Victims of Srebrenica recalled on anniversary

Thousands of Bosnian Muslims gathered in Srebrenica on Wednesday to mark the 23rd anniversary of Europe’s worst massacre since World War II and attend the funeral for 35 recently identified victims.

The remains of the men and boys, slaughtered at the enclave in July 1995, were laid to rest in the town whose name has become synonymous with the brutality of the 1992-1995 Bosnian war. The coffins were lined up at a memorial center and new burial pits were dug at a graveyard that already holds 6,575 victims found previously.

Srebrenica was a U.N.-protected, Muslim-populated town in eastern Bosnia besieged by Serb forces throughout the war. Serb troops led by Gen. Ratko Mladic overran the enclave, separated men from women and small children and executed about 8,000 men and boys within a few days.

Undermanned and outgunned Dutch U.N. peacekeepers failed to intervene.

Experts are still excavating more victims’ bodies from hidden mass graves throughout Bosnia.

Although an international court has labeled the Srebrenica killings as genocide, Serbs have never admitted that their troops carried out the massacre. No official delegations of Bosnian Serbs or from Serbia were at Wednesday’s event.

Mladic has been sentenced by a U.N. war crimes tribunal to life in prison for masterminding Serb atrocities throughout the war, which left 100,000 dead. He is appealing the verdict.

— Associated Press

Iranian envoy charged in alleged bomb plot

An Iranian diplomat suspected of involvement in a bomb plot against an Iranian opposition rally in France was charged in Germany on Wednesday with activity as a foreign agent and conspiracy to commit murder.

Assadollah Assadi, a Vienna-based diplomat, is suspected of contracting a couple in Belgium to attack a meeting of an exiled Iranian opposition group in Villepinte, near Paris, German federal prosecutors said.

He allegedly gave the Antwerp-based couple, who have Iranian roots, a device containing 500 grams of the explosive TATP during a meeting in Luxembourg in June, the prosecutors said in a statement.

Assadi was detained this month near the German city of Aschaffenburg on a European warrant after the couple was stopped in Belgium and authorities reported finding powerful explosives in their car.

German prosecutors allege that Assadi, who has been registered as a diplomat at the Iranian Embassy in Vienna since 2014, was a member of the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence and Security, whose tasks “primarily include the intensive observation and combating of opposition groups inside and outside of Iran.”

Belgian authorities also accuse Assadi of being part of the alleged plot targeting the rally of the Mujahideen-e Khalq, or MEK, in neighboring France and want him extradited.

German prosecutors said their investigation would not hinder Belgium’s extradition request.

— Associated Press

Death toll in Japan's flood reaches 176: Japan's government said 176 people have been confirmed dead after last week's heavy rains in western Japan as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited the hard-hit city of Kurashiki in Okayama prefecture, where more than 40 people died. Record-setting rainfall caused severe flooding and landslides, toppling and burying homes across a wide area. Most of the deaths were in Hiroshima and the surrounding area.

Israel fires missile at drone that entered from Syria: Israel fired a Patriot missile at an unmanned aircraft that entered its airspace from Syria, the military said, warning that it would not tolerate such infiltrations, which have occurred several times over the past year. There were no reports of injuries or damage from the drone's incursion. Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus said that the drone was constantly monitored as it traveled about six miles inside Israeli territory.

Neo-Nazi found guilty in 10 killings in Germany: A member of a German neo-Nazi gang was jailed for life for her role in the murders of 10 people during a seven-year campaign of racially motivated violence. A court in Munich ruled that Beate Zschaepe, 43, a member of the National Socialist Underground, bore "particularly heavy guilt" and sentenced her at the end of one of the most closely watched court cases in Germany's postwar history. Prosecutors said Zschaepe had played a key role behind the scenes, planning the killings and arranging money
and alibis.

— From news services