Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 23rd 2015 Contents A29
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ANKARA---Turkish President Recep
Tayyip Erdogan yesterday condemned
what he said were suggestions in Europe
to sink human traffickers vessels,
insisting the plans would leave migrants
"to their deaths."
Erdogan s comments came a day before
European Union leaders were scheduled
to hold an emergency summit in Brussels
to discuss ways of stemming migrant
trafficking after a boat carrying hundreds
of people destined for Europe capsized
off Libya. Authorities believe 800 may
have been killed.
Combatting the traffickers by arresting
ringleaders and destroying their boats
has emerged as a proposal to be discussed
at the summit, although no one has men-
tioned targetting boats with people
Erdogan, speaking at a joint news con-
ference with visiting Iraqi President Fuad
Masum, suggested however, the European
plans could pave the way for ships being
sunk while carrying migrants.
He didn t specify how, but spoke of
"statements coming from Europe prepar-
ing the ground for (vessels) to be sunk
in the Mediterranean, in the Aegean, while
transporting migrants and refugees."
Erdogan has increased his anti-West
and anti-European rhetoric in recent
years. His latest comments follow a deci-
sion at the European Parliament to pass
a non-binding resolution to commem-
orate "the centenary of the Armenian
genocide" later this week.
The Turkish leader criticised European
countries efforts to stop migrants reach-
ing their borders saying Turkey was cur-
rently hosting 1.7 million refugees from
Syria and another 300,000 from Iraq
because it considered it to be its "human-
"If for one reason or the other these
people are fleeing their countries to seek
refuge in European countries, what kind
of an approach is it to sink the ships
they are fleeing on? How can they adopt
an approach that leaves the migrants to
their deaths?" Erdogan asked. "I con-
demn and curse the West s attitude."
Migrants have some
food after disembarking
from the Italian Navy
vessel Chimera in
Salerno, Italy, yesterday.
Italy pressed the
European Union on
yesterday to devise
concrete, robust steps to
stop the deadly tide of
migrants on smugglers'
boats in the
setting up refugee
camps in countries
bordering Libya. Italian
Roberta Pinotti also said
human traffickers must
be targeted with
LUNCHTIME FOR MIGRANTS
Turkey slams European plans
to destroy traffickers' vessels
A worker paints the 130-foot vessel The Phoenix, harboured outside Valletta, Malta,
yesterday. The owners of the yacht, Christopher and Regina Catrambone, founded the
Malta-based Migrant Offshore Aid Station in 2013 after the drowning of 366 people off
the island of Lampedusa, and are gearing up for a six-month tour of duty rescuing
migrants in need, to fill the void they say has been left by an ineffective European
response to the Mediterranean migrant crisis. AP PHOTO
TOKYO---Japanese authorities said they were
investigating after a small drone laced with traces
of radiation was found yesterday on the roof of
the prime minister s office, sparking concerns
about drones and their possible use for terrorist
No injuries or damage were reported from the
incident, and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was in
Indonesia to attend an Asian-African conference.
Police said it was not immediately known who
was responsible for the drone. They were inves-
tigating the possibility it had crashed during a
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said a
drone landing at the prime minister s office was
a wakeup call to problems caused by the unmanned
aerial devices, including possible terrorist attacks
when Japan hosts a Group of Seven summit next
year, as well as the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
It was not clear when the drone landed.
What was initially considered only a mishap
turned eerie when investigators detected small
traces of radiation from the drone, which police
said were not levels harmful to humans. TV video
showed several uniformed policemen without
hazmat suits carrying a blue plastic box containing
the drone for further examination. (AP)
Nigerian ground troops have joined an offen-
sive on the last known hideout of the Boko
Haram Islamist militants, a military spokesman
has told the BBC.
The vast north-eastern Sambisa forest is where
they have many bases---and it has been subject
to aerial bombardments since February.
There has been speculation that some of the
Chibok schoolgirls kidnapped more than a year
ago are being held there.
Boko Haram has killed thousands in northern
Nigeria since 2009.
Nigeria s military, backed by troops from neigh-
bouring countries, launched an offensive against
Boko Haram in February---and has recaptured
most of the territory the militants had taken in
the previous year.
Some of the abducted schoolgirls, who escaped
shortly after they were seized, have told the BBC
they had been kept in militant camps in the Sam-
BBC Africa security correspondent Tomi
Oladipo says the Nigerian military has been
steadily reclaiming territory from the insurgents
and sees the takeover of Sambisa as one of its
But our correspondent says the Sambisa forest,
which incorporates a former game reserve, is far
larger than any other territory that has been
fought over so far.
The aerial bombardments on Sambisa, which
is mainly in north-eastern Borno state, have been
slowed down by weather conditions and poor
visibility, he says. (BBC)
Drone found on roof of
Japanese PM's office
Nigeria begins ground
offensive against Boko Haram
recalled its ambassador to
Venezuela for consultations, a day
after Venezuela's leader accused
Spanish Prime Minister Mariano
Rajoy of backing a conspiracy to
overthrow his government.
A Foreign Ministry statement
said Spain rejected the "insults,
calumnies and threats" by
Venezuela against Spain, Rajoy and
former prime ministers Felipe
Gonzalez and Jose Maria Aznar.
On Tuesday, Venezuelan
President Nicolas Maduro said
Rajoy's "bandit" government was
behind an international conspiracy
to overthrow his government.
Spain said it found Maduro's
remarks that Spain supported
terrorist activities in Venezuela
"particularly intolerable," especially
given that Spain has suffered many
acts of terrorism in the past.
Venezuela vowed to take
retaliatory action against Spain but
gave no details.
Venezuela also declared former
Socialist Prime minister Gonzalez
persona non grata for announcing
he intended to help the defence of
two jailed Venezuelan opposition
leaders. Spain last week summoned
Venezuela's ambassador after
Maduro accused Spain of
interfering in its affairs when
Parliament passed a motion calling
for the jailed Venezuelan opposition
leaders to be released. (AP)
Spain recalls ambassador to Venezuela after 'insults'
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