ITALY ““ (BBC) The company operating a cruise ship that capsized after hitting rocks off Western Italy, killing six, says the captain may have “committed errors.” He appears to have sailed too close to land and not to have followed the company’s emergency procedures, Costa Crociere said in a statement. Captain Francesco Schettino is suspected of
manslaughter, but denies wrongdoing. Six people are confirmed to have died, but about 15 remain unaccounted for. Divers are attempting to find more survivors. “It seems that the commander made errors of judgement that had serious consequences,” Costa Crociere said. “The route followed by the ship turned out to be too close to the coast and it seems that his decision in handling the emergency didn’t follow Costa Crociere’s procedures which are in line, and in some cases go beyond, international standards,” the statement added. The Costa Concordia is lying on its side, just meters off the Tuscan island of Giglio.
ROMANIA ““ (BBC) Romanian Prime Minister Emil Boc has called for dialogue and an end to violence after four days of protests against austerity cuts. Dozens of people were hurt on Sunday as demonstrators and riot police clashed for a second day running in the capital of Bucharest. The rallies began in support of an official who quit in protest against health care reforms, but they have grown into a broader hostility towards government policies. The alliance of opposition parties has called for early elections. More than 1,000 demonstrators rallied in University Square in the center of Bucharest on Sunday, the scene of violence the night before. A number of people were arrested, without officials saying most of the troublemakers were young football fans. Peaceful protests were reported in a number of towns and cities across the country on Sunday, including Cluj, Timisoara, Brasov, and Arad, as demonstrators called for the resignation of the government and of President Traian Basescu. Basescu later announced that he was scrapping the unpopular reform, but that has failed to sooth demonstrators’ anger.
SERBIA ““ (BBC) Police in Kosovo have made more than 140 arrests after clashing with protestors who tried to stop traffic from Serbia entering the territory. Around 50 people ““ most of them police officers ““ were injured in the violence at two border crossings. Protestors say Serbia wants to obstruct development in Kosovo, which declared independence from Serbia in 2008. Serbia doesn’t recognize the independence of the mainly ethnic-Albanian territory. Saturday’s demonstrators were organized by Self-Determination, a Kosovo party opposed to contacts in Serbia.