Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Zagreb Croatia Newsletter


Dear Citizens and Guests of Zagreb! Recognition for Zagreb and Croatia with a warm welcome to the European Union
“Welcome Zagreb and welcome Croatia to the large family of European nations and states.” This was the common message sent by the leaders, statesmen and politicians from the European Union.

Dear friends and business partners,
This year the month of July is certainly not the same as previous years, the main reason being that Croatia became a European Union member on its first day.
A New Meeting Point
“Zagreb Welcomes You” Scale Model
A bronze scale model, “Zagreb Welcomes You”, is a new tourist attraction and meeting point for tourists and Zagreb’s citizens alike. The model of Zagreb features a welcome message in as many as 38 world languages, and tells the story of the city, its streets and squares, its past and present… For the future.
Zagreb’s St. Mark’s Church in Mini-Europe
Zagreb’s Church of St. Mark is a new model at Brussels’ Mini-Europe, a project which showcases models of as many as 350 of the most important European attractions in one place. One of Zagreb’s most instantly recognizable landmarks now finds itself in the distinguished company of Brandenburg Gate, the Eiffel Tower, Big Ben and many other European landmarks.
our pick
:World Tour - Dream Theater Comes to Zagreb
:Zagreb’s Parks - Green, how I want you green
:Metropolis Music & Billiards Club - A New Nightlife Venue
:A unique exhibition in three museums - A four-thousand-year-old story of glass
:A Festival of Organists - The Sounds of the Organ of Zagreb’s Cathedral
:Not to be Missed - World famous guitarist Joe Bonamassa at the Culture Factory
:Zagreb Cultural Summer - Theatre and concert programmes at Bundek Lake
:Tea Time Music - Soulfingers at the Oleander Terrace of the Esplanade Hotel
:The Museum of Arts and Crafts - Theatre Exit's Summer Nights

Tel: +385 1 48-14-052 / 053
City Breaks
A Total of 35 Attractive Programmes
If you want to get to know Zagreb, enjoy its beauties, learn about its culture and history or experience the lifestyles of this new EU capital, 35 specially selected and very attractive City Break programmes will be the perfect opportunity to do so. They will introduce you to Zagreb’s customs and secrets, and take you further afield to the city’s surroundings and other Croatian landmarks.
The 32nd Evenings in Grič
A tradition of concert events in the Upper Town
Top class musicians from Croatia as well as abroad will mark this year’s cultural event – Evenings in Grič, from July 2nd till August 1st. This event has been traditionally held in attractive locations in the Upper Town as well as at the Culture Factory (Tvornica Kulture).

Zagreb Tour Film Festival
Festival in the city with a million hearts
After last year’s successful launch of ZAGREB TOURFILM FESTIVAL, this year Mimara Museum is hosting its second edition from July, 3rd – 5th. It is an event organised by the Zagreb Tourist Board and Balduči Film, and is held under the auspices of the President of the Republic of Croatia Ivo Josipović and Ministry of Tourism.

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Published by: Zagreb Tourist Board   |   Produced by: U.T. Marketing d.o.o., Zagreb


Taliban attack NATO Supply

 Taliban truck bomb and gun attack killed eight people in the Afghan capital Kabul on Tuesday, destroying the entrance to a NATO supply company's compound in the latest insurgent assault to shake peace efforts.
Four Nepalese and one Romanian were among those killed in the bombing, which came after a series of recent Taliban suicide attacks targeting the Supreme Court, the airport, the presidency and a CIA office.
The US has been pushing for peace talks as 100,000 NATO combat troops prepare to leave Afghanistan next year and local security forces take on the fight against the Islamist extremists.
"Four Nepalese guards, one Afghan guard and two Afghan civilians have been killed," Kabul police chief Mohammad Ayoub Salangi told the news agency after the attack, which started at about midnight GMT.
A Romanian male civilian contractor was also killed and another wounded in the attack, Adrian Kozjacski, the head of the Romanian diplomatic mission in Afghanistan told the news agency.
Telecom Commission approves 100% FDI in telecom sector

Inter-ministerial body Telecom Commission on Tuesday gave its nod for raising foreign direct investment limit in the sector from 74 per cent to 100 per cent subject to Cabinet approval.
"TC has approved raising of FDI limit to 100 per cent from 74 per cent at present where 49 per cent of investment in an entity can be done through automatic route and FIPB approval will be required for raising further stake. The decision will come in force only after cabinet approves it," a senior government official said.
The official said that Department of Telecom will send a detailed note to the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion which would take it forward for inter-ministerial consultations before moving it to the Cabinet.
At present, FDI limit in the sector is at 74 per cent where 49 per cent is done through automatic route and rest requiring nod from Foreign Investment Promotion Board.
The idea behind the proposal to increase FDI limit in telecom sector is to help the industry get fresh funds to lower financial burden.
Reacting to the proposal, telecom operator Aircel's spokesperson said "the move will help the industry to bring in more FDI to fund the high CAPEX demands of this sector especially in areas where coverage needs to be enhanced , and launch new 3G and BWA services. This will undoubtedly have a huge benefit for our customers and higher licence fee for the government."
Malaysian firm Maxis Communication holds 74 per cent stake in Aircel with rest of the stake being held by Sindya Securities & Investments Private Limited.
Reacting to the development, Russian conglomerate Sistema controlled SSTL's spokesperson said "Sistema Shyam TeleServices is supportive of 100 per cent FDI in telecom. The much needed policy decision is certainly a pro industry and a pro consumer move."
Indian telecom firm Reliance Communications said "100 per cent FDI in telecom will enhance value for all stakeholders."
According to a presentation by GSM industry body COAI to DoT, the debt of telecom sector stood at Rs 1,85,720 crore at end of 2011-12.
This included debt of Rs 93,594 crore from domestic and Rs 92,126 crore from external sources.
"The Commission also discussed creation of Telecom Finance Corporation (TFC) to address the sector's funding challenges and "sought a detailed project report on it".
The TFC is proposed to be set up on the lines of sectoral finance bodies such as Power Finance Corporation and Tourism Finance Corporation of India.
The proposed TFC is targeting financing Rs 38,000 crore in a five-year period.
The issue of lowering government's stake in Telecommunications Consultants India Ltd was also placed before the commission.
Food Security Ordinance on Cabinet agenda today

The proposed ordinance on food security is likely to be taken up again at a meeting of the Union Cabinet on Wednesday, when it will consider whether to go ahead with promulgating it or convene a special session of Parliament for its passage.
As per the reports the National Food Security Ordinance, 2013 is listed on the Cabinet's agenda for Wednesday cabinet meet.
On 13th June, the Cabinet had deferred the proposal amid differences on the issue.
Finance Minister P Chidambaram said the UPA government is committed to bringing the food law as promised in the Congress manifesto for 2009 general election.
"The Food Bill is a promise made by the UPA and the Congress party. It is one of the promises, we believe, on which the people voted the UPA back to the power. If that is the will of the people that we must have a Food Security Act in place, I think UPA will have an Act, a law in place," he said.
Series of car bombs kills at least 54 in Baghdad
A series of blasts rocked Iraq’s capital Baghdad on Tuesday afternoon killing at least 54 people and injuring dozens of others. The car bombs targeting markets in both Sunni and Shiite areas of the city struck at around 15:00 GMT, according to an official from the interior ministry and medical sources, reported AFP. This comes a day after the United Nations announced that more than 2,500 Iraqis have died in violent attacks since April this year, with May – which saw over 1,000 people killed - being the deadliest month since the height of sectarian bloodletting in 2006-07. In June, 761 people fell victim to militant attacks in different parts of the country.

Irish lawmakers vote in favor of bill legalizing abortions for medical emergencies

Irish lawmakers have voted in 138-24 in favor of a bill legalizing abortions for medical emergencies. It was the first of several votes aimed at ending decades of confusion surrounding the right to receive an abortion in Ireland. The bill will face final passage next week. Ireland officially bans abortions in all circumstances, even when the life of the mother is in danger, but the Supreme Court ruled in 1992 that terminations should be legal if doctors deem one essential to safeguard the life of the mother – including from her own suicide threats. The vote comes just eight months after a 31-year-old Irish woman died after being declined an abortion at a Galway hospital.

US trade talks should go ahead despite spying scandal - EU

Free-trade talks between the European Union and the United States can go ahead next week despite a report that Washington is spying on the 28-nation bloc, the European Commission said on Tuesday, calling for "transparency and clarity". "The beginning of EU-US trade negotiations should not be affected," said Commission spokeswoman Pia Ahrenkilde Hansen. The first round of negotiations on the world's most ambitious free-trade agreement is due to start next Monday in Washington. Some EU officials have suggested the forthcoming trade talks with the United States should be suspended until Washington accounts for its activities. Relations between the US and Europe plummeted as new disclosures emerged of the National Security Agency (NSA) in the US spying on its European allies.

Canadian police foil ‘al-Qaeda-inspired’ terror attack plot

Canadian police have foiled an al-Qaeda-inspired terror plot that involved pressure cooker bombs similar to those used in the Boston Marathon bombings, reports Reuters. A man and a woman, both Canadian-born, were arrested and charged in connection with a conspiracy to detonate three explosive devices on a on Canada Day in the capital of the Pacific province of British Columbia. The suspects allegedly planned for the bombs to explode on Monday outside the province's legislature in Victoria. The contents of the improvised bombs included nuts, bolts, nails, washers and other items intended to kill or injure people, according to CBC. Officials said they had no evidence to suggest the planned attack had foreign links and described the two as “self-radicalized.”

254 news websites blocked in Jordan due to lack of license

The Jordanian government has blocked 254 unlicensed news websites, 16 of them in the last two days. On June 3, authorities said they would block nearly 300 of 400 local news websites “for failing to obtain the necessary licensing,” under a 2012 law criticized as a threat to freedom of expression, AFP reported. The law gave the government powers to regulate “electronic publications,” requiring them to register and obtain a license. It also stipulates that the chief editors of news websites must be members of the Jordan Press Association, giving the government the right to censor content and hold journalists liable for comments posted on web pages.

2,500 civilians trapped in city of Homs in Syria – UN

Some 2,500 civilians are trapped in the Syrian town of Homs, the spokesman for UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said in a statement on Tuesday. The UN called on the warring sides to do their utmost to avoid civilian casualties where there is heavy fighting, Reuters said. The UN chief is also concerned about threats to seize two Shiite villages in the northern province of Aleppo.

Russian parliament approves fines, 7-year bans for sports hooligans

The lower house of the Russian parliament approved on Friday in the third reading amendments allowing convicted hooligans to be banned from sports events for up to seven years. Sports hooligans will be fined 1 thousand roubles ($30) or compulsory work from one to six months and a minimum ban set at six months. The amendments were submitted to the State Duma by the government in November 2012. More than 14,000 offenses have been committed at Russian sporting events over the last three years.

US, Russia remove 16kg of highly enriched uranium from Vietnam

The US and Russia have helped ship out nearly 16 kilograms of highly enriched uranium from Vietnam as part of a global campaign to reduce the use of nuclear fuel that could also provide material for bombs, Reuters reported. Vietnam has become the 11th country from which all highly enriched uranium has been removed in the last four years. With this, “we will have removed nearly all highly enriched uranium from Southeast Asia,” US Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said during a meeting in Vienna. The material will be down-blended into low-enriched uranium to fuel power reactors, Moniz said, adding that “highly enriched uranium still exists in too many places where there are viable alternatives.”

Iran could build new nuclear power plant with Russian help - Ahmadinejad

Tehran and Moscow could boost cooperation and build a new nuclear power plant in Iran, the country’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said in Moscow on Tuesday. Preliminary discussions have already taken place, and with the necessary Russian presidential decree work could start on planning the project, Ahmadinejad said during talks with Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin. The Iranian president also said the construction of the Bushehr plant has been completed. “The nuclear power plant in Bushehr is producing electricity and has turned into a good symbol of bilateral cooperation between Russia and Iran,” he said.

Russian businessman Lebedev found guilty in TV assault case

Moscow’s Ostankinsky District Court on Tuesday found businessman Aleksandr Lebedev guilty of beating another businessman Sergey Polonsky during the recording of a television program on Russian channel NTV and sentenced him to 150 hours of compulsory work, Itar-Tass reported. The prosecutor’s office earlier struck down the charge of hooliganism against Lebedev, opting to press ahead with the battery case. Lebedev said he regretted the incident, but did not plead guilty.

Maoist rebels kill 4 policemen 

More than 50 Maoist guerrillas in eastern India ambushed a police patrol on Tuesday, killing the district police chief and three other officers. The rebels opened fire on vehicles carrying police superintendent Amarjeet Balihar in Dumka district in Jharkhand, an impoverished state home to a large Maoist movement. Two policemen were injured, AFP reported. The revolutionaries have waged a decades-long battle across the country’s central and eastern states, saying they are fighting for the rights of poor and landless farmers in India.

N. Korea says US must accept offer for dialogue

North Korea’s top diplomat said Tuesday that the US must accept its offer for dialogue without preconditions.“The US must accede to our courageous decision and goodwill gesture… if it is truly interested in ending the vicious circle of intensifying tension on the Korean Peninsula and safeguarding peace and stability,” Foreign Minister Pak Ui Chun said, adding that Washington must normalize relations with Pyongyang and lift sanctions against the country. The US says Pyongyang must move in the direction of denuclearization before it will agree to talks.

Egyptian tanks amassing on Gaza-Sinai border

At least 30 Egyptian tanks were deployed to the Gaza-Sinai border on Monday, RIA Novosti reports, citing Palestinian witnesses. It is the “first time in years” that the Egyptian army has dispatched tanks in the region, according to the report. Under the Israel-Egypt peace treaty, Egypt is obligated to coordinate the movement of military vehicles and weapons in Sinai with Israel. Israel has not officially commented on the tanks’ transfer to the border area.

Turkish deputy PM blames foreign powers, Jewish diaspora for unrest

Foreign powers and the Jewish diaspora have triggered the recent unrest in Turkey, Deputy Prime Minister Besir Atalay has said. He also said Monday that the international media had played a key role in “the conspiracy,” adding that “they bought it and started broadcasting immediately.” The nationwide protests, which began on May 31, were triggered when police cracked down on activists staging a sit-in demonstration to save Gezi Park, located near Istanbul’s iconic Taksim Square.

German couple accused of spying for Russia sentenced

A German court has convicted Andreas and Haydrun Anshlag for spying on behalf of Russia, sentencing the couple to 6.5 and 5.5 years in prison respectively. The sentence can be appealed in Germany’s top court, an official from the Stuttgart court told RIA Novosti. The couple was also ordered to pay a 500,000 euro fine and to surrender property confiscated during the course of the investigation. Neither the defendants nor Russia have acknowledged that they were engaged in espionage. Russian authorities provided consular assistance to the couple throughout the course of the trial, which started in January.

Competitiveness, climate, security Finn’s priorities Ministry of Finance release Finnish road map of EU presidency. Finland i...