Titanic Under UNESCO Protection
The wreck of the Titanic will now be protected by the United Nations cultural arm, UNESCO, the agency said Thursday. April 14 will be the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic in the North Atlantic Ocean, killing 1,514 people. “Previously the Titanic was not eligible for protection under the UNESCO Convention, which only applies to remains submerged for at least 100 years,” the agency said. The wreck lies around 2.5 miles below the surface off the coast of Canada’s Newfoundland, and according to UNESCO, “no single state can claim the site because the wreck is in international waters.” The vessel was rediscovered in 1985 due to advances in underwater exploration technology.
ICC Demand For Gadhafi’s Son Rejected
The International Criminal Court (ICC) demanded that Libya hand over Seif al-Islam Gadhafi, son of longtime dictator Moammar Gadhafi, but was turned down by the country’s interim government. Since he was captured last November, Gadhafi has been kept in relative isolation in a secret location in Zintan and has no access to a lawyer. Amnesty International said the current Libyan government does not have a functioning justice system thus Gadhafi should be tried in the Netherlands-based court. A spokesperson with the Libyan government, Nasser al-Manee, told Reuters that the country’s “the central prison preparations have been completed. They are ready for the trial of Seif al-Islam and it will be soon.”
Mayor’s Facebook Account Hacked
The mayor in northwestern Turkey warned residents that his Facebook account had been hacked and was being used to con people on his friends list, according to Hürriyet Daily News. The hackers used Dursunbey Mayor Mehmet Ruhi Yilmaz’s account to send messages to his friends, asking for cellphone numbers. Hackers sent messages reading: “Reply ‘yes’ to this message to open your Turkcell phone line to mobile payment and purchase FB mobile payments via Zong for 40 Turkish liras [$22].” Yilmaz warned the town via loudspeaker: “The social networking account of our Mayor Ruhi Yilmaz has been taken over by cyberpirates. Citizens are to ignore any messages coming from said account,” he said.
Unrest After Suicide Near Parliament
Greek police and protesters clashed in Athens just a few hours after a pensioner killed himself outside of the Parliament building, Several hundred demonstrators gathered near Parliament soon after on Wednesday evening. Some people threw Molotov cocktails at police, who responded with tear gas. The 77-year-old man left a suicide note, which said: “The government has annihilated all traces for my survival, which was based on a very dignified pension that I alone paid for 35 years with no help from the state,” Athens News reported. Parliament member, Yiorgos Karatzaferis, said that the suicide “should make us understand that we have all been behind this, we have all pulled the trigger.”
“Kony 2012” Follow-Up Released
U.S.-based Invisible Children released a follow-up to its massively popular “Kony 2012” video that calls for the capture of Joseph Kony, the rebel warlord leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army. “Kony 2012: Part 2—Beyond Famous,” uses similar production techniques and addresses some of the criticisms against the group and looks at Uganda’s political background. “This generation has responded to the call to make Joseph Kony famous. Now we need to dig deeper and turn awareness into informed action,” the video says. Jason Russell, the co-founder of Invisible Children, is not in the latest video. After the first Kony video’s release, he suffered a nervous breakdown and is said to be recovering.
April 6, 1896: First Modern Olympics Opens
On April 6, 1896, the first modern Olympic Games open in Greece, the birthplace of the ancient sporting ritual. However, they almost do not take place because of Greece’s troubled economy and political instability after it comes out that the price tag will be three times greater than originally thought. A successfully appeal to the patriotism of the Greek public, however, results in the raising of enough funds to go ahead. It takes another 108 years before the games return to Greece.
Today, because of Greece’s dire economic situation, the country has had to cut back on sports funding. This sparked rumors that the country cannot afford to pay Olympic coaches or training staff and may have to miss the London Olympic Games this summer. On Thursday, Sports general director head Panos Bitsaxis refuted this reports and accused the Amateur Athletic Federation of spreading disinformation, according to Athens News. Bitsaxis said, “The Greek presence at the Olympic Games will be exceptional,” adding that Greece will send 100 athletes.