the mainly Russian-speaking Crimean Peninsula.Agreements signed Friday let businesses in former Soviet republics of Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia trade freely in any of the EU’s 28 member nations without tariffs or restrictions, as long as their goods and practices meet EU standards. Likewise, goods and services from the EU will be sold more easily and cheaply in the three countries.Closer ties between Ukraine and the EU have long been overshadowed by Russian opposition. Moscow is loath to see its historic influence wane in its strategic neighbor, which it considers the birthplace of Russian statehood and of Russian Orthodox Christianity.”There will undoubtedly be serious consequences for Ukraine and Moldova’s signing,” Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin said.Georgia has already lost chunks of its territory and Black Sea coast to rebels backed by Russia after a brief war with Russia in 2008.Play Video Obama, Putin discuss Ukraine conflict for first time Putin did not immediately comment on the trade pact, but in recent days has signaled that he wants to de-escalate the conflict ahead of talks later Friday by the EU’s heads of state and government on whether to ramp up sanctions against Russia over its conduct toward Ukraine.”The most important thing is to guarantee a long-term cease-fire as a precondition for meaningful talks between the Kiev authorities and representatives of the southeast (of Ukraine),” Putin said Friday.The EU leaders gave the Russian government and the rebels until Monday to take steps to improve the situation in eastern Ukraine, including agreeing on a way to verify the cease-fire, returning three border checkpoints to Ukraine, releasing all captives and launching „substantial negotiations” on Poroshenko’s peace plan.A second round of talks was being held Friday in eastern Ukraine between representatives of the mutinous regions and the Kiev government, also involving envoys from Russia and the EU, Russian news agencies quoted rebel leader Andrei Purgin as saying.Poroshenko’s office confirmed that a weeklong cease-fire, which both sides have accused each other of violating, was set to expire at 10 p.m. local time.Interior Minister Arsen Avakov told Ukraine’s Fifth Channel that at least 20 servicemen had been killed since the rebels agreed to the cease-fire, although he did not elaborate. He said the government would respond „harshly and adequately” to all rebels who did not put down their arms by Friday evening.An overnight battle for a National Guard base in the eastern city of Donetsk left rebels in control early Friday. All servicemen were set free but the commander was taken captive, according to the National Guard’s website.In Brussels, Poroshenko made no mention of the cease-fire as he triumphantly signed the agreement.”What a great day!” he said. „Maybe the most important day for my country after independence day.”A rally was scheduled to be held at Kiev’s Independence Square, the site of the protests that toppled Yanukovych, but the mood was still subdued Friday after Poroshenko’s signing. A trickle of people filed by votive candles and portraits of the so-called „Heavenly Hundred,” the protesters killed – many by snipers – near the square in February.Andrei Berezov, a 30-year-old driver who lives in a Kiev suburb, said he favored Poroshenko’s decision to bring Ukraine closer to Europe.”I have lived and worked in Madrid, there’s no comparison, it’s black and white,” he said. „There’s no corruption, paying a policeman 50 hryvnias, it wouldn’t happen there.”Svetlana Kosenko, an 18-year-old student from Ukraine’s western regions, said she didn’t believe the country would change overnight.”I think it will take a long time,” she said. „As they say, hope dies last, and for now we hope things will be good.”The U.N. said Friday that 110,000 Ukrainians had fled to Russia this year and another 54,000 fled their homes but stayed in Ukraine as the government fought with separatists in the mostly Russian-speaking east. Long lines of cars stuffed with belongings backed up at the border heading into Russia this week.European Commission experts estimate the deal will boost Ukraine’s national income by 1.2 billion euros ($1.6 billion) a year. Ukraine won a 15-year transition period during which it can use tariffs to support its domestic auto industry from competition. Moldova will gradually eliminate protections for its dairy, pork, poultry and wine producers over 10 years, while the EU placed limits on imports of chicken from both countries.Perhaps more important than the trade clauses is an accompanying 10-year plan for Ukraine to adopt EU product regulations. Such rules ease the way for international trade beyond Europe.The trade deal also demands that Ukraine change the way it does business. Adopting EU rules on government contracts, competition policy and copyright for ideas and inventions should improve Ukraine’s economy by reducing widespread corruption and making it more investor-friendly.Amanda Paul, a policy analyst at the Brussels-based think tank European Policy Center, said Russia has levers to inflict serious economic pain on Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia through trade restrictions, cuts in energy supplies or the deportation of migrant workers from those countries.In Brussels, Poroshenko reminded EU leaders of the Ukrainians who died opposing Yanukovych’s government and in the ongoing battle against the pro-Russian insurgency in the country’s east. He said Ukraine „paid the highest possible price to make her European dreams come true.”He asked EU leaders to take a further step and formally pledge that one day Ukraine can join the EU as a full-fledged member.That „would cost the European Union nothing,” he said, „but would mean the world to my country.”© 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.  
News / Europe Ukraine Rebels Free OSCE Monitors Related Articles

TEXT SIZE Reuters June 28, 2014 4:10 PM  —Pro-Russian separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine on Saturday released a second group of four monitors from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) who had been seized on May 29, a Reuters witness said.Their release, which followed the freeing of another group of OSCE monitors early on Friday, came after Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko announced a 72-hour extension to a ceasefire until Monday night. That ceasefire appeared under threat when three members of the Ukrainian military were killed in a rebel attack on their post near the eastern city of Slaviansk.This correspondent saw the four – three men and a woman – driven by heavily armed men up to the entrance of a hotel in the eastern city of Donetsk.They stepped out, shook hands with other waiting OSCE representatives and then went into the hotel.A first group of OSCE monitors, seized days earlier by pro-Russian separatists, were released in the early hours of Friday.The OSCE monitoring groups are part of a 300-strong force sent there to observe compliance with a four-way agreement in Geneva in April aimed at defusing the crisis in Ukraine’s east.The circumstances of their detention is not yet clear.”A total of eight were detained and we have released eight,” Aleksander Boroday, „prime minister” of the self-styled Donetsk People’s Republic said on Friday.A ceasefire extension until Monday night announced by Poroshenko called for the release of „hostages” held by both sides.But elsewhere on Saturday the ceasefire appeared under threat when three members of the Ukrainian military were killed in a rebel attack on their post near the eastern flashpoint city of Slaviansk.”As a result of the [rebel] fighters shooting at the post near Slaviansk, three members of the Ukrainian forces were killed and a fourth was wounded,” the spokesman, Oleksiy Dmitrashkovsky, was quoted as saying by the Interfax news agency.Poroshenko announced the extension, partly at the urging of some European leaders, after returning to Kiev from a European Union summit in Brussels where he signed a landmark free trade pact.
Russia will not sit idly by as jihadists press Iraq assault


Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov speaks during a press conference on June 28, 2014 in Damascus during an official visit in the Syrian capitalView photo Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov speaks during a press conference on June 28, 2014 in Damascus during an official visit in the Syrian capital (AFP Photo/Louai Beshara)Damascus (AFP) – Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said in Damascus on Saturday that his country „will not remain passive” as jihadists push an offensive in Syria’s neighbour Iraq.Related Stories

„Russia will not remain passive to the attempts by some groups to spread terrorism in the region,” Ryabkov told journalists after meeting with President Bashar al-Assad.Sunni militants, led by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) which is active in both Syria and Iraq, have seized vast territory north and west of Baghdad since launching their offensive two weeks ago.Ryabkov, whose country is Assad’s main backer, did not elaborate on what steps Russia might take.”The situation is very dangerous in Iraq and the foundations of the Iraqi state are under threat,” he said.Ryabkov also reiterated Moscow’s position that the crises in Syria and Iraq must be resolved „through a genuine national dialogue”.Asked about Washington’s decision to support moderate rebels in Syria, Ryabkov said: „There can be no alternative to a political solution.”He added: „We reject this US policy. It is in everybody’s interest, including the Americans, to act responsibly on Syria.”President Barack Obama has asked US lawmakers to authorise a $500 million plan to arm and train the Syrian opposition, which has been fighting both Assad’s troops and the jihadist ISIL.Ryabkov said Damascus had taken a „responsible” decision in handing over its chemical weapons arsenal, while calling on Israel to „abide by” the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.

Gaza rocket hits building in southern Israel


Israeli firefighters extinguish a burning factory hit by a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip on June 28, 2014 at an industrial zone in the southern city of SderotView photoIsraeli firefighters extinguish a burning factory hit by a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip on June 28, 2014 at an industrial zone in the southern city of Sderot (AFP Photo/David Buimovitch)
 Jerusalem (AFP) – A rocket fired from the Gaza Strip hit an industrial zone in Sderot in southern Israel, setting a building on fire but without causing casualties, police said.Related Stories

A military spokesman said the building was a factory, and police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said four workers were able to escape after the attack.”Once the fire was extinguished, we began a search of the interior to determine whether there was anyone still there,” he said.The privately run Channel 10 television station said the building was a paint factory and that one employee was slightly injured and taken to hospital.Four other rockets landed in the fields without causing any damage, an army spokesman said, noting that 23 rockets and shells have been fired from Gaza over the past two weeks.On Friday, two Palestinians in the Gaza Strip were killed in an Israeli air raid after a bomb exploded near troops manning Israel’s security fence.Rocket attacks from the coastal enclave late Friday were followed by more air raids overnight.Of four early morning strikes on Gaza, two targeted „sites of terrorist activities” and the others hit arms depots and production facilities, a military spokesman said.Palestinian medics said the air raids that killed the two men struck near the home of Ismail Haniya, the former Hamas premier who stepped down on June 2 when Gaza and the West Bank set up a unity government.Israel has put Hamas under intense pressure since the June 12 disappearance of three Israeli teenagers it says were kidnapped in the West Bank by members of the Islamist movement.Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has urged the international community to press Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas to end his reconciliation with Hamas, citing the alleged kidnapping as proof that the movement’s „terrorist” activities make it an unsuitable political partner.Five Palestinians have been killed in the Israeli security sweep to find the teenagers and more than 400 have been arrested, mostly Hamas members.Troops have also raided some 2,100 buildings in the West Bank, a military spokesman said.

Angry Kosovo Serbs call Serbian president „traitor”


Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic delivers a speech at the Gazimestan memorial, near Pristina, Kosovo, during a ceremony marking the historic "Battle of Kosovo", on June 28, 2014View photo Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic delivers a speech at the Gazimestan memorial, near Pristina, Kosovo, during a ceremony marking the historic „Battle of Kosovo”, on June 28, 2014 (AFP Photo/Armend Nimani )Pristina (Undefined) (AFP) – Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic was booed during a visit to Kosovo on Saturday by ethnic Serbs who accused his government of betrayal for agreeing to normalise relations with the breakaway state.Nikolic was addressing around 1,000 Kosovo Serbs at a ceremony marking the anniversary of an historic 14th century battle at Gazimestan, around five kilometres (three miles) southwest of the capital Pristina.Midway through his speech, several hundred people in the crowd began chanting „traitor” and booing.Many Kosovan Serbs are angry over a landmark agreement signed last year that normalised ties between Serbia and Kosovo, a majority ethnic Albanian region that declared independence in 2008.”You betrayed Kosovo!” and „Treason, treason!” were among the shouts directed at Nikolic.He was forced to cut short his speech at the historic site where the Serbian army was defeated by the Ottoman Empire in the 1389 Battle of Kosovo.That defeat paved the way for the Ottoman Empire’s 500-year rule in the Balkans, and is still remembered as a key moment in the clash between Christians and Muslims in the region.A firecracker was thrown at Nikolic, forcing his bodyguards to gather around the president and escort him quickly from the scene in a bulletproof convoy.”Today, our neighbour Albanians are building houses and are farming. I wish them luck but want them to know that they are building on Serb soil,” Nikolic, a hardline nationalist-turned-pro-EU politician said before he was interrupted.Serbia stopped short of recognising Kosovo’s independence in last year’s EU-brokered agreement but accepted the Pristina government’s control over the territory. It was rewarded with the opening of EU accession talks.Ethnic Serbs number around 120,000 in Kosovo’s population of 1.8 million.Kosovo’s declaration of independence has been recognised by more than 100 countries, including the United States and most EU member states.
Seoul: North Korea fires more short-range missiles

Associated Press

A man watches a TV news program showing the missile launch conducted by North Korea, at Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Thursday, June 26, 2014. North Korea fired three short-range projectiles Thursday into the waters off its east coast, a South Korean defense official said. The move was most likely a routine test-firing, but the official said it could also be meant to stoke tensions with Seoul. The writing on tje screen reads "The missiles were launched to alert and express its internal solidarity." (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)View photoSEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea fired two short-range missiles into its eastern waters Sunday, a South Korean official said, an apparent test fire that comes just days after the country tested what it called new precision-guided missiles.Related Stories

The Defense Ministry official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, citing department rules, said the missiles were fired from Wonsan and are presumed to be short-range ballistic missiles. The official said North Korea fired the missiles without designating no-sail zones, which the South Korean military views as provocative. South Korean media quoted officials as saying the projectiles appeared to be Scud missiles.North Korea regularly test-fires missiles and artillery, both to refine its weapons and to express its anger over various developments in Seoul and Washington. North Korea has in recent days criticized alleged South Korean artillery firing drills near a disputed maritime boundary in the Yellow Sea that has been the scene of several bloody skirmishes between the rival nations in recent years. The missile displays also come days before the leader of North Korea’s only major ally, Chinese President Xi Jinping, is set to meet with South Korean President Park Geun-hye. Seoul and Beijing have long pressed North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons ambitions.North Korea said Friday that leader Kim Jong Un guided test launches of a newly developed precision-guided missiles, in a likely reference to three short-range projectiles South Korean officials say the North fired a day earlier.It’s not possible to tell if this assertion about the new missiles is an exaggeration, something North Korea has frequently done in the past when trumpeting its military capability, analysts say. Its army is one of the world’s largest but is believed to be badly supplied and forced to use outdated equipment.Still, the impoverished North devotes much of its scarce resources to missile and nuclear programs that threaten South Korea, Japan and tens of thousands of U.S. troops in the region. Outside analysts say North Korea has developed a handful of crude nuclear devices and is working toward building a warhead small enough to mount on a long-range missile, although most experts say that goal may take years to achieve.After a brief period of warming ties earlier this year, animosity has risen on the Korean Peninsula. North Korea has in recent months threatened South Korea’s president, calling her a prostitute, and the South has vowed to hit North Korea hard if provoked. Pyongyang conducted a series of missile and artillery tests earlier this year in response to annual U.S.-South Korean military exercises it says it considers preparations for an invasion. North Korea also test-fired two medium-range ballistic missiles and exchanged artillery fire with South Korea near the disputed boundary in the Yellow Sea.On Thursday, North Korea’s army accused South Korea of firing shells into the North’s waters near the sea boundary.Both Koreas routinely conduct artillery drills near the maritime boundary. A North Korean artillery attack in 2010 killed four South Koreans on a front-line Yellow Sea island.The Korean Peninsula is still technically in a state of war because the 1950-53 Korean War ended with an armistice and not a peace treaty.

Libyan suspect pleads not guilty in Benghazi attack


The U.S. Consulate in Benghazi is seen in flames during a protestView photo The U.S. Consulate in Benghazi is seen in flames during a protest by an armed group said to have been …By Patricia, Zengerle, and, Doina and Chiacu Related Stories

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A Libyan militia leader pleaded not guilty in a U.S. federal court on Saturday to a terrorism charge in the 2012 attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi that killed four Americans.Ahmed Abu Khatallah was transferred to the U.S. District Court in Washington on Saturday morning from a Navy warship where he had been held since his June 15 capture by U.S. special operations forces in Libya.He was charged at an afternoon hearing with conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists resulting in death in the attack that killed U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans in Benghazi.The Sept. 11, 2012, attack triggered a political firestorm for President Barack Obama, with Republicans accusing his administration of misrepresenting the circumstances and of lax protection for diplomats.The charge against Khatallah includes malicious damage to and destruction of U.S. property by fires and explosives. It carries a maximum penalty of life in prison, the Justice Department said. The department said it intended to file additional charges shortly.Khatallah was not shackled when he appeared before Magistrate Judge John Facciola and kept his hands behind him as he gave answers through an interpreter. He wore a dark hoodie and black trousers and had long gray hair and a gray beard.”You conspired, that is to say, you agreed with other people, to provide material support and resources to terrorists, including yourself, knowing that support and those resources would be used in killing a person in the course of an attack on a federal facility involving the use of firearms and dangerous weapons,” Facciola told the defendant.The judge appointed a public defender and Khatallah was taken out of the courthouse in a motorcade after the 10-minute hearing. U.S. officials did not say where he would be held.Federal charges filed against him in July 2013 but kept under court seal until this month also included killing a person on U.S. property and a firearms violation.There was heightened security around the federal courthouse building, which is blocks from the U.S. Capitol and across the street from the National Gallery of Art, prime tourist destinations in Washington. Two or three armed U.S. marshals patrolled the perimeter of the building.MILITARY TO CIVILIAN CUSTODYKhatallah was taken aboard the USS New York, an amphibious transport ship, after his seizure in a raid on the outskirts of Benghazi. At the time of Khatallah’s capture, a U.S. official said he was expected to be questioned by an interrogation team at sea. The unit seeks information from suspects that might prevent future attacks.Khatallah was in U.S. military custody for nearly two weeks before being transferred into the American civilian court system. He was transferred to U.S. soil by helicopter, a U.S. official said.“Now that Ahmed Abu Khatallah has arrived in the United States, he will face the full weight of our justice system,” said U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder in a statement. “We will prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, the defendant’s alleged role in the attack that killed four brave Americans in Benghazi.”Khatallah denied in a Reuters interview in October 2012 that he was a leader of Ansar al-Sharia, an Islamist group Washington accuses of carrying out the assault on the consulate.His capture was a victory for Obama, who has been accused by Republicans of playing down the role of al Qaeda in the Benghazi attacks for political reasons and of being slow to deliver on promises of justice.Republicans said then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton failed to take steps to ensure the safety of American diplomatic personnel, an issue that is still resonating as Clinton considers running for U.S. president in 2016.Khatallah’s capture also led to Republican criticism, with some lawmakers calling for him to be taken to the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, for military prosecution. Obama has sought to close down the Guantanamo prison and his policy has been to try terrorism suspects caught abroad in the U.S. justice system.Most terrorism suspects tried in the United States since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks have been prosecuted at federal courts in New York and Alexandria, Virginia.FBI Director James Comey said capturing Khatallah and bringing him to the United States was a big step forward in the Benghazi investigation, but the FBI’s work was not over. „This case remains one of our top priorities and we will continue to pursue all others who participated in this brazen attack on our citizens and our country,” Comey said.(Additional reporting by David Ingram, Jonathan Ernst and Kevin Fogarty; Editing by Frances Kerry)

Bosnia marks end of Europe’s violent century

Associated Press

A man walks past a mosaic depicting Gavrilo Princip, the Bosnian-Serb nationalist who assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand in 1914, and other members of "Mlada Bosna" movement in the Bosnian town of Visegrad,140 kilometers east of Sarajevo, Saturday, June 28, 2014. Marking the centennial of the beginning of World War I in their own way, Bosnian Serbs in Visegrad on Saturday unveiled a mosaic of the man who ignited the war by assassinating the Austro-Hungarian crown prince on June 28, 1914. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)View gallery   SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina (AP) — Artists and diplomats declared a new century of peace and unity in Europe on Saturday in the city where the first two shots of World War I were fired exactly 100 years ago.Related Stories

On June 28, 1914, the Austro-Hungarian crown prince Franz Ferdinand was assassinated in Sarajevo, where he had come to inspect his occupying troops in the empire’s eastern province.The shots fired by Serb teenager Gavrilo Princip sparked the Great War, which was followed decades later by a second world conflict. Together the two wars cost some 80 million European their lives, ended four empires — including the Austro-Hungarian — and changed the world forever.Visiting the assassination site Saturday, Sarajevan Davud Bajramovic, 67, said that in order to hold a second of silence for every person killed just during WWI in Europe, „we would have to stand silently for two years.”A century later, Sarajevans again crowded the same street along the river where Princip fired his shots. And the Austrians were also back, but this time with music instead of military: The Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra was scheduled to perform works of European composers reflecting the century’s catastrophic events and conclude with a symbol of unity in Europe — the joint European hymn, Beethoven’s „Ode of Joy.”The orchestra wanted to pay tribute to the history of Sarajevo, a place where religions meet, said the first violinist, Clemens Hellberg.View galleryA couple walk past a poster of Archduke Franz Ferdinand …A couple walk past a poster of Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife Sophie, in the Bosnian town of  …Austrian President Heinz Fischer said Europeans „have learnt that no problem can be solved by war.”The continent’s violent century started in Sarajevo and ended in Sarajevo with the 1992-95 war that took 100,000 Bosnian lives.”If anything good can be found in this repeating evil, it’s more wisdom and readiness to build peace and achieve peace after a century of wars,” said Bosnia’s president, Bakir Izetbegovic.The splurge of centennial concerts, speeches, lectures and exhibitions on Saturday were mostly focused on creating lasting peace and promoting unity in a country that is still struggling with similar divisions as it did 100 years ago. The rift was manifested by the Serbs marking the centennial by themselves in the part of Bosnia they control, where a performance re-enacted the assassination.As Austrian conductor Franz Welser-Moest raised his baton in Sarajevo, an actor playing Gavrilo Princip descending from heaven on angel’s wings, raised his pistol in the eastern town of Visegrad, at the border to Serbia, to kill Franz Ferdinand again in a spectacular performance designed for the occasion.View galleryA man walks by a mosaic depicting Gavrilo Princip, …A man walks by a mosaic depicting Gavrilo Princip, the Bosnian-Serb nationalist who assassinated Arc …For the Serbs, Princip was a hero who saw Bosnia as part of the Serb national territory at a time when the country was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. His shots were a chance for them to include Bosnia into the neighboring Serbian kingdom — the same idea that inspired the Serbs in 1992 to fight the decision by Muslim Bosnians and Catholic Croats to declare the former republic of Bosnia independent when Serb-dominated Yugoslavia fell apart. Their desire is still to include the part of Bosnia they control into neighboring Serbia. Serbia itself flirts with both — the EU opposed unification with the Bosnian Serbs and its own EU membership candidacy.Serbian crown prince Aleksandar Karadjordjevic, Serbian prime minister Aleksandar Vucic, President Tomislav Nikolic and the head of the Serbian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Irinej attended the ceremony in Visegrad where Serbian flags flew and the Serbian anthem was played although the town is in Bosnia.Vucic said he was proud because in Visegrad „the Serbs are protecting their good reputation.”In Sarajevo, French philosopher and writer Bernard-Henry Levy said Europe owes Bosnia because it „stood idly by” as Serb nationalists bombed besieged multiethnic Sarajevo for 3.5 years. Levy started a petition Saturday among European intellectuals requesting the EU to „pay Bosnia back” by promptly giving it full membership in the European Union because it defended European values by itself 20 years ago.”What Europe will gain from Bosnia is part of its spirit, part of its soul,” he said, referring to efforts of some Bosnians to preserve the multiethnic character of the country and resist national division.Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic, a former hard-line nationalist-turned pro-EU reformer, previously said he considered going to Sarajevo for the centennial but gave up after realizing he would have to stand beside a plaque depicting Serbs as criminals.Indeed, a plaque at the entrance of the recently reconstructed Sarajevo National Library building where the concert was taking place states „Serb criminals” had set the library ablaze in 1992 along with its two million books, magazines and manuscripts.Karl von Habsburg, the grandson of the last Austrian emperor Charles I, was also attending the ceremonies.”We need united Europe and one thing is for sure: Europe will never be complete without Bosnia,” he stated.

Russia: US, EU must combat Mideast ‘terrorism’

Associated Press

FILE - This undated file image posted on a militant website on Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, shows fighters from the al-Qaida linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) marching in Raqqa, Syria. Moderate Syrian rebels are buckling under the onslaught of the radical al-Qaida breakaway group that has swept over large parts of Iraq and Syria. Some rebels are giving up the fight, crippled by lack of weapons and frustrated with the power of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. Other, more hard-line Syrian fighters are bending to the winds and joining the radicals. (AP Photo/Militant Website, File)View galleryDAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Russia’s deputy foreign minister called on the United States and Europe to take „serious” steps to combat terrorism during a visit to Damascus on Saturday, warning that several Middle Eastern countries are threatened.Related Stories

„Russia will not stand idle toward attempts by terrorist groups to spread terrorism in regional states,” Sergei Ryabkov told reporters, apparently referring to the rapid advance of the extremist Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant across eastern Syria and northern Iraq.Russia has been one of Syrian President Bashar Assad’s main allies since the start of an uprising against him in March 2011. Moscow has used its veto power four times at the U.N. Security Council to prevent international sanctions on Syria.Both Russia and Assad’s government have portrayed the civil war in Syria as a struggle against foreign-backed „terrorists,” the word Damascus applies to all rebels fighting to end the Assad family’s four-decade reign.Nearly two hours after Ryabkov’s comments, a car bomb exploded in a busy market in the rebel-held Damascus suburb of Douma, activists said. It was not immediately clear how many people were killed or wounded.The activists said the market was crowded as many people went shopping a day before the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, when observant Muslims fast from dawn to dusk and feast in the evenings.View galleryFILE - This undated file image posted on a militant …FILE – This undated file image posted on a militant website on Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014, which has bee …The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the explosion caused extensive damage. The Observatory and an activist in the nearby suburb of Saqba who goes by the name of Abu Yazan said the Islamic State is believed to be behind the blast, because of a rivalry with other rebel groups in the area.”Hospitals are full of wounded people,” Abu Yazan said via Skype.Douma, one of the most populous suburbs of Damascus, has been under rebel control for more than two years.The Islamic State has been fighting against rival rebel factions, including al-Qaida’s official affiliate, the Nusra Front, since January in battles that have left more than 6,000 people dead, according to the Observatory.Ryabkov called for confronting terrorism by „taking integral measures against radicalism and by searching for a solution to prevent the influx of fighters from abroad,” adding that terrorism will have „catastrophic repercussions” on the entire region.Thousands of foreign fighters, including hundreds from the former Soviet Union, are fighting against Assad’s forces in different parts of Syria, mainly on behalf of the Islamic State, which has carved out a sprawling enclave astride the Syrian-Iraqi border.Ryabkov praised Damascus’ „responsible” decision to give up its chemical weapons, saying that doing so has boosted Syria’s security.On Monday, Syria finished handing over to Western powers 1,300 tons of chemical weapons it acknowledged possessing, completing a deal reached last fall under threat of U.S. airstrikes.Ryabkov held talks a day earlier with Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem and his deputy, Faisal Mekdad.According to the state-run Syrian Arab News Agency, Ryabkov congratulated al-Moallem on removing „all chemical material” from the country._Mroue reported from Beirut.

Saved by the woodwork, Brazil lives another day

Associated Press

Brazil's Neymar fights for the ball with Chile's Francisco Silva during the World Cup round of 16 soccer match between Brazil and Chile at the Mineirao Stadium in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 28, 2014. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)View gallery BELO HORIZONTE, Brazil (AP) — Tight and tense as it was, it was enough to keep Brazil’s national obsession of winning the World Cup on home soil from taking a desperately disappointing turn.Related Stories

And it wasn’t Neymar, the country’s poster boy for this year’s World Cup, that played the key role this time. It was goalkeeper Julio Cesar, the country’s scapegoat from the last World Cup, who made several crucial saves and even got some help from the woodwork in a 3-2 penalty shootout win over Chile.With the score level at 1-1 on Saturday, Brazil was inches away from an early exit when Chile forward Mauricio Pinilla hit the crossbar in the final moments of extra time.Then, on the final kick of the match and after a pair of saves from Cesar in the shootout, Gonzalo Jara hit the post.”I believe the Brazilian people just needed this,” said Cesar, who made a mistake four years ago in South Africa that led to a quarterfinal loss. „The players, everybody else, we needed this.”The fans still have to wait to celebrate the title, however. There are three more matches to win before the home team can lay claim to a sixth World Cup title.View galleryBrazil's David Luiz, left, and Fred celebrate after …Brazil’s David Luiz, left, and Fred celebrate after Brazil’s opening goal during the World C …”Let’s see if we can make fewer mistakes in the next matches,” Brazil coach Felipe Scolari said. „Perhaps next time we won’t be as lucky.”To be fair, it wasn’t just luck that saw Brazil through to the quarterfinals at Mineirao Stadium, which was a sea of Brazilian yellow with islands of Chilean red.Neymar, David Luiz and Marcelo scored in the shootout, and Cesar saved penalties from Pinilla and Alexis Sanchez before watching Jara’s final attempt hit the post.The game over, some Brazilian players fell to the ground, exhausted and emotionally drained. Willian, who missed a penalty for Brazil, sobbed uncontrollably, as Fred helped him to his feet.The Chileans stood still, staring into the ground, wiping the sweat off their faces.View galleryBrazil's David Luiz, right, celebrates with his …Brazil’s David Luiz, right, celebrates with his teammate Neymar after Brazil scored the opening  …”Do you think I can be satisfied with the result?” Chile coach Jorge Sampaoli said. „We’ve played a hard 120 minutes even if everybody was against us in the stadium.”Brazil, which extended its 39-year unbeaten streak in home competitive matches to 61, will next face either Colombia or Uruguay in the quarterfinals.Brazil dominated the first half against Chile and took the lead when Luiz scored following a corner kick. After Sanchez equalized for Chile, Brazil had several chances to regain the lead.Neymar’s header deflected wide, Fred lifted the ball over the bar from close range and Dani Alves forced a backpedaling Claudio Bravo to make a one-hand save.But after referee Howard Webb disallowed Hulk’s second-half goal, ruling he had used his arm to control a long pass, Brazil lost the initiative to a Chile team that can leave the World Cup with pride after eliminating defending champion Spain in the group stage.View galleryChile's Alexis Sanchez, front, scores his side's …Chile’s Alexis Sanchez, front, scores his side’s first goal past Brazil’s Thiago Silva d …Pressing deep inside Brazil’s half, Chile pressured the home side into making mistakes or resorting to long passes to Hulk and Neymar.And, again, it was Cesar that often came up big, making a spectacular save on Charles Aranguiz’s shot to keep Chile from taking the lead in the second half.”We tried to give everything, we tried to fight for a dream, and we didn’t achieve it,” Chile midfielder Arturo Vidal said. „But we gave all our effort on the pitch.”Chile has never defeated Brazil in Brazil and hasn’t reached the World Cup quarterfinals since 1962, when it hosted the tournament.Brazil, meanwhile, has reached the quarterfinals of each World Cup since Argentina eliminated it in the second round in 1990.View galleryChile's Alexis Sanchez (7) wipes his brow after …Chile’s Alexis Sanchez (7) wipes his brow after Brazil’s David Luiz scored his side’s fi …Brazil went ahead in the 18th minute after Thiago Silva deflected Neymar’s corner kick toward the far post. Luiz was given the goal but replays showed Jara may have touched the ball before it went in.Brazil lost the lead when it failed to cope with Chile’s aggressive pressure in a throw-in situation deep inside its half of the field. Eduardo Vargas intercepted Hulk’s pass and found Sanchez on the right side of the area. The Barcelona striker scored easily with a shot toward the far post.In the end, however, it was Brazil moving on to the quarterfinals, with the hopes of a nation planted on the backs of every player.”I hope these are lessons being given to the whole population,” Scolari said. „If you make a promise, you must deliver. This is what the players are doing.”_Lineups:Brazil: Julio Cesar; Dani Alves, Thiago Silva, David Luiz, Marcelo; Luiz Gustavo, Fernandinho (Ramires, 72), Oscar (Willian, 106); Hulk, Fred (Jo, 64), Neymar.Chile: Claudio Bravo; Mauricio Isla, Gary Medel (Jose Rojas, 108), Eugenio Mena, Francisco Silva, Gonzalo Jara; Arturo Vidal (Mauricio Pinilla, 87), Marcelo Diaz, Charles Aranguiz; Alexis Sanchez, Eduardo Vargas (Felipe Gutierrez, 57).

Suarez idolized, not blamed for Uruguay’s exit

Associated Press

Uruguay fans wear masks of Uruguay's Luis Suarez before the World Cup round of 16 soccer match between Colombia and Uruguay at the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, June 28, 2014. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)View gallery RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Dejected but defiant, and still defending Luis Suarez.Related Stories

Uruguay’s support of the banned, biting striker was steadfast on Saturday even as the team was toothless in his absence and went out of the World Cup with a 2-0 loss to Colombia.Among the Uruguay fans in the stands, in the team dressing room and in the dugout, Suarez’s global pariah status is still mystifying. To them, the 27-year-old player is not a pariah but a footballing hero, even if the bite on an opponent will prevent him representing the national team in competitive games for more than a year.”People have been after him for a long time,” Uruguay coach Oscar Tabarez said in the Maracana, echoing recent attacks on a perceived FIFA and English-language media campaign against Suarez.World football’s governing body acted swiftly after the bite on Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini during Tuesday’s Group D finale, banning Suarez for four months, disrupting his Liverpool career, as well as nine international matches.”It is an outrage,” veteran defender Diego Lugano said. „It is a violation of human rights which is far beyond winning or losing a football game.”View galleryUruguay fans holds masks with the face of banned Uruguayan …Uruguay fans holds masks with the face of banned Uruguayan player Luis Suarez prior to the World Cup …While Suarez was more than 1,000 miles at home, his usual No. 9 jersey was hung in the dressing room as usual, tweeted out for the world to see by the team. Outside the Maracana, some fans pretended to bite each other, inside many watched the game wearing Suarez face masks and „Ole, ole, ole, Suarez” was sung throughout.”We all know the things that happened, but we had to take only positive things out of that situation,” Tabarez said. „In fact, it gave us a lot of strength for this game. We really wanted to win.”But apart from Suarez’s name, there was little to cheer as Uruguay fans were outnumbered by the swathes of Colombian yellow. Just like in the group stage opener when Suarez was still recovering from a knee injury, Uruguay couldn’t find a way to win in this round of 16 match without the lethal marksman, who scored twice in the victory over England.At 35, Diego Forlan made little impact up front during his 53 minutes on the pitch. Only in the closing minutes was there any intensity from the 2010 semifinalists, but Cristian Rodriguez, Maxi Pereira and Edinson Cavani were all denied.Still, though, no fan in a Uruguay shirt could be found blaming Suarez as they left the stadium.View galleryColombian supporters hold up a photo of Uruguay's …Colombian supporters hold up a photo of Uruguay’s Luis Suarez before the World Cup round of 16 s …”He is not a criminal, he is a good boy,” said 43-year-old Santiago Pineyioz. „He has a problem.”Suarez has now been handed a third biting ban after previous incidents with Ajax and Liverpool.But with the FIFA sanction preventing Suarez playing in next year’s Copa America, a perception is growing in Uruguay that the country of around three million is being unfairly targeted.”It’s very easy for FIFA to punish Uruguay,” 33-year-old Jose Maria Blanco said. „They wouldn’t do it to Brazil … we don’t have the power.”It’s a sentiment that’s shared by Uruguay midfielder Egidio Arevalo.”Right now I’ve got a bitter feeling,” Arevalo said. „We really had to fight against all … because the truth is that they wanted us out of the cup long ago.”

Wimbledon at a glance

Associated Press

LONDON (AP) — A look at Wimbledon on Saturday:Related Stories

Weather: Rain prevented play on the outside courts most of the afternoon, while three matches were played under the roof at Centre Court.Schedule: There is no play on the tournament’s middle Sunday. Two men’s singles matches originally scheduled for Saturday were postponed entirely until Monday; one men’s match and two women’s matches were suspended by darkness and are to resume Monday.Men’s Seeded Winners: No. 2 Rafael Nadal, No. 4 Roger Federer, No. 8 Milos Raonic, No. 23 Tommy Robredo.Men’s Seeded Losers: No. 15 Jerzy Janowicz.Women’s Seeded Winners: No. 3 Simona Halep, No. 5 Maria Sharapova, No. 9 Angelique Kerber, No. 13 Eugenie Bouchard, No. 25 Alize Cornet.Women’s Seeded Losers: No. 1 Serena Williams, No. 20 Andrea Petkovic, No. 24 Kirsten Flipkens.Stat of the Day: 90 — Points won by both Williams and Cornet in their third-round match; Cornet 1-6, 6-3, 6-4.Quote of the Day: „I think everyone in general plays the match of their lives against me.” — Serena Williams.Monday’s Third-Round Men’s Matches: No. 9 John Isner vs. No. 19 Feliciano Lopez, No. 5 Stan Wawrinka vs. Denis Istomin, No. 10 Kei Nishikori vs. Simone Bolelli (to be completed).Monday’s Third-Round Women’s Matches: No. 11 Ana Ivanovic vs. No. 19 Sabine Lisicki (to be completed), Madison Keys vs. Yaroslava Shvedova (to be completed).Monday’s Fourth-Round Men’s Matches: No. 1 Novak Djokovic vs. No. 14 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, No. 3 Andy Murray vs. No. 20 Kevin Anderson, No. 11 Grigo Dimitrov vs. Leonardo Mayer, No. 26 Marin Cilic vs. Jeremy Chardy.Monday’s Fourth-Round Women’s Matches: No. 4 Agnieszka Radwanska vs. No. 22 Ekaterina Makarova, No. 5 Maria Sharapova vs. No. 9 Angelique Kerber, No. 6 Petra Kvitova vs. Peng Shuai, No. 8 Alize Cornet vs. No. 13 Eugenie Bouchard, No. 16 Caroline Wozniacki vs. Barbora Zahlavova Strycova, No. 23 Lucie Safarova vs. Tereza Smitkova.Monday’s Forecast: Mostly sunny, high of 70 degrees (21 Celsius).