GERMANY ““ (BBC) German police have issued photographs of a teenager who appeared in Berlin last year saying that he had been living in the woods for five years. They hope the images will help them establish the identity of the teenager, who has only given them a date of birth and said his first name is Ray. He told the police he and his father went to live in the woods after his mother died in a car crash when he was 12. He said he left the woods after his father died and he buried his body. Police have said they have many doubts about his story and unanswered questions regarding the chain of events that led to him arriving outside Berlin’s city hall in September last year. At the time, he spoke only English and a few words of German. Police estimate that Ray is between 16 and 20 years old. They said that, apart from a series of small scars on his face, he appeared to be in good health. After a brief period with Berlin’s emergency youth services, Ray was placed in a institution for assisted living and assigned a legal guardian. Officials said he has quickly picked up the German language and adapted to city life and technology, using a laptop and his mobile phone comfortably. “Everything gives the impression that he was not far away from civilization for years,” police spokesman Thomas Neuendorf said.
IRELAND ““ (BBC) The Irish government is to pardon more than 4,500 former soldiers who deserted the Defense Forces during World War II to fight with the Allied Forces. Irish Defense Minister Alan Shatter said the government apologized for the manner in which the deserters were treated by the state after the war. Mr. Shatter said the government recognized the importance of their contribution to the Allied victory. He said the war gave rise to grave and exceptional circumstances. Mr. Shatter said the government would introduce legislation “to grant a pardon and amnesty to those who absented themselves from the Defense Forces without leave or permission to fight on the Allied side.” In his statement to Dail Eireann, he said that in August 1945, the government of the day summarily dismissed soldiers who had absented themselves during the war and disqualified them for seven years from holding employment or office remunerated from the state’s central fund. Individuals were not given a chance to explain their absence.
NORWAY ““ (BBC) A psychology professor called to testify at the trial of Anders Behring Breivik has said he believes the self-confessed mass killer is sane. Svenn Torgersen told the court in the Norwegian capital Oslo he agreed with the conclusions of the second court-appointed psychiatric team. The second team found Breivik sane, contradicting the assessment of the first team last year. Breivik will be sent to prison if the trial decides he is sane. Breivik admits to bombing government buildings in Oslo before shooting young Labor Party supporters at a camp on the lake island of Utoeya on July 22nd last year. In all, he killed 77 people and injured 242. Breivik sought to justify his attacks by saying that they were necessary to stop the “Islamization” of Norway.
POLAND ““ (BBC) Clashes between rival Russian and Polish football fans in the Polish capital Warsaw have marred a Euro 2012 tie between the two teams. A march ahead of the match by thousands of Russian fans to mark their national day had to be halted and some missiles were thrown. Police say they arrested at least 120 people and that 10 people were injured. A heavy police presence was in evidence around the stadium after the match as further clashes broke out. About 6,000 police were on duty to keep the rival fans apart. Beforehand, some Polish fans on a bridge on the march route had tried to attack the Russian fans and had been involved in scuffles, says the BBC’s Alex Capstick in Warsaw. Tear gas, rubber bullets, and water cannon were used to disperse fans at the end of the march, according to Poland’s state news agency. In a separate incident, 50 Polish fans in masks attacked Russian fans in a Warsaw cafÃ©, the Russian news agency Interfax reported.
SPAIN ““ (BBC) Spain’s borrowing costs have risen to the highest rate since the launch of the euro in 1999. The benchmark 10-year bond yield hit 6.81% as optimism about the weekend’s Spanish bank bailout continued to evaporate. Italy’s 10-year bond yield rose to 6.28%, a rate not seen since January, as concerns about its finances rose. The interest rates are seen as unsustainable in the long run for two countries weighed down by huge debts. Markets continued to be uneasy about the situation in the eurozone. In other developments this week, ratings agency Fitch downgraded the creditworthiness of 18 Spanish banks following its decision on Monday to cut its ratings on the country’s two biggest banks, Santander and BBVA. Additionally, the European Commission recommended a European banking union and a single regulator to oversee banks across all 27 EU states. However, disagreements over the proposals highlighted the problems of finding a solution to the crisis.