NEWS

In Brief

Fatal shootings

Two Albanians killed in drive-by attacks in Athens Police in Athens said they were investigating two fatal shootings early on Saturday, one in the western neighborhood of Peristeri and the other in the district of Aghios Panteleimonas near the city center. The first attack was carried out at around 8 a.m. by a gunman in a car driven by an accomplice. The victim was a young Albanian man. The second incident occurred shortly before 9 a.m. Again, an unidentified gunman fired from a moving car, killing a street kiosk manager, also an Albanian. The employee was shot dead while sitting in the kiosk. Both attacks are being treated as a settling of accounts. Crime ring Five suspects held, 9 sought A 26-year-old Greek man was being questioned by police in Nikaia, near Piraeus, over the weekend as the suspected leader of a ring behind a series of arson attacks, thefts and and drug deals. Officers said they are also questioning another two Greeks, aged 24 and 48, a 34-year-old Albanian national and 35-year-old Romanian woman and are seeking nine more suspects. The ring is believed to have staged arson attacks in Nikaia, Aghia Varvara and Peristeri. Police confiscated 2.5 kilograms of cannabis from the homes of the suspects. Seminary appeal A Turkish state minister has said Ankara should open the Greek Orthodox seminary of Halki, an island off the coast of Istanbul, to boost the rights of the country’s non-Muslim minorities, Turkey’s daily Hurriyet reported yesterday. «I personally would very much like to see the…seminary reopen…We need to permit this,» said State Minister Bulent Arinc. «We must agree to the rightful requests, the basic rights of those of different faiths, because we are not just the government of Muslims,» he added. The European Union, which Turkey aspires to join, has pressed Ankara to reopen the seminary, which has been closed for nearly four decades, to show its commitment to democratic pluralism. J-Lo saga A hotel in the Turkish-occupied north of Cyprus has threatened Jennifer Lopez with a 40-million-dollar (or 31-million-euro) lawsuit after the pop diva called off a concert there citing «political»reasons, press reports on the divided island said over the weekend. The head of the Turkish company managing the venue where Lopez had been scheduled to play said the singer had until the night of the July 24 concert to retract her cancellation. «If she does not show up… we will begin a procedure in the courts,» said Murat Bozoglu, speaking from the company’s headquarters in Istanbul. Lopez canceled the planned concert after vehement protests from Nicosia. Teen deaths Two youths, aged 16 and 17, were killed on Saturday when the scooter they had been riding on the old Patras-Corinth national road veered off course and crashed. The accident occurred shortly after 4 a.m. near the Diakopto junction. The exact circumstances of the crash remained unclear yesterday.