Terrorism in the jungle. Colombian armed forces rescued 15 hostages, including former presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt, held by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). Ms Betancourt was held prisoner for six years in the Colombian jungle.Read more
Morgan Tsvangirai, Zimbabwe’s opposition leader, fearing for his safety, has taken refuge in the Dutch embassy in the capital Harare. Zimbabwean authorities said to respect the Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations of 1961 [PDF]Read more
The embassy has diplomatic immunity and cannot be entered without permission of the ambassador.
Famous cases involving embassies are ; the Iran-US Hostage crisis in 1979, the Hungarian Cardinal József Mindszenty lived for 15 years in the American embassy in Budapest.
Keywords for more literature on diplomatic protection : Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations, Hostages, Iran, Diplomatic and consular protection
Who is a true Lesbian?Read more
Inhabitants of the Greek Isle of Lesbos started a trial in Athens to ban the Greek Gay and Lesbian Union (OLKE) from using the word “Lesbian”. According to the Lesbos residents the term “lesbian” causes psychological distress to the islanders, as it is a world lesbian centre in a rather conservative environment. Same-sex marriage is still a difficult issue. The decision can have worldwide effects, if the name may be used only for the people of Lesbos, with a copyright not to use it publicly in print. What about the other “Lesbians”?
Perhaps Sappho, the poetess, who lived around 630 BC on the island, and whose poems caused all these problems, was not a lesbian after all?
The European Football Championship, Euro 2008, will start on 7 June and finish on 29 June. This football tournament will be hosted by Austria and Switzerland.Read more
Thousands of fans will support their teams, celebrate victory and mourn defeat. Often these huge and massive emotions of joy and grief will result in violent clashes with supporters of rival teams and even lead to fights with the local police.
Literature on this dark side of football can be found in the Peace Palace Library collection under the keyword hooliganism
The global increase in food prices will plunge millions of people into hunger worldwide. Starvation and food shortage already caused food riots and are threatening to destabilize regimes.Read more
The famous ring of three Amsterdam canals, Herengracht, Keizersgracht and Prinsengracht must be included in the Unecso World Heritage List, according to a decision of the City Council and the Mayor & College of Aldermen.Read more
Already this year UNESCO has proclaimed Amsterdam ‘World Book Capital’. From 23 April 2008 until 22 April 2009.
Consult for an extensive collection of materials on cultural heritage the Bibliography on the Cultural Heritage of Mankind!
The history of piracy goes back in the library collection till 1816. Still the oceans are unsafe, especially the Somali coast is crowded with modern pirates with guns and grenades. As in the old days kidnapping and piracy are lucrative businesses, if a ransom is paid.Read more
The German Federal Intelligence Service paid an informant some 5 million euros for a list with the names of account holders from a Liechtenstein Bank. German investigations thereupon revealed a massive tax evasion scandal! Hundreds of people in Germany are suspected of having stashed away millions of euro in Liechtenstein to escape taxes in Germany.
The tiny Alpine principality of Liechtenstein, a major European tax haven, accused the Germans of attacking its sovereignty and of breaking the law by buying secret (stolen) data and sending in spies to uncover the scandal.
The OECD in Paris criticized the Liechtenstein practice of allowing foreigners to open trusts there anonymously by registering them through a local attorney or trustee.
The policy of “excessive” secrecy of banks in Liechtenstein might have attracted many rich people and more countries are interested in the data bought by the German intelligence agents.
Interestingly a lot of literature on Liechtenstein is about financial matters, trusts, anti-money laundering issues and the transparency of its fiscal regime. Read more on Liechtensteinand its special place in Europe.Read more