- - Sunday, October 10, 2010

HUNGARY

Rush to build dam in case of new flood

KOLONTAR | Hungary raced against time on Sunday to erect a dam around a ruptured reservoir and divert a new wave of toxic sludge that threatens to overwhelm already devastated villages.

As hundreds of volunteers joined engineers rushing to erect the 2,000-foot dam, a top official said it was only a matter of days before the reservoir housing a chemical residue would begin to crumble.


Repair work also continued on the reservoir itself where cracks have been detected, raising fears that what is already Hungary’s worst environmental disaster could soon get even worse.

At least seven people were killed when the sludge first began seeping from the reservoir next to an aluminum plant before then cascading into nearby villages and tributaries of the Danube.

SERBIA

Police clash with anti-gay rioters

BELGRADE | Serbian riot police fought running battles Sunday with thousands of far-right supporters who hurled Molotov cocktails and stun grenades to try disrupt a gay-pride march in downtown Belgrade. More than 140 people were hurt and more than 200 were arrested, officials said.

Thousands of police officers sealed off the streets in the capital where the march took place, repeatedly clashing at several locations with rioters who tried to burst through security cordons.

Several parked cars were set on fire or damaged, shop windows were broken, garbage containers were overturned and streets signs destroyed. Several shops were looted before police restored peace in the late afternoon.

The anti-gay rioters also fired shots and threw Molotov cocktails at the headquarters of the ruling pro-Western Democratic Party, setting the building’s garage on fire. The state TV building and the headquarters of other political parties were also attacked, with many windows shattered by stones.

Protesters chanting “death to homosexuals” hurled bricks, stones, glass bottles and stun grenades at riot police. Police responded by firing tear gas and deploying armored vehicles to disperse the protesters, who remained in the heart of the capital even after the brief pride march ended.

Interior Minister Ivica Dacic said police estimated that 6,000 rioters faced 5,600 policemen. He praised the police “for preventing even more serious bloodshed.”

SWITZERLAND

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