Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 11th 2016 Contents Sen Robert Kennedy s assassin, Sirhan Sirhan,
was to attend a parole hearing yesterday, his fifteenth
since Kennedy s death in 1968.
Today s hearing may be one in a long line of similar
parole reviews, but this one has a twist. One the wit-
nesses to Senator Kennedy s assassination, Paul
Schrade, will attend for the first time. Schrade has
long been steadfast in his assertions that Sirhan did
not act alone.
The primary season may bring back memories for
some of Kennedy s assassination, which occurred
after his California Democratic primary win in early
June, 1968. Kennedy had just addressed a crowd of
supporters gathered in a ballroom at Los Angeles
Sirhan ambushed Kennedy and some of his close
supporters in a pantry at the hotel as Kennedy left
the ballroom. Sirhan is now 71 years old. On the
night he shot Kennedy, Sirhan was just 24.
Initially, the Jerusalem
native was sentenced to
death after a $1 million trial.
His sentence was commut-
ed to life imprisonment
with the possibility of
parole in 1972.
The former stable hand
has expressed regret for the
shooting that killed
Kennedy several times since
the event occurred.
Yet despite his apparent
regret, Sirhan claims that
he does not remember the
assassination at all. He has maintained this claim for
nearly 50 years now, and was expected to do so again
during his trial yesterday.
Schrade is currently 91 and has been seeking justice
for Kennedy s murder for decades. He was serving
as Kennedy s labour chair when the assassination
occurred, and was himself injured in the attack.
Schrade is convinced that Sirhan was not the only
In 1995, Schrade assisted author Dan Moldea with
his book about the assassination, titled The Killing
of Robert F Kennedy. Schrade parted ways with
Moldea after the author came to an unsatisfying con-
In 2011, Dusek and fellow Sirhan lawyer William
Pepper claimed that 13 bullets were fired on the night
of the assassination, several more than Sirhan could
possibly have fired from his .22 caliber handgun.
They contested existing evidence and presented evi-
dence of their own, including audio analysis of the
Schrade has also speculated on the existence of a
possible second shooter. The case has intrigued the
country for decades, with disappointing dead ends
and recanted confessions by Sirhan, who first claimed
that the murder was politically motivated before
alleging that he couldn t remember the event at all.
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VATICAN CITY---Pope Francis placed
ashes on the bowed heads of prelates,
nuns and ordinary Catholics yesterday,
and had them trace the cross on his own
head, too, to usher in the Lenten season
of prayer and sacrifice he said must be
done out of authentic love, not to satisfy
The ritual, during Mass in St Peter's
Basilica, symbolises mortality. Catholics
in churches worldwide were also
marking Ash Wednesday with similar
ceremonies. Lent is the annual period of
penitence, prayers and sacrifice as
faithful prepare for Easter.
"True love, indeed, is not an exterior
act, it's not to give something in a
paternalistic way to satisfy the
conscience, but it is accepting those who
need our time, our friendship, our help,"
Francis said in his homily.
The pope described Lent as a good
time "to train ourselves to be more
sensitive and merciful" to others. He
added that Lent presents the occasion
to practice simplicity and sharing.
The pope has proclaimed this year as
a Holy Year of Mercy. He says people are
hurt by the "evil they commit and suffer"
and need to experience forgiveness.
Pope on Ash Wednesday: charity's not to please ourselves
faces his 15th
Turkey s leaders lashed out
yesterday at the United Nations
and others who are pressing
the country to open its border
to thousands more Syrian
refugees, accusing them of fail-
ing to shoulder the refugee bur-
den or stop the Russian bomb-
ings that have triggered the
The civil war in Syria has
killed more than 250,000 people
and forced millions to flee their
homes since it began in 2011. In
recent days, a Russian-backed
Syrian government offensive
around the city of Aleppo has
sent tens of thousands of people
fleeing to the Turkish border.
Turkey has taken in some
three million refugees---including
more than 2.6 million Syrians---
making it the country with the
world s largest refugee popula-
tion. Turkey has not, however,
allowed the latest wave of
refugees in, providing them
instead with assistance at dis-
placed persons camps on the
Syrian side of the border.
That prompted the UN
refugee agency, UNHCR, on
Tuesday to call on Turkey to
admit "all civilians who are flee-
ing danger and seeking inter-
At a news conference yester-
day with his Dutch counterpart
in The Hague, Turkish Prime
Minister Ahmet Davutoglu called
the UN Security Council and
the international community
"two-faced" for demanding that
Turkey open its borders while
not moving "a finger to solve
the Syrian crisis" or to stop the
Davutoglu also said the Syrian
and Russian military operations
were an attempt to drive out
people who don t support the
government of Syrian President
Bashar Assad. By taking in the
refugees that have fled Aleppo,
he said Turkey would be indi-
rectly contributing to what he
called Syria s "ethnic cleansing."
In Ankara, Turkish President
Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the
UN had sent $455 million to
Turkey to help with refugees
compared to the $10 billion that
Turkey had spent on the
refugees since 2011.
"What does the UN say?
Open your border to the
refugees. What are you for then?
What is your use?" Erdogan
asked. "We have taken three
million Syrians and Iraqis into
our home until now. How many
did you take?" (AP)
Turkey lashes out at UN
demands to open border
After taking in 3 million refugees...
Revellers throw talcum powder during the street carnival 'Los Indianos' in La Palma, on Spain's Canary Islands on Monday.
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