Unruly behavior by British tourists and others in beach resorts has started the summer season in the same way that last year led residents to call for a crackdown. Binge drinking led to the rape of a British woman by fellow Britons in Mallia on Crete, and a Dutch woman was attacked by two Greeks. On the island of Kos, another British woman was assaulted, allegedly by five Eastern European immigrants. Last year Mallia residents demanded that police crack down on tour operators and bars that promote excessive drinking. Police increased patrols, but apparently to little avail.
In a novel way to help ex-convicts avoid returning to a life of crime in the Camorra mafia, Campania authorities have trained about 70 of them to help tourists negotiate the streets and alleys of Naples. They wear yellow jackets, caps and ID cards and are posted at tourist areas around the city. Some hoteliers and tourist agencies are not thrilled with the program, but officials countered that no one knows the city's risk better than ex-cons.
The crime rate is low in Lisbon and around the country, but petty crime occurs as it does in most major cities. Pickpockets work Lisbon's tourist areas, and small-time drug dealers and con artists commonly approach tourists. Police statistics show that overall crime is down, but violent crime has increased slightly, led by a 10 percent rise in carjackings since 2006.
Nine foreigners, including three children, were abducted June 11 in northern Yemen near the city of Sa'ada, and seven of them were found killed June 15. Two of the children were found alive. Authorities suspect Shiite Zaidi rebels, but they denied the charge. Other analysts fear the execution of foreigners signals a new turn in Yemeni violence, possibly by Al Qaeda groups from Yemen and Saudi Arabia that have merged. The victims were five Germans, a Briton and a South Korean. The U.S. State Department and the British Foreign Office advise against non-essential travel to Yemen.
The entire nation suffered blackouts over a two-week period, first in early June, when the national power company shut down two of its six generators at the Kafue Gorge hydropower station because of a massive accumulation of weeds blocking water flow, then Monday night when a substation that provides Zambia's main power supply failed. Workers restored power after almost two days, but intermittent blackouts continued.
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