Sarkozy investigation continues
Nicolas Sarkozy, the former president of France, was put under formal investigation Wednesday in a corruption and influence-peddling case. The latest twist in a case that has gripped France came a day after Sarkozy was held for questioning by the police for 15 hours, the French media reported, an unprecedented indignity for a former French president. Sarkozy, a conservative who led the country from 2007 to 2012, was detained and questioned before being taken to a Paris court to meet with investigators. The anti-corruption authorities in France are looking into whether Sarkozy, abetted by his lawyer, Thierry Herzog, sought to obtain information from an influential appeals court judge, Gilbert Azibert, about investigations linked to the former president, including an inquiry into the financing of his 2007 election campaign. They are also investigating whether Sarkozy, Herzog and Azibert worked together to reward Azibert for his help in the case with a post in Monte Carlo.
Police arrest 511 protesters
In a rare scene of disorder, Hong Kong authorities cleared out hundreds of protesters who blocked part of the city’s financial district, a high-profile reflection of rising anxiety over Beijing’s tightening grip on the little enclave of incomplete democracy at the southeastern edge of Communist China. Police arrested 511 people who staged an unauthorized overnight sit-in after a rally the day before in which tens of thousands of demonstrators marched in the streets for the right to elect a leader free of limits from Beijing.
Pope recognizes exorcist group
Exorcists now have a legal weapon at their disposal. The Vatican has formally recognized the International Association of Exorcists, a group of 250 priests in 30 countries who liberate the faithful from demons. The Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano reported that the Vatican’s Congregation for Clergy had approved the organization’s statutes and recognized the group under canon law. More than his predecessors, Pope Francis speaks frequently about the devil.
Arab teenager found dead
Anger over the killings of three Israeli teenagers kidnapped in the West Bank plunged Israel into another round of violence as the discovery of the charred body of an Arab teenager set off hours of clashes between enraged Palestinians and police. The body was found in a forest near a Jewish neighborhood of Jerusalem after reports that he had been forced into a car.
Compiled from wire reports