NEWS

Six locals arrested for Paramythia blasts

Six local youths were arrested in the northwestern town of Paramythia yesterday on suspicion of being behind two bomb explosions at local police and Church targets over the past three weeks. The young men, aged 18-23, were caught in the act of planting a makeshift bomb under a police patrol car. Some of them were carrying Molotov cocktails, according to initial reports. The six reportedly confessed to planting another two bombs on December 15 and New Year’s Eve in the small town to the west of Ioannina in Epirus. The first caused damage but no injuries to the Paramythia police station and patrol cars parked outside, while the second buckled the iron gate outside the local bishop’s office. Dynamite was used in both cases. Initially, police had expressed fears that the attacks could be the work of local or Albanian gangs that smuggle guns, drugs and prostitutes through the area. There had also been speculation regarding Albanian irredentist groups. Since then, the Tillya Tepe finds have been wrapped in rumor, acquiring a quasi-legendary status. Recent reports agreed that the hoard was once in the vault. In one of his last interviews before being assassinated this year, Northern Alliance leader Ahmed Shah Massod confirmed this but said the Taleban – who looted and destroyed most of the Kabul Museum’s exhibits – had gained entry.