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News digest: 2 November 2012

Bulgaria FM slams Brussels over interim report warning (Novinite): "Bulgaria's foreign minister has harshly criticized the European Commission for "circulating rumors" after it warned an additional report on the country's justice and home affairs may be due"

BULGARIA: Own Interior Minister Describes Bulgaria as 'Organized Crime Oasis' (Novinite)

CYPRUS: Cypriots to sue Britain over torture claims (Ekathimerini): "Cypriots who fought against British colonial rule in the 1950s plan to sue the UK government for torture they allegedly suffered at the hands of British authorities while in custody, an official said Wednesday"

CZECH REPUBLIC: Far-right leader Vandas pulls out from presidential race (Prague Daily Monitor): "Tomas Vandas, leader of the Czech far-right Workers' Party of Social Justice (DSSS), has given up his candidature for the presidential election, Vandas said yesterday"

CZECH REPUBLIC: Former intelligence head faces charges (Prague Daily Monitor): "The police have raised information leak charges against Karel Randak, former head of Czech counter-intelligence and a member of the board of the Anti-Corruption Endowment, Randak himself and Sarka Pokorna, the Prague 1 state attorney, confirmed to CTK yesterday"

EU to Poland: artists should be free to 'shock' (euobserver): "The European Commission has said that Poland's prosecution of a rock group for "blasphemy" is out of tune with European values"

GERMANY: Berlin asylum seekers on hunger strike for a week (euronews): "Protesters have gathered outside Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate to mark the seventh day of a migrant hunger strike." See also: Mass protests across Germany for the rights of asylum-seekers and migrants (pdf)

GREECE: Immigrants attacked in Athens centre (Ekathimerini): "Members of the neofascist Golden Dawn party and residents of Aghios Panteleimonas late Wednesday assaulted immigrants in the central Athens neighborhood, reports said"

GREECE: Torture accusations being investigated, Dendias says (Athens News): "Claims made by 15 antifascist demonstrators that they were subjected to torture at Attica police headquarters (GADA) are being investigated in the context of a sworn administrative inquiry, public order minister, Nikos Dendias, has said, in a written reply to a parliamentary question from a number of Syriza MPs"

ITALY: Agustawestland distances self from kickback allegations (Gazzetta del Sud)

NETHERLANDS: Dutch Parliament suspends deportation of young asylum seekers (Radio Netherlands Worldwide)

NETHERLANDS: Iraqi illegal immigrants in Dutch limbo (BBC News): "In The Hague dozens of Iraqi refugees have set up camp together, jointly resisting the government that wants to send them home"

NORWAY: Aliens Directorate dismisses 925 marriages (The Norway Post)

PORTUGAL: Protesters vent austerity anger on streets of Lisbon (BBC News): "Angry protesters have gathered outside Portugal's Parliament to protest against the government's latest austerity budget"

Return on investment makes ANPR an 'easy sell' (Info4Security): "The global market for automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) systems is set to reach $350 million by the end of 2012 as suppliers focus on applications that provide a strong return on investment (ROI)"

Romania Senate decision worries EU (Balkan Insight): "Romania's upper chamber, the Senate, on Tuesday ruled that Mircea Diaconu, an MP from the ruling coalition, should retain his position in parliament at the end of his mandate in November despite a ruling from the Supreme Court"

Russian 'Internet blacklist' goes into effect today (Global Post): "A new Russian law will that allows the government to force any website offline, at any time, for any reason, without trial, goes into effect today"

SERBIA: New law on funding regulators alarms Serbian media (Balkan Insight): "As the government drafts a new law, changing the way electronic communications operators are funded, journalists' union warns it may jeopardize their independence"

UK: A nice little earner: Metropolitan Police force receives over £22m from sponsors (The Independent): "Britain's largest police force was handed private donations and sponsorship worth £22.7m over the last five years, it has emerged"

UK: Inqury under way into the death of detainee at the Harmondsworth immigration centre (The Independent): "An inquiry is underway after a man awaiting deportation died in mysterious circumstances at a privately run immigration detention centre in west London"

USA: Drone Economics: Tiny tactical drones get dirt-cheap, GPS-guided bombs (Ars Technica): "The economics of "precision-strike" drone warfare may change very soon. The US Army and General Dynamics announced today that they have successfully tested a weapon that could turn small unmanned aircraft into small-scale automated precision-attack bombers"

USA-UK: Supreme Court upholds US detention of Yunus Rahmatullah (UK Human Rights Blog): "The Supreme Court has ruled that the law of habeas corpus should not be used to order the US to return a Pakistani national held in US custody to the UK"

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