Czech PM resigns: After claims of organised crime and corruption in the Czech government, Czech Prime Minster Petr Necas has decided to resign.
17 June 2013
The scandal reads like the script of a European television thriller, melding politics with human drama.
The pressure had been growing on the prime minister since Friday when his chief of staff, Jana Nagyova, was charged with corruption and abuse of power. Detectives said she was suspected of bribing MPs with jobs in state-owned companies.
Last week, police raided government offices and seized $8m worth of cash and gold. The chief of staff is also accused of ordering spying on Prime Minister Necas’ wife.
Intriguingly, he said in his resignation speech that what he called the “twists and turns of his personal life” were a weight on the political situation in the country.
It is not clear if the president of the country will rule that there should be a new general election, or whether some form of the existing coalition government will continue with a different prime minister.
Nelson Mandela remains in hospital: Nelson Mandela remains in hospital after being admitted for a lung infection. His condition is still being described as “serious but stable”. Mr Mandela, 94, was admitted to a Pretoria hospital early on Saturday.
10 June 2013
As the world’s media gathered in Pretoria, where Nelson Mandela is being treated for a recurrent lung infection, there’s been no fresh information about his health status.
Whilst the absence of any official updates did little to help the speculation, many took heart from a visit by Nelson Mandela’s daughter Zindzi, who said that her father was well and a fighter.
Although Mr Mandela has rallied in the face of past health scares, there is an increasing acceptance among many South Africans that the former president is frail and not immortal.
Commentators are now daring to talk of a time without Mandela, urging South Africans to cherish his enduring achievements: an end to racist white rule and a constitution that is the envy of the world, as much as the man himself.
Queen visits the BBC: The British Queen, Queen Elizabeth II, has officially opened the BBC’s new headquarters. The Queen, who is commemorating sixty years since her coronation, took a tour of the newsroom and met journalists from the World Service. She also made an announcement live on air to declare Broadcasting House open.
7 June 2013
The Queen first visited Broadcasting House in 1939. Back then she was a young princess, accompanying her father King George VI and her mother, Queen Elizabeth. Fourteen years later she was crowned.
In her six decades as Queen, the BBC’s headquarters have seen many changes and challenges. During the Second World War the iconic art deco facade was damaged in the Blitz. Producers and announcers regularly took cover in a special air raid bunker. Since then, some of the building’s wood panelled offices have been made famous by those who worked in them. Room 101 gave George Orwell inspiration for his novel 1984.
In recent years, Broadcasting House has had a one-and-a-half billion dollar revamp. The Queen will see the state-of-the-art glass fronted extension and inspect the BBC’s multi-media newsroom.
Turkey protests: Turkish protesters have clashed with police in Istanbul overnight, in some of the worst violence since protests started on Friday.
3 June 2013
The demonstrations overnight in Istanbul were the most dramatic so far. Protesters in the Dolmabahce neighbourhoods built barricades and tried to reach the prime minister’s office.
Witnesses say they got hold of a digger and drove it at police lines. Demonstrators also tried to march on the prime minister’s office in the capital Ankara. They were met by the police who fired tear gas and water cannon.
The government has reacted angrily to the continuing protests. The prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has dismissed accusations that he acts in an authoritarian manner.
Erdogan has insisted that a controversial plan to redevelop Gezi Park in Istanbul, the issue which sparked the initial protests on Friday, will still go ahead.
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