Poland ‘ready’ to demand WWII reparations from Germany
- Poland’s rightwing premier Thursday said she believed her country had the right to demand World War II reparations from Germany but added that her government was still mulling its official position.
“The position of the Polish government on war reparations will be officially expressed when a political decision is taken,” Prime Minister Beata Szydlo told the commercial radio station RMF FM.
“In my opinion, Poland has the right to this (reparations) and the Polish state has the right
to ask for them,” Szydlo said.
“We are ready to go ahead with this procedure,” she said.
The government disputes the validity of a 1953 resolution by Warsaw’s then communist authorities, who dropped claims against Germany. The deal was made under the diktat of the Soviet Union, the government argues. Szydlo said Wednesday that Warsaw was “proposing dialogue” with Berlin about war reparations. Her foreign and interior ministers have previously said EU and NATO neighbours Poland and Germany should hold “serious talks” about reparations, adding that the figure could be as high as one trillion dollars. Jaroslaw Kaczynski, the powerful leader of the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party, has accused Germany of shirking responsibility for the damage it inflicted on his country.
‘250 000 Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh’
- More than a quarter of a million mostly Rohingya refugees have entered Bangladesh since fresh violence erupted in Myanmar last October, the United Nations said, as more bodies washed up a day after boats sank attempting to cross the river that divides the two countries. In the last two weeks alone 164 000 mostly Rohingya civilians have fled to Bangladesh, overwhelming refugee camps that were already bursting at the seams and triggering warnings of a humanitarian crisis. Scores more have died trying to flee the fighting in Myanmar’s Rakhine state, where witnesses say entire villages have been burned to the ground since Rohingya militants launched a series of coordinated attacks on August 25, prompting a military-led crackdown.
COX’S BAZAR Israeli defence chiefs warn Iran, Syria
- Israel’s defence minister on Thursday issued a veiled warning to Syria, without confirming or denying what Damascus said was an Israeli air strike on its territory. Syria’s army accused Israel of hitting one of its positions, killing two people in an attack earlier the same day that a monitor said targeted a site where the regime allegedly produces chemical weapons. We are determined to prevent our enemies harming, or even creating an opportunity to harm, the security of Israeli citizens,” Avigdor Lieberman said in Hebrew, in remarks broadcast on Israeli television.
JERUSALEM One dead, ‘several injured’ on Dutch Sint Maarten
- At least one person was killed and “several were injured” after Hurricane Irma raged over Dutch Sint Maarten in the Caribbean, Internal Affairs Minister Ronald Plasterk said.” We confirm that one person has died and several others have been injured, but the picture is incomplete,” Plasterk told journalists in The Hague. Communication with the hard-hit island remained difficult Plasterk added, as the Dutch aid effort gathered steam on Thursday evening.
THE HAGUE Man, woman arrested for ‘terrorism-related’
- Police in Singapore have arrested a man suspected of planning to join Islamic Statelinked fighters in the Philippines and a woman who was in contact with foreign militants, the government said . Singapore, regarded as the most stable country in Southeast Asia, has become increasingly concerned about the risks of radicalisation among its Muslim minority. At least 14 radicalised Singaporeans have been put under restriction or detention orders under a tough internal security law since 2015, up sharply from 11 cases between 2007 and 2014, the government said in June.
SINGAPORE Mexico braces itself for impact of Hurricane
- Mexican authorities are preparing for the impact of Hurricane Katia, which could affect over a million people as it rumbles towards the state of Veracruz from the Gulf of Mexico. Army troops and personnel from the federal electricity authority have been deployed to the area on Mexico’s eastern gulf coast to be on hand to help in emergencies. Meanwhile, several shelters have opened as areas at risk of landslides are evacuated.” We are expecting the hurricane to hit on Friday night or in the early hours of Saturday,” Veracruz Governor Miguel Angel Yunes told Radio Formula.
READY: Poland’s Prime Minister Beata Szydlo.