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Dec. 20, 2008

International News for Dec. 6 - Dec. 19

by Alisa Lu, Online News Editor
This is not original reporting. All information has been compiled from CNN, Reuters and the Washington Post. Silver Chips Online posts this news summary to provide readers with a forum for discussion.

Greece

Dec. 6 - Riots broke out in the streets of Athens and other Greek cities after policeman shot and killed 15-year-old Alexandros Grigopoulos during a confrontation between policemen and a group of teenagers in a neighborhood known as a leftist hangout. Hours later, youth in other regions of Greece protested the shootings at demonstrations, which led to rioting in many places. Many political analysts have hypothesized that rising unemployment, anger at the Greek government and overall frustration were catalysts for the riots. The policeman who shot Grigopoulos has been charged with premeditated manslaughter.

Canada

Dec. 8 - Liberal Party leader Stephane Dion announced that he will resign his position as leader of the major political party when a successor is chosen amid parliamentary turmoil. Dion had joined the other leaders of the opposition parties to call for a vote of no confidence against Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Harper requested and was granted the power to dissolve parliament by Governor General Michelle Jean and delay the vote until Jan. 26, 2009. Since then, Liberals have clamored for Dion's resignation due to the loss of Liberal seats under his leadership in previous elections and his unpopularity with the voters.

Iraq

Dec. 14 - At a press conference, an Iraqi journalist threw his shoes at President George Bush, who was visiting Iraq on an unannounced tour. Muntadhar al-Zeidi, a correspondent for Al-Baghdadia TV, which is owned by Iraqis but based in Egypt, has been arrested and is being held without charges by the Iraqi police. Thousands of Iraqis have since been demonstrating for the release of al-Zeidi, who has been lauded as a hero by the Arabian world. Iraqi Parliament Speaker Mahmoud al-Mashhadani resigned his seat in protest of al-Zeidi's jailing. In 2007, unknown assailants kidnapped and held al-Zeidi captive for three days in Baghdad.

Philippines

Dec. 15 - Twenty-eight people are dead and 22 are missing at last count after the ferry "Maejan" capsized off the coast of Cagayan Province in the northern Philippines. The wooden ferry was authorized to carry only 50 people but more than 100 people were on board when it sank. The recent incident is the latest boat-related disaster after a cargo ship capsized last month and two passenger boats sank in the weeks before, killing a total of more than 50 people.



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