01 February 2015

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Writer on trial in Italy pleads freedom of expression

BRACCIANO  An Italian writer sent to trial for saying an environmentally controversial train link should be "sabotaged" plans to make freedom of expression the centre of his defence.Erri De Luca is due in court in Turin on Wednesday to answer a charge of incitement to commit a criminal act over 2013 interviews in which he was quoted as saying a proposed new link through the Alps "should be sabotaged" and that he thought "it is just to sabotage it."In theory, the 64-year-old writer could be

Turkey detains 26 police in wiretapping probe

ISTANBUL: Turkish authorities on Tuesday detained at least 26 police in the latest nationwide swoop over the alleged wiretapping of top officials including President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, state media said.Police conducted raids in the western city of Izmir and 12 other provinces and detained suspects, including high-ranking officers, accused of wiretapping key figures including businessmen, academics and government officials, Anatolia news agency reported.The suspects were facing a series of charges from

Obama leads heavyweight mission to key ally Saudi

Obama leads heavyweight mission to key ally Saudi RIYADH: US President Barack Obama led a heavyweight delegation to Saudi Arabia Tuesday to offer condolences on the death of King Abdullah and shore up ties that analysts say have suffered in recent years.Obama cut short a state visit to India to pay his respects to new King Salman, 79, after Abdullah died on Friday aged about 90.The United States established full diplomatic relations with the Muslim kingdom in 1940 and the unlikely allies remain bound by shared interests in

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