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Round-up of news stories from across the EU
25.4.16
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AUSTRIA: Women targeted in anti Muslim attacks in Austria (The Local, link): " There were 156 assaults against Muslims in Austria in 2015, with the vast majority of incidents targeting women, according to the first ever anti-Muslim racism report presented yesterday in Vienna.

Around 95 percent of the incidents were aimed at women, according to the report presented by the Documentation Office for Muslims in Austria in partnership with the Islamic Faith Community in Austria (IGGiÖ).

The organisation documented incidents from December 2014 up to the end of 2015 and said they expect the number of assaults to increase in the future."

Exclusive: Bangladesh Bank hackers compromised SWIFT software, warning to be issued (Reuters, link): "The attackers who stole $81 million from the Bangladesh central bank probably hacked into software from the SWIFT financial platform that is at the heart of the global financial system, said security researchers at British defense contractor BAE Systems.

SWIFT, a cooperative owned by 3,000 financial institutions, confirmed to Reuters that it was aware of malware targeting its client software. Its spokeswoman Natasha Deteran said SWIFT would release on Monday a software update to thwart the malware, along with a special warning for financial institutions to scrutinize their security procedures."

LUXEMBOURG: Former PwC employees face trial over role in LuxLeaks scandal (The Guardian, link): "Two former employees of PricewaterhouseCoopers accused of being behind the biggest ever leak of confidential corporate tax deals face criminal trial in Luxembourg on Tuesday.

Antoine Deltour and a second man, who is expected to be named in court this week, are charged with carrying out the LuxLeaks theft, violating the Grand Duchy’s strict professional secrecy laws and other offences. Their criminal prosecution follows a complaint to Luxembourg’s public prosecutor by PwC."

Saudi Arabia, 9/11, and the secret papers that could ignite a diplomatic war (The Independent, link): "Twenty-eight secret pages of a report locked away in a room in the Capitol in Washington lie in the centre of a crisis between America and Saudi Arabia which threatens to have severe and widespread repercussions.

The US Congress is considering legislation which would enable the families of victims of the September 11 attacks to sue Saudi Arabia, presented by the West as its most valuable ally in the Middle East, over alleged links with al-Qaeda terrorists who carried out the attacks on New York and Washington."

UK: Anti-semitism: thought or deed? (IRR, link): "Significantly, but without much fanfare, an expanded definition of anti-Semitism entered the UK’s policy arena this April.

An article by Eric Pickles, former secretary of state for communities and local government, chair of the Conservative Friends of Israel and, since September 2015, UK special envoy for post-Holocaust issues, entitled ‘A definition of antisemitism’ introduced the government’s ‘Combating Anti-Semitism: a British best practice guide’ just before the announcement of a short Home Affairs Committee inquiry into anti-Semitism. And in it, anti-Semitism, traditionally defined simply as ‘hostility to or discrimination against Jews’ (Concise Oxford Dictionary) was replaced by an enormously long definition which not only includes attacks (physical or verbal) on Jewish people and community institutions but also ‘manifestations … target[ing] the state of Israel, conceived as a Jewish collectivity’, such as: ‘denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, eg, by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavour; applying double standards by requiring behaviour not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation … drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis …’"

UK: British spies hacked themselves and family members to get personal information to send birthday cards, new papers reveal (The Independent, link): "British spies have been collecting bulk data on people for years, and abusing it to find out people’s addresses for birthday cards, new releases show.

MI5, MI6 and GCHQ have been collecting and relying on huge amounts of data collected on almost every person in the country, according to new documents obtained by Privacy International during a legal hearing.

And spies have even been hacking themselves to find out that personal information so that they can use it for booking holidays and spying on their family members to get personal details, the papers show.

The papers also prove that the collection of bulk data has been happening for much longer than previously known."

UK: Race and racism: exhibition: A Nation's Theatre - Selina Thompson: Race Cards (Arts Admin, link): "Selina Thompson has devised 1000 questions concerning issues of race and identity. You are invited to respond to one of the questions which will feed into her research for this ongoing project."

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