BC-AP--AP Europe News Digest at 1100 GMT, AP
TOP STORIES IN EUROPE SO FAR ON MONDAY, OCTOBER 07, 2013
STOCKHOLM — Americans James Rothman and Randy Schekman and German-born researcher Thomas Suedhof win the 2013 Nobel Prize in medicine for discoveries on how hormones, enzymes and other key substances are transported within cells. The Nobel committee says this traffic control system keeps activities inside cells from descending into chaos and has helped researchers gain a better understanding of a range of diseases including diabetes and disorders affecting the immune system. By Karl Ritter and Malin Rising. 800 words by 1430 GMT.
NOBEL-MEDICINE-GLANCE: Looks at the three scientists who won the prize.
MOSCOW — In the words of President Vladimir Putin, the four-month Olympic flame relay will “show the world Russia as she is and as we love her.” The relay for the Sochi Winter Games, which began Monday in Moscow, will pass through many cities that showcase the historical, cultural and ethnic richness of Russia. But other cities on the route will do more to remind the world of the evils of Stalinism, the harsh treatment of dissent under Putin or the Islamic insurgency simmering in the Caucasus Mountains not far from Sochi’s ski slopes. And as the relay crosses the expanses of Siberia, it will put the spotlight not only on Russia’s immense wealth of natural resources but on its rusting industrial towns. By Lynn Berry. Moved. 1,000 words.
THE HAGUE, Netherlands — Three sailors are missing in the North Sea after two boats collided off the northern coast of the Netherlands. The Dutch Coast Guard says three of the five-man crew of a ship called the Maria, which guards offshore oil rigs, are unaccounted-for after it collided with a fishing boat, the Texel 68, about 40 kilometers (25 miles) southwest of the naval port of Den Helder in the early hours of Monday morning. 130 words moved.
LAMPEDUSA, Italy — Italian coast guard divers have plunged into the sea off the island of Lampedusa in hopes of finding more bodies from inside the wreckage of a smuggling ship that sank with some 500 people aboard. The official death toll remained at 194 Monday, but more bodies were feared trapped inside the hold of the 18-meter (59-foot) ship, which now lies on the ocean floor 47 meters (154 feet) below the surface. 130 words moved.
BUSINESS AND FINANCE
ATHENS, Greece — Greece expects its economy to grow — at last — next year, the first annual improvement after six years of brutal contraction. Deputy Finance Minister Christos Staikouras says the economy is projected to expand 0.6 percent, compared with a 4 percent contraction this year. By Nicholas Paphitis. AP Photos. 130 words moved, 500 words by 1300 GMT.
PARIS — The French Parliament on Monday is to debate a pension reform intended to partially plug a funding gap in the generous system by asking the French to work longer. Economists have criticized the bill for fiddling at the edges of the problem and only addressing a third of the 20-billion-euro ($27 billion) hole. They say it puts off too far into the future an extension of the number of years employees must pay into the system and doesn’t extend that period enough. It also doesn’t touch the deals that allow workers in certain professions to retire early. 250 words by 1400 GMT.
ATHENS, Greece — A former Greek defense minister was found guilty of money laundering on Monday in the most prominent corruption case to date in the financially-stricken country. An Athens court found Akis Tsochadzopoulos, a prominent figure in past Socialist governments, guilty along with 16 of his 18 co-defendants, including his wife, ex-wife and daughter, after a five-month trial. He has spent nearly a year and a half in jail in pre-trial detention, as had his wife, daughter and other close associates. 300 words moved.
NICOSIA, Cyprus — An independent inquiry has concluded that Cyprus’ former president is primarily responsible for the financial crisis that brought the country to near bankruptcy and resulted in a painful financial rescue. The three-member panel said in its non-binding report Monday that Dimitris Christofias pursued “reckless” economic policies, ignored warnings over spending and worsened problems by delaying talks on an international bailout. 130 words moved.
As a journalist covering African football, you learn to expect the marvelous and the unexpected. After all, who could have foreseen Roger Milla’s hip-wiggling dance as Cameroon stunned Argentina on its path to the quarterfinals of the 1990 World Cup? Or, for that matter, Senegalese fans slaughtering cockrels to celebrate their nation’s defeat of France in 2002? Now, we’re just two games away from writing another chapter that once seemed inconceivable: Ethiopia qualifying for the 2014 World Cup. UPCOMING. By Gerald Imray. 800 words, photos by 1400 GMT.